Be still


Yesterday as I was rushing from class to class, I began to stop and think knowing I had 4 minutes left to get back to class before the professor started to lecture after our 10 minute break, why is this world so fast paced. Why am I planning out how much time I would have to drop off my water, use the restroom and still get a snack before she began to lecture again? I shrugged it off and rushed to drop my stuff off in my next class and run down to get more water and a quesadilla something a little more substantial than my first snack. So I get back to class and I’m out of breath from practically running upstairs, and it crosses my mind again why am I always in such a rush? Maybe it was the caramel macchiato sugar rush that I had influencing these thoughts but then I stopped and thought no I’m always moving this fast and my brain just about as fast if not faster. 

Why do we as a culture move so fast? We are so impatient waiting for something to get done, when it says in the Bible “be still” over 100 times. Have you ever thought about how many opportunities you’ve been given but you don’t slow down enough to make the best of the moments where God gives us the chance to speak into other people but we just pass up the chance. I think we need to slow down and encourage one another to live life the way god has called us to bringing him the glory that he deserves. 

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Letting God be in control at all times

“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways, my ways,” says the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts your thoughts.” Isaiah 55:8-9

“Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.” 2 Thessalonians 1:2

“And he said to me, my grace is sufficient for you, for my strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” 2 Corinthians 12:9

I’ve been struggling lately to feel at peace with where I am right now. These verses connected tonight to me almost as a reminder to just stop and let God take over. The other night I found myself questioning God over why when we grieve do we suppress some of the best times we had with our loved one to focus on how we will never have that again at least not for a while. Case in point: The other night I was talking to my cousin about the last conversation we each had with our grandpa and how our uncle was jealous of that. The divide created between my family has been jealousy oriented more often than not but that’s besides the main point. Anyways I proceeded to think about one of the last conversations that I had with him. I remember it vividly, I was sitting by the sewing machine in the bedroom at their house as he was on hospice, and was holding his hand. He looked at me and said “hug, hug” as in wanting me to hug him. It was one of the best hugs just felt really good especially because that was right around the time that he stopped talking. It brought tears to my eyes just thinking about that moment, don’t get me wrong it was wonderful and comforting but looking back it’s one of the most emotional moments my grandpa and I shared. Oh how I long for another one of those moments but I know that for right now finding peace and strength when I feel weak like that in God is what my grandpa would want me to do.

I don’t know why that crossed my mind the other night but ever since I’ve been feeling pretty emotional. Granted it could be because his birthday would’ve been yesterday and we went out to the cemetery again but it’s been on the back of my mind ever since. Like it says in Isaiah Gods thoughts are so much higher than our thoughts, which is hard for us to let go and trust god all of the time but in due time it will be revealed why this has been on my mind so often lately. God’s thoughts and plans for us may be different than what we want for ourselves, but in him all things will work out for our good so long as we find grace and peace through him during the hard times.

Thoughts… For lack of a better title

Do you ever wonder how God chooses who’s mind to put you on and when? God has a mysterious way of working everything together for our good even if we don’t always understand how it works. One of my friends that is definitely going through a much harder time than I am right now took time out of her day trying to figure everything with her situation out to text me probably one of the most encouraging things that anyone has said to me in a while. Just a simple reminder that she was praying for me and that everything I am facing will pass with Psalm 147:3 “He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds,” cited at the end. It was a great reminder don’t get me wrong but coming from her it was just one of those things where I asked God why am I crossing her mind when she has so much more she should be focusing on? I mean this probably sounds really bad but she has been through so much more than I can even fathom and maybe it was just all of the times I encouraged her and told her I was praying for her like I always do, that God was telling her to stop and encourage me, I don’t know but like I said God has a way to make all things work together for our good.

