Teachable Moments (on the road) #1

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Hey family! This summer 2018 has me full of so many teachable moments that I want to share with you all! I worked at Kids Across America this summer and let me tell you – no one was safe haha. By that, I mean that it was impossible for anybody to leave without having been impacted by God in some way, shape, or form. I remember during our staff training week when the executive director greeted the new staffers by saying, “You have  no idea what you have signed up for.” My friends. He was right. What a fun yet hard summer it was. What a good yet difficult summer it was. There was a purpose for every single bit of it though.

Let’s get to one of the many moments that I’m so excited to share about!

Before kamp, driving was a favorite hobby of mine. I love it even more now because of how one can be impacted by the parallels that so easily connect driving and the ways we approach daily life. One of those parallels is speeding. When I am behind that steering wheel preparing for a long drive, I am focused. I know where I am going and I have my gps there to guide me. If I can help it, there will be very few stops made. And that estimated time of arrival(ETA)? I must beat it. It’s funny because I don’t get in the car planning to speed, but when I see the ETA I know that there’s a strong possibility to shave at least 30 minutes off my driving time.

While on the road one time this summer, I had about 600 miles to cover. At some point in covering this distance, I realized that I was nearly 20 miles over the speed limit. There were no police in sight and the other cars around me were going just as fast – so I was fine, right? Surely I’m in the right if I’m just trying to keep up with the rest. How can the police stop one car if we’re all going the same speed?

Let me introduce you to a little something-something that makes you go, “Ooo, maybe this isn’t right.” “I don’t have a good feeling about this.” “I think that I should slow down.” Yes, my friend. You’re thinking it and I’m gonna write it. Say it with me in 3…2…1, “Conviction!” Yes! You got it! Yo, the Lord was tugging me. I saw that I was way over the speed limit so if we’re being honest, I was held accountable at that point.

Because I am who I am, I had to lay out all of my excuses and also put up a little fuss to God because…I had to convince him that I was good and that he had no reason to worry about me, right?

He’s tugging me, moving me to slow down, but I was against it:

“There’s no police in sight, though!”

“Why must I be the one to slow down?”

“But if I slow down, the other drivers will see that and think that I can’t keep up.” (I have a huge image issue. I care too deeply about what people see and what they have to say.)

OR

“But if I slow down, everybody else is going to leave me behind. I don’t wanna be left behind(because moving at a slower pace is the mark of a whack American millennial)…so I must keep up.”

______________________________________________________________________________________________

In all of that, an over-arching theme for my summer was this: staying in my lane. The sub-theme then became: go at the pace that you have been given.

Imagine with me how necessary it is/was for the Lord to break me of that. I’ve been convicted plenty of times for my speeding, but because I held so tightly to those thoughts I never let up.

(Ahaaa… Interesting how those thoughts have hints of stubbornness, image issues and what I can see with my naked eye…more of that will come out in later teachable moments. Keep truckin with me, though.)

This day, my grip was loosened a little bit. I allowed myself to get to a place where I’d be open to receiving what the Lord had for me in that moment. He had me to realize that I was putting myself at a greater risk of getting into a car wreck and that if I were to pass a police car, I’d definitely be pulled over and wouldn’t get out of a speeding ticket.

He also had me to realize that I was indeed going to make it to my destination.

The truth was that I wasn’t going to make it as soon or as fast as I thought. That sucked and kinda hurt(because I’m now accepting that I will have to slow down after having gone so fast for so long. I became used to that rhythm and now it’s having to change. Funny though, how, externally, I was perfectly fine with going so fast, but in my mind I had legitimate fears of being pulled over or getting into a wreck. Ha, I also had legitimate concerns for those drivers that were going a little too fast. I would wonder how they appeared to not be the least bit concerned about those same things.). The Lord knows.

Another truth, though, was that I would make it-not the way I wanted/imagined, but I was going to make it.

I had so much pride in the way I was doing things for so long! My way seemed to be okay. Yea, I’ve gotten one or two tickets and then in some cases never got caught. Yea, I’ve gotten into some mess and then in some cases stayed afloat. But a good question would be this: When would I get tired of running into those messes? That’s not to say that I won’t ever fall, but listen: some of the ruts we find ourselves in are self-imposed(Strangely enough, God is sovereign and has orchestrated all things… and allows this to happen so maybe we would look back at those moments and come to some truths that I’m about to share. See, for our good, for his glory? Funny.). Yes, God is sure to restore us in those moments.

God is gracious, God is good, but God also wants us trust and obey.

Trust and obey. I believe that just about all of these teachable moments will lead right to that. Trust, enjoy, and obey. All three of those are commandments.

Proverbs 3:5-6 “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.”

Philippians 4:4 “Rejoice in the Lord always: and again I will say, rejoice.”

