“My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.” // Psalm 73:26
Hey guys! I hope you’ve been having a great start to 2020! It’s been a minute since I’ve released a blog, but I’m going to try and be back with new blogs every week again!
If you read any of the blogs I put out towards the end of last year, you know that I experienced a lot of hurt and disappointment in 2019. I didn’t realize this at the time, but the hurt and reality of all my disappointments had really taken it’s toll on me. I started to question God, and I just plain didn’t understand why nothing that I wanted or had been praying for was happening. I could feel my heart starting to harden, and I knew I was in trouble.
I say all that to say this: out of my own experience, and the experiences of others around me, I know that hurt and pain and suffering is real. So many people wrestling with God–let alone His goodness–when times of trials come. But here’s the thing–sometimes the advice we get or the comfort others give (that comes from well intentions, no doubt) isn’t what we need in those moments. What we need is REAL HOPE for REAL HURT. That’s what I want to talk about the next couple weeks.
We’re not talking about Romans 8:28–though that’s a great verse, and is certainly true.
We’re not talking about– “Everything happens for a reason”, though I believe that’s also true.
We’re not talking about– “It’ll happen, just have to wait”.
We’re talking about:
Who is God when my world falls apart and what can I hang my hope on to get through this? Because it doesn’t feel like anything is going to help me right now.
That’s where I was, and that is where so many of you are right now. So we’ll start here.
Recently I was reading Luke 8 in my Bible, and was reading the story of when the disciples were in a boat with Jesus and a really bad storm kicked up. These guys were in danger. The Bible goes so far as to say they were in “great danger”. Panicked, they rushed to Jesus, scared for their lives (literally), and they say, ““Master, Master, we’re going to drown!” (vs. 24).
So Jesus gets up and literally commands the winds and the waves to calm. And they do. When the storm subsided and all was calm, Jesus turned to His panicked disciples and says this: “Where is your faith?”
This hit me so hard when I read this. As almost Jesus Himself was saying these words directly to me. “Where is your faith?”
This got me thinking about where my faith actually was. I could say it was in God. But was it?
I think that’s where so many of us are right now. The winds are roaring and the waves are swamping our lives and we are drowning–just like the disciples. They knew where to turn, but I don’t know if they fully grasped Who they were turning to. If they had, would their reaction have been the same? Would panic have overtaken them? Or would they have remained calmly confident?
Honestly, I’m not sure. Fear is a human emotion, and if we were in a boat about to go under, I would surely be panicked. But in the midst of that panic, I have to wonder if there would there be an underlying peace because we knew Who is in our boat.
So I want to leave us with that question today. “Where is your faith?” Could it be that your faith is actually in yourself? Have you been putting everything all on your shoulders? Or maybe your faith is in someone else. Or something else. Honestly take a look at what you’re putting your faith in.
Next week, we’re going to talk about the components of the One we put our faith in. What makes Him trustworthy? Why can I choose to put my faith in Him? Let’s talk about it. I want you to experience the real hope of Jesus. Because that’s where healing and real hope comes from.
Until Next Time,
“Do not be yoked together with unbelievers. For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness?” // 2 Corinthians 6:14
So, I have kind of a different blog coming at you guys today. One that I’m not sure I’d ever be writing. But this is what’s been going on in my life very recently, and I thought it’d be beneficial to share with you and hopefully to aid in a healthy discussion of this topic.
About a month ago, I started looking into online dating sites after my mom half-way was joking but half-way was serious about me trying online dating. Never thinking I’d actually do it, I did some research, read some reviews, and ultimately tried a free trial on one. That was that. For a bit.
After a while and a sequence of events that I’ll spare you from, I really started getting this overwhelming urge to return to the dating site and actually DO THE THING. I had this anxious, but peaceful, confirmation from God about it after much prayer and doing research on what other Godly people had to say on the topic. At the end of the day, I did it.
So why am I telling you all this? Well, for one, I want to have a discussion about the implications of online dating and how a Christian should view it, just in case someone out there is thinking about trying it and is looking for a Godly perspective on it like I was.
