right now.

sigh.

I’m done telling myself that I’m going to blog regularly.

The only reason I’m blogging right now is because I’m procrastinating the homework that has been haunting me all day.

sigh.

But I’m here now, so {hopefully} I’ll make the most of it!

In fact, thats what I want to talk about. Being here. Right now.

At the beginning of the summer, I talked a lot about the anxiety I had over the future. What I would do, where I would be, and most importantly, would it matter? I wanted (and still do) to feel like I was doing something, something important. I long to be on the front lines, so to speak, of my faith. Living in a hut, in a village with no electricity, with the homeless, with the sick, with the orphans, to see God move.

I know in my head that getting a degree is important, and that it will help me do whatever I’m going to do, but my heart longs for more. Thats it though, its my heart that longs for more. Its my need to feel needed and used and important and valid, that has me longing. Even when the longing is for something “good”, we’re meant to be satisfied and content right where we are. Moving to that hut or village won’t instantly make me feel needed or used or important or valid, I will have simply moved.

I’m not discounting those options at all, I still fully plan on doing so one day (even though you know what they say about when we plan 😉 ) but doing so with the wrong intent, or to find some self worth will only lead to the same longing I can feel right here in Tallahassee.

My heart still longs for more, but I’m working to point it to Christ and Christ alone, and let the rest land where it may. Doing good doesn’t satisfy (even when we think were doing it for Christ) if we are not ourselves saturated and whole in Jesus. When the focus is on Jesus, we will see His heart right where we are. We will be satisfied in waiting and sitting with Him, because He is enough.

I so often forget this thing called grace. That He is always moving in my direction, its not me stretching and working for Him, its Him coming down to be with and work through me. So right now, I will sit with Him. I will rest in knowing that I have Him right now, and He is enough.

today. {a not as loving, but similar letter}

I kind of like this letter writing thing. So today, I’m writing a letter to, well, TODAY.

Oh, Today, you got me good.

You wake me up to do icky school forms and show me I have to refile one that will take a while to get here. Then you lead me to class where I realize the paper that I KNEW was in my binder is in fact, not in my binder.

You have me walking around campus, feeling that tug of annoyance of the surplus all around, and the guilt in knowing I’ve been a part of it. You got me in that cynical “I just want to move to another country” mood.

I’m sorry today, you’re only half way through, and I’m glad I get to live through ya, but come on.

The good news is you also brought me to that thoughtful place these kind of circumstances can do. You brought me to The Word, which I know I have been slacking on lately. You brought me to those out-loud prayers I need to do more of.

You brought me to remember that Your Father creates this day and He says, to live in the world but not of the world. He says, you can be cynical and grouchy or you can help fix it. He says, don’t focus on the day, focus on ME.

So today, the rest of you will be better. It will be spent with more Truth, it will be spent with puppies at the shelter that need love (I started volunteering last week and love it! And I haven’t and won’t be bringing home any, don’t worry 😉 ) and it will be spent in choosing joy.

Take that, today!

 

my dear friend. {a love letter to my body}

Today, I’m writing something a little different. The lovely women over at She Loves Magazine  are writing love letters, to their bodies, and inviting us all to join in.

So here it goes!

Its been a rocky road these years hasn’t it? I’ve put you through quite a lot. But we’re not talking about that today. Today, we move forward. Today, I’m telling you something new.

My love for you has been conditional. I spin around in the mirror and determine how confident I feel about you today.

I lift up my shirt, running my fingers over the cross I had etched on my ribs. Turning to the side once more, I let my shirt fall back down with a shrug. I will do this to you every time I see a mirror.

I’ve let this ritual define you. I’ve let my thoughts be consumed by what you aren’t. But today, dear friend, I will thank you for what you are. I will direct my thoughts to think only good of you.

I will stop thinking of you as the bridge for love, for acceptance. You are not what makes me loved, what will make me loved, or what makes me accepted.

Instead it is my acceptance of you, my love for you that allows me to create that bridge.

Because you, dear friend, are not who I am. You do not tell me my worth as a woman, as a daughter, a sister, a friend, a believer.

But you are a part of me, a part I promise to treat better. A part I will respect and care for, without letting you rule my thoughts.

I will care for you by feeding you what makes us feel good.

By running because it makes us feel alive and free.

And then letting the rest take care of itself.