Deuteronomy 11:1 “You shall therefore love the Lord your God and keep his charge, his statutes, his rules, and his commandments always.”

When you enjoy and trust God, you will then [want to] respond to him in obedience … because when have you ever obeyed anybody you didn’t trust or enjoy?

For me, in this case, trusting God will be/is accepting the slower pace he has given me and trusting that this pace is perfect for me and actually for his glory. Enjoying God would be taking value in every bit that he allows me to experience and counting them all joy instead of discounting them.

In accepting this pace and actually enjoying it, I have and am gonna taste and see that the Lord is good(das a commandment too! The Bible doesn’t say, “Oh, maybe you should taste and see”.. noooooo.. Psalm 34:8 says, “Taste (chew and study the word) and see(watch God move) that the Lord is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him.” Go grab you a bite! Because the word is our daily bread and… you get it. So cool how the Bible doesn’t need any help because the Bible is the word and the word is God and…. yea. So when you’re chewing on the word, you’re tasting it, savoring it, letting it marinate-which is what we’re supposed to do with the word-marinate/meditate on it day and night…….okay, yea. Yasss! Think about when you let some food marinate for long time and how delicious it is when you cook it! Ahh. So tasty. You may have had to wait a while for the piece of meat or whatever it is that’s soaking, but the wait was worth it! Sure you can cook it sooner than later and it will still be good, but the longer it sits, the better. Now I’m thinking about those Christians who have walked with the Lord for a long time…the “seasoned Christians”. Whew! Okay, I’m gonna stop right there because…yea. God is so dope.)

……every bit is for my good and for his glory.

 

 

 

Good Grief, sis.

Long Sigh

Go ahead. Do it. Let it out. Even if your sigh is accompanied by tears; do it. It is your sigh, by the way. I could have typed “even if the sigh”, and all would have been well, but let us practice the art that is owning our feelings. Feelings are a part of our makeup, and we would be doing ourselves a disservice if we did not acknowledge them; whether they are up, down, or both. One side of self care that is often advertised is the more upbeat view that shows clay masks, bubble baths, perfect music playlists, and personal date nights. Another side of self care that I would like to promote is the acknowledgement of feelings and allowing oneself to feel; especially the negative ones.

Say this with me, “I see you. I feel you.

Have You Sighed Yet?

If you have not, that is okay. I only want to talk to you. You are not a robot. You are not a stick lying on the ground waiting to be trampled on. You are a human body with a soul. You live. You move. You interact. You feel. You take in. You release. I have two questions for you: When your body is ready to defecate, how does it feel when you choose not to go? Rather, how does it feel when you cannot get to a toilet immediately?

Discomfort. That is all I feel. Discomfort is what your body is feeling because it is signaling that it needs to release something but you are not giving it any kind of outlet. Our bodies are like that of a conduit rather than a container. Life and the issues that come with it flow through you. Yes, some issues may stick for some time while others may stick for a bit then pass on.

Track With Me.

Let us look at how amazing God is and how he teaches us through the life and the lifeless things around us. I hope that this is fun and interesting for you.

  • Trash cans and dumpsters get full and have to be emptied.
  • Our bodies grow and change over time. I mean, you are not planning to wear your first ever onesie tomorrow.
  • People retire and companies and organizations fill those positions.
  • Cups, sinks, tubs, pitchers, and bowls have a rim.
  • Waiting lines lengthen and shorten.

The point that I want you to see is that life has been fashioned to naturally move things along. No matter how long of a wait it may be to get into the doors of the Ryman Auditorium, you know that line is going to continue to move and that you are going to arrive to your seat. No matter how full that trash can gets, somebody is going to dump it because it is going to stink and attract unwanted creatures. No matter what, things must move along. We were not created to hold everything in and to be bound by our circumstances. We were created, however, to embrace truth and be set free by it.

What is your difficult truth at this moment?

Have you been fired? Has your longing for community not yet been satisfied? Is he/she not the person you thought you liked? Are you still searching for ways to tenderly handle the mental or emotional exhaustion that is weighing you down? Are your value and worth being attacked?

Let us deal with the real. No matter how funky it is. It may feel like gut punches, breathlessness, loneliness, embarrassment, and uncertainty. You may not want to be around people today. You may want to lay on a bed next to your best friend and not want to say word. You may want to sit in front of your phone screen, on FaceTime, in silence as your friend watches you stare into space while you process your thoughts as tears stream down your face.

Will you sigh? Please?

The knot in your throat will only tighten. The pain in your face from holding back tears will only worsen. The thoughts riding back and forth on that never ending train will only ring louder.

Look at that.

There goes your body sending you signals again, my love.

Teachable Moments (from kamp) #2

Hey family!  I hope this post found you at a good time! Let’s get to it.

