Disclaimer: Reading this may cause extreme dizziness and confusion. If you find your way through to the end I hope that your nausea will have settled. Good luck!
Today I opened my journal and just stared at it for awhile. I’ve been pushing it aside and trying to ignore it because I haven’t known where to begin with trying to wring all the thoughts out of my head without it being a sopping mess.
It was pretty cool morning on the beach and I wasn’t wearing a hoodie, so I only got 3 pages in before my arm froze up and made my handwriting nearly illegible. I succumbed to thinking. As much as I want my journal to be coherent, and my blogs for that matter, its this confuzingly awkward life of mine that I have been aiming to straighten for awhile. Today on the beach, surrounded by seagulls, I asked myself, ‘why?’
God has brought me to this place in life where I feel blindfolded… and like I am in one of those times when someone is driving you and you are trying to guess where you are going and make sense of your surroundings without really knowing anything. Its like ohh… we went left and then right and you said this… so we are probably going… And they just laugh because they know its good… but you just want to know, so its kinda irritating. Ya know? Well. I have found freedom and beauty in it.
He has shown me that the love that he has given me for adventures, for people, for reading and writing and discussing, for photography, and all different kinds of food, and for running, and for seeking him. For a long time I have felt spread too thin. I like too many things. I have wanted to be channeled.
Excuse me, Mr. Painter, you put too many colors on this canvas and they don’t complement each other.
Sometimes I do feel like abstract art. I don’t really like abstract art.
I have been looking and analyzing myself to the death trying to figure out these pieces he has given me so I can go ahead and put the puzzle together already. But now I see. He never gave me any pieces. He never gave me hints. He made me whole. If I am looking for something in the future, its not what he has for me. What he has for me, I already have. I am complete as I am, because of what he has done in me.
My love of being around a lot of people. and for being alone.
My love for adrenaline and crazy sports. and for laying on the beach.
My love for healthy food. and a fresh donut.
My love for reading challenging books. and for people’s witty fb status updates.
My love for working out. and for taking naps on the couch.
I have a hard time making decisions because I like too many things. I have too many favorites. I am too optimistic.
Focus. Purpose. Intention. Even typing those words make my heart race.
If I focus on one… what about the rest?
In the past 2 weeks I have surfed, paddleboarded, started learning to kite board, sea kayaked and swam in the ocean. I could focus on one and maybe even get kinda good at it. But then I wouldn’t get to experience the others… and they are stinkin fun! This is who I am.
My focus, my purpose, my intention is Jesus. Today. Whether that is through eating donuts with friends or taking photos of insects, he gets the glory as I enjoy him and what he has made. After all, this is the day that the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it. He will shape and lead and guide, most likely without me realizing it, as I pursue him and what he has set right before me.
So, for transparency part of this post…
Because I enjoy so much, I am in danger of getting distracted. I am in danger of living life in a really full way, soaking up all that it has “to offer me,” and then tanking. As I look back through cycles of my life, there have been periods of darkness that overcome me. I haven’t understood them. They have clouded all that has been good and all that I have enjoyed with feelings of pointlessness and despair and drudgery.
When I get in the habit of living life because it is good, I am on unsteady ground. When I allow myself to be distracted from the only real and steady and consistent thing in life, from the only thing that gives life… and instead focus on “life,” all that is sweet and good and what makes me, me, becomes tainted. The good in life stings bitter.
I write this knowing that not many people will read it, but knowing that some will encourages this confession and profession of what he has done. This is part of my testimony of what God is doing in my life. I am convicted that I have been asking: Where am I going?, instead of: Here I am, send me.
I am sure it will be a lifelong wrestle of enjoying life because I think it is good… and knowing that the perspective I should have is to enjoy life because God is good. Because really, life isn’t that good. Sorry. But there is a lot of pain and crappy situations that I would rather avoid. But I pursue this life, these people, this town because this is where I am and because he is good. He is always good.
God has always been so gentle in his teaching and patient with me as I struggle to unlearn all that life and culture and society has taught me. He has much more grace than I have for myself and loves me much more than I love myself as well. Instead of wallowing in my own self-condemnation ranging from not reaching certain standards to deliberate sin that would horrify most people, I will go to him because he immerses me in forgiveness and mercy, makes my heart new and sends me out to love.
Gosh, he is so good.
That freedom cannot be found anywhere else.