Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Goodbye Wishy Washy

Have you ever seen Runaway Bride with Julia Roberts? She is like a chameleon that changes who she is based on the guy she is with. With one guy she likes poached eggs, another she likes her eggs over easy, and with another she likes them with pepper and dill. Her identity was found in each of her relationships and it was spiraling out of control. When it came time to marry yet again, she ran away, yet again because what it came down to is that she didn't know who she was or what she wanted. She also had dreams yet to be realized, she made these unique lamps out of different appliances but she never invested in them all the way, she never really believed in her dreams (until the end of the movie, when it all comes together perfectly;).

Last night I had some quiet time with God and can totally relate to this girl, not with guys but with my life. There are a couple things I have stuck with over the years my doctor and my hair colorist (except in a couple instances…oh man can I even count her?!). Other than that I feel like a wandering hippie, which is something I usually like to identify myself as until I realized that I'm drifting through life somewhat aimlessly. I have all sorts of dreams, plans and ideas but I only indulge in them half-heartedly. The thought of investing myself all the way is somewhat terrifying to me especially when these thoughts plaque my mind. "That will take up too much time", "No one will like what you've done or no one will support you", "This is out of your comfort zone", and finally the worse thought yet "That was a nice thought, but unrealistic", wham, back to reality and that sinking feeling inside that I need to give up on another dream.

How self defeating our minds can be! I'm tired of Miss Wishy Washy, I'm ready to wring her out and put her out to dry for good. But I can't do it alone, I need wisdom beyond my understanding, I need someone to believe in me more than I believe in myself. Last night was refreshing for this very reason, prayer, scripture, and journaling. All three of these combined help me to take a good look at myself and a good look at all I can be. It separates the truth from the lies, and allows me to discover what dreams God wants me to pursue.

Last night while reading "A Mary Spirit" by Joanna Weaver she mentioned Psalm 51 “Create in me a clean heart, O God, and put a new and right spirit within me. Do not cast me away from your presence, and do not take your holy spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and sustain in me a willing heart. I have always been focused on the first part of that verse, create in me a clean heart, O God, but I never paid close enough attention to the last part sustain in me a willing heart. Perhaps I always looked over that because the first part I'm asking God to change me, but that last part means I would have to do some work, some changing. It would mean if what God is asking me takes up too much time, I’m supposed to say yes anyway. If no one supports me but God is asking me to do it, I must say yes. I need to say yes to God even when it is out of my comfort zone. When I want to give up and brush it off as a nice idea, I have to pray for a willing heart.

I can’t carry out His dreams and plans for me if I attempt them half-heartedly. I can’t find who I am in Christ if I keep him at a distance. Another thing that I’m realizing is that my dreams, plans, and ideas may be very different from what he has planned…yet I have to be willing. I have some goals, some things I know God is calling me to do right now. I want to list them below to share with others and pray that my heart not only can be created new but that my heart is willing to say yes.

Goal #1
(this one is a perfect example of something that is going to take a willing heart on my part) my first goal is to be single in this season and pray for the right man to come in my life. I pray in my season of singleness no matter how long that I continue to grow to be a woman a godly man desires

Goal #2
my second goal is to find a church home where I dive in all the way, to serve, to join a bible study, and tithe.

Goal #3
To pray, fast, stay in the word, and journal so that I am reminded of Gods love, his promises, and so I can clearly see where I need to be and what I need to be doing in my life.

James 1:5 if any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.

James 1:6 But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like the wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Diving In

Dive In....

I raised my hand above my squinty eyes to shade them from the beaming sun. I observed the ocean's pale blue color become deeper and richer as it streched beyond the horizon, white capped waves crashed to the shore; the cold water briefly touching the tips of my toes felt refreshing as the smooth hot sand exfoliated my gritty feet.

Etching forward the water rises and as I breath deeply I can taste the salty water the smell awakens my senses. Tears peak from behind my eyes and start to stream down my face I thought I had grown numb to my failures, to lonliness, to saddness, to pain but the salty aroma reminded me of wounds yet to be healed. As the waves pulled back from the shoreline I heard a soft whisper "I am with you…dive in".

As quickly as the whisper came it went and racing thoughts started to swarm in my head again. The smooth sand started to feel like sandpaper and the teasing water that touched my toes was soon not enough. I began to ache all over as the sun beat down so I stepped in up to my knees hoping for refreshment. As the waves lapped up against me I heard it again, a little louder this time "I am with you…dive in".

Without a thought I screamed "Dive in?!" I already have come in further than I wanted to, I was just coming for a visit, not to dive in!"As soon as the words left my mouth, I bit my salty sea lips and the truth overwhelmed my halfheartedness. My faith was only knee deep-Shallow and afraid always standing on the outskirts and never diving in. Yet he still calls to me even when I just come to visit, even when I just go enough for me but not all the way for him.

The tears came again, not because of me but because of him-for him. For His deep love for me, for never giving up on me. He believes in me, he is with me on this sandy seashore and his love is deeper than the ocean and streches farther than I can comprehend! I start to move, the water rises up higher and higher until I throw myself in to the cool salty water. Over my head it rushes, waves crashing all around, I'm part of the ocean, I'm in the deep, I can't see where it ends but I finally found where freedom begins.....

