The 5 Month Curve

So we fix our eyes not on what is seen but what is unseen for for what is seen is temporary but what is unseen is eternal.” 2 Corinthians 4:18

I had my good cry already.

I cried because I came to the realization that May is not October, it’s a month that only happens in the fall, and it’ll be five months and a country away from another visit.

I’ve stretched my fingers into a large ‘L’ formation across my forehead to emphasize my sad conclusions.

Take that October! You’re an ‘L’ formation!

Rest assured, no matter the time, no matter the distance —- my heart will break from the absence but, the ache and the wait are forces I can withstand.

Take heart, God reminds us to,

“Seek the Lord and his strength; seek his presence continually.” 1 Chronicle 16:11

I believe when God asks for us to seek Him he is thrilled by our desire, our intention to draw close, to praise, and to prioritize his truth in life. This is meant to be done always and ‘continually’ as the verse suggests.

I’m definetly a fan of setting new goals, improving my understanding and learn to better equip myself in the Word.

Through willingness and freedom through Christ, I want to take it upon myself as He did for me, and refresh the friendship that I have in Jesus; observe new ideas, places, spaces I have not yet seen. I hope to plant seeds in my spirit, and bloom more and more and more.

What better time than now?

—- Timeline —-

June 2016: Ephesians Devotional Series // Book study
July 2016: Philippians Devotional Series // Book Study
August 2016: Baptism // Colossians Devotional Series
September 2016: The Resurrected Life (14 Day) // Book study
October 2016: Proverbs: The Way of Wisdom (28 Day) // Book study
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Rose Colored Glasses

Passing by the wide open lake waters is the highlight of riding the train; it never matters what the weather is like, it’s persistently blissful – never interrupted – mesmerizing and zestful.

Even when you scan the glances of those riding the train, all attention is drawn to the peaceful scene out the window.

It’s a feast for the eyes to see, and respectfully, worth much more than one thousand words; it’s shiny, it’s bright, and it’s natural wonderment.

It’s the work of a detailed artist. God.

But…and there is always a but.

What is it about the goodness in life that we as humans love to hate, or tarnish in some way?

It feels necessary to deem things as ‘too-good-to-be-true’ a dream, or unreal.

Afterall, we know that roses have thorns too, right?

I frequently struggle with my rose colored ideas, and try to build a box of logic and ‘realistic’ comprehension around them. That usually results in a ruined idea, a sad conclusion, and a headache.

My pastor recently said,

“Faith is not blind leaping into the dark; faith is informed trust. It’s about facts, and it’s about encounter.”

I wouldn’t say my joy is fluffy and weightless in nature, but rather unmoving and sincere.

I would assume that this is the difference between sheer naivety and carelessness, and the awesome and strategic leaping (for joy) of God’s desires for ones life; ‘informed trust,’ and conscious faith.

Allowing myself to be dictated by ideals that aren’t anchored in God serves no purpose. God goes beyond all our logic and perpectives.

“However, as it is written: what no eye has seen, what no ear has heard, and what no human mind has conceived – the things of God has prepared for those who love him.” 1 Corinthians 2:9

I think it’s astounding the way that God calls upon us in life. It’s unimaginable, dream – like, and far too rosey for even the ‘wiser’ ones among us.

But I believe, from the top to the bottom of my heart, that God only works perfectly and our logic is over – delighted by such things.

Everything just may be as it seems.

For God loves me more than I can see. He is in me, and I in Him – these blessings are a Heavenly thing, and the roses are lovely.
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Dear Tender Heart

“So, I have a lot of anxiety. I say that all the time and it’s something I hate about myself. My mom always said that if I used the word ‘hate’ it meant that I wished death on whatever I had such feelings about. Well. With all my heart…. I’d love for my anxiety to kick the bucket. The sad thing about that previous statement is that I’ve given my anxiety legs and feet with enough force to kick a bucket. How stupid of me to think that my anxiety should have any power to kick over buckets. I wish it were only that strong. Right now it has a hold on my heart. I feel helpless. Honestly. I don’t know why I let things get this far within myself to the point where I feel helpless. I feel almost inconsolable.”

 

This was how I decided to feel at one point.  I had chased my endless train of thought far too long, and I never did get to the end. I never will, and that’s something very hard for me to accept.  It makes me frustrated that I don’t have the remote control, a crystal ball, or any sort of omniscient power to see all that will be…MY LIFE. *flips table*

I feel a ‘push’. I can feel God working very specifically on areas of myself and my life and something is ‘PUSHING’ me! It feels soul-clenching at times but, I suspect that the ‘soul-clenching’ is God rearing my life in the direction in which he, oh so politely, wants it to go.

