Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Let Us Fight

I skyped with my parents tonight, well "skyped", they could see and hear me, but I couldn't see or hear them, so I talked on the phone and they saw every move I made, just about usual. I was feeling particularly homesick this evening and wanted a remedy for that, so all day I looked forward to seeing some of my family's faces. Then, the disappointment of not seeing them at all fell upon me. I was frustrated, but I said to myself, at least I can find comfort in telling them that I am not feeling like being in college and that I just want to go home for a little bit, but we got so stuck in our side talks and little conversations that I didn't get a chance to tell them or even have meaningful talk at all. A few times my eyes welled up in tears because I was so frustrated at the conversation, but suppressed them pretty quickly. So, I logged off of the suck skype session upset, disappointed, and feeling like I got gyped of something that I deserved. A walk seemed like the go to solution for all these pent up and angry frustrations.

I grabbed like three coats, two pants, my music, and yes a pair of shoes finally (seasons first snow!!), and headed for the great outdoors. I took three steps before I felt the frustration well up again in my heart and about four steps before I started talking with God about it all. The odd thing was that I started to talk with God and then stopped because I wanted to leave way for the tears and frustration and bitterness and disappointment. I began to hear truth about the situation and decided I didn't want to know it. I knew that God would give me something to be joyful about, would remind me of who He was and I didn't want anything to do with that, I wanted to just be upset. It was when I chose to let God speak truth that I heard it, but I had to be okay with stepping out of my lie first.

That got me thinking. What other parts of my life do I choose to live in lies because I am not ready to let God speak truth? What other parts of my life have I chosen brokenness because I don't want to be made whole? There's that story in the Bible when Jesus heals a cripple by the healing pond in the book of John and He asks the cripple if he wants to be healed. Everyone assumes that if Jesus asked us if we wanted to be healed of our insecurity, of our brokenness, of our lies, of our handicap, then we'd automatically say yes. And I used to jump on that bandwagon of assumptions, but now I'm not so sure. There are some parts of my life that I can't imagine changing. There are some sins that I've gotten so used to I don't know what life is like without them. There are some lies that I have grown so comfortable in believing, that I squirm when the truth is spoken about them.

What is it in being in lies that is so appealing to us? I think the better question would actually be, what is it in being healed of our lies that is so frightening? One of mine is fear of the unknown. But I know now that it is that fear that traps us in the "normals" and it holds us back from experiencing the joy of knowing God, in looking more like Him, of growth. Then I get stuck there. Okay, now I've recognized my fear, I can name it, I even know what it holds me back from. How do I conquer it? This came for me in asking and believing in the Strength that God gives to His Warriors. We are strong. We are strong enough to defeat our lies, we are strong enough to want to. God does not leave us to struggle and be captive to our fears. No, He pursues us in truth and gives us the right weapons to fight against the fear that holds us in our place. Ask God to show you the strength that is already in you to defeat the fear that this world breeds.
"Little children, you are from God and have overcome them, for he who is in you is greater than he who is in the world." - 1John 4:4
I leave you with the wise words of my older sister, "The only power that Satan has over you is to convince you of lies, but once you know the truth, then boom, he loses ALL power over you." We can live in truth, we can defeat the fears and temptations of this world. Let us fight.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011


A couple nights ago I wound up playing a game with a few of my friends. This is a strong indicator that hanging out with me could turn into a very boring event. So, here we are sitting outside of a frozen yogurt place and I force them to think about their summers and sum it all up in one word and then on top of that think of a metaphor or simile they would use to describe it. I'm thinking it would be wise to simply carry around catch phrase so that I don't force others to play weird made up games when I'm bored. Anyway, my friends were actually good sports and they played along. And I LOVED IT. We had great metaphors, great similes, great words! For example a couple of them were, "Encouraging. It was like doing an ironman with no time limit." "Humbling. It was like when a grandfather holds his grandchild for the first time." "Revealing. It was like only being allowed to take one thing with you to a deserted island." "Freedom. It was like the speech a general gives to his troops before battle." I loved it because there was something to discover beyond their responses. There were experiences, there were relationships, there were emotions that went into their similes. There was a story.

Story. Why is it when I type that word I have to stop and look at it for a while; I have to let my heart take a breathe of air? I look at that word and I think power. I think glory. I think freedom. I think heartache. I think pain. I think honesty. I think GOD and then I thank Him. What would happen if we all looked at our stories; if we all took hold of our pasts and our present and held them up in our small hands to God? What would happen if we weren't gripped by fear thinking about dealing with the pain and trauma that happened to us; if we eradicated them of lies? What would happen if we could take those stories and put them in God's Hands? If we could place them down and then say "You make me new, you are making me new." What if we could look back and instead of feeling shame, we felt the power of God whispering, "My power is made perfect in weakness...For when you are weak, then you are strong." 

Imagine (another one of my favorite words) the weapons that we would have against the enemy if we allowed God to turn our stories from ones of captivity, heartache, shame, burdens of great weight, pride, and sin into perfectionistic-breaking, mask-shattering NEON signs of His Glory and Love. WHOA! We would be a force to reckon with. Coming alongside those who were trembling from depression, loneliness, stress, exhaustion, pain, and fear and kneeling down to embrace them because we understand what it means to be lost. Coming alongside the prideful and being bold enough to say something because we know we've felt the same things and thought the same way. Letting our ministry being ones of "I've been there" instead of "You shouldn't be there". WHOA, WHOA, DOUBLE WHOA. That would be the ultimate welcome to church-the body compared to church-the place. 

So, I think that will be my prayer for a while. That we as the church will learn to take our stories, the good and the bad, and lay them down, whatever that means for us. Whether that means having to cry for a while, having to tell them to someone, having to read truth so that we can see the lies for the first time, having to jump up and down in joy and celebration, or having to talk to others in our past to find closure. That will be my prayer. I pray that for you and me. That our stories would cause the demons to tremble in fear, not smile in victory. "Satan, in the name of Christ, take your hands out of the minds of my brothers and sisters. Once your lies are discovered, they hold no more power...sucker! God, move in and begin to reveal truth, show us that a story cannot be told without first taking off the mask that we so often wear. Help us to use our stories as weapons of mass destruction against the demons of the spiritual world. I pray this for every one of my brothers and sisters, who I love a lot God, and also for me."

Friday, July 22, 2011

Whimsical Heartache

Whimsy, it’s a beautiful place, one of dreams, of running and never growing weary, of becoming everything you’ve ever wanted to be and more. It’s a place free of failure, free of pain, full of smiles.
In a place like this people can fly and fairies are real. There is no trouble, no arguments, no struggle. The water tastes sweet, the weather is warm, and people never want to leave.