At kamp, I served as a kook(cook)! It was a fun, yet laborious job. Most of my time during a regular day was spent in the kitchen. When we had a break all I wanted to do was sleep. Our kitchen manager acknowledged the importance of resting while also acknowledging the need to have quiet time with the Lord. When she’d remind us, I’d have an, “Oh yea!” moment lol. This day, just like most days, I was exhausted but I felt an urge to have quiet time – in my room anddd on my bed…because why not kill two birds with one stone?

It appeared to be an easy thing to do until I began my quiet time. I started to ask, “Lord, what does it mean/look like to trust you?” but the Lord wasn’t going. It seemed as if he would not speak to me unless I got out of my cabin and went elsewhere. I wound up at the lake where I found much calm and peace. After laying my jacket and books down on the rocks, I walked closer to the water and stood near a narrow tree. As soon as I leaned on that tree God was like, “Get up off it,” haha.

Then he said, “This is what it looks like to trust me: standing firm wherever you are and not relying on what is around you. Believe that I will fully support you.”

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge me and I will make straight your paths.” Proverbs 3:5-6

What’s the do, the don’t do, the how, and the result?

Do: trust in the Lord

Don’t do: lean on your own understanding | When I read that part of the verse, I will always think of when I leaned on that tree. I looked to that tree for support and comfort. Isn’t it so easy to do that, though? To look for everything else but God for support and comfort? Eventually, those things will fade; that tree will snap. God, though, is constant and everlasting (Psalm 90:1-2).

How [do I trust]: with all your heart and acknowledging the Lord in all your ways

Result: The Lord will bring direction.. He will make your paths straight.

**you can take this little activity and put it in your back pocket if you want. I think it will help a lot with learning how to apply scripture**

I think it’s really amazing how deeply God cares for his people. Sometimes loneliness will seem to run rampant in our walk with God, but the truth is that he will never leave nor forsake us.

He has a perfect track record of that (which proves that he is beyond worthy of our trust)… Check this out: We were once sinners and enemies of God; living in darkness. What did God do? He (1) brought us out of darkness(and didn’t just leave us without a clue), (2) brought us into his marvelous light(still didn’t leave us, cuz what we gone do) YO! BARS!! Anyway… it doesn’t stop there, though! Yes, we are in his marvelous light(which is enough, right?) but then what he do? He (3)lavishes his grace and mercy on us (Ephesians 2..but really read all of it lol). Then what? teaches us how to live accordingly because at this point all we know are our former ways. How does he teach us? By way of the Holy Spirit. (It’s real cute when we say/think “I’ve gotta get myself together.” “I need to fix this.”) Yes, take responsibility for your actions(currently learning), but be mindful that there is a work, a fixing that can only be done by the power of the Holy Spirit.

“But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.” John 14:26

So he teaches us right? Yes, absolutely. He doesn’t just tell us what we shouldn’t do without telling us what we should do. He also tells us how to do and what that practice will result in.

What is the point in all of that? The point is that God is so sweet to us! See how he takes every step with us? He seriously could have left us dead in our trespasses, but he didn’t. He could have brought us into his dwelling place and then said, “That’s enough. My work here is done.” But no! God wants to do life with you my brother and sister. I mean, he gave you life, so why not? He wants your trust. Take the step…he’s holding your hand.

*Cues Every Little Step by Bobby Brown*

“Every little step I take, you will be there. Every little step I make, we’ll be together.”

Amazing how truthful lyrics can be.

He is trustworthy, man. So trustworthy…..

Have faith that he will uphold you, bro.

Believe that his word will come to pass, sis.

Stand

firm

and

TRUST.

Where Did My Passion Go?

Thoughts from January 21, 2018:

Today, in church service, the sermon came from Ephesians 3:14-21. It really spoke to my issue with not making God my priority. Over the last few months, I have not desired to open my Bible because I wasn’t necessarily “feeling it” at the moment. I wondered at times, “what if I don’t have an intimate moment with Jesus as I’m reading?” “What if the Holy Spirit doesn’t move as I’m reading?” What’s the point if none of that happens? What if there’s no real “AHA!” moment? I ask myself those questions because I know what those moments are like and having an “AHA!” moment while reading the Bible can leave you with a sense of growth and understanding. When the Holy Spirit has revealed some sweet knowledge to you while reading the Bible, you expect for that to happen every time you touch the book but when it doesn’t happen every time you begin to lose your excitement for it.

This makes me think of how we go through what some of us label as “dry spells” with the Lord. It appears that we can’t hear from God or that we no longer have that crazy passion, but in my personal experience, every time I have looked back at those moments, God has shown me how he was/is still being God and how his beautiful hand was/is still over my life. Nothing extravagant had to have happened.

