identity

Yesterday, I came to the conclusion that I have always had something to find my identity in, but I think that is true of most people.

When I was a young girl in school, I was smart.

When I got into high school and college I was a cheerleader. I told everyone that.

My last semester in college I started dating this guy so I was his girlfriend for 4 1/2 years.

After we broke up, I started running. Then, I was a runner. I found myself telling people so and it was a fact most people knew about me for my adult life.

Then, the unexpected happened. I was injured training for a marathon and never really healed. I didn’t know who I was. I couldn’t hang out with those friends anymore because they were doing something that I could no longer do -> run.

I struggled in trying to find my place in this world. I suddenly didn’t know where I belonged anymore.

I had been back in church for a year or two at this point so I was slowly but surely starting to recognize the gospel. So in the past 2-3 years I have found my true identity.

And, that brings me to yesterday I was sitting in church listening to the message when I had to write my ideas down.

I don’t ever have to wonder who I am or where I belong anymore, because I know that I am His and He is mine.

identity

That is where my identity lies from now till forever, in the love of Christ. I don’t ever have to wander this world alone again. I am saved by grace through faith.

For by grace you have been saved through faith.  And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God.  {Ephesians 2:8}

What about you?  Where do you find your identity?

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unanswered prayers

unanswered prayers

I thank God every day that my ex-boyfriend and I never got married.  That was 5 years ago and I can’t imagine where I’d be if we did.  I can only think lonely, depressed, and unhealthy.

So, sometimes He says, in His infinite wisdom, “No.”  We may be hurt and cry and pout but, in the end, we thank Him, because like an earthly father he is acting in our best interest, even when we think He’s being unfair.

I’m sure you’ve seen or heard the saying – God has 3 answers for our prayers: Yes, Not Yet, or I have something better for you.  It’s so true, right?

I love this illustration of how we want to hold on to something so badly we don’t see what He has for us is so. much. better.

Just-trust-Me

We only need to trust.  Are you trusting today?  What is God asking you to let go of?

what’s on the horizon

Do you enjoy every sunrise and sunset as I do?  Do you look at it and know the beauty of our Creator?  Most days it brings tears to my eyes to see the horizon, to know that His mercies are new every day.  Not some days when He feels like it.  Not only on weekends.  Not only when I am doing my best to be His child here on Earth. Every. Single. Day.

That brings me to this.  I have felt a nudging in my heart.  That nudging has brought me to the conclusion that this is something God keeps putting in front of me for a reason.  He is in this, as He is in all things.  I try to not make huge life decisions without Him.  I say “try” because sometimes I fail and my selfishness takes over.

holy yoga

So, this thing that I’m going to do, or think I’m going to do, is Holy Yoga.  I am going to be an instructor.  It is my passion to lead other women in loving themselves and their bodies exactly where they are in a Spirit-filled atmosphere.

I have no formal yoga training.  I only practice at home. I am humble in all aspects of yoga (and ministering – this is scary to me).  But, I am willing to trust and I am willing to learn.  If there is one thing I can say positive about myself it’s that I am coach-able.

Therefore, I am taking up this journey.  I am going where the Spirit leads me, even if it is into deep, unknown waters.  I am trusting.  I am trusting in His timing.  I am trusting in His provision.  I am trusting in His sovereignty.

Have you ever practiced Holy Yoga? Where do you feel the Spirit leading you this year?  What are your new scary endeavors?

Core of Christmas

If you follow me on Instagram, you have more than likely noticed my latest posts.  In December, I decided to start the #CoreOfChristmas challenge.  I absolutely love everything about Christmas, from the music to the lights on the tree to the excuses to get together with more people I love.  With so many people running around trying to “get things done” and buy gifts, I really wanted to just focus on Jesus for this season.  After all,  that’s what it’s all about, so in comes the “core” of Christmas.

I decided to combine my love for Jesus with my love of fitness.  We will be doing a different core exercise every day and meditating on a verse to keep us in the present.

coc

I have teamed up with my lifelong friend, Courtney, as well as friends I met through faith and fitness in social media, Tiffany and Bobbi.  I’m hoping you will join us!  Did I mention there are PRIZES??  Oh, yes, we will be drawing names on the 12th and 24th of December.

Here is a look at the past few days!

Day 1: elbow plank & Proverbs 31:17

plank plank2

Day 2: bicycle crunches & Psalm 139:14

bicycle

Day 3: superman & John 16:33

superman

Day 4….check us out on Instagram!  Can’t wait to see you join in on the Community we are forming.

