Soul-First

Last weekend, I sat on the porch at the lake to watch the sunrise and I found myself making a list. Even now I’m not exactly sure what it is, but it’s divided in half, one side of negative qualities and the other positive. 

I had been in a funk. You know the kind you’re full aware is happening, and it’s as if you’re trapped, don’t want to be, but can’t find yourself out? 

I kept watching myself be short with my family. I was disappointed my summer of discipline was not unfolding like I’d envisioned. I felt disconnected from God, myself and from my people. It was time to hit reset, take inventory of what was happening and implement some sort of change.

In the midst of the weekend I had two dear friends come visit the lake. We set out to talk out our freshest dreams, and we did, but also traveled into lucious chatter about the holiness of our bodies, beauty, celebrating, and inevitably, boys. We got donuts, floated in the warm water and read our novels side by side - we even made up a dance. I promise it was as glorious as it sounds!

At one point, the conversations simmered down to midday rests on the swaying of the pontoon. Madelyn was out cold, and I was face up looking to the cloudless blue sky soaking in the rays, the joy of the day, and the fresh thoughts prompted by our chats and my recent read. 

I thought about love. And about how I don’t think about love very often. I had come to this conclusion before, but was faced with it once again, this time feeling unable to escape the tangled web question of “why do I think this way?” 

I realized I think more about doing what is “right” than anything. Being “right” is structured, it’s black and white. I’m either doing right or wrong. I can strategize when I’m attempting to do the “right” thing all the time. But love, love is messy. It’s a beautiful, chaotic mess that I have been tentative to fully submerge myself in fear of doing something “wrong.” This explains my default (and deceived) view of God: a distant someone who is frustratingly trying to straighten me out and use me as a pawn in the game. 

This perception has been so deeply tucked into the engine that revs my way of living when I remembered God IS Love (1 John 4:8) it was as if I heard it for the first time. It was like I had been hearing an overplayed song, then finally woke up to listen to the magic of the perfectly combined elements of lyrics, melody and style. 

I returned to my list. And what I began to see were characteristics my life could be marked by. Each word was like a knock on the door into my life that wanted to be let in, and I had the opportunity to choose if they could enter. On the left side words like anxiety, strife, proving, self-sufficient, heavy, distracting and critical were obviously on the negative half. I swallowed slowly to face the fact I was more well acquainted with these words than the ones on the right - love, empathy, kindness, courageous, worshipful, consistent. 

In the push to be “right” I had left behind what was right in the first place. I had thought about these qualities, read about them, preached them. But when I turned deeply inward I couldn’t find them there. I heard someone say recently that if someone were to squeeze them they would want Jesus to come out. Oh do I long for that! But with such a skewed view of God Himself how would that have ever been possible?

Now the tables have turned a bit. And it feels like I have sea legs and am learning how to walk. I’m calling the way I want to live for the rest of my life ‘soul-first.’ I want to abide so deeply in the God who is Love that my life seeps of belonging, joy, creativity, discipline and spontaneity. No more settling for going through the motions, running so non-stop I can’t even connect. I want when people get closer to my life it becomes more beautiful because I am not just performing acts of love, I am becoming love. Love is the drive, and the eyes I see from. 

Living soul-first is tied closely to groundedness. For me, it looks like seeking silence in the bookends of my day and midday. It looks like putting relationships over tasks, but being faithful to the work I was given. It is exclaiming with awe when I see a butterfly and accepting a beautiful sunset as personal. It is seeking to feel fully in suffering, whimsy and confusion. It is walking into a public place with a listening heart asking God, “What do you want me to know, do or say?”

Living soul-first means being on the playing field of your own life. It is messy and beautiful, not something you can organize tidily. All it requires is our commitment to be all here. 

Define The Season

I've done my best to make mountains my home. You see, mountains are photo-worthy. Mountains are where celebration happens, instagrammable moments take place and joy overflows like champagne. If I look back in the distance of my 21-year old life I see a lot of high peaks. I’ll candidly and gratefully admit to have done some pretty cool things so far. 