God is sweet like that. Maybe it’s so easy (very easy for my friends out there who have a fear of loss) to think that God has left us or is not hearing us because of our human-ness. If we haven’t talked to someone for so long, we may think that there is a disconnect or that something has gone wrong (which can be the case at times but not always). But God is different. His thoughts are not our thoughts and his ways are not our ways. Hebrews 13:8 says that Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever. He is patient and he is kind. He hasn’t changed on us!

A little while ago, one of my favorite youtuber’s posted a video where they discussed that exact thing: not feeling it(the Bible; my walk with the Lord, etc.) anymore. The question they posed was “What do you do when you’re not feeling it anymore?” Yall, it was so good. Great points that I took away are that feelings are present but they don’t take us anywhere and that life (especially walking Jesus) is about doing regular things everyday. They used an example of long, healthy marriages. Yes, those good feelings are there but just because they are not felt always doesn’t lessen either spouse or the marriage or the love with which they began with! Wow. The wedding day is big, beautiful, and full of excitement just like our personal coming to Jesus moments but everyday after that doesn’t always reflect that. The love is still there though, and you continue doing those simple, regular, day-to-day things. Isn’t this a familiar response when you ask someone of the faith that you admire, “How do you do it?”

My encouragement to my brothers and sisters in the faith is to keep on keeping on. You’re not alone in this walk for one. You have a cloud of witnesses that have gone before you, the triune God who lives in you, and fellow followers of Christ who are striving just like you are. Share your story and be willing to hear and listen to others. Share your story and be willing to hear and listen to God. By the power, might, and grace of God, you’ve got it.

“I don’t always feel it. Doesn’t make me any less Christian. Doesn’t make me any less God’s child. If anything that’s when I learn to see him more. That’s when I press through those moments of apathy; those moments of not feeling anything [at this point they close those their eyes and have their hands out as if they’re finding their way through darkness] ‘cuz now I know it’s not just a feeling ‘cuz I pressed through it; I’m here even without the feeling. I’m still here… and I think that’s more real.” -Joseph Solomon

THE BEST.

Ahh! Fresh from Redeemer Church’s Vacation Bible School 2016! (Well, like, 2 hours fresh) This girl is kinda sorta dog tired, but it was all worth it!

Ahhh, why are children so– thoughts.

So the Lord says that children are a gift from him right? RIGHT. What a great glimpse I got this week at VBS. Oh my goodness. Oh my lanta. From the thoughts that are flowing in my head now, I am starting to see why children are a gift.

First off, they are the most truthful beings in the world. They have no filter and have no shame in telling you about yourself or simply about how they feel about whatever. Ever get offended by a child telling you something like, “Well, I actually like hanging out with the other group leader more than you”? Ha! What do you do? Get over it and love them anyways. Initially, you may think that they really don’t like you but by the end of the day, they will ask you for your phone number and look at you and say, “I’ll call you” as if there is a big strategy meeting coming up.

Second, they are the funniest, most relieving beings in the world. It’s literally the little things. Whether it’s them trying to be funny or them simply breathing, you can’t get passed it. For example, (the child simply breathing), they look up at you and motion you to come down to their level so that they can tell you a secret(while laughing), revealing that they have a crush on the boyfriend of an older sibling. I’m honestly dying on the inside right now. Another example, (the child trying to be funny), they exaggerate hand and body movements to a kid worship song(because every children’s ministry song should have hand and body movements to every song…seriously.) by moving into an aisle and jump all over the place and you see them and can’t help but laugh because you already know that child has serious(funny serious) issues and watching them dance adds to their craziness.

Third, they are the most innocent beings in the world. This can be overwhelming because when you’re adult status you are aware of the brokenness of the world and you never want your child(nephew, niece, whomever) to deal with it, but when you see and hear them (this is the example) sing their hearts and lungs out to “My God is so BIG so STRONG AND SO MIGHTY. There’s nothing my God cannot do *CLAP CLAP*. THE MOUNTAINS ARE HIS. THE RIVERS ARE HIS. THE STARS ARE HIS HANDIWORK, TOO *bloop, bloop, bloop*(because they are pointing out the stars). Or when you hear them sing their song of the week at the closing of VBS,

“So Spirit, come, put strength in ev’ry stride,
Give grace for ev’ry hurdle,
That we may run with faith to win the prize
Of a servant good and faithful.
As saints of old still line the way,
Retelling triumphs of His grace,
We hear their calls and hunger for the day
When, with Christ, we stand in glory.”

Ahh.

Some of them may not even know what the song is saying, but they sing with everything in them! Hearing the voices of tiny humans is the greatest.

They are gifts from the Lord and we must love on them.