One of the biggest drawbacks most Christians have with online dating is that it seems to indicate a possible lack of trust in God’s timing and faithfulness to provide a spouse. I thought this one through pretty well because I certainly am not one to overstep God on His timing (though I’ve been tempted–as we all probably have). However, I came to the conclusion that me doing this was not an indication of that at all. I felt like God was actually nudging me in that direction. If you have prayed about online dating and feel God’s peace about it…do it! After all, He is the one who has to get you and your future spouse both on the SAME dating site at the SAME time. As long as you’re seeking God and following His lead through the process, you’re not manipulating anything. If it’s not God’s will for you to find your spouse at the time, you won’t. It’s up to you to follow and listen to His guidance so you don’t settle and make the wrong decision about a spouse, though. That’s something to consider as you contemplate your decision.
Another thing to consider regarding online dating is if you’re confident in knowing what you want in a spouse. Have you been praying for your future spouse? Are you in a good spot in life where you’re reading for a real, intentional dating relationship with another Godly person? If the answer to these questions is YES, then maybe you should try it out!
At the end of the day, I don’t think God frowns upon online dating. After all, it’s just a place to meet other people in our modern day. Just like going to a football game, a church group, or a party, it’s just another place to meet people who you might not have otherwise. What God IS concerned about is the person you’re to marry and the qualities that person should have. (That’s a totally different blog, one that maybe I’ll do someday!)
While I was in the process of making my decision, I watched the videos below to help me think things through. Above all, I prayed and followed where I felt God leading. Hopefully between this article and the resources below, you can form your own opinion of the topic.
When we chase Jesus and follow wherever He leads, you never know, someday we might just change the world. ❤
Until next time,
“I wait for the LORD, my whole being waits, and in His word I put my hope.” // Psalm 130:5
Hey guys! Welcome back to the blog. If you’ve been here before, you’ll know that this isn’t the first blog that I’ve written on the topic of waiting, (and it probably won’t be the last, tbh). The topic of waiting is something that I am so passionate about. It’s something that is incredibly difficult, but is something that is completely rewarding if we wait the right way.
We’re all waiting on something in life. A job to come through, a dream yet to be fulfilled, a spouse we haven’t met yet. And in the waiting, it can seem like the thing we’re waiting on will never happen. Worse than that, it can seem like God has complete forgotten about us, and it tempts us to despair and ruffles our trust in God.
But friends, please hear me when I say this: God has not forgotten about you. God is not a God who forgets about His children. The Israelites were wandering the desert for 40 years before they inherited God’s promise for them in Israel. David waited 20 years from the time he was chosen to be the king of Israel before he ever took the throne. And Jesus waited 30 years on earth before starting His ministry and living out the very reason He was here on earth.
So if God’s chosen people, God’s chosen King, and God’s only Son had to wait, chances are, so will we.
But if God didn’t forget about His people, His King, or His Son, He won’t forget about you, either.
Hear me when I say this: In the waiting, it is vital that you keep your eyes on God and your heart in the Scriptures. The waiting season can feel like you’re in a desert with no water – that’s a fact. But we have Living Water through both Jesus Christ and His Word – two things that are readily accessible to us right now. God promises to sustain us when we trust in Him.
Along with the waiting season, I’m just as passionate about the reason we wait. I believe God has His very best in mind for us. The best spouse, the best job, the best place for us to live. God’s “best” meaning the things He has for us that He knows we’ll love and that will bring us closer to Him and the person He wants us to become. God is infinite – He knows every single thing from eternity past to eternity future. He knows what’s best for you, when it’s best for you, and what’s not His best for you. That’s why in the waiting season it’s so important to trust God and keep our focus on Him.
While we’re waiting, we’ll often be tempted with things that look good or even okay. And when we stumble across these options, know this. If it’s not God’s best – don’t settle for it. You will know what God’s best is when it comes. Just like you’ll know what’s not His best when it comes. When Jesus was fasting for 40 days in the wilderness, Satan came to tempt Jesus when He was weak, hungry, and vulnerable. He offered Jesus bread – because Satan knew he was hungry. He tested His identity. He offered Him every thing this world had to offer, if only Jesus would bow down and worship Him.
Satan found Jesus in a season of testing, and offered Him things that seemed “good”, but the consequences would have been disastrous. Jesus met Satan with Scripture, not giving in to any of the enemy’s temptation. Jesus knew His mission, His identity, and His God. Satan’s temptations to settle for anything less failed against it.
When we’re in the waiting, it’s easy to only see good or okay. And so often, we’re blinded by good or okay, that we forget about God’s best.
