Tag Archives: faith

Starbucks Confessional (I am a freaking hot mess. Now, what?)

Yes, God helps in our need. It's a broken world, and bad things happen to good people. But what about the messes I get MYSELF into? What then?I’m doing something that makes me nervous. I was feeling pretty raw and low last week and it spilled onto the pages of my journal. I’m nervous because I know I’m supposed to share it.

I wanted to edit it first – but not in the way I usually edit my writing. I could tell I wanted to edit the desperation out of it. Just take it down a notch or three. I can’t have you all thinking I’m losing it over here.

But what? I don’t want people to think I’m that broken? That flawed? That needy?

So I’m not editing it. Because maybe one of you needs to know that if nothing else, you’re not the only one who is that broken. That flawed. That needy.

And maybe you’ll find that the God who is big enough for someone as broken, flawed, and needy as me, can be big enough for you too.

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I’m low. And I’m apparently stressed, as I have a behemoth trifecta of a cold sore eating my face. I’m in Starbucks, face unwashed, Abreva on my mouth. Wow.

I’m low. I’m sluggish. I’m blasting music through my earbuds to drown out the Starbucks crowd.

I’m not going to run the 1/2 marathon I’m registered for this Saturday. I didn’t train. And why?

Just because I chose not to.

Just like every day I choose NOT to do the right thing. To give my body the healthy food it needs. And the time in God’s Word. And the break from so much caffeine and sugar. (As I sit here with my grande quad shot two pump white mocha Americano, thankyouverymuch.)

It’s like I’m rebelling against my own freedom. I’m rebelling against my own success, health, growth, victory. What in the world for? Why?

WHY?
WHY?
WHY?
WHY?

Laziness? Addiction? Oppression? Simple rebellion? Self-loathing? Pride? Perfectionism?

I don’t know why I do this.

Does it matter why?

I wake up tired. I go to bed tired. I walk through my day looking for my next cup of coffee.

I think about doing awesome things. But I do the opposite.

It sounds like Paul’s words. “I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do… I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. For what I do is not the good I want to do; no, the evil I do not want to do – this I keep on doing… WHAT A WRETCHED [WOMAN] I AM! WHO WILL SAVE ME? WHO WILL RESCUE ME FROM THIS BODY OF DEATH? Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord!”

I only copied the part about “Thanks be to God” because I feel like I should, but it doesn’t feel real right now.

I need to write. But what!? WHAT DO I HAVE TO SAY!?

“I feel low. Blah blah blah.”

Well, I feel low BECAUSE I MAKE POOR CHOICES. I feel low because I know what my body needs, what my mind needs, and I REFUSE TO DO IT. And even do worse. No one does this TO ME.

I DO THIS TO ME.

I am rebelling against my own freedom and I am angry and ashamed and tired and fed up and sad and nothing. And low. Just low. And apparently anxious, judging by the aforementioned face-eating cold sore.

So what now? How do I even approach God with this? I’ve done it – AM DOING IT – to myself.

Adam and Eve come to mind. In the Garden. It was so beautiful. It was perfect. They could have so much, but they chose the one thing God said no to. They traded ALL THE YESes for the NO. They rebelled against their own freedom.

Were there consequences? Absolutely. Um, hello, fall of all mankind. [You can read the account in context here.] But that’s not what I’m thinking of right now.

I’m thinking of this verse:

“The Lord God made garments of skin for Adam and his wife and clothed them.” (Genesis 3:21)

He could’ve left them naked and ashamed. But He didn’t. He clothed them. He covered them. He allowed them to experience the consequences of their rebellion, but HE MADE THEM GARMENTS AND HE CLOTHED THEM.

EVEN THOUGH THEY GOT THEMSELVES INTO THIS MESS.

God called to them. He met them in their shame. In their defeat. In their utter failure. And He met their need.

And I’m trying REALLY HARD to not cry in Starbucks right now. Because I need that. I need Him. I need Him to come and get me in this pit. I can’t climb out to find Him. I need Him to hear me hiding, naked and defeated, make me a garment, and walk me back out into the light.

Please come, Jesus.

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Oh my goodness. A garment. Oh JESUS, YOU CAME to make garments too. Just like the Lord God did in the Garden.  You came “…to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair.” (Isaiah 61:3)

You guys. Could you use a new garment? Or any garment? Will you answer Him from your hiding place?

Ordinary Monday

Easter weekend felt so powerful – the kind of powerful that makes you think you’ll wake up feeling different the next day. But can I be honest? So far, today really feels like Just Another Monday. Disappointed, I prayed about it this morning, and God reminded me of some thoughts I typed into my phone over the weekend. During a moment of awe and wonder at the miracle of the Cross and the Resurrection, my heart had overflowed:

He loves me. And I am loved.
He sees me. And I am seen.
He hears me. And I am heard.
He knows me. And I am known.
He finds me. And I am found.
He chooses me. And I am chosen.
He redeems me. And I am redeemed.
He is risen. And so I rise.
Love wins. And LOVE. HAS. WON.

Today, on this seemingly ordinary Monday, I’m reminding myself that some things are true whether I feel them or not. My God has conquered death. He’s as risen on Monday as He was on Sunday. Jesus, help me live like I believe it!

#firstfridayfinds: It.

first friday april 2014

It’s the first Friday in April, which means I’m linking up with Elizabeth at Words and Wonder for first friday finds! Ready? One verse, fifteen minutes, and… go.

The one who calls you is faithful, and he will do it. (1 Thess. 5:24)

I’m not sure where to even begin with this verse. It jumped off the page to me amidst many other marks and underlinings. This verse speaks peace and hope to my heart – as I sit here on my couch with a cup of coffee and my notebook.

But what will it look like as I go about the rest of my day?

The one who calls you is faithful, and he will do it.

God has called me. No, wait. Not past tense. God calls me.

He is faithful.

And He will do it. It. What’s the IT? What’s the IT He calls me to, that He’s faithful to do in me, through me? How often do we ask, “What is God’s will for my life? What is He calling me to? What is IT?”

What if I don’t know what God’s will is? What IT is?

Ah, jackpot! – if we jump back just a couple of verses, we find a pretty clear place to start: Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. (1 Thess. 5:16-18)

Joyful. Prayerful. Thankful. This is God’s will for you – and me – in Christ Jesus.

“But you don’t know what my day has been like. You don’t know what my life has been like. How am I supposed to be joyful? prayerful? thankful?”

It’s time to remember this isn’t a call to muster up righteousness in my own strength. He who calls me – to be joyful, prayerful, thankful – is faithful, and He will do it.

May I yield today to the God who calls, the God who is faithful – and experience the wonder of Him doing something in me that I couldn’t do on my own.