Heartache, it’s a terrible place, one of nightmares, of running and never being caught, of becoming everything they’ve every wanted you to be and more. It’s a place free of trying, free of knowledge, full of false smiles.
In a place like this people fly away and fairies are the only thing that is real. There is no depth, no growing, no insight. The water is tasteless, the weather not noticed, and people can’t ever leave.

What people don’t know is that Heartache and Whimsy are the same land, viewed in a different lens, but having the same affect: pull someone out of reality, out of present. We can live with our heads in the clouds, or in the dirt, turning our eyes away from everything and playing make-believe or hiding because we don’t want to see the world. The fact of the matter is that one false land pulls our eyes up, the other down, but they both take them away from where they should be, straight ahead.

Our God gives us a world that doesn’t have to be full of fantasy or full of despair. He gives us a world that is full of both; He gives us a world that is real.

I have lived in both worlds. I have entered the singing white gates of whimsy, put my bag down and stayed a while. I have entered the decaying black gates of heartache and sank to my knees and stayed a while. In both lands I have felt utterly and terribly alone. Misunderstood, looked over, and unloved. Now, I have entered the slightly rusty, chipped away blue gate of my reality. And I see, heartache and whimsy are not a world in itself; they are not an idol to be sought after, nor a cell to be locked in. Heartache and whimsy are components of one world, one full of suffering and joy, full of struggle and benevolence, full of laughter and tears. One full of life, life to the fullest, life being known, life being free.

I invite you to enter into your own gate of reality. To look at your life through the lens that God has given us. Live a life full of turbulence, ups and downs, irregularity, confusion, uncertainty, and faith. Because we serve a God who is constant and He will be our rock, not this world. His Hand will be the one we squeeze tight in our anguish, fear, and sorrow and the Hand we raise high in celebration, joy, and laughter. And our Rock, our Guiding Hand, will make living not just bearable, but abundant. We can live life, not just cope through it. 

Friday, July 8, 2011

"The Mask I Wear"

THE MASK I WEARThis is a poem that I was given to me by a very wise woman. Just read through it, I feel like it speaks for itself (and the pictures are of my brother (looking good bro)).

Don't be fooled by me.
Don't be fooled by the face I wear
For I wear a mask. I wear a thousand masks-
   masks that I'm afraid to take off
     and none of them are me.    
Pretending is an art that's second nature with me
          but don't be fooled,
   for God's sake, don't be  fooled.
I give you the impression that I'm secure
That all is sunny and unruffled with me
   within as well as without,
    that confidence is my name
     and coolness my game,
    that the water's calm
   and I'm in command,
  and that I need no one.
But don't believe me. Please!

My surface may be smooth but my surface is my mask,
My ever-varying and ever-concealing mask.
Beneath lies no smugness, no complacence.
Beneath dwells the real me in confusion, in fear, in aloneness.
   But I hide this.
    I don't want anybody to know it.
     I panic at the thought of my
      and fear exposing them.
That's why I frantically create my masks
          to hide behind.
They're nonchalant, sophisticated facades
          to help me pretend,
To shield me from the glance that
But such a glance is precisely my salvation,
   my only salvation,
       and I know it.

That is, if it's followed by acceptance,
   and if it's followed by love.
It's the only thing that can liberate me from myself
   from my own self-built prison walls

I dislike hiding, honestly
I dislike the superficial game I'm playing,
   the superficial phony game.
I'd really like to be genuine and me.
But I need your help, your hand to hold
Even though my masks would tell you otherwise
That glance from you is the only thing that assures me
   of what I can't assure myself,
     that I'm really worth something.

But I don't tell you this.
   I don't dare.
      I'm afraid to.
I'm afraid you'll think less of me, that you'll laugh
   and your laugh would kill me.
I'm afraid that deep-down I'm nothing,
        that I'm just no good
             and you will see this and reject me.

So I play my game, my desperate, pretending game
With a facade of assurance without,
And a trembling child within.
So begins the parade of masks,

The glittering but empty parade of masks,
   and my life becomes a front.
I idly chatter to you in suave tones of surface talk.
I tell you everything that's nothing
   and nothing of what's everything,
                 of what's crying within me.
So when I'm going through my routine
   do not be fooled by what I'm saying
Please listen carefully and try to hear
   what I'm not saying
Hear what I'd like to say
   but what I can not say.

It will not be easy for you,
   long felt inadequacies make my defenses strong.
The nearer you approach me
   the blinder I may strike back.
Despite what books say of men, I am irrational;
I fight against the very thing that I cry out for.
   you wonder who I am
    you shouldn't
     for I am everyman
     and everywoman
      who wears a mask.
Don't be fooled by me.
At least not by the face I wear.
-----author unknown and it has been published in a number of books and on the web.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Process of You Are Still

You are still. These three words have been the focus point for me these past few weeks and all of last semester. I never thought I would use those words as often and with such grave importance as I have grown to use them. It starts with something way earlier than saying them though. You see those words, they start with realization, then experiencing and letting go, and ends with trust and contentment.

Let's just start with the beginning, with brokenness and hopelessness. We all have experienced something be it big or small that has left us hurt. Some of us have been hurt so bad that we have run away from the anguish, from the sorrow, from the piercing pain that comes with thinking about it. So, instead of looking at it, we put up a wall, a mask to pretend that it didn't happen and we run. We run as fast as we can away from ever having to look at or deal with the pain that has been bestowed upon us. Some of us take our hurt and we say that we've got everything under control and we can find our own way of dealing with it and our own way of healing. We do so completely away from God because this is just a small thing and we don't need to bother God with such small things. After all, God is a big God who is in control of the universe who doesn't need to look at the things that we can deal with and we are just small people, how could He care about just one person and their small problems?

Saying the words You Are Still takes first realizing that there is brokenness in your life, that there are things that have happened that hurt, that are not fun to think of, that you wish had never happened. It takes realizing that God is a big God, yes, but also that He is a God that cares about YOU, that cares about everything you think about and everything you go through, no matter how small. He LOVES you, it takes realizing that and recognizing that He wants an intimate relationship with you.

Then we walk through it. It's not that we recognize the hurt and then we find immediate healing without ever having to walk through what it was that hurt us, what it felt like to be hurt, what thoughts and events occurred that dug the knife in. We walk through it, we begin to feel for the first time. We see what it was that hurt us, we deal with the river of pain that we built that fantastic dam for. And it hurts. But we continue to walk through it, because we have a reason for doing it, we have a hope that is being restored as we walk and talk about it with the Lord. Because, we're not just walking through our pain for the sake of walking through it; we're walking through it because Christ has promised healing and we are holding on to the promise with our whole lives. And we are giving up the reigns to all of our hurt to the Lord as we walk through our anguish. We are putting these emotions and tears at the feet of Christ. And you know what, He's catching them before they even hit the ground and He's looking at us with Love so fierce we are overwhelmed to experience it.

