Archive for August, 2014

Enough

The hardest thing for a woman to accept is her beauty.


woman-low-self-esteem

 

Her innate, just woke up, no make up on on, walking naked around the house, belly rolls clearly visible, unadulterated, beauty.

 

I am beautiful. Twenty one years, and today is the first time I have ever said it, thought it, and believed it.

 

It took an awful day, a rough summer, a lifetime of fighting to be someone’s definition of worthy. To recognize that I am enough. Not that I will be enough, but that right now, today, I am enough.

 

To accept that I am not perfect. I am not the smartest, the wisest, the most graceful or prettiest thing to ever grace this lovely planet. But nevertheless, I am enough.

 

No, I have yet to accomplish every one of my dreams, and God only knows if I ever will. But all things are beautiful in His time. And the only time God has guaranteed me is this moment. And today I choose to revel in it.

 

I choose the revel in the fact that I am perfectly imperfect. That I fall, but I get back up. That I fail, but I keep on trying.

 

My life is fulfilling, because I can look around me and see beauty. The low hanging branches, the graceful calm of the wind, and the sun’s warm rays scratching gently against my back. I can find peace in the hustle, the rush, the traffic, and the stress. To not only see, but to appreciate the beauty in a father holding his daughter’s hand, or a mother searching frantically around for her lost son.

 

I can see love. The infatuation, the lust, the enduring friendship, the brokenness, and the trust. Seeing the beauty in each and appreciating those used to be strangers that we meet. Learning that not every goodbye has to be tearful, but that some people are best in small quantities and a goodbye could be a blessing in disguise.

 

I am grateful for my family. Individually broken, but together our love seems to be more than enough. I take joy in their presence. Their lives show me how much love can lead to fear. The fear of losing what is worth so much. But slowly that fear is letting go, so that gratefulness and appreciation can take it’s place. I am grateful for the time I’ve had with them, and the time I still have left.

 

All in all I can say that I am happy. I’ve decided to stop dwelling on all thats is falling apart, but to be grateful for what still is. And when I sit down and count the blessings, I find that they are more than enough

happy

Make a choice

Freedom is the state of not being imprisoned or enslaved. It is the absence of coercion or constraint in choice or action.

 

What if you made a choice, and it resulted in no action?

choice-a-or-b2

Assume you’re a kid. And you’re in, I don’t know, fourth grade. Your mom says she’s gonna be packing you a lunch to take to school everyday. She then goes on to suggest that she can make you either a PB&J or a turkey burger. Excited at the prospect of choice, you tell your mom that today you want a PB&J, but tomorrow you’re gonna need a turkey burger. You get to school, lunchtime rolls around, and you open your lunchbox, pleasantly satisfied that your peanut butter and jelly sandwich is there just as you requested. The next day you open up your lunch box expecting to see a turkey burger. But your 4th grade forehead wrinkles in consternation, because before you yet again is a PB&J. Frustrated, but hungry, you eat your PB&J , but determine to get to the bottom of this gross mistake. Later that day you get home and you put on your best pout as you confront your mom as to why you didn’t get the turkey burger as per your request. She smiles in understanding of your situation and asks you what you want for tomorrow. Pleased that you seem to have easily straightened things out you ask for, guess what(?), a turkey burger. But the next day, when lunch time rolls around, you open your lunch box with tears rolling down your face in disappointment, cause hey, it’s another PB&J.

 

My point?

 

Is there any significance of having freedom to choose, if our choice is never reflected in any correlated action?

 

I mean why give the kid a choice of turkey burger or PB&J, if no matter what he chooses, he’s always getting a PB&J?

 

Is that freedom? No. In fact it’s worse than entering knowingly into a dictatorship, because from the outset, you were under the impression that it was a democracy.

 

“In freedom, most people find sin.”

 

Do you know what we expect from God? We expect, no, we demand freedom. “Because true love is not forced.” Right? But at the same time we expect that no bad things will ever happen. At least not to us.

 

We expect to make the wrong choices and for everything to turn out okay. Why? Because God is good. But for us to choose wrongly and still not have to face the consequences of our actions, or even to have others choose wrongly and not have it affect us, God would need to take away our freedom. He would need to make it impossible for our choice to result in any actual action.

 

The sin, degradation, and depravity that we see in the world often leads one type of person to wail “There is no God,” and if there is a God, then “He simply isn’t good.”

 

However, another type of person might also, more accurately I would argue, wail ‘How lowly, how depraved is the sinner’s state.’ Would that we had chosen more wisely or had more compassion.

 

Prison_175143c

 

 

“Sin is like a jail cell. The door is open, except its so nice and comfy and there doesn’t seem to be any need to leave.” But you can leave. You can get up, leave, and enter into the light.