Someday might bring that special guy who will find you beautiful, but more importantly, he will see you as I do, just a part of me, the me he really loves.

Someday you might bring precious children into the world.

Someday you might run a marathon, or climb a mountain, or lay in a bed of wildflowers.

What you do, and wherever life leads us, I promise to be good to you, to love you.

We’re in this together, dear friend, and if we work together we can make this crazy ride a beautiful one.

funny things.

Two funny things happened to me this week.

Earlier in the week I noticed my right hip was bothering me a little. I hadn’t done Insanity or ran since last Thursday so I didn’t think too much off it. But as the day went on it started to hurt worse. And it wasn’t just my hip, it was my butt. It was like the muscle down my right butt check had locked up. So I feel asleep with a bag of peas on my butt.

Good times.

Its feeling much better now after taking a little break from Insanity and stretching a lot, but still.. this is my life.

And then, do you remember that cute boy I mentioned in one little line in a post a few days ago?

I had my hopes raised and then dashed as I found out he’s a Christian, but…

He’s gay.

Yup.

I think God was laughing a little bit with me this week. Too often we picture God as the Ruler, the mighty and just sitting on His throne, as the God who wiped out the earth with a flood or kicked Adam and Eve out of Paradise. Its easy to think of God this way when were in trouble, when we’ve messed up, thinking we deserve the same wrath.

We overlook the times when God parted the seas for His people, or protected them in a furnace or a lion’s den. We forget that God is for us. That even though we deserve all those things, He still sent His son for us.

He sent His Son so we could be saved and forgiven and free. He sent His Son so we could laugh.

The weight of our sin is lifted and sometimes we just need to laugh.

Let you shoulders fall as the stress goes with them. Take a deep breath. Think about pulling a muscle in your butt, or thinking about a gay guy. Think about those times you got stomach stitches and had tears in your eyes. And just laugh.

Laugh in grace, laugh in freedom, and laugh with Him.

school+work.

Two weeks in to six weeks courses is busier than I thought. Two Lit classes in that six week session means a lot of reading which means no time for reading or writing anything else.

And one of the other bookkeepers at work is out of town so I’m working every day this week. Not complaining, just explaining. 😉

Hopefully I’ll find a couple minutes to post here in the coming days, but for now you can go check out my first guest post!

Some of my family is in Honduras for the week and so I got the honor of guest posting for my step-mom. 😉

Go take a peak! 

 

weekends.

Sinking in to my bed with a cup of peppermint tea tonight. Why, yes, I am secretly an eighty year old women. Further proof is I’m sleepy at 9:00 on a Friday night, and my stomach is bothering me.

[also, I’m enjoying the quiet.]

Heres to the weekend!

 

Weekends are for::

Venti iced coffee.

Transporting puppies out of the shelter tomorrow.

Movie at the dollar theater.

Early Sunday morning run.

Homework.

Work.

Anticipating The Newsroom on Sunday night.

I hope your weekend brings you calm and joy that refreshes your soul.

I leave with you some of my favorite things I’ve seen around the internet this week::

Sarah Bessey – Ten books she reads over and over.  – She’s sharing ten books each day and I have bookmarked every one of them. If you’re looking for something to dive into, go here.

Rachel Held Evans – Christian bookstores and their chokehold on the industry. – I recently started reading this blog and I love it. She’s honest and willing to talk about things that need to be talked about. This post talks about how some Christian publishing is basically sugarcoating Christianity and sweeping things under the rug. We are able to bring things out of the open because of grace, and we need to do so.

Every Bitter Thing is Sweet – A remembrance video. – Go watch the video at the end and cry. That is all.

Have a great weekend friends!

 

 

 

 

freedom.

Happy freedom day friends!!

I don’t have class or work today so I’m enjoying it. I pressed snooze too many times, ate breakfast, went for a run, and am now sitting in Starbucks sipping on some iced coffee. (I’m still having that for now on the raw food thing. 😉 )

Tonight I’m going to be the beautiful Tom Brown to watch fireworks with some friends. Should be fun!

I celebrate this day grateful for the country I live in and the legal freedom that comes with that, but more so thinking of the only true freedom there is. I’m thinking of the believers in China meeting underground to fellowship and read the Bible for hours on end. I’m thinking of the mothers who can’t work and provide for their children. I’m thinking of the men and women who sacrifice to bring us this freedom so many (including myself) take for granted.