Then the words come. Then the You Are Still is uttered. As we are in anguish, as we are sobbing uncontrollably, as we are feeling for the first time the things that we've spent our life running from, we utter the words: You. Are. Still. "God, You are still good. You are still in control. You still love me. You still have a good plan for my life. You are still faithful. You are still forgiving. You are still with me. You are still accepting. You are still calling me Child. You still see me. You still catch me. You are still who You say You are." And as we utter these words we see a transformation. A transformation from the lies that Satan has spent so long convincing of us into the Truth that God has placed in our lives that NEVER change or alter. We see a transformation from all that we are not into all that Christ is. We lay our pain at His feet and find the healing He places in our hands. We find freedom from the anguish we've been chained to all this time. We find the reason for the cross, and in that we rejoice.

You Are Still Everything. Thank You Lord!

Sunday, July 3, 2011


I do a lot of work at the local coffee house at Purdue and in the lobby of my residency hall. They're not necessarily the most quiet places, but I find my comfort, my normalcy, my mojo so to speak in this small uproar. I talked to my counselor a few days ago letting him know that I was just struggling to stay above water in my classes and he asked where I studied, I proceeded to tell him what I just told you and his response was the whole, "maybe you should consider a quieter place to study". My little heart and mind did an imaginary gasp inside of myself, a quiet place to study, NO WAY! I freaked out, and decided I was just going to nod and smile, but there was no way I was changing my habit.

Now that I'm sitting in my coffee house comfort zone in the midst of the dull uproar of conversations about everything, people wasting time, people being WAY productive, and everyone drinking coffee and just being, I'm wondering why I was so opposed to a quiet place. What's in the quiet that I find disturbing, that I find upsetting and worth gasping about? Maybe the answer is in the question. What? The quiet is a mystery (or at least for me it is), it's a place where all of a sudden we are who we are and we are slapped with a rude awakening of reality, no more lies, no more distractions. A dull uproar, that pretty much characterizes my whole life. Running from place to place, something planned every day, studying out the wazoo, and work to pay for my expensive coffee house habits. Quiet isn't exactly something that I come across every day and when I do my brain doesn't just stop, it keeps going, desperately trying to escape from this situation of rest. It takes a while just for me to stop thinking to go to sleep!

Yet, God desires us to be in rest with Him, to sit with Him in Silence and listen to His Voice whispering in the wind. God desires us to rest from our daily lives so that our souls may find peace and renewal and may be poured into by His amazing fountain of Life; but it takes seeking out. We have to actually seek out the quiet in our culture; we must search for a place that is our own and be able to sit with the Lord. "... the crowds of people came to hear him and to be healed of their sicknesses. But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed." - Luke 5:15-16. Christ did it in the peak of His ministry, so why should we not withdraw from our daily lives and be in touch with the Creator of the Universe and every cell? Take some time this day and sit with the Lord. Be it through journaling, sitting in some nature, listening to worship music, going for a walk, reading your Bible, or praying. See what happens when we lose the uproar.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Falling Floor

Okay, I want to paint a scene for you. So, it's National Treasure 2 (for the record I'm not a huge fan of this movie...Nicolas Cage, you try, but to no avail...but they have already put into image what I want you to think of, so here goes). The group gets into trouble as they find themselves in a room where the floor shifts from side to side as they move around. It's got one support beam in the center of the floor that keeps it perfectly balanced, but if any weight is placed anywhere else then the whole floor moves, like a giant, I'm-not-messing-around-sized, teeter-totter.

Let's put you or me on this floor, we at first start at the middle, but as time goes on we begin to see things on the sides of this shifty floor that we desire. So we take a step towards it, at first we feel the ground shift a little bit under our weight, but not enough to freak us out, so we take another step and reach our hands out and pick it up. But then, we see something farther out on the floor that we want even more than the thing that we have. So, we begin to step out again, farther and farther on this floor until we feel the entire floor start to fall out from under us and in a frenzy, a panic, a mad sprint we dash to the other side of the floor to compensate for how much we overstepped on the other side and we feel the floor descend back into its normal position for a nanosecond, but then it too begins to plummet downwards into the dark abyss, so we sprint again to the other side and that continues until we are exhausted from running.

"The man who fears God will avoid all extremes." -Ecclesiastes 7:18b.

God is the one who stands at the middle of this treacherous floor and softly calls our name as we run past Him trying to overcorrect ourselves. "Child, if you would rest and stay here with me, your floor will settle out, you will find peace." "Oh God, You don't understand I've got to fix this, I've got to correct my mistake and this is the only way to do that. I have to make up for the bad that I've done!"

We think that we have the solution to the problems that are in our lives; we think that we can fix our mistakes, but we end up worrying, or sprinting, or panicking through life until we are so worn out we lay down and just let ourselves fall. It takes giving that up and listening to the words of our Father for our panicked sprints to cease and for us to settle into the peace and steadiness that our Lord gives us. That's not to say that our lives will be smooth sailing, that as we put our trust in God, our finances will be abundant and school will get easy and our relationships will be perfect, but that we will find peace in the fact that God has control and desires good things in our lives and we trust that He is Bigger than our problems!

What extremes do you resort to? How do you dismiss God's call to rest in the middle ground and dash from one falling floor to the other? Think about them, lay them down before the Lord, and discover the rest God extends to us, the middle ground and firm foundation He places underneath our feet.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Barefoot and Feeling

I love walking barefoot. I love taking off my shoes and feeling the ground that I walk on, feeling the dirt, the rocks, the cement, the asphalt, the grass, everything. My feet seem to breathe and be set free from their enclosed prison when I whip my shoes off and continue on with no sole between the ground and I.

During finals week I ended up walking all over campus finding new places to study so that I didn’t get extremely bored with my head in the books. As I walked to new places, both far and near to my dorm I often threw my shoes off, put them in my bag, and took my time to get wherever I was going.

This particular day I was walking to the Veterinary Library (it’s like the cone of silence in that place, but one of my good friends loves to study there so that’s where I went), way down on the southern part of our campus. I was walking along a particularly un-kept sidewalk with large patches of rocks and broken cement. I was, of course, walking barefoot and gingerly finding the path of least pain across these sections when it hit me, “my obsession for walking barefoot is a perfect example of living with an open heart.

