It’s Time For Me to Be Real Here

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I’m sitting at the counter, jittering from my intake of caffeine, waiting to take a final, and seriously thinking about the future.

 

To be perfectly honest, I’ve been a little disoriented lately. Thinking about what I’ll do next is so tiring, sometimes.

 

Because every time I think I’ve figured everything out about what I’ll be doing and where I’ll be in a few years, something changes. My desires change, my situations change, anything and everything and it sends me into a mental frenzy.

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Trusting God Through the Journey (+ giveaway winners!)

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Every good story involves some kind of journey.

 

I’ve been thinking about my journey a lot, lately. Thinking about how in five years I’m gonna look back on this moment and remember the things I felt, the things I thought, what I did and who I spent my time with and how I lived my life, and I’ll be so far removed from those things then.

 

I’m looking ahead to the day I’ll look back and see how things have changed.

 

How I’ve changed.

 

How those around me have changed.

 

Because even now, I look back, and I’ve learned, and grown, and changed so much. Even the very way I approach life now is so different. I have different perspectives, different struggles, different voices in my life I listen to.

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Why I’m No Longer Trying to Figure Out What to Do With My Life

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For the past few months, I’ve been thinking and praying, seeking to know, grasping to discover what to do with my life. I have somewhat of an idea; somewhat.

 

I have my passions. I have my friends and family that encourage me. I have my hobbies, my loves, those things in my life I can’t imagine doing without.

 

And so lately, I’ve been on this journey. It’s been somewhat subconscious, in the back of my head, and on those days where I’m home alone with my notebooks, my Bible, my phone, and computer, I can choose to either think, or be distracted.

 

Sometimes, I choose to think.

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My Ink-Stained, Remembrance-Filled Practice

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Hey, can I let you in on a little secret?

 

Yes, you. Right here, right now.

 

I have a pretty good memory, for the most part. I can recall so many details from conversations and places and events that happened ten years ago. I can remember sights, smells, tastes, emotions, all so vividly.

 

But there is one thing that I can so easily forget…and that’s goodness.

 

Not goodness in the world, I don’t mean that. Look up random acts of kindness on Tumblr and they’re right there. Goodness isn’t too difficult to find in people’s actions, even when this sinful world’s in chaos.

 

But sometimes…I forget those simple truths I’ve known for years. Sometimes, I forget the goodness of God.

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What The Christian Life is Really About (Hebrews Bible Study: Week 13)

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Welcome to week thirteen – the final week – of the Hebrews Bible Study on Scattered Journal Pages.

 

And wow, we’ve made it so far. I don’t have the time to bring up every lesson discussed in these thirteen weeks – so that’s what the previous post list is for, of course. This means now that if you want to access any study on any chapter in the entire Book of Hebrews, they’re all in the archives, open for the reading. I’m excited about that!

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Real Trust in The Lord

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We’ve probably heard them all a thousand times. Written them on index cards, saved them as our lock screen wallpaper, pinned them, Tweeted them, and posted them on Facebook.

 

What is “them?”

 

Bible verses. The ones we memorized as Sunday School Kids, highlighted in our first Bibles, and became deaf to because we’d heard them so many times.

 

That Powerful Verse became absolutely cliché. Trust in the Lord, yada yada. For God so loved the world, blah blah blah. I’ve heard it all so many times. And it becomes un-life-changing, un-impressive, non-radical.

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Do I Really Trust? Let’s Find Out…

Do I Really Trust Let's Find Out...

This blog is titled Scattered Journal Pages for a reason, and it’s time I use the theme more than I do.

These are my contemplations, and the equivalent of what I would write (sort of) in my journal. My contemplations. Things I’m feeling, and learning, and growing from.

Yesterday (Monday) was a miserable day for me.

Actually, it really wasn’t miserable, but I was miserable. My attitude. My feelings. My outlook. And yes, a few days before, I had just written about not forgetting my joy.

I felt like a hypocrite, I really did. This girl who claims that joy lasts is not living with a joyful spirit.

And I mean, that totally happens. Sometimes we just succumb to our dark circumstances and make ourselves see only bitter dark tunnels with no end.

Some things have happened that have weighed on me emotionally, and I let that become the end.

Some people say they ‘can’t feel,’ but for me, it felt like I was just feeling so much. And for my future, I’m scared.

