January 5, 2014 § Leave a comment
I would rather be what God chose to make me than the most glorious creature that I could think of; for to have been thought about, born in God’s thought, and then made by God is the dearest, grandest, and most precious thing in all thinking.
January 4, 2014 § Leave a comment
“Your life is passing like a hand waving from the back of a train and every choice determines whether you are on the right track. It all matters. How do you keep your nails filed and you eyebrows plucked when your secret hope is to have dirt under your fingernails and the strings of your heart plucked into a symphony that might make stars move?”
How is this supposed to feel? I try to aim for accuracy in emotions, so let’s go with the newly adopted staccato rhythm of my heart for excitement, blended with the shivers down my back slight nauseous terror. Diagnosis: I’m getting hitched (lucky if that thought even danced in your mind for a bit), or I’m getting to collide with one of those moments where God’s blurry plans for your future are brought into a slight sharp focus.
Today I got accepted into a missions program, and though it does nothing to help my nerves, people keep telling me how intense the Global Urban Trek is. I’m often an idealist, so I want to reveal how fearless I am instead of admitting that my pride is not adoring all the insecurity and fear that is currently surfacing. Is it equally as senseless as it is necessary to be afraid of the ambitions closest to your heart? Here I am selfishly dwelling on the daunting thought of my last semester of college quickly approaching, while simultaneously still trying to figure out why it is so hard to sacrifice things and experiences that have no eternal value. Why is it that I’m willing to wait for myself to be ready for this opportunity one day in the (far far far far-will I even live this long) future, but I can never be patient with God when He needs me to trust Him?
I’ve come to the realization that my life will not solely change by this experience. Life changed the moment I considered missions because I began to release the firm grip on my self-created illusion of control to God. Likewise, people’s lives aren’t always changed by kind acts and good conversations, their lives are changed when they consider what reason initially precipitated the change in your heart to pursue them. I apologize for how incoherent this rant must be, but one day I will need to look back on some of these words in retrospect and realize that at their root, they were all excuses. Nothing is too great for my God.
Happy belated Anniversary Urbana. Thank you Lord for the broken year that made space in my heart for Your will, and for Your usual relentless pursuit of our distant hearts.
He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus. -Philippians 1:6
January 2, 2014 § Leave a comment
One day you meet a stranger.
A stranger that has the ability to color your world in a particular shade you don’t recognize. Suddenly much of your world becomes tinted in this strange color and you feel this stranger connects with you more than the people you’ve known your whole life. Seamlessly, this stranger adopts the role of family before you even realize it.
There aren’t many explanations for this strange phenomenon, but I’d like to believe that these people carry angels within them. Sent with a mysterious higher purpose, these angels will teach you lessons you were incapable of learning from others, and will protect you when your world seems to fall apart. You will never know the true intentions of these angels, but even if they come hand in hand with pain and suffering trust them anyways.
As most of your favorite childhood toys do, they come attached with a warning label- remember that as your love for this person progressively grows, they are not yours to keep. In time you will come to realize that their intention was never to save you, but teach you how to save yourself. Once this is fulfilled, the angel leaves its temporary residence in their body, and that person too exits your life.
One day you say goodbye to a friend.
Our days may come to seventy years, or eighty, if our strength endures; yet the best of them are but trouble and sorrow, for they quickly pass, and we fly away
– Psalm 90:10
January 2, 2014 § Leave a comment
Recently I have had the privilege of catching up with several of my hometown friends since this is the longest time I have been home in quite a while. This was probably one of my favorite conversations in a while, and now it is highly woven into my New Year’s resolution, so I thought I’d just share some of it.
The main point of conflict stems from me feeling like for a long time that I have been standing on an imaginary fence, split between loving the people that treat me miserably, and letting them go. I’m aware this shouldn’t come as a surprise; a lot of people go through this situation especially when their heart is more invested than another person’s. This seems to be life’s preferred type of curve ball, the kind where your mind and heart reside on two completely separate pages. When I wasn’t standing on that fence and had actually picked a side I was still just as stuck, always wondering what the other side looked like. It was almost like I hadn’t picked at all. (Note to self: Keep the friends that ask you a lot of why questions. The ones that force you to think care that you understand yourself). The turning point in this conversation came from me realizing that a fence should have never existed in the first place because God’s grace finds expression in the way we treat both people and possessions.
Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.
Don’t let people put you on a fence. Make you feel like you need to choose. Maybe people won’t understand the way you love, but this is the perfect opportunity to extend to them the incomprehensible love that envelops us all. At the end of the day you can’t be responsible for other people’s actions, or the way they decide to treat you, and that shouldn’t be your goal either way. Your goal should be to love in spite of it all, not because you “deserve it”, but because they do.
There is nothing more beautiful than the way the ocean refuses to stop kissing the shoreline, no matter how many times it is sent away.
-The Great Gatsby
My resolution: Live life with an attitude of appreciation in the light of His mercy and grace. No expectations, and no taking moments for granted. Happy New Year everyone!