Our hearts are tender things; they are susceptible to pain at a higher level and are easily broken when left out to the public. We build walls up for our hearts; we put them in cages of gold so that our community thinks that they’re whole. We cater to images set for us and we convince ourselves that we are who we say we are. In other words, we put shoes on our hearts as we walk through life.

People tell me I’m crazy for not wearing shoes, they tsk-tsk me and warn me of “tape worms” or other parasites that I can catch. Now I know that walking barefoot isn’t risk free and actually heightens the chances of getting hurt. There’s glass that I can step on, there are thorns waiting to embed their selves in the bottom of my flesh; but I am not ignorant of the danger I have in barefoot walking, I simply choose to risk it, because I think that feeling what I walk on and the freedom of being shoeless is worth the risk.

People in this world will call you crazy for living with a shoeless heart, but choosing to do so is not about living in ignorance of the risk that comes with living vulnerably. It’s about seeing the risk and trusting that God will take care of you; seeing that the risk is worth the result: freedom. As we live with hearts that are bare and as we feel the world that we walk in, we will see more and more of who God is and how He loves those around us, how He love us. We will feel the pain of others, the pain that we never dealt with and the pain of the Lord as He sees His Children choosing the wrong path. We will feel the joy that the Lord pours out, we will feel the hope that He gives every morning. We will feel the awe that He puts in our lives as we live through the mundane. We will feel as Christ felt, wept as He wept, and rejoice as He rejoiced. That’s what comes as we take the shoes off and we live feeling.

So today, this moment, and every moment to come, I ask you, Will you choose to embrace the risk? Will you choose to take off the shoes of your heart and feel? Will you experience the rocky cement and the jagged glass for the sake of feeling the cool grass, the soft dirt and the surface that you live through? It's not a one-time choice, it's about choosing every day to be intentional, to be God-glorifying, to be who God meant us to be. It's about recognizing that our hearts are not our own, our pain is not ours alone. It's about recognizing that our lives are not the whole thing, but simply a piece of the Big Puzzle the Creator is putting together. So tie your shoes together and throw them on the telephone line, put them over your shoulder, dangle them in your hand as you walk on, barefoot and feeling.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011


What are Dreams? And by dreams I mean aspirations in life. What are yours? What do they mean to you? Seriously, I want to know! Give me some feedback on this one if you don't mind. Leave a comment on this blog, send me a facebook message, text me, call me, email me (enyart@purdue.edu), whatever you're comfortable with.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Empty, Blank, Open, New

There's something about an empty soundtrack, an unwritten journal, an uninhabited campus, an open field, a blank campus. It's full of potential, full of hope, decisions, opportunity, and mystery! Anything and everything can happen and imagination is let loose. Memories seep into the scene and the mind just let's loose like a child in a giant playground. Especially when the weather plays along with the game, stormy, windy, rainy, overcast.

Sometimes these types of situations are idolized as something unreal and can be held onto as a replacement to reality, but we're not going to go there, we're taking this a different direction (I just wanted you to be aware there's another way of thinking of this and that is living in the future or the fantasy, but that's definitely NOT what we're discussing).

We'll take each moment and make each day like a blank canvas, an empty soundtrack, a clear campus and open field. Let's take the moment you fling off the covers and we'll hit play on the symphony, rock band, piano, or acoustic set. We'll tell the campus to clear and your brain to play. This day, these 24 hours, the ones that are here only in the minute, the second that we live through them. These blank slates, empty soundtracks, clear snow, and open fields the ones that are only so as long as we walk through them, write in them, paint on them, and play alongside them, they are the ones that we're talking about, these are the new moments, the playgrounds, the times that we need to present in. "Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself." Matthew 6:34.

Tune into the moment, live your life as it comes at you, not as you reach towards it, or look back on it. We serve a God with a great plan, an amazing purpose, and an awe-inspiring Love and Devotion. What better time to partake in His Plan than the very moment that you're breathing in and out? God is the One pushing play on our soundtrack, erasing our canvas so it's new, clearing the fields so they're fresh for our sight, erasing the Words and ink spots in our journals so that we can write new words and make new impacts. He's the One who wakes us up and watches as we go. He's the One that whispers the invitation, "Live for Me today, this moment, dear Child of Mine. Partake in My Great Plan for this world, fight the good fight alongside me and find the overabundant JOY that comes with it, the ever-increasing STRENGTH that saturates my armies...live for Me, choose to draw closer to Me, fill your canvas today with Everlasting ink. You see, Child, 'The grass withers and the flowers fall, but [My] Word...stands forever" -Isaiah 40:8.

Everyday, Child, everyday, the Lord extends this offer to you. Everyday He tells us about His Great Plan: "As the rain and snow come down from heaven and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish, so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater, so is My Word that goes out from My Mouth: it will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it" -Isaiah 55: 10-11. That is His Great Plan, and we are invited to partake in it, live in it, and send back His Word fruitful and growing. Wake up this next morning and hear His Invitation, choose to dwell in it, and Live in the Moment, filling your empty soundtrack, your blank canvas with Everlasting impacts.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Holes Shown

"Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective." James 5:16. 

This passage is amazing for two reasons, 1: it talks about community, fellowship, the Church the way it was intended and still is intended to be and 2: It validates and speaks volumes into the POWER of prayer. 

Confess your sins to each other...you see, this section had not been brought to my attention until my freshman year in college (which is now, but I wanted to sound older. =] ). I had always imagined confessing my sins to God and to God only and that He was going to be the One forgiving them and then letting them go, you know like it was a checklist and once I gave them to Him He'd get rid of them in my life. Or at least, that's what I told myself and if I got stuck in the sin, then oh well, I'd just keep confessing. So, this whole confessing to others, no way, that requires too much and makes the sin too real. It forces me to need a Savior because someone in the world knows of my inadequacy and I can't keep pretending that I can earn my own salvation and be my own Savior. 

Could you imagine what community would look like, what a leader-follower relationship would look like, what a Church would look like if this was practiced? Confessing our sins to each other, even the ones that we keep deep in our hearts, that we bury and hold down with shame and guilt and remorse? 

Let's try something. Picture a sin, not one that you forgot to pray over a meal or that you got mad at your brother or whatnot, but one that you've struggled with over and over again. One that you feel enslaved to, one that you return to time and time again as a dog returns to their vomit. The ones like addiction to pornography, lust, hating your body, defining yourself by others, doubts about God's Existence. The ones like cutting, abusing your body, abusing someone else's, like pre-marriage sex.  