I have to do my own invented version of self-analysis when I feel this way.

Why am I so down?

I’m down because I’m scared to death.

Why am I so scared?

Because I have no idea what’s coming in the future.

Do I trust God?

Of course I trust God. Don’t I?

Do I trust that God’s plan is best, even when I can’t see it?

Well, I know it is.

 

Yes, but do I really trust? Do I trust that He will bring me through everything that happens to accomplish His plan?

Yes…I think so.

 

Do I trust that even if He doesn’t bring me through, that it’s for the best?

I don’t know. I should. Because I know it is. So, yes.

 

Then why am I still afraid?

Because…what if things never get better? What if my life stays just like this forever? What if I’m hopelessly lost for the rest of my life?

 

Should that really be my concern, though? Okay, let’s say things never get better. Say I have to live with my circumstances how they are long-term. Do I still trust that God’s way is perfect? Do I still believe that God has my life under control, that what happens happens, and that He will never leave me or forsake me?

*thinks for a long while* Yes, I do trust.

The light is what we make of it.

I told myself I was fumbling around in darkness. I told myself I had to be miserable. I told myself I was in a tunnel without and end. I told myself that there was no light.

 

But those are lies.

 

I forgot (temporarily) what the Bible says.

1 Thessalonians 5:18

“Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”

I wasn’t giving thanks and living with what God had given me. But now I am.

2 Samuel 22:31

“This God—his way is perfect;

the word of the Lord proves true;

he is a shield for all those who take refuge in him.”

I wasn’t trusting that as hard as God’s plan may be, that it is the best. Now I am.

Jeremiah 29:11

“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.”

I wasn’t trusting that God’s plans for me were for my welfare, future, or hope. But now I realize that they are.

Isaiah 55:8-9

“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.”

I was basing my fear of insecurity off of my perception of what was going on. Instead, I’ve refocused. I’ve realized that things may look like they’re impossible, but God has a plan through it all. That His ways are far better than mine.

The verses speak for themselves.

I want to encourage all of you today, don’t give up on trusting God.

Don’t give in to the lies that hold you captive.

Never lose hope that God’s ways are best, and whatever happens is for your good and His glory.

And please remind me of all of this when I feel like I’m in the dark!

*aj

Even When It’s Hard

Even When It's Hard

Life is pretty crazy at the moment.

I will spare you the details, but let’s just say things are different around here at the moment.

And it’s not easy. I’m easily overwhelmed, and it’s hard at times. Lots of times.

Through all of this, I’m realizing more and more that God is faithful.

In the easy times, and in the hard times, God does not change. He does not leave. He does not forget us. He does not forsake us. He does not revoke His promises. His grace still stands. He never stops loving us. He still protects us, even when it seems like our world is crushing us. He is still with us…even when we can’t feel Him.

Psalm 91 is one of my favorite chapters in the Bible. And it’s such an encouragement. You all know how much I love words and imagery.

Please do read all of it when you get a chance (it is really beautiful) but here are just the first two verses.

Psalm 91:1-2

“He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High

will abide in the shadow of the Almighty.

I will say to the Lord, ‘My refuge and my fortress,

my God, in whom I trust.’”

I always have to remind myself that God is my refuge, and He is faithful when I am faithless.

2 Timothy 2:13

“if we are faithless, he remains faithful—

for he cannot deny himself.”

Psalm 36:5

“Your steadfast love, O Lord, extends to the heavens, your faithfulness to the clouds.”

Deuteronomy 7:9

“Know therefore that the Lord your God is God, the faithful God who keeps covenant and steadfast love with those who love him and keep his commandments, to a thousand generations[.]”

Even though life is really rough, God keeps His promises about never leaving or forsaking us. It still stands true that God comforts us.

2 Corinthians 1:3-4

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.

I know this post is short today. But know this.

Whatever you are going through today, God will be with you. He is faithful, and His promises still stand.

And lastly, one of my favorite verses.

Isaiah 43:2

“When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you.”

I’m really tired…so I’m not going to say much more. Please know that God is for you and not against you, and that He wants to work good out through your situation.

Trust. The key to everything.

Don’t forget to trust Him who formed you, created the stars, and know every thought you’ll have even before you think it.

Trust Him, for He is trustworthy.

Even when it’s hard.

*aj