I’m always telling myself the same things: I feel out of control, not confident, not ready, and too hysterical for my own good. I’m just too hysterical.

In short, I’m human and I know nothing. It’s like God got the joke, and I’m just sitting here…watching him laugh….still not getting it.

 

Throughout the Bible we read about many chosen individuals that God uses to deliver the truth.  At my church, we are studying the books of 1st and 2nd Peter; in these writings, Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, illustrates the way which Christians should live, the holiness of suffering, and the purpose that God has placed on all of our lives as His people: to live for God, and regard all suffering in the name of Jesus as a blessing; for he suffered for us, and because Jesus Christ is the only ‘living hope’ that we have in this life.

In this study, God chose Peter as his messenger. Peter from a worldly perspective, was unqualified; a misfit that had many limitations weighed against him…I’m sure all of humanity can relate to this. Yet, in spite of this God chose him anyway.

I think I feel like a misfit a lot of the time; significantly unqualified and in most moments radically insecure about the blessings, situations, or life that I’ve been given. But, in this I have to remember that God calls us into action differently, and prepares us uniquely for his plan; he chooses us.

It started with Adam and then with Eve, and, Jesus Christ has had a plan from the very beginning. This perfect idea God has for us will come with great reward.

We are his people, and he will continually keep us out of harm… we just have to allow ourselves to trust him.  Trust the call that he has on our lives, and trust that he has overcome all that you will encounter in this life.

Trust God…he gets the joke, and you certainly do not. Don’t try to. Just sit there. One day you’ll get it.

 “Life is amazing. And then it’s awful. And then it’s amazing again. And in between the amazing and awful it’s ordinary and mundane and routine. Breathe in the amazing, hold on through the awful, and relax and exhale during the ordinary. That’s just living heartbreaking, soul-healing, amazing, awful, ordinary life. And it’s breathtakingly beautiful.”
― L.R. Knost

 

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The Art of Being Out of Control

          One time, I did this cool thing called planning my life. Not all of it of course, but I had a fuzzy idea of what I wanted to make of myself.

          Technically, I was being responsible and making sure that I set all my ducks in a row by figuring out: a career, my likes, my loves, my dislikes, and also discovering myself while of course, having fun — because I’m young, free, and by 25 all will go downhill; including my metabolism, fountain of youth, and childlike wonder (I know there’s a few other drawbacks but, I’m assuming I’ll know when I get there).  The important thing is that I had a plan. 

In the midst of all of this, I re-established and  discovered my image and faith in Jesus Christ. I committed to consciously connect with my Lord and Savior, everyday and all the time.

          I was in control. I had a grip on how I felt things needed to be, when in reality God had been leading the show all along….my life show.

          This little life of mine that I drew up so strategically, is actually developing frayed edges and falling away so gracefully.  I feel like I’m being undone, replanted,  and fully tied up into something extraordinary that only God could have created. My life is shifting in a direction I never imagined for myself and it has subtly, freaked me out.

In a way I’m collapsing into pieces and I’m not even mad about it.

 For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and hope. Jeremiah 29:11 (NLT) 

          I can’t  grasp the direction that my life is going, and I’m willing to leave that with God.  My life right now is, extraordinary and unfimiliar. I’m changing and falling in love with every moment, every piece, and every person along the way too.

I’m out of control and God thankfully is in control. I’m falling apart and falling exquisitely into place. How lovely. I’m not even 25.

I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit.  Romans 15:13 (NLT)

thatswhatevesaid: about chocolate factories and conformity

Have you lost your sense of wonder?

 I know within the past year, I did…

In fact, up to this point I didn’t realize it was gone.

 

When I was a child, one of my favorite movies was Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory (none of that 2005, Johnny Depp nonsense). My favorite part wasn’t the kids,the golden ticket, the factory, or the infamous girl who turns into a giant blueberry, but rather the concept of free thinking, childish wonder, and…pure imagination.

In life, especially in the earlier years, we are encouraged to conform in society.  We comply in such ways by decorating our lives with respectable education and incomes, a few dashes of logical thought, a tattoo that reads ‘being realistic’, and a cup of normality at the dawn of every day. The result of this progression makes us a little more experienced, responsible and developed.

Don’t get me wrong – I totally want all of that. There’s a familiarity and consistency that comes with conformity.  I hear it’s safe and warm there too.

