Wednesday, October 27, 2010

There's a kid sitting beside me in the coffee shop. He's obviously an underclassman and he goes to the U of A. His friends are egging him on "Are you still a Christian like you were at the beginning of the semester?" You can see in his eyes he's cornered. He's insecure and he wants to make sure that his answers please those sitting beside him, waiting to judge his answers.

"I don't want to be anything. I hate labels, and that's all Christianity is"

His friends nod with approval. They are pleased, so he is pleased.

Poor, lost boy.

We are all poor, lost boys.

WHY do we feel like we have to hide and keep who we are, who and what we love a secret?

SINCE WHEN is our identity based on two people who, in a few years, you won't remember their names?

HOW can this be a way of life that's appealing to us? Always trying to measure up to every fickle human being around us?

Why can't we just grow up? Stand on a rooftop and yell "THIS IS WHO I AM! Take it or leave it, but I love it because it was worth dying for".

Who you are is beautiful. Who you are is on purpose. Own it.

I'm praying for you, poor lost boy.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Dear Life:

Please keep surprising me, it keeps me on my toes :)

I look forward to the future more and more everyday, but with it...I feel as if I'm finally understanding what it feels like to just be. To rest in the ebb and flow of God working everyday in the most simple, uncomplicated, and quiet ways. Living in the moment is just as important as dreaming big dreams. It's easy for me to hate the present, and try to just push my way to the future (which I know is literally impossible...but I'm speaking figuratively here). So much good is going on all around me-beautiful fall weather, fantastic new friends. I'm letting myself feel things I've never been willing to feel before, and it's scary and wonderful and sometimes I'm struck breathless at just how good life is. Like when I'm laughing so hard I'm in tears because simple conversations get out of hand hilarious, or walking into a building where people take the time to let me know I am loved, or getting to dance and have little girls in the audience think I'm a fairy princess. The fact that I even have a high school diploma and am about to receive a college diploma, which is more than a lot of girls around the world get to have. So much of life is so good.

Sometimes, I feel awkward inhaling because I'm afraid my exhale is going to sound like a toddler's giggle.

This is a beautiful life we get to live. Stop. Look around and love it for what it is right now.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

I have been neglecting blogging and journaling entirely for a while. Afraid that, if I write something, then I will be forced to think too much about too many things. But here I go again. I want to document this last year of school, because I think it’s going to be full of a lot of things-good, bad, every beautiful thing in between. Over the past year or so, I’ve been realizing that I don’t have to plan. Life is a collision of events, orchestrated by a God who is much more wise and powerful than I will ever be. Each collision happens to spur you to a place you would not have thought to go for yourself. I have dreams, I have goals. But mostly, I have faith to take each step, big or little, with what little strength I have, knowing that I am being carried.
This weekend, I went on an Unplugged retreat with a church I have been going to for a while. It would take post after post to explain the impact this church has had on me. But this retreat topped it all. I found a home. I heard from the Lord. I was emptied of all the crap that was taking over myself, and filled with joy and peace. But we did something that I never would have thought to do.

We took 2x4s across our shoulders and ran up a steep, curvy hill. It was symbolic of taking up our cross and dying to ourselves. To me, this has usually been an over glorified idea that leads to focusing on ourselves, but this was not the case. Since we were in the mountains of Arkansas, I couldn’t breath because of my allergies to pine trees, so I started out at a disadvantage. They said we could walk or run, but I wanted to feel the spirit push me physically as he’d been pushing me spiritually, so I took off running. I was tired and sweaty, sore and out of breath, my shoulders hurt and I could barely stand when I finished. But that’s nothing compared to what Christ experienced. The cross is not a pretty stained glass window. It’s not a silver charm on a chain hanging around someone’s neck. It’s dirty and sweaty and bloody. It’s a reminder of how it must be God’s will and not ours, even when we are begging him to take the cup from us. It’s a challenge for me to push myself for the sake of the Cross, and that’s a sad part about how I live. But something in me died last weekend so that I could actually remember what it feels to be alive again. And it is Christ carrying the ends of the beams, lifting the burden and keeping me from falling flat on my face.




the cross