Though I’ll tell you I am currently trekking my way down from one of my favorite mountains now, and all I want to do is hop to another one. I want to bypass the mundane, skip over the normal and just be a part of something awesome and world-changing. But girl - we both know that is not how how this life works, especially if Jesus is your tour guide. 

Instead of a new mountain I am finding my way in the pasture. The place in Scripture we see David pre-kingship and post-anointing (1 Samuel 16). You know, the place along the still waters (Psalm 23:2). 

Here’s the thing about seasons - they’re real (Ecclesiastes 3). In the middle of a season we tend to forget we’re in one. This, today, the people you’re around, the things you’re apart of, it won't all be the same in years to come. Whether the fact strikes you with hope or fills you with fear, we must intentionally cling to the promise that this is all ever-changing in order to fully show up to the season of our lives we are in. 

The pasture - where I’m calling home for now. For a place meant to be restful, I am sure finding myself restless (and I think that’s the point!) To me, the pasture is off the radar. It is where richer character will be cultivated through building habits of servanthood and self-denial. It’s filled with deep fellowship with my Shepherd and fellow sheep. It’s a place I would never lead myself. 

I’m not telling you to go to the pasture. That’s my season! (But hey we can totally hang out if you are led there, too!

I am challenging you to blatatenly ask God what He calls this season of your life. 

We don’t serve a random, distant God - He’s strategic, creative and the proud Author of your story - He knows exactly where you’re at. 

Sit with Him to NAME & CLAIM this month, year, decade so you can fully show up in every struggle and celebration found within it. Ask Him what He’s trying to teach you here, then with a listening ear trust you are learning exactly what you should be - no need to strive. 

Find me rolling out one of those cute checkered blankets with my packed sandwich as I learn to stay awhile. We are all meant to be faithful with what we were given, where we were planted.

How are you being asked to spend your time this season? 

How To Love

When I think of the people who make me feel most loved, I also realize they make me feel special. And I don’t just feel special, they don’t just throw me in an endorphin frenzy. Such people actually make me believe I have something worthwhile to contribute to the world and frankly that I’m (kind of) awesome. I leave their presence feeling empowered. And really liking them, too. 

I’ve been pondering what it means for me to love the way I was intentionally created to. I guarantee it resembles Jesus, I guarantee I’m lightyears away from living out my unique way to love as was intended. But still, I am curious. And I’m asking myself the question “How can I love people better?” A question I think has become more theoretical than applicable, if we ever even get around to asking ourselves.

It’s a quick slip into the superficial actions as a Christian. To love by letting ourselves mindlessly settle by performing the “right things.” You hug strangers in the church lobby, tell everyone you’re praying for them and that they’re amazing

Don’t get me wrong, there’s nothing wrong with these things. But honestly, acting as a baseline for a Christian culture thumbs-up of an acceptable standard is shallow in terms of how loving others is supposed to be. And I don’t know about you but I can smell a flippant compliment from a lengthy distance away. 

Please don’t discern my words as a call to condemnation, rather an invitation. One that ushers you into asking yourself the question, “How can I love people better?” 

Jesus tells us to love our ENEMIES. Though it seems like Sunday School 101 if we remember that our “enemies” are synonymous to our “haters”, “people on our last nerve” and the “people who do harm” we are faced with the challenge this command holds. He also tells us to love people who are different than us. Who may or may not share a similar skin tone, but more so hold different beliefs (gasp!), social status and life goals. 

Tonight as I ask myself “How can I love people better?” I return back to the notion of reminding others of their worth. It’s remembering that God created the person I am speaking with on purpose with purpose. It’s being present enough to discern if the mode of speaking or showing is most effective in making someone know how special they are. It’s asking God for His eyes to see the goodness in someone when I can’t find it myself. 

