the uncomfortable

original post date 5/15/14

Forever and a day ago, I went to a LifeTeen Leadership Retreat. Literally, a million years ago. One of the first things I remember about this monumental week was when Mark Hart, aka the coolest Catholic man ever, stood up and told all of us to “Get comfortable with the uncomfortable.” That seemed simple enough. I understood what he was saying. I have since heard a quote saying “You were made for greatness, not comfort.” Again, that made sense. Being a Christian may not always be easy and you might be put in some awkward situations. Got it. I sure thought I did…

As I continue to grow in my life and faith, I have seen this idea take on a whole different life. Beyond. “The uncomfortable” is far more than a few awkward situations. It is painful situations. It is lonely situations. It is confusing situations. It is annoying/frustrating/stupid/scary/challenging/new situations. The uncomfortable is ever changing.

“The uncomfotable” is also where there is greatness. It is where God’s love radiates. It is where we grow. It is where we learn and develop. It is in the uncomfortable that we make the most progress.

It isn’t easy. It never is. Life is hard. The Devil makes sure of that. I have found when I am particularly on fire and ready to take on anything, the hardest things come at me. The most uncomfortable situations have to be dealt with.

I feel that this idea of getting comfortable with the uncomfortable is something I need to revisit. I’m planning to spend the summer getting comfortable with the uncomfortable and being a part of greatness.

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multiplied.

original post date 5/15/14

multiplied. multiplied. multiplied.

This is literally all I can think about. It has become an obsession.

Obviously. I have been slacking lately. As in, majorly. I have been seriously lacking. I got overwhelmed. With school. With work. With people. With feelings. It all just took me over. I let everything slide. But the semester is over (FINALLY!!!) and I have moved into my new apartment.

So I finally have some space, emotionally and physically, to think about everything.

I have been so uninspired lately. I could feel it coming over me. Usually, I can hunker down and get through life. This time, I just laid down. I let the sadness and stress and depression in. I gave in. It has been dark. I just have not been able to get up out of the funk. And then…

I heard this song on the radio.

At the end of the semester, I had decided to take on a position with the retreat team through my campus ministry. I had began to think about themes and lessons and discussions; just different things I wanted to work on and develop over the summer. I am excited to share some of those ideas throughout this summer. Anyway, I was still processing everything and trying to come up with a core theme. And then it happened. This song played. And I was done.

Every single word was a direct message to my heart. I have been obsessed with the idea of mercy, lately. It blows my mind that we get to serve SUCH a merciful God. Mercy that we do not deserve.

“God of Mercy, sweet love of mine, I have surrendered to Your design”

He is a God so full of mercy and love, He waits for us to surrender to HIS unimaginable plan for us

“Your love is like radiant diamonds, we cannot contain”

My pray this year has been that I can be a light in this world to others.I want people to see me and know that there is something different about me, and I want that to be the Light of Christ.

“Your love will surely come find us

Even when our lives are dark and scary, our God comes and finds us. That makes my heart ache. I cannot understand that. He searches for us. He meets us where we are.

“These Hallelujahs be multiplied

Multiplied. We are called to multiply. In more ways than one. I think for me, this was an invitation to multiply my love for Christ. On a personal level. Yes, we are called to multiply, with children. We are called to multiply and spread the good news of the Gospel. But this song, at this moment,was telling me to multiply my love.

With everything the past few months have brought, it has been dark. It has been easy to be angry. I have felt every forgotten. I know better, I do. But that does not mean I won’t feel forgotten from time to time. I’ve been angry at God, pissed I think is the correct word.  It has been far to easy for me to forget the blessings God has given me. It has been easy for me to take everything for granted. It has been easy to feel entitled, and let me tell ya, I surreeeee have felt entitled.

I forget God has given me radiant diamonds.

I forgot His design is better than my own.

forgot that He was right there the whole time, He had come to find me.

I forgot to send my hallelujahs. I was not multiplying.

I was not forgotten, I had forgotten. Big difference.

This idea of multiplying has become my theme for the summer. I have to start small. I have to start with me. I have to start multiplying my love for my Merciful God. And then, watch out everyone else!

weakness.

original post date 2/20/14

i’m really not sure where i stand right now.

That is such a scary feeling. I feel like the last couple of days, I have just been going through the motions. I don’t like it. I feel so out of touch with everything. I’m not used to that feeling. It is super weird.

I feel weak.

I don’t like that either. I like to feel in control. I am just so tired. I don’t know if it’s because of the weather (it has been forever cloudy), or the lack of sleep I have gotten for the entire month of February, or the fact that it is Mid-Terms, or what it is. I’m just not sure. I feel really sad. Honestly, I want to just curl up in my bed under the covers and sleep for days. That sounds like Heaven. I know that is not the answer, though. I mean, I know sleep would help. But not dealing with things is not going to help anything. Typically, it makes things worse. Way worse. So I cracked open my Jesus Calling book to see what it had to say.

Habbakkuk 3:19 (NAB)

God, the Lord, is my strength;the makes my feet swift as those of hinds and enables me to go upon the heights.”

What more could I ask for?

