March 06, 2018

I've seen the world... you can have it

I've been made more aware of the earth's shortcomings lately. I've seen that a relationship isn't going to give me hope when my family falls ill or my deadlines approach. I've seen that staying busy with working out or writing or meeting friends for dinner doesn't stay with me long enough to get a sense of purpose. I've seen what happens when I expect more from others than myself. I've seen that some things, I simply cannot do alone. 

And I choose Jesus. 

Because when I've chosen Him, in the moments of uncertainty and fear, I've discovered a newfound sense of courage--not a change in circumstance, but a sense that I have 8 swords strapped to my waist should I need them. When I've let Jesus be the source of hope, I've realized that the direction I go will be baller, simply because He's in it. I've seen that the friends I have are for a purpose, not just to keep me company--that people will come and go and that's more than okay. 

I choose peace. I choose hope. I choose purpose. I choose redemption. I choose the fresh start, each day. I choose to believe that grace pours out in abundance over the sin and shame of my life, even today. I choose to trust that God is Who He says He is. I choose to believe that He loves me. I choose to believe that He is in the midst of every detail of my life, even the ones He allowed me to step into in my own free will. I believe that He wants goodness for my life, but that He will come into the darkness I have let into my heart and wait with me awhile, His arm still outstretched, waiting for me. I choose to trust that when He says He brings life and life more abundant, that He means it. Because I've seen it. I've never laughed more deeply. Never loved more genuinely. Never fought more fiercely. Never been more confident.

I choose the Hands that did the work, not the work of the Hands. 

February 09, 2018

Meltdown

I find myself on the edge of a meltdown. 

 

I’m in the unique position of knowing that one chapter of my life is coming to an end very soon, like three months soon, and not knowing what is to come after that. We humans do everything in our power to plan and prepare for “what’s next.” And when we don’t have that lined up, we are falling short. I have done my best to be open to what’s next, but open-mindedness is not an easy trait to possess when suffering with first-born syndrome. 

 

Sometimes, I think people assume that life gets easier when you follow Christ. And being the English major that I am, I feel obligated to address this word “easier” we tend to use:

 

Life does not get easier the closer to God you get. You do not become immune to trials and issues and conflict and illness and worry and confusion and loneliness. IF ANYTHING, the trials of Earth rear their ugly heads more often at you because you are living in a way that is counter to how culture and humans and the world want you to. The world wants you focused on money, power, fame and materials. Christ keeps it real simple for us: Keep your eyes fixed on Me. 

 

It’s easy to lose focus when the voices of others, the influence of the media and the songs playing in the background challenge what we deem as important. The messages we are receiving tell us we deserve things we really don’t. They tell us our bodies are merely objects and that our followers won’t notice our broken hearts if our clothes are pretty enough. They tell us to keep quiet about our faith, and that we have to be the best. 

 

And tonight, I’m noticing I’ve had my eyes fixed on the things of the world for a bit too long. The world has a way of twisting reality and photoshopping expectations until you’re convinced you’ll never measure up. 

 

If only we take a moment to seek God’s heart. The heart that loved us enough to send His Son to die so that we could live, a sacrifice my human brain can only semi-grasp every so often. The only detail we need to be concerned with is keeping our eyes locked on the One who loves us best and has a plan that proves it.

 

And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. Hebrews 12:1b-2a

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