Now, think about looking someone in the eye, watching them blink, crease their eyebrows, lean in attentively and tell them, tell that person your sin, the one coated in slime, the one held in so long that you don't even know how to live without. Does it make you cringe? Does it make your face flush in embarrassment? Does it make your heart curl up and tighten? That's the opposite of freedom. God, came and proclaimed a message of true FREEDOM. He gave us community so that we may drop our chains, not so that we can pick them up. God, tells us to confess our sins to each other so that we may grow and get rid of the footholds that the demons hold in the darkness. 

But it doesn't end there, He says to pray over them for healing. Think about the healing that can begin when you confess your sin to someone righteous, and Godly and they place their hands on you and pray that God will come in and bind your broken heart, can release you from the enslavement this sin has over you. That my friend is freedom.

So, grab hold of your image, the false one that shows perfect skin, a perfect heart and a whole person, and peel it back, however painful it might be. Reveal to someone here on this Earth that underneath that person is one riddled with holes and rips, one enslaved by sin and desperate for a new life, for healing. Show your holes and find your freedom, just as the Lord intended it to be.

Check out the video that is posted explaining the song Healing Begins by Tenth Avenue North too, a lot of what I said I got from that video.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

College-the God Way

There are a few things in college that just come accepted: lack of sleep, money deficiency, eating weird things in the fridge that might be expired, pizza, late nights, friends, change, COFFEE, and stress (loads of it). Some of these things are great, a few other things, whew boy they SUCK. Stress being the biggest one, but what does college look like for the one dependent on the Lord?

It seems to me, that the answer is one of submission, sacrifice, and letting go. Submission to His Will, His Plan, and His Desires for our lives (which I guarantee will grant you the desires of your heart); Sacrifice of Our Plans, and Will, as well as friends, money, and maybe comfort; Letting Go of our stress, brokenness, hurt, and "rights" given to us here on Earth (right to our time, right to good service, right to friendship, etc). You see, the decisions we make in the present have two outcomes: they draw you closer to God, or they take you away (apathy ie non-growth is an example of being taken away).

The week before Spring Break was full of stress, loads of it. But with stress, it's crazy to see how when you give it up to the Lord you feel instantly closer to Him. It's like when you admit you're stressed to a good friend and they take you in their arms, wrapped all the way around your body and just squeeze you tight letting you know everything is going to be okay. When we admit our stress to the Lord we take away the walls and the false perceptions that it doesn't exist or that we can handle it and He pulls us into a close hug, one that tells us things are going to be okay. And we relax, our shoulders, they loose their tense strain and a sigh of breathe escapes from our mouths. God, the Creator of the World, the Stars, Laughter, Happiness, and Joy takes us in His Arms and says, "I am He, I am He who will sustain you. I have made you and I will carry you; I will sustain you and I will rescue you." (Isaiah 46:4). Can you imagine The God of The Universe, the One who has, "measured the waters in the hollow of His Hand and with the breadth of His Hand marked off the heavens" (Isaiah 40:12), whispering this into your ear as you give up your control and let Him hold You tight, let Him say to you, "'Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest." (Matthew 11:28). This is true of Brokenness, Pain, Hurt, Sin, etc. God is faithful in His Response through all of it!


Ears, God made two of them. Maybe, He made two for the very reason that we are to listen to Him above for our security and our identity, and then to those around us as an act of love. That's what I walked away with from this past week sharing my faith in Panama City Beach, Florida with Campus Crusade during Big Break. Now, if any of you are aware of Panama City Beach (PCB) then you understand that it is party-central for most college students and even some high schoolers during Spring Break. Everyone is drinking alcohol and walking around in skimpy clothing; it's what the youth of America loves.

This week we learned about listening intently, not planning the next question or statement, but sincerely taking an interest in others lives and showing them the Love that their Creator has for them. I had conversations like no other with these party-ers and I loved every second of them. I had the blessing of leading a beautiful middle school girl named Hannah to Christ, watched my ex-roommate come to Christ, and was able to share the Gospel in its original format, saturated with Love, Interest, and Desire to know the other person, with so many people on that beach. I could not believe how incredibly fruitful ministry can be when the intent is solely to Love another.

When we went out, we didn't go with the intention to force the Gospel, but simply to listen, to take an interest, to show those out there that we care about their lives, their existence, and that there was a God out there who paid attention to them a gazillion times more than we ever could. It was BEAUTIFUL, AMAZING, OUTSTANDING, to simply care for those out there. When's the last time that we looked at the strangers around our campus and sincerely took an interest in their lives, in their eternal destination? When have we looked into the eyes of those passing by us and wondered what they thought about God, and how they've been hurt? When's the last time we've even CARED for the lost and broken, not even LOVED them, but just cared? As the atheist Penn says, "How much do we have to hate someone to sincerely believe that they are going to hell for not believing in Christ and then not sharing that with them?"

Now, that we've got one ear explained, the other comes into play, the one listening to the Lord for our security and for Truth. We cannot let the lies that Satan plants in our minds take hold of our lives and rule them. Lies that we don't know enough about Christianity to share the Gospel and share our faith. As long as we know the Love of the Lord and have the Holy Spirit leading, we can say no wrong words. We plant the seed and water it, but God is the One who Grows it. Lies that we do not matter or are too small to make a difference, or lies that our reputations are on the line. People are grateful to us for sharing our Father's Love, now some are not, but most are. After all, who hates having a Loving person sit down with them and intently pay attention to their lives and their hurt, pain, and brokenness?

People, I pray that our hearts will be awakened to the Lost, to the Broken, to the Sick who need Healing. I pray that our desires will be driven towards getting to know others, not trying to convert others. With true Love comes the desire for them to celebrate with you forever in Heaven, for them to know God and to give their reigns to Christ, because we know that wholeness and complete satisfaction only comes from the One who Created us! I pray that we are bold in our Love, strong in our Passion, faithful in our Calling, and fruitful in our Sharing.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Shadow Walking

Around midnight, a brisk 45 degrees, clothed in jeans, cut-off rainboots, double jacket, and rainbow beanie. Upon the back a guitar and backpack filled with school books, camera, notebooks, and Bible. The streets lit with a dim glow of mystery and cars whiz by leaving behind breezes to move hair and thoughts. A window slams shut, car alarm goes off, voices yell, and "city" noises envelop the air. I breathe in a fresh breath, and lay my foot in front of the other, time and time again.

I wandered home tonight (and in my opinion that's the best way to do it) and I talked out loud (yes, like a looney) with the Lord. And as I walked I looked down, I watched my shadow, I watched as it moved, I looked at the guitar as it bobbed above my head and I noticed the new curves in my thighs (those cursed dining courts...=]) and you know what I didn't notice...everything. My campus, with all the life it's filled with come nighttime silence remained unnoticed for good stretches of my journey, the lives that walked past me remained unthought of, and the nature that screamed out in unspoken languages remained uninterpreted.