I realized a short time ago, that one of my greatest fears is losing my sense of wonder or imagination. This fear presented itself about a month ago; it occurred to me that I was simply just, ‘fitting in’, and doing what was expected and advised. You could say I was down-playing a side of myself and doing what people were telling me to do.

What a harsh reality it is when you realize how far-gone you really are! I had lost myself for a second.  Myself and her sense of wonder, I mean.

This may not make a lot of sense, but isn’t that why they call it an imagination? See! I’ve got it back! I’m not making any sense! HA.

But more importantly, as I continue to grow and evolve into myself, I’m going to promise not to lose that spark of pure imagination ever again! I don’t know about you but, my T.V. views in color, not black and white, I refuse to be on the straight and narrow, and the sky is not a limit.  I’m going to live the rest of my life through metaphors and fluffy language…

Or maybe in my imagination. 

 
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thatswhatevesaid : from 19 to 20

I changed my mind…

I won’t be attending my university lectures, I won’t ask whether you want a Grande or Venti sized latte, and I definitely won’t be used to living beyond the walls of my parents home.

19 was a hard year – I obtained a diploma in makeup, I landed a luxurious position in one of the best designer retailers, I excelled, I met amazing peeps….

 an utter catastrophe, I know.

I wanted to go a different direction, which introduced a butt-load of anxiety. A literal butt-load that costed me my childish perspective of life,  and forced me to re-evaluate who I wanted to be.  The best way to relieve myself of this indescribable doom, was to quit (makeup) and do something else ( dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb).

I didn’t know it at the time, but my anxiety was a wake-up call to real life; I was experiencing many things at once, and I wasn’t ready to handle it. BUT, I was ready to go back to school (coward). I wanted to be a student again, and thrive in the familiarity of old friends, homework, and the same-old-same-old. Basically, sew my ego back together.

The summer of my start-over consisted of working, preparing for school, and volunteering. I had a re-established plan for my future, new experiences as teacher, and an acceptance into university!

Throughout this time, I discovered how different I was becoming too; my room was cleaner, the T.V. was off, I had more clarity, a sense of self, I was thinking more about God, and my thoughts of adventure and independence were prominent.

I wanted to LIVE and break free of myself – my old self in a sense. I wanted to teaching people, work hard, be in new places, meet different people, and be full in the spirit of Christ. Even now it’s riveting to entertain such ideas.

Call it divine intervention, marvelous sorcery, or plain ridiculousness but… I decided to go back into makeup. 

Now, at 20, I’m being considered for a phenomenal position with Tom Ford cosmetics; which requires training from the best- of- the- best in New York City. I’ll also be moving on my own, becoming best friends with Christ, teaching makeup, launching my life, meeting people, and, oh yeah, living!

I changed my mind.

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thatswhatevesaid : about reaching Jesus level

“As I have said, the first thing is to be honest with yourself. You can never have an impact on society if you have not changed yourself… Great peacemakers are all people of integrity, of honesty, but humility.”
Nelson Mandela

The late Nelson Mandela was an enormous impact on the world.  He was that type of person that made you wonder what the heck you were doing with your own life,

I for one, am eating a banana — it’s all about baby steps, right?

There are many like Mr. Mandela that seem to have that ‘it’ factor; the ones that unlocked their awesomeness early on in life, put it into action, and subtly sedated us with their kindness and bountiful servility (I’m talking to you, Craig Keilberger).

When it comes to Jesus, I think it’s safe to say that he takes the cake.  After all, he preformed astonishing miracles, walked on water, ministered to all, laid down his life for others (aha, humanity), and rose from the dead! Plus He  really really loves us! A fairly well-rounded guy if you ask me.

I believe there comes a time in every Christian’s life, when they ask themselves how they are going to make an impact.  What they are going to do, that will catapult them to the next step in their walk with God; the moment that they feel they are fulfilling God’s plan or living in a Christ-like way….Jesus level:

The state in which a human decides to emulate the characteristics of Jesus Christ!

This proposition has been meandering around in my mind for some time, and this year I’ve really learned a lot about myself.  My relationship with the Almighty is forming more day-by-day, and I’m starting to acquire who I am and what I want to offer.  Of course, this is all thanks to His tough-love teaching style, but I’m coming to adore what I believe God has in store for my life.

I have been urged in many ways to start ministering to other people.  This coming fall, I have a perfect opportunity to do so as I begin university! God is so good, and I’m so excited to prove how He is working in my life.

 

Watch out, I’m entering Jesus level.

 

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