Sweet Time

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=roOP29KVaAo

It seems that recently I have been in tune with the purpose of my life. I don’t know how much I believe in irony, but I know that my Lord has a sense of humor. And he has started to humor me on the daily. Today this realization came through the words of a song.

This song is me. Me being narcissistic. Me being egotistical. Me being controlling. Me being independent.

See, our society tells us that being independent is a good thing. Being able to do things on our own is admirable. But I am here to tell you that that is not the way we were intended to be. Shortly after Adam’s first breaths, he gained a companion. You see, we aren’t meant to go at this alone. Alone is a lonely place. There is a nice saying, and I am not sure by who that says “I don’t want to be alone, I want to be left alone.” How true. Loneliness is a choice.

However, with relationships of any kind comes chaos. And for a lot of people, that chaos is uncomfortable. We are always looking for that balance. We just want things to be “normal”. Angela Thomas says that we have an “illusion of balance”. You see, the happiness found in this balance and control doesn’t exist. 

As for the chaos that comes with these other people…that is something else that is hard to handle. However, as humans we do have a bit of a choice. We can choose to live our lives in solidarity and hope that chaos and stress will leave us be. Or we can love our neighbor, our friend, and our family and be guaranteed to be bombarded and overwhelmed at times. As for me, I would choose my loves every time. Every single time. I couldn’t imagine going a day alone. Without my mama or daddy, Aaron, Huck or Pearlie; as well as countless others. What kind of life would that be?! As Angela Thomas says, “When you are called to love lavishly and give generously, there isn’t going to be any external balance on this earth.” In other words, make a choice and live with it!

I encourage you to click the link and listen, but if you didn’t, the gist of the song I posted is that we tell the Lord to take his sweet time, but yet in the same breath are giving Him criterion that must be met in order for us to be happy. This just reminded me how sweet my Father’s timing is. Everything, and I mean Every Thing, happens for a reason, according to the plan, and on time. It may not be according to MY timing, which may mean that it comes as a shock to me. But I can assure you that it does not shock my God. He has a plan for me and my life. A plan in which I am the main character. My course is mapped out. If I am stubborn and constantly wanting my way instead of God’s way, of course my plans will be ruined!

I can’t put stipulations on my God. It doesn’t work. I can’t make someone stay in my life just like I can’t force them to leave. At all times I must learn to say “Thy will be done”. I don’t have to constantly be on the lookout for anyone or anything. I need only focus on one thing and that is the glorification of God. If I do that, he will take care of the rest. He is my daddy. And he WILL take care of me. There is no need for me to tell my Father what my perfect friend, relative, or significant other will “look” like. HE knows. He made them. For me. And all I have to do is wait. Wait on for His sweet time. I can rest in that thought.

 

 

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Heaven is real, y’all

For a person so young, I have experienced a lot of loss. And by loss I mean, lost time with those I love. I can rest assured knowing that those I love who have died are surely not lost. I don’t say this for pity. I say this to justify my fascination with death, dying, and coping.

My questioning really began at 16. I found myself wanting to know all these questions related to dying and where heaven fit into all that. It hasn’t been until recently that I have truly grasped the concept.

Through this I have found myself also questioning phrases of comfort such as “that person is looking down on you” or “they are here with you”. I thought, is that true? If so, is that what I want? I found my first perspective of this while listening to Allen preach my aunt’s funeral. He said that no matter how much Bridget loved Terry, and her children, and her life; she wouldn’t want to come back here. Heaven is for real, y’all. And when our loved ones get there, they aren’t coming back. Revelation 21:4 tells us that in Heaven, there is only room for the good things…far better things then we could ever experience in our time here on earth. There is no pain, suffering, stress, or anxiety there. They spend their ENTIRE day worshiping, praising, singing, partying with our Father. Coming back to a fallen world, ain’t nobody got time for that!

I will admit that it is a sweet thought that my grandma is looking down on me; but there are some things I just wouldn’t want her to see. And I truly believe that if she did watch over me, she would continue to stress. She loved me so much. And it would be natural for her to worry about my safety, my future, and MY worries. And to be honest, I would never want that for her. That’s not what eternity is about.

