NaNoWriMo is upon us, we have to blog, we have to study, we have to write, we have to be with our families. Thanksgiving is coming and people keep talking and the world is rushing all around and chaos and voices and the nois-
You’d be surprised at how it helps.
But I sometimes forget to breathe. Do you? When you find your heart beating too quickly or the scene unfolding in front of you takes away the air in your lungs, do you breathe? Do you take a step back or do you jump in? Reorient yourself, my friend.
I’ve been learning these past months to take a moment, breathe, read a Psalm or a chapter of whatever book of the Bible I’m currently in, and then get back to the whirlwind of life. I challenge you to join me. To put aside our perfectionism and take breaks to breathe and reorient ourselves. We are human, not machines, no matter how we like to fool ourselves into thinking we can work until we can’t keep our eyes open.
Well, I was going to write a post a couple days back, but then I was physically unable to. How so, you ask? Well, my left hand was out of commission.
What’d I do to my hand? How did I do whatever I did?
Well, let me explain.
Eh, what the heck? I’ll just tell you.
So I got into trouble the way that most people find themselves in it, by being an idiot. And not listening to my mama. Which I should know to listen to her by now cause she generally has better ideas about stuff than me. At least when it comes to knives.
So I found this great recipe for avocado toast with poached eggs and naturally I was very excited and felt the desire to try it as soon as possible. My plan was initially to try it that morning, but I woke up and food sounded like a bad idea and cleaning up sounded even worse. So I waited, but still with excitement.
So, finally lunch rolled around and I began to cut my avocado.
That is where it all went horribly wrong.
So, you know the little avocado trick with the knife? Well, I didn’t know about it. I had another avocado knife trick.
I held the knife in my hand and stabbed the seed vertically. Even though Mom had told me before to use a spoon. But no, I had to go and use the knife. Cause the silverware drawer was really far away.
And as you have probably guess, the knife slipped off the seed and sunk itself through the avocado and into my hand.
My mom had to patch me up, gave me a couple of “I told you so”s, but I didn’t need stitches and I lived to tell the tale.
And I have recovered enough to write and pick up lightweight things with my left hand. So all in all…
And now I’ll have a cool scar story. I lost a fight with an avocado.
Wait, that’s actually not that cool…
Do you guys have any embarrassing scar stories? Any other really sporadic bloggers out there?
Today I wanted to share a freeform poem I wrote based off of a person I met at church. I always enjoy hearing people’s stories, and this person had an interesting tattoo to go with their story. It was one of those things that are just begging to be written.
My heroes have been many different people over the years. Men and women, fictional and real, famous or unknown, these people have inspired me. They have made me try harder, reach further, dig my feet in when the world tries to pull me off the edge.
I want to surpass my heroes. I want to dig in deeper, fight harder, be smarter. I want to fight like my life is too short to care about what people think of me. I want to sing when I feel a song in my soul, I want to write the words that buzz in my fingers, I want to tell people I love them without reserve or “only when”s.
I want to do all these things, and I try to do them, but the fact remains that I get scared.
This life feels long to me. The songs too awkward, the people too broken, the words too hard.
But the truth is, this life isn’t long. And I can’t do the hard things. But He can, so I don’t need to be strong. I am weak, I know this, but if God is strong, then I can be too.
Somehow, it’s hard to remember this.
It’s hard to sing when you sometimes forget the tune and your voice wavers.
It’s hard to write when the words don’t flow and things don’t make sense, when the plot doesn’t come together and the characters don’t seem genuine.
It’s hard to tell people you love them when you don’t always feel like you do. When they do things that you don’t love and it’s hard to remember to see the person and not the filth they are smearing on themselves.
The things we want to do, need to do, are hard.
But I hope I will do them. Today and tomorrow and the next day. The next week. This year. Next year.
And at the end of my life, I hope I will stand before my Maker, my first and last Hero, and look him in the eyes as my knees shake and tremble because my inspiration, the comforter of my soul, is standing in front of me. I hope that while I stand in front of him, my mouth dry and a grin on my face, that I will force out the words “I did my best with what you gave me.” That I will mean them. That then, the words will tumble and I will tell my Father what I did.
I wrote the words that you put into my soul. I sang the songs that you handed me to sing. I loved the people you put into my life. I followed in your footsteps.
This is what I want to be able to say.
All of my heroes are fighters.
I hope I will be one too.
I want to fight to write the words that He’s given me, to sing the songs that play on repeat in my heart, to love everyone with open arms.
This is my heart, and it is many of yours. So let’s fight for this.
May the grace and strength of God allow us to do so.
Who are your heroes? What do you want to say at the end of your life?
Something I’ve been thinking about lately is a personal battle of mine. I’m sure that many of you feel this struggle I’m about to describe, but even if you don’t, it still can be applicable.
I’m good at borrowing guilt, or “borrowing depravity”. I will feel guilty about things I have never done (and things I would never want to do) simply because I feel the need to wallow. Simply because I think if I’m not reminded of my own depravity, I might get an ego. Because I feel the need to wallow in my own sinfulness instead of His righteousness. If you’re nodding your head right now in understanding, let me tell you something.
That’s the Devil talking. Not God.
I like to remind myself that I’m not enough (more on this concept in a bit). Maybe I think that’s humility. Beating yourself up is humility, right?
So what, if I’m not enough? So what, if I fail expectations and fall on my face now and again? Reminding myself of that does not make me humble. It might not even be fully true.
Humility is defined as follows:
a modest or low view of one’s own importance; humbleness.
A modest view of my own importance is not focusing on what a horrible person I could potentially be. In fact, that’s the opposite of humility; what I’m doing in focusing on my errors and shortcomings and potential for wickedness is focusing again, upon myself. That’s not a modest view of how important I am, now is it? The world doesn’t revolve around us, it doesn’t revolve around me.