How often do we wander through our life focused on our shadow? Focused on our own brokenness, our own faults, our own vices and stumbling blocks, how often do we miss everything? You see, God gave His Son not just for us, but for the person we jostle on the street corner, the person we drive past when commuting, the person we sit near in class. You see, God made the World, everything in it with His Hands and called it good. You see, God has eyes for these people, this world, and this hurt. So often, we look to our shadow and ask God to fix the brokenness, the sin, the temptation, and the hurt and we lose sight of God's beauty, strength, love, grace, renewal, hope, redemption, and compassion so embedded in the world and relationships around us.

Now, I am NOT saying that understanding and seeing our brokenness and vices is not important, because to not know what our sin is, is to let Satan have a ledge, not just a foothold. But what I am saying is that as we pour ourselves out to those around us, as we worship God in His Creation, and as we look outside of ourselves, we understand what it means to be glorifying God, to be dying to self. As we pour out, we begin to understand what it means to be poured into. As we feel for this World, we begin to understand how God feels for us. As we love, we begin to understand what it means to be loved. As we bring healing to others, we begin to understand what it means to be healed.

You want to know what I'm grateful for in my wander home tonight? I looked up before it was too late to see what was around. I encourage you, look up, notice the world, pour out as God pours in, love as You've been loved. Don't wait until you are that grown, matured, and ready Christian to jump into this world and the ministry it is in desperate need of. Jump in and see how you grow because of it.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Leather-Bound, Cloth-Woven Journal

For graduation one of my babysitting clients gave me an amazing journal to write in. Pretty much TOO amazing quite frankly. It's leather-bound, with cloth stitching woven in crazy flower patterns into the cover. On the inside, it's like old egyptian papyrus with no lines (you know something is creative and for artistic use when there are no lines). I've looked at that journal for a while wondering what's good enough to write in it, what sort of pen should I use, what kind of thoughts are good enough for this beautiful journal?

This is why when I'm journal shopping I never buy the ones that look like this. There's so much pressure to write the right things and the right way when I'm using it. I usually stand at the rack where the journals are lined and my eyes stop on the super-journal, but I keep going not even letting myself fall into the misconception that I have enough money for this one, or that I would even have anything to put into it. On an adventurous day I pick up the coveted journal and I run my fingers over the pages, feel the woven intricacies on my fingertips lightly and slide it right back into its spot. It's gorgeous, but expensive.

I feel like I look at my Lord as a beautiful journal. I don't want to write my life in Him because what I have to say is not deep enough, it's not good enough, or pretty enough. My words, they don't look fancy, they fall below what deserves to be written in that journal. So, I take a step to the side and I pick up the journal with the flimsy cover and lined notebook pages; the one that I feel like I deserve. I put His Sacrifice back on the shelf and say, I'm not worthy. I don't deserve the best, I haven't worked hard enough for it. I am not pretty enough or smart enough to be in His Presence. Hold on, wait just a few more years and I'll be better and we'll do this again, when I'm at my best, just wait, Lord, just wait.

The beauty of the Lord is that He says, "no, my Daughter. I want you right now. I want you broken. I want you when you're hurting. I want you when you doubt me because I love you." He never says, "no you are good enough," he never says, "you've worked hard enough," he never says, "you are strong enough." He simply says, "I AM good enough. I AM strong enough. I AM big enough."

God wants us to understand that someone has already paid for our leather-bound, cloth-woven journals. All we have to do is receive it and continue to receive it. For what good is our journal if it sits at home after we carried it back from the store and kept it closed because we were afraid that we might spoil it with our writing. God wants us to fill its pages with our lives, so that He may write back showing us how He's there. So, open your God-given journals and fill its pages with words, emotions, people, dreams, hopes, despairs, struggles, LIFE; for when He opens them to read them, He smiles at the chicken scratch that we have filled it with and He whispers "I love you" on every page. He touches them and let's forgiveness, mercy, compassion, and grace flow into every crevice and every ink spot, so that when we open them anew for a fresh day with the Lord, every blessing He placed in it the day before, and that moment then, and the day tomorrow comes flowing out into our lives so that we may see how GREAT our God is and how BEAUTIFUL His Promises and Fulfillments are.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Words and People

I recently got back from a women's retreat at my church where 100 women gathered in a cabin with four bedrooms and plenty of floor space to be slept on and be...well, women together. We made button rings, talked, laughed, colored with crayons on the tablecloth, and stayed up incredibly late, ultimately falling asleep closer than we really needed to be. The weekend's theme: story.

Now, if you know me you understand the deep obsession I have for stories, both for telling them and hearing them. And recently I've been trying to figure out why I am so in love with stories, why they mean so much to me, and give me that little-kid-imagination high. I think I've got it, you see, stories relate two of my greatest passions in life: words and people. Stories are sharing a significant part of our lives with significant people in our lives; they take the everyday situations that we relay and they envelop them entirely in word-wrapping paper of beauty, suave, adventure, excitement, completeness, and fantasy. A story requires two components to exist: a writer (one who experienced the situation and is sharing it out loud or on paper) and the one sitting at the feet, listening. A story means being intentional and letting others see into your life, ergo the essential role in community within our Spiritual Story. We are called to not just experience our stories and keep them inside, but to validate them by speaking them out loud to the listener, sitting at our feet experiencing our story with us.

A good listener, the one that doesn't merely sit through your story, but runs through it with you, climbs in it, and breathes along you throughout it, is like a good back to lean on. Seriously, have you ever been sitting on the floor for an extended period of time with nothing to rest your back against? You basically get the option between criss-cross-applesauce or the lean-back on the hands. Either one is ridiculously harder now then it was when we were five and sitting Indian-Style was the hot commodity of rug-time. Well, there weren't enough chairs for all of us women at this retreat so we popped a squat on the floor. It had been a long grueling two hours of sitting (it really wasn't all that grueling, but for the sake of the story....ya know. =]) and I leaned agaisnt my friend Jessica, her back against mine, and discovered this amazing and immediate relief! We both got something out of this wall that we offered up, we both put in just as much strength as we pulled out, but the best part about it was that we were connected. When she was talking to her friends on the opposite side of me I didn't just hear her words, I FELT them. I could sense them as they traveled and vibrated throughout her body. And when she swayed, my body swayed with hers, when she leaned over to readjust I fell backwards unsuspectingly.

