Saturday, October 26, 2013

Untitled - because I don't have a clue how to title what I've written. My guts.

We are on a break. I hope it’s permanent, but I know the heart a little too well. You’d think breaking up with insecurity would be an easy thing. I mean, who WANTS insecurity as a constant companion? However, before I sell myself totally short, I also know that I have been in a warrior mode this past year. So much so that I bought 150 arrows to give away and give away I did. Now I just need a bow, and I ain't talking about the girlie put in your hair bow that seems to be making a comeback among college women. That’s another blog entirely along with the resurgence of denim shorts and neon.



I had my pictures made this week.  When people ask me why, I tell them it’s for a magnet to send out @ Christmas to my financial supporters as a reminder to pray for me.  And while that is a small part of the reason, it was actually for a much bigger reason, a reason more significant.    

So I went to Aveda (Jen Carey, you were booked! I promise I did not cheat on you) and the lady curling my hair asked,

“So, are you having family pictures made?” 

“Yes.” 

She kept curling. I kept praying she wouldn't ask more questions.

“How many kids do you have?”

Breathe. 

“No kids.” 

“Do you and your husband want kids?” 

Breathe deeper.

“It’s just me.”

Crickets.

“You’re having pictures made by yourself?”

I nod.

“Well, that’s cool.  Go have a drink first.”

Laugh.

Insecurity – “Self-doubt, inhibition, nervousness, lack of confidence.” 

Confession.  I just wanted to edit the definition of “insecurity” to make myself look better. I’m insecure.

Or maybe it’s that sometimes it is hard to tell ourselves the truth?


A year ago I felt God impress 3 words on my heart: Covenant, joy, and beauty.  I wrote those words on a strip of fabric and kept it tied around my wrist for two months.

 And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise.You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates. Deuteronomy 6


Covenant.

I desperately needed something to shift inside of my heart and mind.  I wanted to understand God’s covenant relationship with me on a deeper level and not just dismiss it as something for every Believer (which it is). It was one of those things that I wanted to know in every fiber of my being that God is WITH.

The LORD, our covenant God. Lasting and permanent.  Is this not what most of us are looking for? Something lasting and permanent because we are afraid and so very aware of our aloneness? I’m not talking about being lonely, I am referring to being an individual who is completely separate from any other person on the planet. The human experience, per se. 

What happens to you when you hear the first line of “How He Loves?” “He is jealous for me….”  Does it stir something in you that can’t be described? Our Creator is jealous for you? Me? Why?  What kind of love embodies the Father that He would want me so much that He sees it as a good thing for me to have a few more years to deeply become anchored in “covenant” – more years than I would have ever chosen, yet would never trade for another story.

Honesty about the things in our heart draw us near to the Heart of God.

 I can’t imagine being in a relationship where the Father had no emotion towards his children, and I, as a Daughter, am in need of my Father’s heart.

Joy.

We are still working on this one, but in the wrestle and disappointments, there’s an anchoring that continues to occur when life happens.  This will have to be for another blog.


Beauty.

Who knew that this would be the hardest one for me?!? Beauty. How do you even define this word? Perfect symmetry? A size 2? Someone who is 23 and has the metabolism of a 23 year old?

More often than not, when I think about beauty, I sometimes feel small.  Internally small.  The kind of soul shrinking small that steals life, causes paralysis and feeds a fear that has kept me awake at 3AM for the past six months.  

When I decided to stare this beast in the eye, I knew it would be a battle, but I didn't know how intense it would feel or how deep it would run.  When you begin to wake up to patterns in your life that you always considered “normal” and see now how much they steal from you, you will either:

1. Cower in fear and avoid what’s been revealed
2. Acknowledge it, but use the excuse, “This is just the way I am.”
                     OR
3. Courageously ask for a new way. 

We need a lot more people who will cry out from their hearts, “I want a new way!”  Hungry and desperate children cry out.  Now here’s the catch.  The gospel catch. 

Is the main reason we cry out in order to just feel better? 
Do we cry out so God might hear us and give us what we want?
Do we cry out “I want a new way” in order to not feel so exposed in our struggle?
Do we cry out because if we “fix” this area in our life then maybe God will give us our hearts desire?

With what motive do we cry out?

I want to cry out for a new way to reveal more of who God is.  To experience Him in deep and soul-changing ways.  To love people freely without it always being what’s in it for me. To relate to others as The Father, Son, and Spirit relate to one another.  To love Him first and foremost.

To be beautiful and unaware because it has nothing to do with what I look like, but everything to do with being fully alive to the One who looks at my heart.


So, I put my best dress on and I went to the woods and I smiled.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Lessons from Luke Bryan

Strange day.  I have had Luke Bryan on repeat all day long.  Not Bethel.  Not Christy Nockels, but Luke Bryan.  Crash My Party to be specific. It makes me happy.  It says “hell” and “baby” a lot, which normally isn’t my style, but it’s a “hell” and “baby” kind of day.   Yes, I’m a missionary.  Please still support me.

Anyway, there’s a line in the song that says, "Go ahead and call me, call me, call me. You don't have to worry 'bout it baby. You can wake me up in the dead of the night; wreck my plans baby that's alright.."  Oh the depths of Luke Bryan's soul. (I think the “baby” count is up to 7. You’re welcome.)



Pretty sure he was singing this for his preggers wife. Lucky woman. I hope she has a brain and depth.

Anyway, it’s been one of those days where life feels like a country song when you recount it, “Yeah, my dog is gonna die, baby, but then she revives, boom boom. Yeah, my heart‘s been run over by a tractor, baby. Oh look, here comes a shirtless man in jorts, ‘Where’s your husband, Red? Wanna go out, baby? Call me, call me, call me’, oh and don’t forget to read your exes book that just got published.  OH, oh, oh….and you lost some support. Jesus take the wheel.”   

Is this what Jesus was talking about when he said, “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.” John 10:10 

Abundant life. 

Abundant – “existing or available in large quantities; plentiful”
Life -  “ the ability to grow, change, etc., that separates plants and animals from things like water or rocks
: the period of time when a person is alive
: the experience of being alive


How do you walk in abundance when you feel lacking? 

You live honestly.  You walk in honesty before Jesus and others.  You lay it all before Him.  You receive.  You give yourself grace.  You cling to truth.  You put on your armor.  You walk by faith.  You embrace seasons as something to journey through and not just try and get around.  You give thanks.  You lean towards the Father with your questions rather than away. 

A friend of mine walked me through Psalm 84 last week.  He shared with me about how we fall in love with God and then we leave home and journey to be with God.  The Psalmist refers to journeying through the Valley of Baca which means, “suffering,” but the Valley leads to the throne room.  The throne room…being with God who when we are lacking says, “no good thing does he withhold from those whose walk is blameless” and that is good news.  That is abundant life.  Embrace the journey.  Embrace this season for all that He has in it for you.  Wave to me from your valley and the throne room.