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relationship status: DESPERATE.

25 Dec

So I’m not ashamed to admit that I am a reality tv fanatic. Put a camera in front of ANYONE (almost) to watch them in their natural environment and I’m there. Sure, it’s sort of awkward when I know the comings and goings of every celebrity on the planet, but whatever.

Anyway. I’m sitting here (on Christmas Eve, mind you) watching Teen Mom 2. Now, if I look beyond the clear brokenness that is teen pregnancy, heartbreak, domestic abuse, and financial instability, there is one HUGE issue. And it’s the issue that seems to plague every reality show (and real life, I guess): Relationships. 

These teen moms battle between staying with their baby daddy or moving on to the next best thing. It is painful to watch these girls struggle in their relationships. Whether it is their child’s father walking out, never really walking in in the first place, domestic violence, divorce, reconciliation, even death, these relationships are ridden with pain. Yet, in interviews, the only thing these girls focus on including the interviewer, is their next relationship.

My only question is, what are they thinking?

They’re missing the point. EVERYONE seems to be missing the point. In college, it feels like every girl feels pressure to find the next guy. It gets to a certain point, it seems, that standards go out the window and it doesn’t really matter that these guys are total crap. We have lost of sense of patience and go after anyone that matches our ideal gender match.

I find it a bit ridiculous.

We look for someone to complete us. We are told that having a guy is exactly what we need. Everything will be better if only we had that one perfect guy to finish out the perfect picture. He will look good on our facebook profile, he will be the perfect addition to our family dinners, and he will relieve the pressure of needing a boyfriend. So, if he isn’t exactly what I’m looking for, that’s fine, right?

Wrong.

We have two major issues here. First, we look for a guy to complete us. Our hearts desire perfection. Our hearts are DESIGNED to desire perfection. Yet, we become so tainted by society that we begin to accept love from people who don’t come close to anything we deserve.

And it’s time to stop. 

A guy won’t fill us up. At all. They weren’t designed to. Relationships were designed to point us to our perfect Lover. 

Jesus said in John 10:10, “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” The evil that is undoubtedly in a lot of these relationships destroys us because we don’t understand what it looks like to know the ultimate Love.

It’s simple. Jesus offers an abundant life. Seek Him first. Find a man who does the same. Image

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so this joy thing…

22 Dec

I have become really good at speaking Christianese. What I mean is, I have mastered the art of knowing what to say when difficult questions regarding spirituality arise. A discussion that I have found so often is one surrounding JOY. What is joy? Is it the same as happiness? Is being “joyful always” even possible? WHHHHAAAAAA.

I got good at telling people the difference between happiness and joy. I would say that deep joy is something that exceeds circumstances. That joy is something that can be present at all times, even in the darkest ones. Happiness was a fleeting thing.

And while I agree with this things here, I have found that in these past few months, I have been far from a living example of these answers.

I have spent the first semester of my college experience complaining. There’s no glossing over that. Whether I voice it or not (and oftentimes, I have voiced it. Ask everyone), complaining is something I have turned to daily to somehow ease my discomfort. And my idea of joy has shifted from this deep seeded thing from the Lord to something that mirrors worldly happiness, yet as this was happening, I didn’t even notice it.

But now, as I watch the coverage of the Newtown massacre, I realize a few things. Firstly, my life is GOOD. It is sweet and simple and satisfying and joyful. Even my greatest pains seem selfish and tiny compared to the devastation of burying a child. Even moreso, though, I have started to understand a little more about so-called “joy”.

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 says, “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, and in everything give thanks.” We usually stop there, but it goes on to say that this is GOD’S WILL for you in Christ Jesus. It is such a reminder that our JOY must be rooted in Jesus, that we must look at everything situation with thanks and rejoicing, because we have hope that exceeds beyond our life here. It is through Jesus Christ that we are able to have an eternal hope.

John 15:11 says, “ I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete.” This one hits me even harder. Jesus wants our joy in Him. He wants us to understand His joy. What’s even freakier is that our pains can’t compare to His. He lived his life KNOWING the pain that would end it. He did nothing to deserve it and could do anything he wanted to stop it, yet knew that he wouldn’t. THAT is pain. Yet, he knows a joy because of his Father and the hope he has in the salvation He brings.

So after going on and on, I do have a point. My point is that I have a hope that far exceeds the anxieties of my day. My hope is bigger than sorority rush. It is bigger than my freshman year, my summer plans, my college experience, my future marriage, EVERYTHING. My hope in JESUS CHRIST. The Prince of Peace. My hope is in my salvation and literally NO circumstance can hinder that.

a new kind of fast

21 Oct

Amidst the nine other internet tabs I had going at one point the other day, I ran across an article from a blog I love called “Good Women Project”. This blog is an INCREDIBLE resource for women trying to become better friends, wives, girlfriends, people, and daughters of Christ. I stumbled across an article that caught me a little off guard, and even more so sparked an overwhelming attitude of conviction. The article was called “The Life I Discovered Inside Of 13 Days Without Social Media.”

(Check it out here: http://goodwomenproject.com/daily-life/13-days-without-social-media)

Being a college freshmen obsessed with the lives of my friends scattered across the country, the idea of giving up all social media terrified me. Twitter and Facebook have become my go-to when I’m bored, insecure, procrastinating, upset, or in need of a self-esteem boost. I became obsessed with the amount of likes I was getting on my new pictures. I soaked in retweets and favorites, as if they contributed anything to my self worth. Comments and wall posts became my daily bread. It was as if getting more likes on my profile picture defined how beautiful or satisfied I was.

On the other hand, these sites became exactly what destroyed my worth. When I didn’t get a like, or a favorite, or a retweet, somehow I told myself that I wasn’t enough. I wasn’t pretty enough, smart enough, witty enough, just not ENOUGH. I would scroll through hours of newsfeed, “casually” browsing through the pictures of my friends at other schools. I’d see them in pictures with people I had never met before, beautiful and mysterious to me. They would be having fun–more fun that I was obviously having– and I was jealous.

So unbelievably jealous.

They must have had a thousand new friends. I had been replaced. Obviously, my social skills were subpar because I did not have that many friends. I wasn’t in THAT many pictures. No one was uploading pictures of me, saying “SO blessed by meeting this girl.”

It became a sick and unhealthy outlet for my loneliness. And it was just making things worse.

So when I ran across this article, I felt deep inside of me that this was something that was absolutely necessary. I had been talking talking talking about my struggles in adapting to school. All I have done since I’ve been here is talk about my discontentedness in this or that… The quote came to mind, “Have you PRAYED about it as much as you have talked about it?”………….

…..

BAMMM. It was like a knife to my soul. I have spent the past nine weeks complaining and crying about the minute issues I run across in my daily life. It’s been interesting to see that while I say aloud, “I’m trusting God in this”, my heart cries something completely different.

With all of this being said, I’ve decided to embark on a two week journey devoid of Twitter and Facebook. Thankfully, my Instagram has exactly zero followers, I follow zero people, and is used solely for fun editing of my pictures. So cheers to a full two weeks of looking inward, desperately dependent on the Creator of the Universe and Savior of my soul, invested in developing a prayer life that mirrors my talk.

I’m hoping to figure out what it means to be desperately dependent on the Creator, rather than my notifications tab.