As I write this I’m reminded of the passage 2 Corinthians 12:9-10 ” But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness. Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak than I am strong.” I think for me lately this has been something that has been hard for me to admit. After all I’ve faced over this past year I know it is okay to feel weak and sad although everyone looking down on me in heaven wouldn’t want me to it’s hard not to sometimes. I think what we all need sometimes is that person that we can admit that we are not okay to. Granted it is one of the hardest things to admit and I won’t be the first to say that but to finally admit it and work towards a path to change the feelings that I have felt stuck in feels great. Everything that we put before our God is an idol and putting our feelings before him instead of running to him when we feel down is so important.
“Don’t be mad if I cry
It just hurts so bad sometimes
‘Cause everyday it’s sinking in
And I have to say goodbye all over again
You know, I bet it feels good to have the weight of this world Off your shoulders now
I’m dreaming of the day
When I’m finally there with you
Save a place for me, save a place for me
I’ll be there soon, I’ll be there soon
Save a place for me, save some grace for me
I’ll be there soon, I’ll be there soon.”

If I’ve learned anything over the past year its that people will be there for you when you least expect it. Don’t be afraid to ask others for advice, prayers or comfort, what happens you might least expect. God knows what’s on your heart and why at all times and will be there to comfort you through his word when you least expect it.

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. (NIV)” Romans 15:13

Timing

Proverbs 3:5-6 “Trust in the lord with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.”

I think so often when we pray for something related to timing we expect it to be done for us immediately with no concept of God’s timing or plan for our lives. God knows what is best for us and we need to be patient in learning how to trust in his timing. No matter what the situation may be it is important to just wait. I think in our culture that is one of the most challenging things to do. This is something I’ve personally been struggling with waiting for the perfect time when it comes to deleting some pictures on my phone. Said pictures make me tear up every time I look at them and just can’t bring myself to delete them yet as much as I almost want to. I know at least for me patience is not my strong suit and waiting for prayers to be answered or the perfect time to do something according to God’s timing isn’t the easiest. All in all trusting god is the most important when it comes to waiting for something to happen. He knows everything that will happen before it happens and will make everything work out for our good!

One of the harder parts of grieving

One of the hardest parts of grieving I’ve come to discover is finding a new normal and the said peace with the loss of the person. Holidays generally bring out these feelings more than other days not to say that these things aren’t felt all of the time but being together for special occasions with family just makes the hurt worse even though nobody really brings up what we are all feeling. Everyone seems to focus on getting to the point where we can find the said new normal but that’s not always easy. Losing a loved one means almost every aspect of your life changes. One thing I’ve been reflecting on lately is how it might feel okay to do something that the person that you lost used to do but in hindsight might not be the best idea. Make sure to give yourself time it’s not a competition who gets over the hurt worse or who feels what or struggles with what worse. Just be there for those who are suffering from losing a loved one sometimes that’s all we need. 

Prayer 


Prayer is such a vital role in the Christian lifestyle. I think more often than not we leave out things on our mind when we pray, at least I do. It might just be me, but prayer is one thing I struggle with being consistent in. When it gets hardest for me to pray and probably when I should pray most I have a hard time finding the right words to pray and talk to God about everything I’m feeling. I think the more that we confess to one another what we are feeling is so vital to our prayer lives as a means to discover what we are supposed to or feeling led to pray for. In times of trouble it is often hardest to pray, and I’m sure I’m not the first to realize that or even share that, but God wants us to run to him when it’s hardest to communicate with him! Some things are better than a hallelujah and some times tears are those things, God sees every tear we cry and knows that it is another form of prayer. Reflecting on the last year of my life brings tears to my eyes, how much I’ve faced and how much I’ve grown in my faith. Prayer is such a good way to release built up feelings whether through tears or words. Philippians 4:6 says “be anxious for nothing but in everything by prayer and thanksgiving…” I think in today’s society it is harder to not be anxious even with as easy as it is to overthink and dwell on what we think could happen. Life won’t always be easy but when it knocks you down run to God and find strength in him to build up better coping mechanisms. Finally, you never know what someone else is going through, so those you see on the streets that may seem down on their luck stop and pray with them or just for them. Leave the judging up to God and just be the best role model you can be for those who might not believe in your life to encourage them to build a relationship with God.