I don’t want people to walk away from me thinking about how awesome I am, but how special they are and how great God is. This is how I feel called to love.

You were made to love like you and I was made to love like me, so maybe your response to the question will be different. What I do know is by simply asking and being willing to lean into this invitation and challenge you are moving the Kingdom of God forward.

 

Invited

Jesus is always inviting us to something more. In each moment, even the mundane, He reaches out His hand to offer us a spiritual option. He lays on the table abundance, joy, freedom, faith — and how delayed, even dismissive, we are to accept all the goodness that is Him. We stay back in disillusion of the Truth, “You are inviting me?” We let the list of fears lead and prefer the dark comforts of normality then to accept His bold and loving invitation to more. 

Today I will ask, “God, what is your invitation in this moment?” And I will probably look up to see the person standing next to me I didn’t before. 

This is the adventure we’re invited to. 

Mapped Out: a contribution to the conversation on mental health

The conversation around mental health has always been one that I thought I wasn’t invited to. Not because I felt I was being pushed away but it seemed if I was under qualified to participate because I assumed I was unaffected by its issues. What has unfolded in this last season of my life though is contrary. 

Anxiety is not a new friend of mine, I’ve recently come to realize she has made numerous appearances in my life since my first birthday party. Her schemes are sneaky and she is quick to blame so forever I have assumed my ‘funks’ were self-imposed. It was my fault I felt distant and couldn’t be as present as I longed to be, my rushing brain who couldn’t find the brakes was my doing then the arrival of the burn-out that called out for numbing was just because I was ‘lazy.’ 

I felt under qualified to even listen in on these conversations before, so you can imagine how I feel typing public words about it. If we were sitting at a corner table of a cute coffee shop I would probably shrug my shoulders and confidently admit I don’t have all the answers. What I have to offer is only what I have learned. And as someone who loves knowledge that promotes growth and stories of other’s beautifully chaotic experiences, I feel indebted to share some of mine - even if it’s just for one person’s gain. 

 

 

Let’s Get Pragmatic

My Cycle: 

I share this not as a measuring tool between your story and mine, but more as place to know where I’m coming from and to cultivate common ground. 

1 || I’m living & loving life. Doing my things & hanging with my people. 

2 || I get asked to be a part of some really cool & important things. This could be work related or social. “I love being busy” I’ll say and will genuinely enjoy everything (Hey, Enneagram 7’s!)

3 || The things start to pile up. For the most part, all really great things. My mornings somehow become earlier & my nights later. My routine is no longer.

4 || It’s go time. Even if it is just for 3 days of straight busy, midway through I start to feel disconnected. My brain begins to function on autopilot. I can’t focus on God or people as well. 

5 || I stop caring what I eat. I don’t exercise because I’m too busy or too tired. Intentionality with the people in my life decreases.

6 || I realize what is happening & I get angry for “letting it happen again.” 

7 || I get in my head & attempt to analyze the situation. I worry I will feel this way for rest of my life. 

8 || The activities are done, but I can’t 'slow down' my brain. So I numb out on social media or TV or other mindless activities that aren’t actually restful. 

9 || I wake up exhausted. My focus has completely turned to me rather than God, so I am tempted to feel ashamed & guilty for not feeling grateful for the great things that have happened the past week or so. My brain is still moving too quickly so my ability to be still with God is dissonant to my deep desire to be. This is frustrating.

10 || In a moment of energy or inspiration I am kicked back into gear. I am able to slow down again, can utilize self-control, be present and hear God. I learn a lot from the little valley. Though I anticipate when it will innocently arrive again. 

 

Seeing my “cycle" in words is painful, yet empowering. For so long I couldn’t see the causes and effects, but now understanding this part of myself so clearly I can list it makes me feel hopeful it can be leashed and controlled. Will it ever “stop?" Probably not. It’s a side effect to the way I was purposely and wonderfully wired (Psalm 139:14) and I believe is a thorn in my flesh (2 Corinthians 12:7-10) God is well aware is there. It brings me great comfort to know He knows. He is not shocked or disappointed in me. Rather, He is letting my brokenness draw me closer to Himself even if it means moments of distance in between. His grace is abounding. 