This was my first VBS with my church and I couldn’t have asked for a better week! Weeks before the event, volunteers filled out a sheet so that the director would know who’s willing to serve in what area. I checked almost everything off and ended up being a teacher.

Initially, I was like, “whaaaa” but then I was graced with three beautiful group leaders! We shared many laughs and smiles while leading some of the most beautiful souls at Redeemer; teaching them Hebrews 12:1-2.

Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus the founder and perfecter of our faith and who with joy set before him endured the cross, despising the shame and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.

Before this goes any further, I must say that it is extremely possible that this scripture won’t read correctly. Our task this week was to memorize it and typing it was challenge to remember it. Like, I’m not even going to google it to check it lol.

Ha, the girls were so excited to share how much they knew. Every time I said, “Who can say this part of the scripture without it being written on the board?” HANDS WOULD FLY UP.

“Ooooooo!!!” *mouths words* “Pick me! Pick me!”

*Wide eyes*

*Hairline-touching eyebrows* Hahaha.

Amazing. They learned scripture. They listened and answered questions during Bible time. They obeyed and didn’t get overwhelmingly loud. They dominated during recreation. They had fun while learning that there is a legitimate Savior that went through mighty lengths for them and ran a hard race and made it so that we can run too while saints that have already gone before us are cheering us on because they know that the race isn’t the easiest, but thank God for Jesus; the one that has ran the race(that he already won for us), and comes back to run with us.

Whew. That picture was painted so clearly this week and my prayer is that those children will never forget that.

Every parent and grand that I met were so thankful for those that volunteered this week. It was really sweet because then, I learn that these people have entrusted us to be a part of this “village”, or better yet, take up our role in what we call the Body of Christ and show them their kids Jesus and why he is so important.

Even while typing this now, I’m realizing that as long as there are children on this earth, there should always be a willingness to love these tiny humans irrationally. Love, love, love them.

***The examples that were given in this post were real events that occurred this week at VBS.***

Laughing, but very serious. Thank you for reading!

 

 

I Can’t Believe I Look Like ME

Yall. I cannot believe that I look like me.

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I look like myself. Ya know? With the light skin, yellow hue. The long finger nails and perfect nail beds. The natural hair that’s been going for nearly 10 years. The eyebrows that get me caught because I can’t keep my expressions to myself. The extra hair on my face that I used to hate so much, but slowly beginning to accept as a small part of what makes me ME.

I look like me! My cute little nose with that shiny thing hanging on the side. My lips that some think are nonexistent lol! My smile that blows me away like it does other people…because let’s be honest, it’s nice and bright..inviting and genuine.

I look like me. Morgan. With the extra roll on my arms that still, til this day confuses me haha. With the three tattoos that I know are permanent, but they were slick out of spontaneity, but that’s why I love them so.

Yo. Can I believe that? Like, I really look like me! MEE! This brings much emotion to at this moment, because for the longest and even today I could not believe who I looked like. Yes, I may remind you of a light bright cousin, some girl with natural hair(because all naturals look alike, right?), or whatever, but I look like me. I seriously don’t look like the girl next door or at my school and that is awesome! I look like me! Wow. I look like me.

I don’t think I ever knew what I looked like. Yes, I’ve looked at plenty of mirrors, but I always (gahhh!) I always looked (tears!) at myself just to compare myself to the next person. Wow. Before I even get to a mirror, I have this checklist of what people, social media, and Hollywood say I should look like. Imagine the frustration I’d deal with every time I left that mirror. Devaluing myself so that I can take what I found valuable from others. Oh, my God.

Help me.

Someone posted a status that read, “If God wanted you to look like someone else, he would have made you look like them.” Whoa! Dude, do you how simple, yet, deep that is? If God wanted me to look like the prettiest girl on campus, he would have done so. If God wanted me to look like the finest girls on Instagram, he would have done so. If God wanted to me to look like something other what I already look like, he would have done so.

That is crazy! Listen to this: When you were in your mother’s womb, the Lord formed you in such a way so that you would grow up to look the way that you do now. Accept it. Accept who you are. ACCEPT WHO YOU ARE.

I cannot tell yall how many times I’d add another 30 minutes to my prep time before school or any event just so I could pluck or wax my face. I had to ask myself sometimes, “Why am I doing this? Is it so that people won’t look at me funny? Or is it because I want to do this for myself?”

What’s your motivation?

When I think of why I do things and realize that it is for the sake of others, all I can imagine is this woman that is bound by chains with the hopes of never being able to walk again…or better yet, a woman that is dragging her feet only because of the weight of those chains. Is that what I want to mentally and spiritually do for the rest of my life? NO.