 

Thankfully we do not have a God like the writer Jarod Kintz telling us, “I want to protect innocent people from sin by locking them in cages, where the evil can’t get to them.” Instead God holds out the PB&J. While Satan has the turkey burger. It’s an all you can eat buffet. But you still have to make a choice.

 

 

freedom

 

(…let the record show that there is no implied correlation between Satan and turkey burgers…)

Green grass

My advice? Read, don’t breathe. Accept, and don’t try to find me in words that describe our society.

For the females. 

Grass is greener

I’m, (pause) jealousin her wedding pics like as if I need matrimony, but nope, I’m not ready to be confined by the strictures of another mind. I’m, (pause) too free to be tied down, goals so high afraid to drown in images of what if… 

I pushed harder, was stronger, stayed wiser, aimed higher? 

I see… the way she walks and talks with a fluency that is beyond me and I turn and suck my teeth telling myself I’m simply not seen. Or the way she’s wrapped success around her finger, which is gracefully mounted on her slender frame, thick thighs, rounds eyes, a dimple, small waist, good taste.

She stands with her man showering adoration all around her, I ask, where’s mine, forgetting I’m just fine… sitting in misery wishing I was anyone but me, forgetting, I’m a BLESSED me, that each day, I’m the BEST me this world ever did see. That I was perfected in the mind of God, before my parents ever accepted that bam(!) the sperm’s slammed the egg, merged, and hit the uterine wall, and now ma’s “time” of the month is on hiatus for another nine. Delivered alone in a room from pain I left the womb, not ready to be confined again till I lay 6ft under, fingers numb.

They didn’t realize what I could be, but God already knew what I would and should be. His special creation, a gift. A jewel, priceless–can’t match the value, but I look in the mirror and instead of grasping the reflection of a pearl, I trip up and grasp at a stone with no shape, no form, no virtue, leaving my Father confused that I could reject the truth and disregard the proof that he’s shown me.

That he owns me. Shaped by grace, fed on mercy, raised on faith. Who am I? Not my fear, nor my failure, not my rejection, nor my confessions. Not a broken vessel, but a willing temple. Nourished on hope. Ready to be filled, I rope in my feelings of inadequacy and grope towards the realization that the grass is green where I stand, here, beneath my feet.

Safe/Control

feeling-safe
I run to him, and I am safe.

 

“But you will cross the Jordan and settle in the land the LORD your God is giving you as an inheritance, and he will give you rest from all your enemies around you so that you will live in safety.” Deuteronomy 12:10

“When you go out to fight your enemies and you face horses and chariots and an army greater than your own, do not be afraid. The LORD your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, is with you!” Deuteronomy 20:1

“I will give you peace in the land, and you will be able to sleep with no cause for fear. ” Leviticus 26:6

 

Have you ever laid down to sleep in fear?

 

The writer Paulo Coelho writes in the Alchemist that “the fear of suffering is worse than the suffering itself.” Our thoughts control us. Whether for good or for evil. We are often limited by what we think we can’t do. And often times we limit God by dwelling on the fears of what God has already said he will take care of.

 

We are human, and as a result it is in our nature is to value the things that are seen more than the things that are unseen. We are more concerned with the love of those we can lay eyes on, feel their touch, and hear their voice. We strive to please parents, friends, teachers, lovers. And we forget to seek to please God. We assume that attempting to please God is like walking with no gravity.Like praying for sunshine in the middle of the night. Or like grasping for an orange from an apple tree. 

 

Nevertheless, that is our claim to faith. Our belief in something more. Something more than the things we see with our eyes. Something more than the immediate pleasures and sufferings of this world. It is the concept of a greater plan, a greater purpose for our life. To nonbelievers it is wishful thinking, it is a conscious rejection of scientific evidence and ‘reality.’

 

“For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.” 1 Corinthians 1:18

 

But the amazing thing is that people of all walks of life, with varying experiences, upbringing, and cultures are drawn to this belief. And what compels them? It’s not the rejection of common sense as most atheists are want to believe. But it’s the openness and awareness of a thread that runs through each and every one of our lives.

 

Death is inevitable. Till then our actions play a large role in the outcome of our life journey. But what controls these actions? It is our thoughts. Descartes said it best, “I think, therefore I am.” If you knew the outcome of your life hinged on a single strand of thoughts, what would you focus your mind on? “To make a deep mental path, we must think over and over the kind of thoughts we wish to dominate our lives.” (Henry David Thoreau)

 

What are thinking of today? Are you dwelling on failures, doubt, worry, and weaknesses? Or are you trusting in God? Are you trusting in Him to protect you from your enemies? To give you security? To give you peace?

 

Control your thoughts. Don’t let them control you.

control image