I’ve had so many thoughts lately, so I’ve been dying to blog but have had insufficient time to do so. Therefore, to top off my weekend of absolutely zero work, I shall blog away…
1) After being in a semi-new group of people over spring break, I’ve learned so much about myself. In middle school, I was the shy tomboy who never uttered a word in public. Compared to that little girl, I’ve become loud, sarcastic, mean(er), and publicly weird. I could be concerned, but I’m actually happy. Now, I don’t seem to form my identity around what other people think about me and wanting to please them, but I know that my identity is in Christ and if people don’t like me for who I am, then that’s okay. That’s not what defines me.
2) New Orleans is a city of contrasts. As we toured the city, it wasn’t like there was a certain neighborhood that was full of rebuilt homes and hope. It was a door-to-door contrast, hope…pain…hope…pain. One house was absolutely beautiful, but the next house still had an “X” on the door. One night, we talked about the concept of a jazz funeral. The first part of the funeral is the mourning for the loved one, but the second part is joy and celebration for a loved one’s life. There’s a sad irony in many parts of NOLA, and it’s no question whether we get emotional about it. The question is whether we decide to feel those emotions or ignore them.
3) I’ve been wearing this bracelet for a few months as a reminder of Passion Conference that I went to in January, and it got pretty worn down to say the least. It represented the transformations I’ve gone through since then. I’ve truly changed and grown in Christ, and it wasn’t a perfect journey of rainbows and unicorns. The bracelet had paint and cement on it and was tearing apart, but it was still holding on. I’ve gone through times this semester when I felt like I was getting cement thrown on me that felt like it would never come off, but I still held on to Jesus and came out stronger. He took the burdensome weight of the cement, and in its place, He gave me freedom and life.
4) After a week of much reflection on my walk with Jesus as I make some decisions, I’ve come to realize that I’ve gone through a tremendous and quick transformation since I first let Him into my heart. In the moment, it’s easy for me to complain, asking God for more change, but I forget that He’s always changing me in His timing. By reflecting on my past, I remember that He’s always been and always will be there for me. I might not be able to see it, but He’s definitely doing something. I just have to change my perspective…thank Him that I had the chance to take an exam instead of blaming God for not coming through for me. Thank Him that I have another chance to have eyes to see the sun instead of complaining about the lack of sleep. Thank Him in all circumstances.
5) I’m not anywhere near perfect. I’ve been reminded many times of how imperfect I am. I can’t remember so many people’s names even though I’ve definitely met them several times before. I just don’t have a good memory. However, I have a God who not only remembers everyone’s names but knows their every thought, pain, hope, and dream. I just want to take this chance to apologize to anyone I’ve caused pain to, and I didn’t mean to hurt you or make myself appear perfect. I don’t mean to make you feel anything but encouraged and supported. Please, pleaaaaase allow me to properly apologize to you if something’s been bothering you. Really.
“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, then I am strong.”-2 Corinthians 12:9-10.
Following Jesus doesn’t always make sense to the world, but it’s all I’ve got. I can see the obvious contrasts between old me and current me as I walk with Jesus, and I want more transformation. I want to follow Him with everything.
“For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.” -Philippians 1:21
p.s. phone is back in business!