 

Maps

I love to gaze at maps of the world. Not only am I filled with awe & wonder as I imagine all the different places and the people who live in them, but they also intrigue me. Maps illustrate by following a certain set of directions we are able to travel anywhere. 

If we have the capability to catch 2 planes, hop a few trains & hail a cab to get to our desired destination why shouldn’t we create maps for our own lives? Destination: giving myself my best chance. 

Below are some of the ‘maps' I implement in my life, as well as some I haven’t but plan to. They are not for necessarily for my own enjoyment - I really would like to eat baked goods all day and be a ‘take it as it comes’ person. But I’ve learned that such practices are not good stewardship of my time, energy and wiring. This is about putting myself in the best place to know God more intimately, be obedient, make myself available to be interrupted for Kingdom work and giving myself the best opportunity to love people really really well. For me, discipline allows me to better receive my freedom that was purchased on the cross and navigate the dark times when there seems like there is nothing tangible to grab onto. 

 

FOOD : Certain foods help me operate at my best whereas others do not - I’ve learned this simply by paying attention to how I feel after I eat. A Paleo diet is what has worked best for me. (Check out all the research on grains/sugar & mental health!) Am I perfect at it? Absolutely not. I’m learning & experimenting everyday. 

*Setting boundaries & guidelines with food helps me to stay focused. If I just eat “healthy” I find myself confused as I attempt to follow an undefined & vague path. 

EXERCISE : When I don’t exercise it feels like my insides are shaking with built up energy that just needs to explode! For me, finding a plan to follow I actually enjoy alongside a group of people sets me up with the best chance of lacing up my tennis shoes and just doing it

MORNING & NIGHT ROUTINE : I try to wake up & go to bed around the same time, as well as do the same few practices to begin & end my day. This consistent rhythm helps to keep me centered & ready for all the craziness the day brings! 

LIST IT OUT : 1) Writing down all the next day’s to-dos before I fall asleep helps my wheels slow down and makes me feel more confident I won’t forget (as many) things. 2) Following a list in my day helps me to complete tasks rather than just start several of them!

WATER : When I actually drink the adequate amount I should I am alert, energized and able to be more present. But this one is tough for me! 

ESSENTIAL OILS : I am far from a know-it-all when it comes to oils, but they have been a positive addition to my life.

MEAL PREP : Knowing what I need to buy at the store, prepping what I can on Sundays and being aware of what I’m having each meal of the week removes another element to think about and sets me up to make better food choices.

SABBATH : Actually obeying God’s call to rest in Him one day a week is obviously a wise choice to make. But this is difficult to implement in a culture where the busiest gets the badge of honor. 

GRATITUDE :  Intentionally recording the beautiful moments of my day refocuses my mind on God and leaves for incredible documentation to look back at. 

YOGA : I seriously roll out of my bed onto my yoga mat. Sometimes I use a youtube video other times I just free flow to worship music, but this time works as a great transition into the new day. 

PLANNED STUDY : Having a study plan to use as a basis to follow in my quiet time with God helps me keep focused, rather than just aimlessly searching for something to read. Though  the Spirit often leads me somewhere else in the Word but having a starting place is helpful. 

PLANNED TIME : Putting things in the calendar like homework time, creative/writing time and reading time helps me to accomplish specific goals I may have. Obviously this is quite adaptable, but intentionally setting aside time for what is important to you makes a big difference. 

COMMUNITY : I couldn’t do this life thing alone. Ever. That’s all I have to say about this. Find your people & hold them tight.  

JOURNALING : I connect with God best when my journal is open and a pen is in my hand. It focuses my mind on Him and helps me to visually see in words what I’m thinking and what He is saying to me. 