Community when rooted in the Lord is like that. Not just listening, but feeling, not just watching, but moving with, not just one-sided, but completely trusting on both ends. When we tell our Stories in Community, that's how it should be received, and that's how we should be receiving: intentionally, lovingly, caringly, and legitimately interested, not judging, and definitely not comparing their stories with our own. God gave each one of us a Great Story and we each get to experience Him in it in a beautifully unique way.

Maybe your story calls you to be vulnerable and trust others with your heart, maybe your story calls you to show others that you're not perfect, or that you haven't grown in your relationship with the Lord in years, or maybe that you never really started one with Him at all. God calls us to take this step, He calls us to risk our hearts, our "identities", and our masks. He calls us to give up our false stories, the ones we paint, so that we can take up the one He painted for us. We cannot hold onto our images of ourselves with one hand and reach out for His Image of us with the other. He calls us to extend both hands, dropping everything in the process to receive the Monet of our Image from His Gracious Hands. This is what it means to tell our stories, the real ones, in the fashion that He practiced Story telling. And if you just need someone to sit at your feet to hear yours, be in prayer that the Lord will send you your listener, your fellow-back to lean on. "You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart." Jeremiah 29:13

So, what's your story? Not just the story of being chased by a squirrel across campus and feeling like you were never going to escape its beady little eyes (although if you have stories like that please share because I am ALWAYS down for a good laugh *cough* I mean solid sympathizing), but What's your story in Christ? Seek the answer to this one, and in your journey for the answer, have regular Story-time with your Community, be real, be authentic, and share your life with those who walk alongside you.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Jagged Bagels

I feel like there's this constant feud of balance between technology and mom-n-pop culture within our society. There's the comfort of the "over-the-belly" jeans vs the fashion appeal of the "off-the-hip-potential-plumber's-crack" jeans, the authenticity of the "take-up-a-whole-wall" calendar vs the convenience of the "punch-it-in" iPhone, or even the efficiency of the backing-up camera on SUV's vs. the fun of the trial and error way of backing up in olden days.

Things have changed, some for the good, but some for the worse. This morning I had two exams to look forward to so I decided to put a great start to this imminently foreboding day. I strapped on my rainbow suspenders, rainbow beanie, and walked down to the best coffeehouse in the world (Greyhouse) to get my all-too-normal skim cinnamon latte and then picked up a bagel from Einstein's. As I ordered my bagel toasted and creamed, the woman, who was a little stressed cause of the busyness, threw my bagel into a metal chute of death, and the sound of my bagel screaming out for life as the blades roared out maliciously and just sliced that poor piece of dough in half was heart-wrenching. She then grabbed the bagel without looking and put it into the toaster 5000, within two seconds that thing was fried. I got my bagel in a minute and a half, and then she didn't look at me again and just moved onto the next person in line.

Now, I was grateful for the fast service, but a part of me felt like I missed out. This bagel-slicer and turbo-toaster had replaced the human touch of a jagged bagel cut with a normal knife and the awkward silence of a couple minutes of toasting bagel time. I had this grand revelation as I walked to class, bagel in hand and coffee in tow, what else in our lives have we replaced with this bagel-slicer to speed up time, make things convenient, and clean up appearances? Our culture is addicted to harder, better, faster, stronger. We commit to short-answered questions in greeting, we are always on the move, and we are obsessed with numbers.

Within the church we are obsessed with numbers, how many attended the service, how many came to this group, how much did we get from offering, how many came to Christ? What about that one boy who comes in the back late, sits by himself on that last seat in the last row wondering if church, if God was the answer to his pain? Who's going to notice the unnoticeable when we're so focused on the outcome of the crowd? What about the one individual who took years to come to Christ, and had to choose to go against everything they've ever lived for, family included, and we simply say, go pray with this group of elders? What about the person who is in desperate need to be seen and asked the question 'how are you?' sincerely? We are the answer to these questions, our imperfect, faulty, humanly hands, time, and lives. We are the ones who are called to see these people, these hurts, these fears, and we are called to reach out, to stop our lives, and to put some interest in their lives.

The super sliced bagel was cleaner cut, that I'm not going to argue with, the appearance was superb, but our lives are not about projecting the image. We are often told that to be accepted we must have a clean, good looking surface; but those who are related to and make a difference in others lives, they're real, they're imperfect, and they're aware and accepting of that. Our imperfections are not to hide away behind the perfection shield of "great!" responses, they are to be seen, to be real, so that we are relatable and have the Touch of Life in us.

Christ pays attention to us, on a secondly basis. He sees us, He notices us, He holds us, and "makes" the time for us.  "You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways. Before a word is on my tongue you know it completely, O Lord" - Psalm 139: 2-4. Slow down friend, mean what you say, pay attention to those who slink in the shadows, be intentional, put your touch on lives, be the jagged, imperfect bagel.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011


Walls, Pride, Self-Assurance, Solitude, Hiding, Plans, Humor, Energy, Chaos, SECURITY.

I link all of these things together in my life. I feel that if I can only attain these things, then the situations and emotions that I don't really want to face or struggle through go away. If I'm funny enough or have enough people around me feeding off of my energy, if I struggle independently and not tell anyone I'm struggling, then it makes the struggle non-existent. If I hide my emotions and thoughts well enough then they will stop existing, they'll go away. If I can carry myself through my hurt, then I don't have to be vulnerable and life is better. All of this seems to act in a cyclone effect, the more I hide, the more I hurt and the more I hurt the more I want to hide, do you see how that goes? Never really seeming that you're better?

Now, I've got this friend, she's a sophomore in my Campus Crusade group and she's got this post-it note pinned to her desk. It's bright yellow, like neon yellow, the kind that when you see you feel that a bit of your retina has been eternally damaged, and on this yellow card it says, "God, you are bigger than_____". When I see that card (every time I go into her room, guaranteed), I put "my pride" in that blank and my fierce desire to struggle on my own is shone for the weakness that it is. The Lord made us to be vulnerable with each other for a reason. When we take down our walls with each other, when we lose the self-assurance, then we find our SECURITY in the Lord, and not in ourselves. It's better then anything we could have provided, we are filled with the Lord's LOVE and we are empowered to share His Grace.

"Who has measured the waters in the hollow of his hand, or with the breadth of his hand marked off the heavens? Who has held the dust of the earth in a basket, or weighed the mountains on the scales and the hills in a balance?" Isaiah 40: 12. God, You are bigger then my pride, You are bigger then my insecurity, You are bigger then my pain, and my struggles. God, You are bigger then my Walls. You are bigger than my fears, You are bigger then my purpose alone, You are bigger than my agenda, my grades, my success, and my thoughts.

