Wednesday, February 16, 2011


~One night a man had  a dream. He dreamed he was walking along the beach with the Lord. Across the sky flashed scenes from his life.  For each scene he noticed two sets of footprints in the sand: one belonging to him, and the other to the Lord. When the last scene of his life flashed before him, he looked back at the footprints in the sand. He noticed many times along the path of his life there was only one set of footprints. He also noticed it happened at the very lowest and saddest times in his life. This really bothered him and he questioned the Lord about it: "Lord, you said that once I decided to follow you, you'd walk with me all the way. But I have noticed during the most troublesome times in my life, there is only one set of footprints. I don't understand why when I needed you most you would leave me." The Lord replied: "My son, my precious child, I love you and I would never leave you. During your times of trial and suffering, when you see only one set of footprints, it was then that I carried you."~

This poem pretty much says it all. The first time I heard it, it brought tears to my eyes. I used to have trouble in believing in God, trusting Him, and always doubting. Past events even pushed me into thinking about if there even is God. But I realized they were just the times where God was carrying me through them, because God never leaves you. Something I that took awhile for me to learn, is that God is always there. Through thick and thin, helping you along the way.

This weekend, I had gone on a retreat called "Discovery", and it means what it's called. You are 'discovering' yourself, and your relationship and hunger for Christ. And I'm not going to lie, it was totally and completely life changing. Before, I had doubts. And after three days, of less than 6 hours of sleep, everything about me concerning my faith was changed. I feel like a better person. And I understand the thirst that christains need to quench, but never really can. I felt like I was on a "God high", and the feeling is being carried on well into the week. If you've ever had the need to speak the Word, just bring others to the light of Christ, then you know how I feel.

This weekend did many things to me:
1. God is ultimately what I need
2. I have discovered more about myself than ever before
3. I made great friends, and I have been able to see Jesus in everyone

I feel totally and completely happy. If there was ever a time like that before, it must have been when I was very young. Like a great burden has been lifted from me, like after confessing my sins completely uplifted me. If I described how amazing and beautiful this weekend was, this blog would be too long for you to even want to read. So I wont, and I'll only give a "short" summary.

Walking into the room, I was a bit unnerved. It was more intense than I was expecting, but Liv, Tess, and I made friends quick. It was such a wonderful experience, going to sleep at 3 and waking up quite early to leave at 7:30. Just sitting by the lake, sunlight hitting the water and it being only source of warmth outside (which is bitterly cold by the lake at this time of year), was one of the best parts. It was a good place to appreciate everything that God has created, even if it was just a little bit of it. I fell in love with the place, and I pray I go back. Dicovery taught me to find Jesus in everyone, to see the good in people, and that one person can make a difference. I want to be the one that makes a difference to someone, if it's just teaching them something about God, or something life changing. Whatever it is, I want to be that person.

I think the most moving part of the entire retreat was on Saturday night, where a schoolmate and a new friend of ours did a skit. Our friend was being Jesus, and our schoolmate was acting as a normal girl would. Every time she would try to talk to him, something would get in the way. "So... let's talk about you and me..... oh, wait, do you wanna watch some television?!" Then, she realized it wasn't appropriate. Our friend, 'Jesus', sat there silently, staring at her intently. Then people started slamming on the door, telling her to come out and party with them. She was torn between the party and Jesus, and then chose the party. She pushed him back to the fireplace, hammered nails into his hands (not really, but you get the point), and then sat in a chair looking at him. Then she started crying, and after a song played, she looked at us and said "What are you looking at? You do this to Him every single day." It broke my heart.

I wish I could explain how different I feel. I feel like I could never be sad again, and I have without a doubt in my mind that God is there for me. I'm not the same as I was, I know that for sure. I find myself humming worship songs a lot now, and right when I got home I was over emotional. I didn't want to leave, I still want to go back. I walked outside around 8 o'clock, looked up at the moon and the stars, and burst out crying. I don't know why, maybe it was my new appreciation for everything that God has done for me, but I knew then that everything had changed.

My relationship is stronger, my doubts are gone, my prayers have been answered, and I know that no matter how bad it gets, God is going to carry each and every one of us until we're strong enough to walk along side Him again.

Until next time (:

Friday, February 11, 2011

Love is Patient, Love is Kind

This will be my last post until Sunday night, so I thought about writing something inspiring. Something that will absolutely blow your mind to pieces. That's probably not going to happen. First, I better think of a pretty intense topic. And I've figured that everyone likes to talk about love.

Love is a tricky, but beautiful thing. Sometimes, we don't know its present in our hearts. Other times, we're looking for love in all the wrong places and in all the wrong people. My friends and I sometimes argue in different 'types' of love, they would argue how there is only one kind of love, but I beg to differ. There are so many different types of love, like the kind of love you hold for your family. The love you have for your friends. The love you have for a partner or spouse. And ultimately, the love you have for God, and the astounding love He returns to you.