SAYING NO : I am a work in progress with this one. My language, “That sounds really great, but I honestly don’t have the capacity to fit that in right now.” 

OTHER : vitamins, seeing an objective person, daily pauses, planned cleaning/errand days, Lara Casey’s Powersheets & budgeting. 

 

Without these maps (though I am far from perfectly following them all) my mental health would bear such a heavy weight in my life that it would fully control it. You & me, we were meant for freedom, communion, and to see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living (Psalm 27:13), so if that means I have to cut down on bread to do so I’m in. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Morning Song

This is my morning song.

I’ve lived in a state of correction for most of my life. All performers can understand with me the subconscious cycle of perform, wait to be corrected, perform, wait to be corrected. A well intentioned practice aimed for excellency is harmless in itself, but over time has become so innate in the way I live my life that it has revealed itself as quite sabotaging. Growth - physically, spiritually, mentally, emotionally - is a beautiful thing, but as anything is unhealthy in excess, so is the mental process of always wanting to be better.

“What can I do to be a better friend?”

“How could I be more effective in my job?” 

“I could have been kinder to them…how should I be more kind?”

All great, reflective questions we should consistently implement into our minds, but not without grace. These type of questions have more often led to shame and anxiety than to peace for me. I had been on a determined path of “being better” while trying to grasp onto the depth of the gospel at the same time. I was a sinner in need of a Savior and a girl who could put on her best outfit and pursue improvement  — no two beliefs could clash more. 

This way of thinking seeped its way into my relationship with God too. Especially when emotions were involved. When I felt negative emotions - sadness, anxiety, fear - I assumed I was doing something wrong. Something needed to be fixed in myself because the freedom and joy I had in Christ that surpassed any type of circumstance was something I knew well. As I attempted to correct my emotions into what I had thought God wanted me to be I had actually been diving head first into a pool of shame. My misperception of God and overly zealous desire to nitpick myself in the name of improvement had made me distant and empty. 

So I gave up. 

Something I think God had been wanting me to do for a long time. I have given up the possibility of perfection, the pursuit of improvement and the pride of mustering up my own strength. And it is like I’ve taken that first deep breath in the morning. This is the freedom and peace I’ve known with my mind for so long, yet had never realized I’d been so far from experiencing. I am more sinful than I dare to believe, and more loved than I could ever hope for - and so are you. (Tim Keller) 

But as I type this out in past tense, don’t believe for a moment it is a struggle of the past. It is here and now - but it’s in my sight by the grace of God. I can see my tendency to micromanage myself and the way I feel, it doesn’t cling so tightly anymore that I can’t even see it.

This fresh layer freedom feels like the first day in the sun after the long winter. It burns more than I expected. I used to watch the news or hear broken stories with an arms distance away to avoid the feelings of pain I thought were wrong. But now I understand that in pain is compassion, and compassionate is what our Father wants us to become since it is more like Him. 

So tonight, I mourn - maybe for the first (real) time ever. I hurt for our world, the people I love and even my own brokenness that will never be “fixed” by my corrections — with no shame. 

I mourn. And I join my Father in doing so. 

I don’t know where you are, but if you resonate I want to give you permission to say that this world sucks. To let yourself feel angry that bombs exist, sad that people are mean to your sister and disappointed that you get in your own way more often than not. Slapping on hope in a disingenuous manner to avoid pain is like the fig leaves in the Garden - it doesn’t cover up the real problem as much as you think. 

God really wants you to come as you are - I know this because he sent his own Son so he could meet you there. 

This place of humility and honesty is a gateway to real hope. In our moments of genuine need and hurt we are in the perfect position to cling onto Him. Letting ourselves feel without correction is a pause in which we get to know our Father more deeply, but it is not a stop in which we sit in. His good, sovereign, loving Truth is yours for the taking despite the way you feel or the events are you. 

In our mourning, there comes a morning - always. 