I know this, but it always manages to give me a shock when I’m reminded of it.
Going back to the “I’m not enough” statement now. Which is absurd. I’m not enough for God, most definitely. But when has he ever required me to be enough? This is the God that loved me when I was drowning in my own sin. This is the God who did not just drag me out of that hell, but the God who died the most excruciating death just so I would never have to feel my own sin coating my throat ever again.
So yea, I’m not enough.
Yea, I’m human. Yea, I mess up. I’m not ever going to be enough, I’m not ever going to succeed at everything, I’m not ever going to be right all the time. And I’ll be honest, that thought scares me, when I really let it sink in.
But here’s the flip side of that.
Jesus is/was/will be enough. Jesus already succeeded at everything; even defeating death, which strikes fear into all that meet it. Jesus will always be right.
So yea, I write to you now as a messy teenager, confused by the struggles in her head and knowing without a doubt that I’m not enough. I worry too much, I don’t know all the answers but I act like I know them and I get too heated about little things. I’m not enough.
And that’s more than ok.
Actually, that’s the greatest thing ever. I’m not enough, so He became enough. I wasn’t enough, so instead of leaving me there, in my not enough state, He hugged me close and informed me that the burden was no longer mine to bear.
So if you find yourself being reminded that you’re not enough, look that straight in the face and tell it yes with a smirk. You aren’t enough. But you aren’t meant to stay there, staring into the mirror and crying.
That has no power over you anymore.
Jesus doesn’t want you to stay there, looking at your hands and seeing how small and frail they are; too fragile to hold the weight they should be carrying.
He wants you to look at his hands, scarred and calloused. He wants you to see his wrists, where your burden found its final rest.
My friends, we are not meant to stay staring our depravity in the face. We were meant to defeat it. We were meant, you were meant to move past it, to refuse it any ground.
So if you find yourself trying to borrow guilt or depravity because you feel the need to remind yourself of your depravity, remember that Jesus is enough.
He doesn’t want you walking around with your head down and shoulders hunched, so why are you doing it, my friend?
Walk with your head high. Keep walking. Don’t look back to see if the shadows still look the same.
Keep on walking in the sun.
You are loved, no matter who you are, where you’re at in life, if you’re a church kid or want nothing to do with God, doesn’t matter where you call your home or who you call your family.
What matters is that you’re not enough, but He is.
The words fail to come to my fingers, my friends. They swirl in my head but don’t look right on paper. Like a misspelled word or a painting turned sideways. I want to write a poem, but I do not have the words to one. I can not write because what I have been saved from is overwhelming. I have a debt paid for that I can not explain in the simple words I know.
But that’s alright. The words will come. Until then, I can only rehash the words I know to be true. The words that have given me so much comfort.
Take heart, we are not in control.
there is power in the name of Jesus.
though satan should buffet, though trials should come…
make my life a prayer to you.
it is well, it is well
a wretch like me
there is power in the name of Jesus
i want to, i need to
be more like Jesus.
prone to wander
lord, i feel it.
it is well
nothing lasts, except the grace of God, by which I stand,
I know I’ve been completely absent kind of quiet this past month. I’ve just been adjusting to my new home and doing a decent amount of school. Camp NaNoWriMo is coming up next month and I am extremely excited to write a completely new novel for it.
I really like Mushu gifs, alright? Give a girl a break.
Anyway, Mushu gifs aside, this has been an interesting month for me. I moved across the ocean, have lived and am currently living in a hotel for a little over three weeks now, been to a mall with a ski slope and penguins in it (no, I am not joking, that is a legit thing), and met a lot (and I mean a lot) of new people.
Here are some things I’ve learned or relearned about moving:
It gets easier once you’re actually there.
Emotions don’t make sense, just go into it knowing that. Let yourself feel the emotions, eat a bag of goldfish, and move on. No sense in dwelling on them.
Moving is an adventure, it’s a chance to explore something new. You have a completely blank slate. Nobody knows anything about you. You have so many opportunities to make minions to read your books one day new friends.
Find an anchor and you’ll be fine.
You’ll dream about all the goodbyes you said and wake up disoriented. It’s alright. Relish the feeling of knowing you’re done with goodbyes for a while and rub the sleep from your eyes.
If you want to get to know people, you need to go and make the first step. Prove that you’re going to stick around.
People are much friendlier than you might think.
Moving is scary but it’s not as scary as we make it out to be.
If you eat more ice cream than normal, it is completely fine.
Remember, goodbyes are hard but they are worth the hellos you said.
If you leave, it isn’t the end of the world. Rather, the beginning of a new one.
An end is required for the next chapter. Don’t hang onto the last words, rather, make new ones.
You arrive on the plane, ideas swirling in your head with no place to write them. Excitement yanking your hand and that already home sickness feeling burning the back of your throat. The wait until take off is a feeling that tingles all throughout your body.
This is it. This is it.
You hold onto your armrests even though the takeoff is smooth and easy. It makes it more exciting as you exchange grins with your younger brother. You watch as people peer through the glass to watch the world become small before their very eyes. You wish you would have gotten a window seat. Maybe next time.
You swipe at the screen in the seat in front of you, turning up the volume as you watch that new action movie while a blond head finds its way into your lap. You were once small enough to curl in the seats too.
You turn off the screen after the third end credits roll. They weren’t exaggerating when they told you it’s near impossible to sleep well on an airplane. You shut your eyes and shove your earbuds in, trying to get some sleep. One thought keeps breaking through your music, keeping you awake.
This is it. This is it.
You drift off to sleep after accepting this fact. Turbulence wakes you up, but not the young blond head using your arm now as a pillow.