Today, I pray for the people who legally have what we call freedom but are bound by the things they might not know are holding them down. I pray for the people who know they are trapped but don’t know the Way out. I pray for the people who don’t know the price their freedom truly costs (including myself).

Lets all celebrate today, celebrate freedom as Americans and as Believers. Celebrate the richness of true and complete freedom that comes in knowing and walking with Christ. And with each step we take with Him, we are walking a little more free.

 

the run.

“Nope, physically,  I just don’t bloat.”

Anyone?

[Bridesmaids]

Megan is in my opinion the funniest character in the movie. And then this line? HIGH-larious.

Well, unlike Megan I was not blessed with such a gift.

raw foods = bloating.

Just in case you were wondering. 😉

My summer classes started today! It’s going to be an intense six weeks, but I’m excited. It felt good to be sitting in a class room again. Since changing my major last semester, school feels a whole lot different. I want to dig in to it. I didn’t mind my science classes before, but I feel like I’m meant to be a part of the classes I’m sitting in now. Theres a purpose in them that sparks my heart. And my heart needed that. I’m so grateful for the ability and the opportunity to learn these things. (theres also this super handsome cutie in both of my classes and he sat by me in both of them, but thats beside the point 😉 )

I did Insanity this morning, went to class, and then had work from three to ten. It was a busy day. I loved it. I love to be busy, to feel productive. Which is why that whole waiting on the Lord can be hard for me. I’m a goal-orientated, production loving, perfection junkie and its hard for me to let that go in most of the things I do.

School. Faith. Work. Food. Relationships.

Its there.

Which is why this book is exactly what I needed. Theres grace that covers even this part of me. 

Thats why I didn’t freak out when I couldn’t finish the last fifteen minutes of my work out this morning. Why I wasn’t as upset with myself over the dark chocolate cashews I had at work. (Seriously, a customer didn’t want them and the front end people got to split them. Seriously, tonight?) So yes I ate some. But I also felt much better (despite the bloating) and know I am making progress.

I’m moving forward, “palms up”, keeping grace in front of me, and running towards Christ. 

In school. In faith. In work. In food. In relationships.

Its discipline soaked in grace. And its all, all, all about Christ.

 

 

hi there!

quick! name the movie!

[up!]

Sometimes random lines from books and movies run through me head. And then I have to find out where its from. Even if it means saying/singing it over and over.

Another one from today?

“Stick with me boys, and you’ll never go hungry again!”

[The Lion King. Scar talking to the hyenas.]

I was making some kale chips when this little gem kept popping in my head. I giggled a little.

Today marks day one of a raw food challenge. I’ve been in a little bit of a rut lately, (can I say the past year actually?) and frankly, I’m done. I’m done with the arguments in my head. I’m done trying to title myself. I’m done trying to figure everything out. I’m done trying to be everything (I think) everyone wants me to be. I’m done trying to fix everything. deep breath. 

So what does this have to do with raw food?

Well, if you know me or have read any of my blogs you know a little about my past with food. Even then, I don’t think my ramblings measure up to the battle keeping me trapped. It sinks my shoulders, draws my knees to my chest, and locks my arms around me. But its not just about food. It goes so much deeper than breakfast, lunch, and dinner. It speaks to my desire to be confident in my own skin. It speaks to my future. It speaks to how funny I am, how likable I am, how cheery I am, how ____ I am. I’ve tried to control these all through food. I come with clenched fists and eyebrows furrowed ready to go to battle and overcome.

And here I am.

This time I am tiptoeing to the battle ground, wearing no armor. I come with my arms open, knowing I stand no chance. I come in surrender. I surrender all those things that try to define me and I surrender the desire to wear them. I lay all this junk I’ve accumulated and take on the Armor of God. I stand behind the Son of God and kneel as He fights for me.

So what does this have to do with raw food?

Its a fast of sorts. Its a daily reminder of that surrender, keeping me focused on the One who sets me free. I don’t know how long, at least three weeks, and theres no specific guidelines yet. For the first couple days I’m eating mostly raw food and getting rid of the other food I already have. But its about surrender.

This is the time. I won’t, won’t, won’t, and will not, allow this to have any more control or steal any more time and joy away.

This is the time.

exhale. surrender.