By Diving In

Monday, August 22, 2011

For those who took the plunge:)

My best friend Jill her husband Brian and baby Ethan

To: Those who are married
From: A single girl

I've once heard that it's better to be single and sleep alone than it is to be married and sleep alone. That one phrase has stayed with me and helps me to be thankful that I'm taking my time to finding the right one, yet today I'm not inspired to rejoice why it's awesome to be single. Today I'm excited to celebrate everyone who has taken the plunge, hung out on the edge, took a chance on lifelong love and made the choice to stick together regardless of the battles they had to overcome. I've seen some of my closest friends with blotchy faces, knee deep in heartache, torn between staying or leaving, waiting for their other half to change, armed with a shield and a sword. Trying to protect themselves from the bruises that loving someone can make at the same time fighting to keep the spark alive and honor their vows. I have brave, courageous, forgiving, forgiven, beautiful friends and I know I'm not the only one.

To me marriage used to be a thing of fairytales, the holding hands, sipping a cold drink on an old porch swing, poems, flowers, vacations, family dinners, butterflies in my stomach….I could go on forever with the ideas of the fairytale romance I envisioned when two became one. Yet the real deal real life scenario while it may be harder, less fluffy and more work has so much more value. If anyone's character is truly revealed it is through marriage because you have to have the heart to humble yourself even when you know you are right, you have to look at someone who has let you down big or small and say "I forgive you", you sometimes have to sacrifice your happiness for someone else's dreams to come true…yet you still have joy, you have to pack your bags and move to a new city or state leaving behind family and friends, you have to help carry the weight of someone else's failures, and each day make the choice to love that person when sometimes it can be hard.

To my married friends from a single girl- You show me what it means to be faithful, forgiving, forgiven, devoted, and it is a testimony to me to see you each take down the shield enough to keep fighting for lifelong love.

Genesis 29:20 So Jacob worked seven years to pay for Rachel. But his love for her was so strong that it seemed to him but a few days.

Proverbs 17:9 Love prospers when a fault is forgiven, but dwelling on it separates close friends. (NLT

Song of Solomon 2:16 My lover is mine, and I am his

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Made to Be


I was reading Captivating the other day, and I’m to the part where it talks about how as woman we should be alluring. We are meant to be alluring. I just sat there in my grungy t-shirt and baggy pajama pants with my hair all up in a messy bun feeling anything but alluring. Most days I find myself staring in the mirror looking at my stomach wondering if I can ever get back to the way I use to before I had my son. Although my stomach was never flat as a pancake after having a kid it’s just not the same. It’s not only the outside that feels less than glamorous but I feel the same on the inside; I know that my heart has yet to recover from some of my past heartaches. I remember a time a while back where I had poured my heart into this guy, I did everything I could to try to win him over, made dinner, cleaned his place, watched his kids, but nothing worked. That my friend was NOT alluring. After we had broken up I remember becoming bitter to ever falling in love again; I cried and cried for a few hours but then I shut off. I was done being vulnerable and that is where I still am today. I still think I even see myself through the eyes of my ex…unworthy of love. As I write that I shudder to think that any person could make me feel that way; but HE is not the one who has made me feel that way...I’m believing in a lie that I am feeding to myself. How many times do we fix ourselves to look good for someone else? We buy that certain outfit so he will notice us, or we color our hair because then we will stand out (my favorite thing to do)…one thing after the other to make ourselves feel more alluring for anyone but who matters the most.
Being alluring starts on the inside and to get there we have to be willing to be a little vulnerable. We have to be willing to give up control and not depend on someone else’s approval to believe we are worthy. When I look up the definition of being alluring it means to be extremely attractive and gorgeous this may be true but I think it’s the result of being gracious, subtle and gentle. When I read the stories of Ruth and Esther in the bible they were both alluring because of their trust in Jesus. Their TRUST alone is so awe-inspiring because they lived courageously by faith. It’s also awe-inspiring because it doesn’t have to be just their story; if we TRUST in God it can be ours too. What I love most in the book Captivating is that it speaks of being alluring in the most pure essence of the word and its God honoring. Alluring means the opposite of flaunting ourselves and being too available. It’s the beauty of finding who we are in Christ, how valuable we are to the King of Kings. I recently read an awesome quote that reminds me of this…”A woman’s heart should be so hidden in Christ that a man should have to seek him first to find her” – Maya Angelou. That is such an inspiring quote that gives me a whole new perspective and reminds me that my dependence should be in God alone. When God is the foundation I believe that he uncovers beauty in us we never believed we could have. So for now I may keep my grungy t-shirt and baggy pajama pants but my sights are set on the Lord; you know the best part- we can just come as we are and be loved.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011


I walk blindly through the days working, working out, making dinner, cramming more and more into an over-booked schedule hoping that I'm becoming successful with all I invest my time into, but at the end of the day I feel just plain exhausted. The days seem to be more of a blur and everything seems to just keep me busy and the only time I worship the Lord is at church. Even then, my eyes feel dry, my heart feels numb, and I am thinking of the next thing on my agenda. I forget to be still, I forget to listen, I forget to cherish each moment as a gift, each day as grace, I forget that I'm not supposed to blindly walk through life. I need to open my eyes, be present, and stop living life sidetracked by the distractions and allow myself to be still and listen for what the Lord has for me today. Each of us has our own distractions, for me right now its filling up each day with so many things to do that I don't have time to be in prayer and in the word. I miss the peace and comfort of my quiet time with Jesus.

Each distraction takes me further from you

distractions make me fear even hope

because I can't make things happen on my own

Each distraction has me planning and trying to be perfect

distractions reveal my faults

because I'm really a mess

Each distraction has me looking for love

distractions leave me feeling alone

because only you can fill me up

Each distraction has me holding on to what I want
distractions let me down

because only you are what I need