Thursday, September 24

Even If a Humble Toe

"For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ. If the whole body were an eye, where were the hearing? If the whole were hearing, where were the smelling? But now hath God set the members every one of them in the body, as it hath pleased him. And if they were all one member, where were the body? But now are they many members, yet but one body." ~1 Corinthians 12:12, 18-20.

Lately, I think I've been slightly discontent with who I am, and have been wishing to be otherwise in some way or another. But tonight God is reminding me that He is the Master Creator behind this unique reflection of His image. He has placed me in the body of Christ exactly where He wants me to be and in the capacity He sees fit, "as it hath pleased him."

May I live my life to please and glorify You. Vivere vix Deus.

Saturday, September 12

Come Away

Once again, my God is good. Somehow in the midst of this weekend that was supposed to rejuvenate me and help me learn to cope with reverse culture shock (which I think I'm only very mildly experiencing), Satan found his way in. Much of this day, he's been whispering lies of inadequacy and insignificance in my head, and I believed him.

Upon my return to my apartment, I decided I was not ready to enter. I needed to come away a while and spend some more time with my God. He had some lies to set straight, and some reassurance to give me. So I found a patch of grass that looked inviting, laid down and talked to God.

Have you ever just really, desperately felt a need to feel and know God's Presence is with you? As I laid there, I knew in my head that God was right there with me. I knew it because He's promised never to leave me nor forsake me. But my heart was wanting to doubt. I prayed and prayed that God would let me know He was near; I prayed that God would remind me somehow of how very much I am loved. I knew in my head that God has blessed me with some of the most amazing friends, and I know that they care about me, but I was feeling alone and insignificant (it's part of the curse of being an F rather than a T; I can't even reason with myself sometimes).

So I waited in silence. No great gust of wind came. There was no flash of lightning in the sky. But after a few minutes, the thought came to me, "Start walking." I was disappointed. I didn't want to leave that place without a reassurance. But I got up and started walking toward my apartment. As I came to the crosswalk, I saw a familiar face driving by. It was Jen. She stopped and began to talk to me.

"Do you want to talk for a bit?" she asked. Apparently I'm not particularly skilled at hiding my emotions (again, the curse of the F). At first I told her that I really shouldn't; I ought to go back to my apartment.

"Are you sure?" she persisted.

I was about to resist again, when I thought, "How ridiculous am I?" Here I'd just finished praying to God and telling Him how alone and uncared for I was feeling at the moment, and I was about to reject an opportunity to spend some time with a good friend who wanted to show that she cared.

I got in the car, and we just drove around a bit. Talked a little. Mostly sat in silence. But it was just what I needed at the moment.

And so I'm ever so grateful for good friends, and even more for a God who loves me enough to orchestrate divine appointments and to provide just what I need when I need it. I pray that I will learn more and more to have faith in God's love even when I don't necessarily feel it.

I walk to the meadow, and stare at the flowers-
Better dressed than any girl on her wedding day.
So why do I worry? Why do I freak out?
God knows what I need, You know what I need.

Saturday, September 5


My hands hold safely to my dreams
Clutching tightly not one has fallen.
So many years I’ve shaped each one
Reflecting my heart, showing who I am.
Now You’re asking me to show
What I’m holding oh so tightly.
Can’t open my hands, can’t let go
Does it matter?
Should I show You?
Can’t You let me go?

Surrender, surrender
You whisper gently
You say I will be free
I know but can’t You see
My dreams are me, my dreams are me.

Say You have a plan for me,
And that You want the best for my life.
Told me the world had yet to see
What You can do with one
That’s committed to Your call.
I know of course what I should do
That I can’t hold these dreams forever.
But if I give them now to You
Will You take them
Away forever?
Or can I dream again?

Surrender, surrender
You whisper gently
You say I will be free
I know but can’t You see
My dreams are me, my dreams are me.


Tuesday, September 1

Blessings of Time

Today God is teaching me a comforting lesson. I say "is teaching" because I'm still trying to completely let go of my anxiety. Sometimes I don't understand why it's so hard for me to trust and rely on God when He gives me such obvious evidence of His supremacy over all time and circumstances. But I suppose I'm an Israelite at heart.

I'm trying to incorporate a consistent exercise schedule into my life this year at Southern. Being in Africa and losing my ability to stay physically active and healthy has given me a huge appreciation for my health and fitness. This morning, I was a little late in getting up to go running, but instead of rushing through my devotions to make sure I could fit everything in, I made a conscious effort to take my time and focus on devotions that I could receive the full blessing God had in store for me this morning.

When I got back from running, I realized that it was going to be a scramble to shower, dress, and eat before walking over to class. So I hurried. But I've hurried before, and I've never gotten ready as quickly as I did this morning. The amazing thing is, while quickly getting ready this morning, I didn't feel particularly rushed. I didn't inhale my food, though I ate quickly. I still made sure that my hair was presentable (Christy, you would be proud of how quickly a state of presentable was achieved). I didn't bolt out the door and forget anything I needed. In fact, I left earlier today than I was able to yesterday, and made it to class with several minutes to spare.

This morning God not only blessed me with His word, but He blessed me with a gift of time. Because I had chosen to honor God and be a good steward of the time He had given me, He saw fit to bless me with more.

What does this have to do with the lesson God is teaching me? Well, I'm taking a slightly more than full load of classes. In going over the syllabi for each of my classes, I've felt more and more overwhelmed with the amount of clinicals, projects and papers I will have to write. On top of that, I might be petitioning to add another class to my load along with a job. All of these circumstances have caused me to feel a sense of panic rising in me. But each time today that I've begun to feel panicked or overwhelmed, God has reminded me that He is Lord over all time, and that if I'm following in the way that He's leading, He is taking care of me and will continue to do so.

I've been reading in Patriarchs and Prophets, and recently read about the Israelites and the golden calf. Ellen White writes of how grave the sin of the golden calf was, and especially because they did it while at the base of Mt. Sinai in the very presence of the cloud of God's glory. While there was a huge cloud and thunder covering Mt. Sinai in plain sight, the Israelites betrayed the very God who saved them and made himself known to them just a few weeks before. When I read things like that, I'm astounded at the Israelites' feeble faith, and yet I do the same thing day after day when I worry about life's troubles.

Especially in the past few weeks, God has shown Himself faithful to me in even the smallest details, and has reassured me in tangible ways that He is taking care of me. And here I sit, anxious about tomorrow before it even arrives.

God give me faith to believe that I might not break Your heart with my distrust. Matthew 6:25-34.