I’ve been writing this post in my head and heart for too long.
It’s the byproduct of so many late night wrestlings, so many journal entries and tweets and long-winded conversations with the people closest to me.
It’s those texts we send our friends about waiting for the next thing to happen – about anticipating the answers to our big questions, about finally finding that thing after waiting so long, hoping so desperately.
It’s the prayer we pray of God, just show me where to go and I’ll go, what to do and I’ll do it, who to be and I’ll be that person.
I’ve been there so many times, and honestly, I’m often still in that boat. Most of my daily prayers close with something along the lines of, “Lead me, Lord, to where you want me to be, who You want me to meet, to the future You have planned for me.”
And over the years, as I’ve grown as both a young adult and a Christian, I’ve often been so focused on that next thing, that I haven’t embraced the space where God has put me.
See, something that I’m ever-realizing is this: God doesn’t need us to be anything extraordinary in order to be used by Him; He uses us right where we are to fulfill His purposes that are so much bigger and more beautiful than just ourselves.
That’s not to say He doesn’t lead us ahead – simply that sometimes, the place He has for us is directly in front of us.
Oh wow He’s faithful.
There’s something so ethereal about knowing when God is speaking.
Oftentimes, before I leave my house to go be with other Christians, I pray a few things. One, that I’d have some sort of meaningful conversation, two, that God would speak, and if I remember, then three, that I’d be filled with the Spirit and used by Him.
And the funny thing is, once I arrive, when I kick off my shoes and put down my phone and start hugging people, I completely forget that I ever even prayed it. And every single time that I come home so filled, I’m overcome with awe at how He worked.
I’m stunned by the conversations that left me glowing with joy, how I heard God in worship songs and in listening to my friends preach, tangibly experiencing God’s love and presence in everyday interactions.
I heard His voice again this weekend, and it left me breathless.
For three days, I’d been praying hard that God would lead me to trust Him. And He has. Oh, how He has.
Pursue Jesus and love Him first. That’s been on my mind the past few weeks, as I run the concept over and over in my head, trying to more fully grasp what it means, what it looks like, why it’s important.
And finally, after struggling for so long to piece together my view of the world with my view of God, I came to a realization that left me breathless, head spinning, but for the first time in my life finally understanding.
Why can’t we can’t afford to put anyone other than Jesus as the first in our minds, as the reason we do everything we do? Because only He satisfies.
Only He can satisfy the longing for peace in my heart, only He can fulfill my ache for something more in this life. Only He can give me the joy, the hope, and love that my soul craves so desperately.
Before we start, I’m going to be straight with you — I’m a millennial.
Yes, I’m in college, and not a day goes by that I don’t drink at least two lattes, turn on Spotify, or check my iPhone a handful of times an hour.
Yes, I do spend most of my days working and studying and on social media on my computer, and I won’t deny it. I live in the generation of technology, specialty coffee, and cultural progression, and here I am, getting swept up in it all.
I don’t think that’s a bad thing. This is the world I’m living in and I can’t do anything about that — and yet there’s something weighing on me, something that’s been bothering me about the American Church for quite some time now.
As the church, we don’t quite know what to do with millennials, and so we shuffle around, trying to cater to what seems to be what they want, yet we overlook the spiritual needs of all involved.
I’m talking about The American Trendy Church.
Sometimes I forget there’s such a thing as a messy faith to go along with my messy life.
And in this moment, I’ll be totally honest – I’m not really sure how to best express what I’ve been feeling, lately. My thoughts are jumbled, my words ineloquent, and the feeling of being stuck permeates my every thought.
It’s quarter till eleven on Monday night where I am, and everything in me feels weary, uncomfortable, aimless. To try and pretend I have it all together, or that my messiness is endearing simply wouldn’t be right – I’m drained, deep thinking has left me unsettled, and all I want is for everything just to feel right again.
As I sit here, I begin to think hard and deep once again –
What do we do when reality hits and our lives don’t turn out the way we wanted them to?
What do we do when studying the Bible seems to leave us wrestling with questions more than finding answers?
What do we do when we find ourselves heartbroken, or filled with guilt and shame, just barely grasping what exactly grace is? Continue reading
In the midst of your pain, in the midst of your darkness, in the midst of the terrifying paths in front of us that we call the future – you’re so radically and beautifully loved. May we never lose sight of that.
I sit peacefully on the porch, one leg curled under me, guitar resting on the other. I feel the cool breeze of the evening in my hair, the summer mosquitoes swarming around my feet, and I unwind as my fingers dance up and down the familiar strings.
And in the stillness, the quiet, the only solitude I’ve had all day, one thing comes to my mind – Worship Him. The Savior. Continue reading
Holiness is not and can never be ankle-length skirts, purity rings, or immersion in Christian media to try to fight against the world. Holiness is so much more than that, and we’ve taught ourselves to settle for the symbols instead of the real thing.
I think it’s time we change that.
It’s funny how God speaks, sometimes.
I think I often expect it to be audacious and resonant, in the moment. A distinct voice from Heaven as I’m reading my Bible or writing in my prayer journal. But lately, I’ve realized that when we’re looking for Him to speak, and seeking Him in every area of our lives, we can’t help but hear His voice in the littlest things.
Because I’ve come to this realization, though it’s taken me a while –
God is meant to be at the very center of our lives, the One that guides everything we do – not just the Being we worship in some set-aside times of the week or the day – but the reason we do everything we do.