Allen told me that day that Bridget would never wish to come back here, she would only say “Come join me!” Heaven is wonderful, while our world is sinful and fallen. Our loved ones are free from that. We can rest in the comfort of knowing that we will be reunited with them, but I have to tell you that they are not here with us. And I think if you truly search your heart, you will realize that you wouldn’t want them to be either.

Sin makes us spiritually dead and is the reason that we are all guaranteed a physical death. However, for the Christian, giving our life to the Lord is a guarantee that our life will continue in a much lengthy and more extravagant way. Therefore, for the Christian, our death is irrelevant. It doesn’t matter nearly as much, because we are still promised a future. Romans 14:8 tells us that to a Christian, death is better than life.

The death for an unbeliever is a truly grim thing, and definitely deserves mourning, because we know what that person is facing. But that was their choice. G.C. Jones said, “When a free human being uses his freedom to reject the truth of God, and to refuse to relate rightly with him, then there is no alternative except to allow him to do so. In making this choice, man becomes responsible for the results of separation from God. He lives his life in this world without God, and when he dies, God will not pick him up against his will and drag him into a place so drastically different from the kind of person he has chosen to be.”

Don’t fear death, my friend. It will come to us all. Cherish each moment here on earth so that those you love have something to hold onto once you are gone. We live for others. God did not wake you up this morning so that you could complete a task for yourself. He allowed you to open your eyes because someone else in this world needs you. I can promise you that losing some of those I love most at 10, 11, 16, 17, 22…it makes me sad. But I have such wonderful memories with them, and that is all I have to carry me for the rest of my life; until the day I am greeted by their smiling faces at the gates of eternity. Make good memories, folks. We will all have bad days, but make memories with those you love. Don’t let anger, blame, spite, or guilt weigh you down. As Angela Thomas says, “Don’t go to the funeral until the day it arrives, because you will miss the life that you have left. Besides, we’re all terminal. Death is certain for us all.” Don’t begin grieving the person before they are even gone. Enjoy the time you have. Yes, you will surely miss them when their name is called. But you can find comfort in knowing that 1 Corinthians 15:54-57 tells us that death will be defeated. It will not win. And that when Godly people die, they are at peace (Isaiah 57:1-2).

The Weight

As a perfectionist, I find it so hard to be okay with things going “wrong”. I want so hard to live the perfect life, and I have to admit that I have been known to condemn those who live around me in imperfection. This was especially true among those whom I love most. I can’t tell you how many times I have wanted to bash someone’s head against a wall for their parenting techniques or life-choices. The day I determined that it was not up to me, and furthermore that in the eyes of my Lord, I am no better than those people was a changing one for me.

I must admit, that realization was a HARD pill for me to swallow. I have lived my life for 23 years trying to be perfect, even though I know I will fail, and I found myself belittling those around me who make different choices than those I would choose. That is hard to admit. It makes me look like the worst person. I stumbled across this quote that said, “Don’t judge others just because they sin differently than you do.” Easy to say, but harder to do.

It has been such a true process for me; learning how to truly accept that my sins are equal to others. Although I may base the severity of my sins on the views of the world around me, the true judge could put my sins on the scale against my worst enemy, and they would weigh the same. All my life I have wanted to be better than those around me. Not better as in a snobby brat, but just better in my actions. The Bible says it is no use. I have started a wonderful bible study by Angela Thomas titled Stronger, in which she says, “We do not earn His love because we have finally become enough. We are not disqualified from His love because we could never be enough.” In other words, NONE of us could ever be enough. We’re all sinners, therefore all equal.

We, as a society, have become so wrapped up in our social laws that rank the severity of crime and punish accordingly that we forget that TODAY we are equal in the eyes of God. God knows everything. I don’t have to waste time trying to let him see my good deeds and pointing out the shortcomings of my fellow man. When Christ died for us we were in no state to deserve it. Romans 5:6-8 says that we were “weak and rebellious and of no use to Him.” Although we were in no way ready to change our ways for Him, God sacrificed His son for me and you. To this Ms. Thomas says, “You do not send your Only Son for the ones you like just a little. You send your Only Son because of love.” It is only through love that we will succeed. Not through judgment or pointing fingers or trying to be better than those around us. It doesn’t work, and in the end it will all be for nothing.

I will leave you today with this Scripture that speaks to my heart, “In your anger, do not sin. Do not give the devil a foothold. Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up.” Ephesians 4:26-29