One of my closest friends always says he asks God to “be his strength,” not give him strength, but be his strength. I love this verse because it says God is already our strength. The Bible also goes on to say His strength is made perfect in our weakness. Well, today, I am feeling pretty weak. And I am glad to know this is the promise that exists. I am counting on it. Today, I am rejoicing that God is my strength. I am asking that He continue to “Be my strength.” I encourage you to do the same. See how it changes things.

sense.

original post date 3/9/14

so lately everything has been really hard.

Nothing has made sense lately. I have been hurting so much. When I moved away to college, I went alone. I had no friends, family or any idea of what was going on around me. That’s what I wanted. I wanted a fresh start with fresh people. I had no idea what to expect. It was a completely different culture and different people. And I had to learn about all this the hard way.

It seems like last month was the hardest month in which I had to learn these lessons. It literally started out with a crazy twist that left me confused, hurt and totally shaken. Then, it seemed like I was completely annihilated. I felt totally attacked by so many people. People I thought I could trust, did their best job of going out of their way to prove me wrong. I had never, ever been so hurt. I was so confused. I couldn’t understand why these things would happen. I had been such a good friend to these people, and done my job to the best of me ability and then some. It just didn’t make sense.

I also didn’t understand why God would ask me to go through this.I couldn’t see the lesson I was learning. I couldn’t understand why I was at this place where I was being so attacked and miserable. It was so confusing. I began to get angry with God, but really, more hurt than anything. I felt completely alone. The very people I had come to love and be close friends with, were the ones making my life so hard. It just didn’t make sense.

Like I said earlier, it is Spring Break. I’m taking a trip to Kerrville with my family and on the way to the camp I turned on the radio. There was a broadcast of a live Hillsong concert. I already love Hillsong and their latest cd, so I turned it up. When the song “Oceans” came on, I cranked it up. I love that song so much and I feel like I could relate with the stage I am in, in life (college, majors, life decisions). But especially lately, with the place I am in with friends and everything else. After the main part of the song, Joel Houston shared his testimony. During his story, it all made sense. I love the words of the song, so much. But when it says ” lead me where my trust is without borders, let me walk upon the waters, wherever YOU would call me.” And it all was in perspective. Where He calls me. Not where I pick, or where I want to go, or the most glamorous places with the easiest paths. It’s about what He wants and where He wants me.

I have a choice. I either commit to the mystery of God and trust He will work things out. Or, I can doubt and live in worry and anxiety. It isn’t going to be easy. It isn’t going to happen over night. I am ready to start committing to the mystery. He has never failed, and He won’t start now.

light.

original post date: 2/7/2014

i can’t even fathom it sometimes.
Sometimes God puts us in seemingly impossible situations. Sometimes He puts ridiculously high mountains in front of us. And then does the unthinkable, He asks us to climb. But then He takes it a step further, He offers to carry us up the mountain when we can’t seem to find the strength to climb. This past weekend/week I feel like God has put a few mountains in front of me. I watched people I love hurt. I watched loss. I watched them cry. I hurt. I cried. I watched darkness close in around us. I watched as the darkness and pain got comfortable and prepared to stay with us for a long time. But in the midst of this darkness, I felt God tugging at my heart. I felt Him ask me to be a light. Before I had time to even think about it, my mouth just opened. Prayers and praise fell out. Even though I had no idea what to think or feel, I just called out to God. Tears falling down my face, the only words I knew in those moments were Jesus’ name. I rebuked Satan as he tried to come in a steal our joy and cried out that God hold us up and give us wisdom. Crying in the emergency room, the hospital waiting room, and the operating room I spoke God’s mercy and love over all of us. Thanking Him in advance for His plan, and His promise and His unending mercy and love. Those were some of the hardest prayers I have ever prayed. In the midst of some of the hardest days of my life, I watched love unfold. I watched as the doctors saved my friends life. I heard as they spoke of what a miracle it was she was alive. Their exact words were, “Someone in Heaven must have been looking out for you.” We all watched a miracle, not for our glory, but for God’s. Her life is a testimony to God and His love for his children. And on top of all this, He asked me to be a part of this. He used me to share His light. He asked me to share His love. He asked me to help reveal His power. This is a love story. A story of a Father who loves His children so much. He wants to share His light and love with all of them. I am so grateful in the face of this darkness He called me to be a light for Him.

mercy.

original post date: 1/26/2014

I am continuously blown away by God’s mercy.
The fact that we serve a God who unconditionally showers us with so much mercy is hard for me to wrap my head around. Our society teaches us to get even with others, to seek revenge. We even have a phrase, “Revenge is a ____.” You can fill it in accordingly. But that is not the God we serve. No, not even close. He shows unending mercy in the face of our greatest failings. He is a God who stands with open arms. Arms waiting to embrace you in love, forgiveness, and mercy. The fact that God can see me in my brokenness and still extend His hand in mercy, is truly mind blowing to me. This is a model that is hard for me to mimic. When hurt by others, my first instinct is often to retaliate. Being a girl means this retaliation might not happen right away, it could happen after a long and drawn out plan is formed. A plan that involves getting even at a minimum, but hopefully one-upping if possible. But when I take a step back and look at this through the eyes of Christ, it breaks my heart. This is not of God, obviously. Jesus came to add & multiple. It is the Devil’s plan to subtract & divided. By allowing this long, drawn out plan to take action, I am carrying out the mission of division. Instead, God calls us to live the life of addition, the life of mercy. By showing those in our lives mercy, we are a living testimony to God’s love.