Now, when I think my motivation as I am getting ready to be around people, all that comes to my mind is, “Forget these people!” I don’t mean that in a vulgar way. It comes out like that because I know how mean and ugly people can be and I refuse to let petty words and actions tear me down when I KNOW that I have confidence and know that the Lord created me and knew how I would turn out: GOOD.

I remember a conversation I had with my dearest friend and she was talking about when people decide point out what seem to be our “flaws” and her response to that is, “You are late.”

Honayyyyy! Can somebody say, “Truuuuu!”

You are late if you thought that I didn’t know. You are late, boo.

I’m glad that I have whatever. You know why? Because I could not imagine myself without it. If that one thing wasn’t there, I’d sure have something else to one day complain and cry about and the next day, love.

I look like me, yall. And I can’t believe it.

It’s time. Gosh, It is time.

Take off the lens of society, take off the lens of your family, take off the lens of your friends.

Take off the lens of what you think…

…and be raw.

You, the person that is reading this? Can you believe it?

You look like you, love! *waterworks*

No one else in this world will ever look like you…even if they tried. I believe that I can truly say, with the Lord to back me up, “It is impossible for someone to be duplicated.”

Yes, there is plastic surgery, make up and more, but even to the slightest feature can someone be duplicated.

Stop trying. This is a situation where you can throw in the towel and not be ashamed. Not in the presence of the Lord, you won’t!

I’m not going to call you handsome, gorgeous, fine, or beautiful. Although these words have the power to describe a person, I want to leave you so much space to define you(in the Lord’s terms-which are infinite).

breath.

 

I’m just trying to take myself back and put myself in my rightful place.

Attraction

Having a crush can be the ugliest thing in the entire world. For the average person, it’s hard to just live and be free around them lol. I know for myself, I hate even being in the same room as my crush. I sweat, shake, and really forget who I am. Words are super hard to come across and I lose all confidence in who I am because I’ve basically put whoever it is on a pedestal and completely out of my reach.

Why does that happen so much? It’s like the person that we like, or are attracted to is the only person that’s alive.

When we begin to find interest in someone we do the most retarded things ever. We avoid them to make them notice us. We may try to get a little close to them, but we won’t really say much. We slowly but surely try to adjust the way we talk, dress, interact with others to hopefully impress them.
Yall, I won’t even lie, I do the craziest things. Like, I start the petty things like the way I may put my hand on my hips or maybe the way I hold my chin lol! It gets crazy out here! But I really want to impress this guy!

Eventually, for myself, I had to break away from all of that madness.
One night, I saw someone for the first time in maybe two months. I was nervous to actually talk to him because I just thought it would be awkward. A few months ago, I expressed interest in him through a text and I automatically put pressure on myself. Because I was attracted to him, I, unknowingly gave him this extreme ultimatum: Either you’re interested or you hate me. Seriously. If he was responding to my text messages, saying the things that I wanted to hear, then it’s wrap. Every time we text, life became harder and harder. Do you see how crazy that is? Now I knew him to be a super cool, laid back, nice guy wayyyyy before we text. Why would I make him out to be someone completely different just because we’re texting? Surely he won’t become this giant monster over night, right?

REJECTION. That was my problem. I didn’t want to be rejected. If I got any kind of response that felt like it, I’m gonna go cry in my little corner because he clearly hates me.
Back to the story. I was nervous about talking to him, but it happened and it was the complete opposite of what I was thinking. It wasn’t awkward or anything, because he’s not awkward! He’s nice! I talked myself into thinking that he wanted nothing to do with me because of whatever “vibes” I thought I was getting. Smh.
On my way home, I was justa praying to the Lord: “God why am I so stupid?! Why do I put so much pressure on myself when I interested in a guy? Whhyyy?!” I said more and then phoned my dear friend to expound on what happened. The Lord was giving us so much wisdom!
He taught us that liking someone or being attracted to them is no BIG DEAL. Do you know how many times I fussed at God for being attracted to dudes?! He had to let a sista know that it is totally alright. Why would he BLESS us with attraction and like and not help us deal with it? (Because y’all know it’s hard sometimes lol)
When these things happen, we should be drawn to these people and want to get to them and their hearts – not avoid them!
It’s so selfish 😦
When we do these things, we begin to send mixed signals and confuse them, which is really not Godly lol.

Confidence.
He taught us that we should not lose confidence in ourselves or Him. Know that you are amazing right where you are. Don’t rearrange yourself for someone no matter what. Don’t be afraid to be YOU around them. Trying to impress someone with what’s not really you is basically telling them lies. Later down the line, you’ll learn that it wasn’t much of an impression after all.

ACCEPTANCE.
You are not meant to be romantically involved with every person you find attractive. Once we realize this, it will become a lot easier to live with those who don’t reciprocate the same interest. Don’t take it as rejection. This shouldn’t even bother us. We have this mindset where we believe that if someone doesn’t want us then we should just say forget it and move on. Maybe there is a beautiful friendship waiting to bloom? Maybe this is a great connect to have for a while.