He is making this world new. He is in control even if it doesn’t look like it. He is growing you, purifying you and in awe of you even when you don’t think so. He is our hope today, always and forever. Hold on tight - this is the freedom we were meant to have all along. 

 


For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him. || Philippians 2:13

But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners || Romans 5:8

Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. || Matthew 11:28

Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted. || Matthew 5:4

He who was seated on the throne as, “I am making everything new!” || Revelation 21:5

Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect. || Romans 12:2

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. || Proverbs 3:5

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever. || Hebrews 13:8

Adam and his wife were both naked, and they felt no shame || Genesis 2:25

Simply Put

I spend a lot of time with kids. I must admit it is something I never set out to do intentionally, it just kind of happened. An equation of my desires and God's leading has landed me in the wild world of abundant potty breaks and Goldfish.

Jesus talks a lot about children. He shares about how much He loves them (Matthew 18:2-5) and that we should become more like them as we begin to more deeply take hold of the truth that we are each one of His (John 1:12). 

But if you're anything like me, you probably take a lot of pride in putting your big-girl pants and facing life's challenges with fists tight and head high. Though I am slowly beginning to learn that this is actually the weakest stance we can take when our knees are the other available option (2 Corinthians 12:10). Our destructed and confused hearts dare to be independent and seek control. I don't want to be told what to do and am often convinced I know what is best. "I got it" I'll say and I spend an awful amount of time trying to be 'put together.' So as easy as it may sound to be a wild and free kid again, maybe it's really not. 

After a month sabbatical spent in the sunshine of sweet summer, I've gone zero to one-hundred in kid mode. Let the adventure begin again! But through the transition back, I've been praying for eyes to take in all they are. Kids have the potential to teach us so much when we set our pride down, so for these last few weeks I have let them. And what I learned astounded me. 

I am astounded by how simple they are. 

Simplicity is lost in the woods of our culture, amen? The busiest and owner of the most materials “wins" and complicated lives have somehow become equivalent with significant ones. We are all stuck in making things more complex than they need to be. All you got to do is take it back Eden and follow along to see that humans speciality is doing just this. But kids, yes complicated to take care of and definitely complicated to understand, have a special way of taking things at face-value that us adults have been jaded out of. 

 

Here are some simple things kids do (that we should do, too):

When they pray they just pray. Kids take hold of the truth that prayer is simply talking and listening to God. They are confident that God delights in hearing from them all the time. They don’t attempt to be ‘better’ when they turn to Him or self-consciously fish for the right words to say. They commune with their Father right where they are - how they are - with no shame. When is the last time you believed in God’s love and grace deep enough to seek Him with absolutely no shame in who you are? If God tells us we are His children, I think that means we can come to Him like one - messy and unafraid.  

"When scary thoughts come into my mind I know they are not from God” -Ella (1st grade) Enough said, I think. 

They are comfortable with joy. They laugh, sing and dance without second thought. Kids don’t let the surrounding environment interfere with the amount of joy bubbling from them. Sure they are crazy. Sure they are sassy and temperamental. But I wanna live my days in joy not influenced by circumstances, too. 

When they see someone in need they help them. No questions or apprehensions. They see the problem, realize they can be a part of the solution and go for it. 

When an opportunity to love someone rises, they jump at it. Without being fueled by the desire to be recognized for doing good. Just like kids when I see an opportunity to love someone well I want to care more for the benefit of that person rather than the sacrifice of myself in the process of doing so. 

They know discipline. Discipline has been contorted to be a punishment rather than a way in which kids are sculpted and molded into the adults they will become. Similarly, we should still be practicing discipline in our lives to become who God is calling us to be. God even says He disciplines us - not because we are guilty any longer, but because He loves us (Hebrews 12:6).

They are not afraid to ask for help. They know they can't do it all alone. Like kids we can stop pretending we have it all together. God wants to help us when we ask (Matthew 7:7) and we should understand our brokenness so clearly there is freedom to ask for a hand without wounding any pride. 