Don’t settle for the guy that shows you attention because you don’t think the “right” guy will ever come along. Take this time to grow in your relationship with God, until He is enough. Get to know the Scriptures about traits a Godly spouse should have, and wait for that guy (and prepare yourself for that person in the process). The wait and the process will be worth it. Promise.
Don’t settle for the job that pays the bills when God’s called you to do something great. Trust that God will open the doors in your life when it’s time. Until then, work well where you are, showing Jesus every chance you get (Colossians 3:23).
Don’t settle for staying comfortable where you are. Instead, prepare yourself for when God moves. Invest in those around you, allow the Holy Spirit to work in you, and spend time with God so He can do everything He wants to do in you while you wait. He will come through in His perfect time. He will.
And every single second you spent waiting will be worth it. He’ll be worth it. His best will be worth it.
And when we do, someday we might just change the world. ❤
Until next time,
“But God demonstrates His own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” // Romans 5:8
If you pay any attention to reality TV or any entertainment news, you’ve probably heard the now infamous phrase, “Colton jumped the fence.” All the hype surrounded the two-part finale of The Bachelor this past week. If for some reason you’re unfamiliar with the show, it’s where one person is cast as the lead and goes on a quest for love with about thirty potential mates, and as the show goes on, the lead eliminates their potential suitors until there are only two left. The lead then chooses one person to spend the rest of their life with. So this season its lead was 26 year old Colton Underwood, but it ended quite different than most seasons of The Bachelor. Two weeks before the show was set to end, the girl Colton wanted to be with, Cassie Randolph, broke up with him. And this left him upset – to up it mildly. After Cassie left the show, Colton was so upset by this that he ran away from the production set and jumped an eight foot high fence to do it.
However, he didn’t do this because he was mad. He did this because his love for Cassie was so deep that he couldn’t imagine going on without her. After he jumped the fence and ran away, the production crew eventually found him and convinced him to come back to the show. At this time, Colton still had two potential girls he could choose to propose to. Two girls who were in love with him. But he wanted Cassie. And because he loved Cassie so much, he broke up with the two remaining girls, risking the loss of every relationship left, to try and pursue Cassie again, in hopes she’d reconsider.
At the end of it all, Colton did convince Cassie to give it another shot, and the two are now together and in love (yay for happy endings!). Now, why bring all this up and how does it relate to anything in our own life?
There’s something in all of us that love love. We all love it when someone goes after the person they love with all their heart. We all want someone to “jump a fence” for us. We all want to be pursued without reservation. That’s why we love the movie scenes when the guy chases down a plane leaving with the girl he loves on it. The romance novel that detail the boy who does anything to get the girl. And while most see these circumstances as unrealistic for our every day life, I don’t believe so. In fact, I think God wired us this way.
I think God wired us this way because God knew He would send Jesus to woo us, to pursue us in this exact same way. Jesus left everything to pursue our hearts (Luke 15:1-7). He left the comforts of heaven, He came to this dirty and dusty earth, He became a servant and ultimately endured the most grueling death known to mankind (Philippians 2:5-8, John 3:16).
Because He loves you.
Because He wants you.
Ladies! You have a man who has left it all to pursue your heart. There is a man who jumped every fence in His way to get to you. To woo you. To have you. This is the greatest romance of all time! And yet it’s so often that we settle for thinking we’re not deserving of that kind of love in this life because we don’t get it from some guy who doesn’t pursue us like that. But no matter what a guy has or has not done for you – Jesus has done this for you! And nothing can change that (Romans 8:39, John 10:28-30).
So today, remember that you have a God who loves you more than you can imagine. He’s waiting for you every second of every day. Even if you’ve walked away like Cassie did to Colton, even if you’ve wanted nothing to do with Him, even if you’ve messed up. We’ve all done this stuff. But Jesus died for us anyways. And He’d do it all over again for you right now if He had to.
So, look up and see that you have been pursued with God’s whole heart, without abandon. And don’t settle for anyone in life that treats you less than this. Wait for the person pursues you like Jesus would. Who fights for you like Jesus does.
Who loves you like Jesus.
When we wait for His best and bask in His love right now, some day we might just change the world. ❤
Until Next Time,
“At the LORD’s command the Israelites set out, and at His command they encamped. As long as the cloud stayed over the tabernacle, they remained in camp. When the cloud remained over the tabernacle a long time, the Israelites obeyed the LORD’s order and did not set out.” -Numbers 9:18-19
Happy New Year, everyone! Can you believe it’s the end of 2017 already? I feel like we were just ringing in the year, and now it’s coming to a close. It’s crazy how fast this year went by. I felt like I blinked and it was gone.