Fulfilled Promises, Sincerity, Empathy, Love, Beauty, Grace, Purpose, Mercy, Compassion, ABBA FATHER, my SECURITY.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011


Every once in a while I enjoy looking through a slideshow of the many many pictures that accumulate in my computer. I usually pick a few folders, arrange the slideshow so that i get three or four pictures zooming in and out of the frame every 5 seconds or so and I listen to some beautiful violin or piano in the background and I let my mind go.

It dawned on me as I was looking at the faces of the people in each shot that these pictures were only telling half stories; they only told the surface. We see the happiness that was captured when someone said "smile". But, what if that's not what they wanted to be doing at that point in their lives. If we were to put a word to the emotion they were really feeling and express it to them as we shot the picture what would we say?, "frown", "yell", "hide", "jump", "run", "pretend", "despair", "cut", "fear", "hit"? If we were to put our lives on a slideshow on our computers, three to four pictures per frame, going through every 5 seconds or so, what images would we collect? Let's cut the crap that we would have nothing but smiling, fashion model shots on the beach with our hair being blown back (for you women) or blue-steeling it up (for you men).

What would your slideshow reveal? Mine would hold shots of pain, some of joy, fear, doubt, insecurity, self-fulfillment, self-loathing, jealousy, pride, Godly deeds, tears, and success. I would have shots of destitute, ones of me shot sitting in the background as life and people passed me by, not really seeing that I was even there. There would be shots of me with my foot on someones head, fist raised high as I judged others, face contorted in evil as I burned them with the "Christian" morals. I would have shots of me reaching down to the lost child, sincere love on my face. There would be images of hate as I viciously clawed at the open back of a friend or a family member as they tried to walk out of my life. And in some I would be placed on a pedestal, feeling the benefits of the limelight from my peers. And that's just a few.

As you compile your slideshow, don't sugar coat your life. Don't leave out the things that you're not proud of. This is the slideshow you'll be giving to God at His Throne in the End, you think He hasn't seen it already? He was the photographer! Play this slideshow, but then I want you to remember who Christ is in your life, and the role He gets to play in this slideshow. He's that last shot where the sun is aglow, the water is spewing perfectly into the air, with grace and power. He's that shot of hope.

"For if the many died by the trespass of the one man, how much more did God’s grace and the gift that came by the grace of the one man, Jesus Christ, overflow to the many! " Romans 5:15. 

And if you don't know Christ yet in your slideshow, I encourage you to read through Matthew 26-28 to find out who He is. Ask  a local pastor or a friend you know is a Christian. Trust me on this one, He makes the Ultimate Pull on the review of your slideshow by the Ultimate Critic.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Life as we know it.

So recently, instead of studying I've been watching Grey's Anatomy (thanks for another addiction to fight Taylor Vega. :p ) and I would just like to mark down some of the things that this woman goes through just in her like 1 to 2 years as a surgeon.

She watches as her Alzheimer's mother goes all crazy-beserk on her, first having to keep it a secret because that's what she wanted. Then she falls in love with her attending only to find out that he's married. She nearly drowns in the ocean trying to save a wounded man, and she literally "dies" and comes back. She grabs an active bomb out of a patient and then watches as it explodes, killing the bomb squad dude in the hall right in front of her. Her mother dies while she's in hypothermia from the near-drowning experience. She watches her husband get shot and nearly die. She herself almost dies because she tells the shooter to kill her when he tries to kill her best friend Christina as she operates on Derek's gunshot wound. She has to watch as her good friend Izzy is dying of cancer and her other good friend George dies after getting hit and dragged by a bus. Her father has a new family and every time Meredith talks to him she feels the pains of him leaving her behind. Christina turns on her after the drama of the mass murders and will no longer talk to her, blaming her for what happened (her trauma). Her step-mother dies and her father blames it on her, resorting to violence as he slaps her and casts her out of his life again. Meredith has a miscarriage with her then husband's baby the very same day that Derek was shot in the mass murder.

Now, how could all that happen in a person's life and they still function on a normal emotional level? More importantly why do we seem to be enthralled by her life and even rise to levels of envy at times? We become so obsessed with action and excitement that we forget what real life feels like. Real life does not give us the opportunities to almost die to appreciate life. Real life doesn't always force us to make decisions that are life-altering; therefore life in our world is unclear, hazy, and confusing. Now don't you find it interesting that some of us would rather have our lives be ridden full of pain and grief if we could just have those decisions that define us be spelled out in the air?

It's time to embrace our world and understand that life here is confusing and we cannot wait to die to live again, because we don't often have movie saves, and second-chances. We cannot be complacent waiting for our life to offer us excitement and force us into making a decision about what we believe. Most of us live in a lukewarm existence, not wanting to risk living until it is forced upon us. But, lukewarm is not an option, we are called to live in a passionate manner that glorifies Christ. "So because you are lukewarm -- neither hot nor cold -- I am about to spit you out of my mouth" Romans 3:16. We can wait no longer, we must live, and who do we look towards to inspire and strengthen us? LIVE for God, don't merely breathe for Him.

Life is not about the Mundane

Life is a movement through each day. We wake up, brush our teeth, put our clothes on and step out of the door into the outside world. Then we walk, walk to our cars, walk to our bikes, walk to our destination. We use muscles, breathe oxygen, balance our bodies, perceive our surroundings, and let thoughts shoot through our brain at a billion miles per hour. It's a daily thing, we don't think about it we just do it.

We have fear in our hearts, we compare our lives to others, we look in the mirror and pinch fat, flex muscles, and long for something else. We judge, we follow that cute boy or girl a little too long, letting our minds go too far. We say mean, pointed things, we sugar coat the truth, we lie to get our way, and we feel shame. These are daily things we often don't think about; we just do them.

We are not God, and we could never be good enough for Him. Our human nature sins and becomes complacent; we let our fire die, and we lose our passion. We don't glorify the Lord, we don't please Him. So, in order to live a life pleasing to the Lord we must be completely dependent on Him. We cannot seek freedom elsewhere cause we won't find it; we cannot control our own lives because we will fail, as is etched in all human future. We will never be good enough. So, cast burdens on Him, cry at His feet, cut people out of our lives, give everything you are to Him, because I guarantee that whatever you offer is not better then what He gives.

Life is a movement through each day. We can wake up, praise God, brush our teeth, and thank Him. We can put our clothes on and step out of the door into the outside world, ready to do His Will. We can walk to our destination, using our muscles, breathing the oxygen, balancing our bodies and perceiving our surroundings in full awareness that the Lord gave it all to us. We can let our thoughts shoot through our brain about the Lord and in conversation with Him. It can be our daily thing.

So, let us depend on Christ. Depend on His Words, His Promises, and His Faithfulness. Let us grow in His Name and not in our own.