I love that of all descriptions the Creator of the stars and seas could call His most favorite creations He chooses to call us His children. Being a child of God isn’t something we have to strive for, but instead wear as our identity. And an identity like that means we can go on simply leading and loving like kids. 

To Rebuild


This summer season has been one of rebuilding & restoring - the act God does best.

Underneath the pile of routine & to-dos & some disillusions of the truth of my Abba I lost my 'spark' with the closing of the semester. It came out of nowhere really - I had been going through the motions of what a heart-led life should look like, but my heart wasn't actually leading.

My focus was spread thin on the colors of my calendar, rather than the Shephard of my soul so it was as if I simply forgot some things, leaving me feeling stuck and aimlessly wondering where my purpose went.  

I forgot that He made me to walk in wild child freedom & deep compassion for others as I began to taste the predictable lifestyle I had used to be afraid of. I stopped longing to fight for justice because I started to override injustice with "it is what it is" statements. My eyes weren't fixed so I was just floundering. 

But in His grace, my eyes are being rubbed open again. And this time with more wisdom to guide them. It has been in solitude on my knees (which to me means my journal wide open) that my Abba has patiently reminded me who He is and who I am in Him. It has been in the redefining of 'discipline' from a consequence to the medium in which so much goodness derives from that growth occurred.  

He is rebuilding my awe for each day as I see Kingdom work to be done. I am learning that the work He has for us comes from unforced rhythms of grace (Matt. 11:28-30 MSG ) rather than strife. I am remembering to priortitze extravagant acts of small love & to take steps onto the waters of the unknown. To set Jesus as my prize & enjoy the adventure He has made. 

I am made new. I am alive. In His power alone I am ready to walk wherever He calls - and to participate in dance parties of freedom along the way. I know who I am and I want to live in her for all the glory ahead.  

He rebuilds. He restores. He is so worthy. Let us be people who sit at His feet as He has His way in our hearts forever.    

Speak In Daylight

Speak up. Don't be silent. 

God often speaks to me in themes & phrases - and this has been one of them recently. I feel like it has appeared in  e v e r y t h i n g  I've read. There have been moments with some of my beloved people that I felt like I could have stepped up to speak some bolder Truth into. So maybe that's what God was referencing...?

My relationship with this little blog is weird. Flat out weird - no other way to put it. About two years ago now (woah) I felt a clear call to start writing - which to me was strange in the first place because I never considered myself to be a decently talented writer to begin with. But I began putting pen to paper and curating a blog. I realize now that then God wanted me to write for the sake of knowing Him better even more than to share it.   

Many templates, resurrection announcements and deleted posts later here I am. Just as I don't have to come to Jesus all put together with a mask, I don't have to do in this space either. It was only when Truth smacked me upside the head I've taken notice to the lies that have stopped me from writing in this space. 

 

Some (not so) pretty liars:

-people don't want to know about you

-this is a selfish endeavor

-this will distract you from your own walk with God

-there are enough Christian blogs out there already

-you're not going to help anybody

-no one is going to actually care

-you're just trying to be "somebody"

 

Maybe these lies crept in because I didn't know my why or maybe some of these ugly motivations really did hold a presence in my heart. But when I faced the Truth behind the recent calls to speak up and not be silent I knew it was time to take a step.

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What I tell you in the dark, speak in the daylight; what is whispered in your ear, proclaim from the roofs

Matthew 10:27

 

This Truth has changed my perspective on this entire written space. He has set me free! He has whispered in my ear! And what is truly selfish is to hold it in for myself. To keep in the greatest news there ever was and will be. This is not an excuse away from for the real-life, often awkward and tough conversations with real faces. Heck no. This is just an additional space, another rooftop for God to set captives free through one of His children. I am but a vessel.

So here is  y o u r  sign to speak (or write, dance, calculate, create) if you are alive & made new in Christ. We can't stay silent. We must share our stories with pure hearts & fixed eyes.