However, this year was indeed filled with many things. Many good, and a few bad. Over all, I can say that 2017 was a good year for me. Probably the best in recent years. And during this year, I had this idea to write down these lessons that I had been learning, and boy am I glad that I did. While I’m only going to give you 17 of the ones I had written down that I had learned from this year, I was stunned when I looked back on the pages of pages of things I had written down! It’s been such a blessing to me to look back on these lessons, and to carry them forward with me into the future.
If I had to choose one word that summed up 2017, it would be surrender. This was a year that was, especially in the last half of the year, characterized by surrender. Surrender of relationships, dreams, and plans. And these things were not always easy. However, it was out of some of these things I had to surrender that some of the most powerful lessons came about, many which are listed below.
So without delay, here are the 17 things I learned in 2017 that I wanted to share with you today. May these strengthen you in your own walk with Christ and in seasons to come in your own life.
Well, that’s about 17, ya’ll. I hope these are an encouragement to you. Thank you for all of you who take the time to read what I write and for those who have been an encouragement to me over the past year. I can’t wait to see what God has in store for 2018. May it be a year of growing in Christ, loving Him more, and watching His marvelous plan unfold.
“Wait for the LORD; be strong and take heart and wait for the LORD.” -Psalm 27:14
Last week I put up a blog post title, “Why I’m not freaking out that I haven’t found “the one” yet, and why you shouldn’t be, either.” If you haven’t had a chance to read it, please go back and do so. This was actually going to be all one blog post (last week’s and this week’s), but it was really long. So I thought I’d split it up. That being said, please try and read last week’s to get some context as to what’s happening! 🙂
The topic this week is what we’re supposed to be doing while we’re single and waiting for “the one” as Christians.
So what should we do while we’re waiting? Here are a few vital things.
If you’re single—stay faithful to God. He knows. He sees you. He hears you. Stay faithful and stay obedient. God promises His best to those who wait on Him.
We’ll talk soon 🙂
“Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in Your book before one of them came to be.” -Psalm 139:16
This is a blog post that I’ve been wanting to write for about a week now. It seems like everywhere you look, people are getting engaged or married, and on top of all of that, it seems like there is an unspoken expectation in the Christian community about getting married by a certain age. Now, before I begin, I want to say that this is no way, shape, or form a dis on anyone who is dating, engaged, or married, or anyone who has just become one of these things—and you’ll see why in a little bit that we’re able to celebrate these precious things in life with you, even when the single ones are left, well, single.
Also, please note that this blog post is written with the intention of the reader one day getting married, that day just happens to not be today. I’m not going to talk about or from the point of the exception of those who have the gift of singleness. I may or may not talk about that some other time. So, let’s begin!
I was at a store a couple weeks ago and I ran into an older-ish man I used to go to church with years back, and shortly into our conversation, this was how it went:
Him: Are you married, yet?
Him: How old are you?
Him: Oh, you’ve got a couple years yet.
No kidding, this is what happened. But it’s really not that uncommon. I don’t think a lot of us talk about it, but it seems that if Christians aren’t married—or at least found “the one”—by age 22, then we’re going to be single for the rest of our lives.
So to all of those single Christians out there approaching college graduation, let me assure you, it’s okay. Really, it’s okay if you haven’t found your person yet. And to all those single Christians who are approaching 30 and all of your friends are already married, it’s okay. And if you’re in your thirties and there still hasn’t been anyone for you yet, it’s okay.
To be perfectly honest, I’m 21, and I’ve never had a boyfriend. Ever. And it’s okay.
So, I wanted to take a moment to present to you why I’m not freaking out that I haven’t found “the one” yet, and give you some encouragement as to why you shouldn’t be, either.
Next week, I want to talk about what to do while we’re waiting for a future spouse. I think it’ll be really practical and encouraging. So make sure to stay tuned for that!
One last thing before I go—I’ve really been loving Psalm 139:16 lately. It tells us this:
“Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in Your book before one of them came to be.”
Every day of your life is already written, guys. God knows. He knows it all. And He loves you more than you could ever imagine. Lean into this truth today, and let His love saturate you as you trust and wait in Him.
We’ll talk soon,
Jeremiah 29:11- “‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.'”