SELFISHNESS.
Do you like ME? What can you do for ME? Tell ME what I want to hear. It’s all about ME. No it ain’t. When we are interested in someone, it’s amazing to see how much we forget about them. We don’t consider them in anything. Notice ME. Text/Call ME. I don’t wanna see you with anyone but ME. Madness, babeh!
When you show interest in them and then disregard them, that confuses them and makes them think otherwise when it comes to even giving things a chance! Show people that you want to be around them. YOU text them first. If you wanna talk, why wait all day to “test” them and get your feelings hurt in the end, when you don’t get what you want? Be real, we are the ones that put all of the pressure on the people we’re interested in because we’ve given them this super high standard that we want them to meet.

Relax.
Again, have confidence. The Lord did not give us a spirit of fear, but of LOVE, POWER, and a SOUND MIND.
How does this apply to this at all?

LOVE.
Towards our person of interest: Love looks at the heart of people. Love makes us compassionate towards people and considerate towards them.
Towards us: Love will fight through the fear of being vulnerable with our person. Love will remind us to be kind.
Towards our creator: Love will say, “Lord, no matter how this situation will turn out, thank you for the experience. Thank you for this(possible) new relationship.” As you’re getting to know your person, you want to point everything you do and say to glorify God because at the end of the day, we should seek to please Him.

POWER.
This is just everything I said, especially in regards to confidence, with biblical emphasis. You have the power of Christ. The next time, you get nervous or become unsure about what to do or say, tap into that God-given power.

SOUND MIND.
Lord. This is so important. When we’re dealing with a person we like or are attracted to, we let go and let our feelings have their way. The world says, “Listen to your heart. Follow your heart.” The Bible says, “Do not conform to these patterns.” Why? Because it also says that the heart is DECEITFUL. The Lord dropped this in my spirit that night,

A sound mind is a sober mind.

A sound mind keeps me aware of what’s going on. Feelings, which are constantly changing, will have you drunk. Tripping over people, saying things that you won’t mean, waking up the next day regretting everything. But it was nice to be in the moment, right? Drunkenness. Don’t put your hope in it.
The Lord pushed through that night. Be encouraged and have faith in how far God can take you versus what you think you can do. Don’t be ashamed of the people you gain interest in. Get to know them and let the Lord work.
I love you.

MY Fall Back Game…in so many words

Yesterday, Thursday, January 8, 2015, I decided to spend time with Jesus. I have this section in my journal where I write out questions that I have concerning my life. It’s more like an “Ask the Lord” section lol.

As I wrote my questions, it all began to turn into a prayer about a specific area of my life that most of us discuss quite often.

“Sharpen me Lord and seriously draw me to a… or continue to draw me to a place of no return. I don’t want to invest so much of my time on a guy that I don’t even know that well or that I really don’t talk to. I know that these moments in my life will help in encouraging and praying for another brother or sister, but I want to mature in this part of my life. I give it to you, because you made me aware that you can be Lord over every aspect of my life. Thank you Lord. Instead of investing wrongly into guys, I want to invest n Jesus…which would probably be way less pressure for me. I don’t have to “wish” to see you or run into you, wonder about how you feel towards me, wonder if you’re the one. I don’t have to hide things from you…I don’t have to be worried about my flaws revealing themselves and you running away… I don’t have to wonder if you’re seeing someone else. I can think about you ALL day long and not regret it because you’ll add to my life and I’d also be in eternity and my mind will be set on those things that are above. I can talk about you to as many people as I’d like and not feel guilt… because you’re pure and whole and fulfilling and I can never have too much of you. You are my portion, therefore you ARE ENOUGH. You fit me. I don’t have to impress you. I can swoon over you and who you are, the miracles you’ve done, every word you say…your presence.

Your love endures forever.

I can love you.

Say What You Need To Say

Passive aggression never helped anyone. All it does is provide a bottle for all of us to store up leftover feelings that have not been dealt with. Eventually, it expires and molds into anger and bitterness with chunks of frustration. It stinks up your attitude and you begin to walk around with this odor that won’t go away until you grab the handles of that trash bag, tie them up, and throw it away… for good. I understand the struggle, though. Sometimes that bag is way too heavy and you’d like for someone else to toss it out. Orrrr, you know it’s about time to toss it, but ya just don’t feel like it. You fear that there may be a leak at the bottom and any move you make after picking it up will make the bag rip and tear before your eyes and boom, you are left with a mess that could have been avoided if you tended to it earlier. Foreign juices and foods that you don’t remember throwing away, the smell of death filling up the space that you are in. Man, it’s bad lol. At that moment, you consumed with some thoughts: why didn’t I just take it out before it got this heavy? Dude, I swear I’m about to throw up. I’m jumping straight in the shower after this. Is today doomsday? Lord, help me!