 

and if not…

Perhaps that is why, in His bewildering mercy, God sometimes shatters our fondest dreams, or at least allows them to be shattered.  (Whether He is the cause or merely allows it to happen, the result is the same.  And in the midst of the pain, the distinction doesn’t always seem important)

In His sovereignly run universe, the unthinkable sometimes happens–the nightmare we thought we’d never have to face.  And no relief comes, sometimes not for years.  More frequently than untested Christians expect, God removes the one source of joy and meaning that we were counting on to make our lives worth living, and replaces it with nothing.

These are the words from Larry Crabb’s “Creating a True Spiritual Community” that I was reading as my phone rang a few weeks ago.  I received news that my grandmother was being taken to the hospital in an ambulance.  No one could tell me what had happened or what they were doing.

I’m a thinker and sometimes I think that I think too much.  What’s going to happen?  What am I going to do?  What can I do?  But the truth is – God has already thought it through.  He already knows where it’s leading and where it came from.  He knows.  We always hope that the outcome will be good, that we will like His plan, but that’s not always the case.  We have to remember those wise words of Ann Voskamp:

And if not, He is still good.

she shares truth: titus

It’s no secret that I read #SheReadsTruth every morning for my devotion.  It’s no secret that I love their content.  I love how I can relate.  I can make sense of what the Bible says about some things.  At last, it’s not all just old school information that cannot be applied to my life, here and now. Every now and then, they give us readers a chance to share our take on it.  We are just finishing up a study on Titus.

Titus 2:3-5 says

Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers or slaves to much wine.  They are to teach what is good, and so train the young women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind, and submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled.

Say what?  Now, y’all know I am neither married nor a mother so this is difficult for me to even comprehend being as “independent” as I am.  I mean this sounds good and all, but where do I fit in? Well, turns out we are talking about spiritual mothers/mentors and I just happen to have a mentor. She has taken me on to mentor in all things life and Jesus-related and I learn more and more from her every time we meet. She reminds me when it is really just the enemy sneaking into my head that is making my life so difficult.  She opens my eyes when I am feeling frustrated or restless to the bigger picture.  She guides me with Scripture and past conversations with other women.

Truth is:  as much as we’d like to be “not of this world”, we are in it…at least, for now.  We need some guidance as to how to navigate this life so that we are not “reviling” (this means speaking abusively, according to the internet) the Word. My mentor and I have done everything together from lunch to exercise classes to meeting at her house and mine.  Our time together has been priceless.  I feel that she has helped me to grow in so many ways.  I honestly don’t know where I would be in my walk without her.

So I say all that to say this, Scripture speaks to each one of us in different ways.  I may not have a husband and kids, but that does not mean that I don’t need guidance from someone on how to do life.  It seems that society (at least in the South) doesn’t take too well to single women.  That we aren’t “doing our part” or fulfilling our lives.  Sometimes that makes me feel less than.  When on Mother’s Day everyone talks about how great mothers are and how they have the most important job in the world, I am sad, for I am not a mother…dare I say, yet?  Will I ever be?  I don’t know but I do know that whatever God has planned for me will come into play in His time, not mine, not society’s, and I will be ready and my mentor has played a huge role in that, along with the other people in my life that love me.

Do you have a mentor or spiritual mother?  How do you spend time together?

things i miss about running

So, I think, I am retired from running.  I know all you runners are gasping at this and trust me, it’s not an easy thing for me to say.  I have actually been considering it for a while now.  Ever since I injured another part of my body while my torn hamstring was healing.  Don’t worry, these were not my only injuries ever as a runner.

Truth is, running is hard.  It takes a lot out of your body, especially long-distance running, which was my preferred method.  I’m sad.  There are so many things I will miss.

things i miss

  1. Exploring the city on foot
  2. The feeling of accomplishment as I top a hill
  3. Crossing a finish line
  4. Being one with nature
  5. Seeing how far and fast I could go
  6. Jamming to my playlist
  7. Making up a new playlist
  8. Runner’s High
  9. Reflection
  10. Running in a summer rain

Some of these things I can experience by walking around or hiking.  I plan on doing a lot of hiking now.  That is something I never would have done before because I was so concerned about getting my run in, but now, I have all the time in the world.  It’s kind of weird to think that.  I started running when I was 26 and I am retiring 5 years later.  I don’t want to, but my body does.  I have to listen to my body.  It’s not worth not being able to walk when I am older.

Have you had to hang up your running shoes?  What would you miss if you did?