Just Stop

Stop it.

Just stop.

Stop rushing.

Stop rushing… everything.

Stop rushing
life.
weight loss.
debt payments.
spiritual growth.
career advancement.
friendships.
relationships.
child baring.
child rearing.
health.
organization.
perfection.

Stop rushing.

Stop rushing Him.

When we rush all that, we rush Him. Whose time frame are we on, anyway?!?!

Oh I’ll tell ya all right… we are on OUR time frame. Our big ol’, in a rush, gotta have it now, gotta have it my way or the highway, gimme gimme gimme now now now time frame.

And so we rush.

We rush on.

And we miss.

We miss so. very. much.

We miss what happens in between blinks. We miss the quiet sound of a fan in a house full of sleepers. We miss the sound of the cricket all alone singing his song. We miss our calm breath in and our calm breath out. We miss the sigh of peace. We miss the blessing in stillness. in the slowness. in the not-doing.

So stop.

Stop that rushing.

And live.

I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.
John‬ ‭10‬:‭10‬ NIV

All That

Know how you go to church, or Sunday school, or a conference, or something where you listen to a speaker… and you listen, and take notes, and nod your head, and maybe even bust out an amen if you’re feeling particularly brave (and a little southern)?

And then you go home and you read through all of those notes and diagrams that you carefully copied, and the one thing that catches your eye… no… the one thing that catches your heart is something barely even related to the rest of the message?

I went to an uh.maz.ing. lesson yesterday by my teacher James Tippit called “The Gospel According to U2″. I mean, I lovvvvvvvvvvvvve U2 and I lovvvvvvvvvvvvve Jesus so this was like the most perfect match made in heaven for me! Well, this morning I go to reread over the notes I took and it was all good stuff…

You don’t have to have a platform as large as Bono’s, the key is that you HAVE a platform. We all do.

He’s gonna ask YOU- what did YOU do with what I gave you

U2 lyrics
And if the darkness is to keep us apart
And if the daylight feels like it’s a long way off
And if your glass heart should crack
And…
Walk on, walk on
What you got they can’t steal it
No they can’t even feel it
Walk on, walk on
Stay safe tonight

At the very end though, he said, God looks at you and says “I can redeem all that.”

I didn’t even really notice it until this morning. But I caught my breath as I read it.

God can redeem all this.
God can redeem me.
God CAN.

So often I feel like when He isn’t “fixing” me soon enough that I need to “take up my cross” and fix myself… by myself.

But today I reminded. I can’t redeem this. I can’t redeem myself.

But God CAN.

Oh God of my heart, be the God of my body, too. Be the God of every part of me. Redeem this life of mine. Redeem me.
Amen.

Year of Grace

I read this verse this morning…

God sent me to announce the year of his grace— to comfort all who mourn, to give them bouquets of roses instead of ashes, messages of joy instead of news of doom, a praising heart instead of a languid spirit. Rename them “Oaks of Righteousness” planted by GOD to display his glory.
Isaiah‬ ‭61:3 The Message

And it just really grabbed me. “A praising heart instead of a languid spirit.” Why, YES, thank you! I mean, sure, I have a history of struggling with food, of using food for all the wrong reasons, of losing weight and then gaining it back, of not being able to lose weight for years… you know the list.

But despite all that I would love to have THIS YEAR be the year of his grace in my life. To be comforted, lavished, joyful, praising.

And why not? Why shouldn’t it be this year? We might as well ask!

God,
I come to you for everything in my life. Well, I want to come to you for everything. I surely know that all things come from you. And so I ask that this year be a year of favor on my life. And I’m not talking about losing weight (although I’ll take losing 30 pounds over a bouquet of roses any day!) but I am hoping for balance with food. A balance in my heart so that I don’t feel the scales tipping away from you and towards chocolate. Thank you for even hearing my prayer on something that must seem a little petty. Your love and understanding… wow… so awesome! I love you God!!!
Amen

Push Back

“Together we will push back the darkness, for I am the Light of the world.” Jesus Calling, September 4th

I read this quote this morning and it just really struck me. Cause this battle with food… sometimes I do feel like I’ve been trapped in darkness. In a dark room with no outlet, or at least, no outlet that I can see.

And so this little snippet reminded me that I don’t have to stumble around in the dark alone… God is pushing the darkness back using His Light. And right now, we can know that His Light is shining in our own lives and in our struggles with food. It may not seem very bright. It may actually seem terribly, terribly dim. But it is there.

Today, look for that Light. Look for Hope. Look for Him.

Deserving Desserts

I probably don’t need to get into too much depth about my… issues… with sugar. Over the past couple of years I’ve made it pretty clear that I find the stuff just straight up irresistible. And I’ve analyzed it six ways to Sunday… sugar is (literally) addicting, sugar is an emotional filler, sugar is a way to comfort, sugar is evil and should be entirely banished, sugar is… sugar is… sugar is.

And let me just take a pause to remind us of what God is…
loving
powerful
patient
joyful
good
perfect
kind
purposeful

And He is enough.

Buuuuuuuut more than likely you are here, like me, because you know God is all of those things. You know He is enough but still… the dadgum sugar.

So after the past several years of covenanting entirely OFF of sugar and then going back and forth WITH sugar to finally trying to find PEACE and BALANCE with sugar. And that’s what I’m trying now.

I’m allowing myself dessert. In fact, I’m mandating dessert.

Wait, what?!?!

Well, it comes from three sources.

1) My friend Laurie who is skinny and not a binge eater feeds her family dessert at night.
2) My friend Cassie who struggles the same as me said that the hardest part of the day was at night when the kids are in bed she just wants a sugar-somethin.
3) My friend Addy who I work with now (oh yeah, by the way, I went back to teaching three weeks ago) and I decided we needed some kind of fast and are doing a Daniel Plan type thing together.

So here was my thinking. I want to eat healthy and I like eating Daniel Plan style, but I’m like Cassie and I was a sugar-somethin every day, and well, if it works for Laurie’s family then surely it’s a good idea cause she’s totally balanced.

So, I figured the best way to do this is to have a nice, average sized portion of dessert right after dinner and then that way the rest of the night when I “want” some sugar I can say “You had some. You have not been denied. You already had a yummy dessert and you’ll get some more tomorrow.”

I dunno. It might just worked. It worked last night.

And so I hope that by finding balance with desserts, my gaze can more easily stay focused on Him who is enough, who is truly sweet, who is my love.