Just say something.

One of my favorite artists, John Mayer, has song called Say. “Say whatcha need to sayyy. Say whatcha need to say. Even if your hands are shaking, do it with a heart wide open.”

Do it a heart wide open.

SAY WHAT YOU NEED TO SAY.

So much could be avoided if we consistently did this. We think entirely too much in certain situations that don’t require too much. We worry too much about what other people are going to say, what people are going to think of us, what will happen to our relationships, what people might do, and then some more. You will get tired, eventually.

I have had my share of passive aggressiveness. Lord knows. The many times that I have gone through without saying anything have led me to the starting block that I am at now.

This Monday, at work, my co-worker noticed that I was kind of distant (Not knowing that it was because of her). She’s a very curious and concerned person, so she asked what was up. I brushed it off the first time she asked, just saying the famous passive aggressive words, “Oh, it’s nothing.” A little while after, I immediately thought to myself, “I’ve got to tell her how I’m feeling about this because I know me. I don’t want to have an attitude while working with her. I want a positive, healthy environment for us both.” Then, I had to pep myself… ya know, get in thug mode (the most Christian way possible lol), “What can she do to me or say to me if I confront the issue? She gone get mad? Should I let this affect me? No, because I’m being upfront and honest. She just might be understanding.” Before I go any further, please note that I had no intent to be violent lol! Anyway, I figured that it should not be hard. This barrier isn’t that big. Matter of fact, there isn’t a barrier! I told her how I was feeling and she WAS understanding! Nothing changed between us. She was actually more content with the fact that I talked to her and now we can really begin to function better as a team.

You can do it.

When the Lord said that we are more than conquerors through Jesus Christ. Remember when I said that he is concerned about what we may consider to be the minor things in life? Yep.

Avoid the unnecessary baggage.

Can You Really Be Lord Over All?

Friday morning at 5:30 on the nose, the Lord woke me up and gave me a word that I was quite not ready for. He reminded me of some time spent with a very, very dear friend: after our time ended, I was constantly thinking about how much I adore our friendship, how much it took for us to get where we are now, and ultimately how I don’t EVER want to lose them as a friend. Sometimes, I could cry at the thought of that. Anyway, he brought that to my mind to show me, specifically, how I have attachment issues :/. This wasn’t anything new to me. I know that if I have high interest in something, I immediately fall in love with it. No doubt. Like, I develop the strongest grips on the things and people that I love. Imagine how hard it would be for me to let go. The letting go part was what he pointed out. This spring is a prime example. I had a dispute with someone that I considered to be my first, best guy friend and he basically let me know that he didn’t want to be friends anymore. At that point, I felt like crap. I remember venting to my friend saying, “The very thing that I held on to the most, is the very thing that I have to let go of.”

Letting go.

Ouch. 

Who EVER wants to let go of something that they admire or adore? It is so hard! At that moment of my life, I seriously had no idea of what would result from that. I dealt with so much fear and doubt of the unknown, but thankfully, we are back at it with little attachment. Healthy relationship. The Lord KNOWS how hard it is for me to let go of things, but it has to be done. When he brought this to my mind that morning, it was so hard for me to swallow.

“But I don’t want to let go, Lord! You don’t understand how close we are. I never want to lose them. It’s so hard to come across genuine relationships. Lord, please.”

He simply said to me, “I can be Lord over this part of your life. You know that, right?” Wow.

To be honest, I felt peace simply because when I think of allowing God to be Lord of my life, I only think of serious things like, my love life(or lack thereof), school, and… that’s it because these are the two things that are in my face right now. I consider things like, I don’t know, my hair, where I work…this blog, friendships, and other minor things in my life to be petty to God. Like, why would he care to reign over those aspects? Maybe because it’s just that…he cares.    Wow, again.

Maybe it’s because we usually tend to not care about those things…which is not bad, but we know that our ways aren’t the Lord’s ways. Plain and simple.

When he revealed this to me, I was like, “Well shucks, take this area, this area, ohhhhh and that one, too!” Mind you, I know that this isn’t gonna be a piece of cake, but with the peace he is giving me, I know that it can be done.

It’s just been a day since all of this happened. I have been thinking about it nonstop. It does make me tear up a little bit because I no longer have control over my life anymore….you know? Where I am able to see and monitor everything that’s going on, stop, rewind or fast forward at my leisure. I can’t anymore, because I am serious about letting God be LORD over every little bit of my life. It is not a super fun thing to think about, but my gosh, trust him.

Taking, “Let go and let God” to another level.

Grace and peace =)