I guess you could say that the love you have for friends and family are quite similar, because I can say that my friends are pretty much part of my family. I'd do anything for either of them. I'd die for them, take a bullet, try to take away their pain, and do everything  in my power to make them happy.

This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. (1 John 4:9-11)

This, I believe, is the greatest form of love. The love that God has for you, the everlasting love that will never change. I know girls, some of my best friends, have had past trouble with guys that turn out to be not what they thought. It's okay, honestly. Guys aren't perfect, sometimes they'll hurt you, or sometimes they'll be great and never do anything to upset you and will love you. But either way, God outshines all. No matter how sweet, how loving, or how loyal a guy is, God is the only man in your life you need.

So let's say that guy comes along. He makes you happy. He tells you his darkest secrets, and you do the same. But, as in one of my closest friends unfortunately had to deal with, they drifted apart. Some things wouldn't work. But the important part, and the part that amazes me, is that she says she doesn't feel resentment for him. She forgave him. And for that, I am so proud of her. Because she was the bigger 'man' in that situation. I love you, and I'm really proud. That takes strength. It's not all bad, because God does have a better, more amazing guy coming for you. And this is just a bump in the road, don't worry. Even if the guy doesn't come as soon as you want, you've got so many people that love you. God loves you.

As in your words, be undefined. Break the chain. I hope that made you laugh. "Girl, you gotta break that chain. NOW. Right here, right now!"

But a comforting message to you all: If you already haven't found that someone that makes you happy, don't worry. They're on the way. Until then, live life to the fullest. Be thankful for everything you've been given. There's always a reason to smile. Love God with everything you can muster.

Thanks for reading something that didn't make a lot of sense.

Until next time (:

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. . .And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love. - excerpts from 1 Corinthians 13:4-13

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Unwilling to See

My friends, my indescribably beautiful friends, have been motivated into blogging. I had spent my afternoon reading them, and I would like to say indirectly how talented they are in their writing. Deeply moving to me and I'm sure to many who will read them, and have really challenged me. Reading one blog by one of my friends did a few things to me:
- Take a step back, be thankful.
- Made me take a deeper look into myself than I found comfortable, but I realized something I had known all along.

Trust is not my strong point.

I had once been a completely trusting person, carefree and loving just like anyone else. So trusting, that I had gotten myself hurt once or twice. But nothing bad enough, so my willingness to see the good in people and love everything about them continued on for some time. The real change in my outlook on people happened not to long ago, and is continuously effecting me today.
So now, the trust I gave people without a second guess, was completely shattered.

For a long time, the only people I felt I could really trust were a couple of intensely close friends. My family. And nothing else.
As I have stated before, my relationship with God is definitely not a perfect one. In fact, I pray daily that my faith in Him becomes stronger than what it is now. But the thing that had really, really broken me was that I had no trust in anyone - not even God. I see now I should have dropped everything and thrown all I had at God, because He is the only thing that can  possibly understand. Who will comfort me in the times where no one else can, and lead me in the right direction.

But no, that wasn't the case. Months of pain and a deep, scarring hatred lived inside of me. I can say that Satan lived in me, and I don't doubt that. He took all my happiness, all of my trust, all of my ability to not be afraid away from  me. It was like an unimaginably heavy, black rock that sat at the bottom of my heart. Always reminding me of the pain. The unspeakable sorrow. And the hatred that grew inside of me. I had lost touch with God this summer, after creating what seemed like a good relationship the year before. I felt hopeless.

But I am happy to say, that the depressing part of this little story occurred before I had found the one thing that probably saved me. The youth group, that changed me for the better and brought me to the greatest and most moving people on Earth, brought me back to God. Showed me the light, His love, and how powerful He is in the darkest of times.

(Matthew 11:28-30) “Come to me, all you who labor and are heavily burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart; and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”

Returning to the love of the Lord helped me. He took that rock that Satan had placed on me and cast it away. There may be troubling times in the future, and I will always struggle with past events, but I know that God will always be there to help me. To carry me when I am weak, to lead me when I am blind, and to love me no matter the circumstance.

God is the only thing you will ever need in your life. He will always protect you. Always love you. He will never abandon you.
Back to my earlier point, and I do apologize if I get off topic, but trust. If you don't take anything else from reading this, just hear one thing: If you don't trust anyone or anything, not even yourself, trust in God. He is the one thing you know you can always count on.

Simply because, He will always love you. No matter what you've done, where you've been, He will love you. A love that cannot be described by words or measured by any of man's instruments, a love that is everlasting and sufficient enough to be the only thing you ever need.

Until next time (:

The Take Off

Maybe I'm not making a lot of sense. Maybe what I'm about to write will speak to you, will help you in some way. That's what I'm aiming for, but I guess I'm just trying to say whatever is on my mind to the people 'fortunate' enough to be reading. The topic I really want to write about today, during the middle of Driver's Ed, is forgiveness.

Because we are nothing without it.

"If you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive yours." Matthew 6:15

I try to live by this verse. This may be a hypocritical statement, but I believe that forgiveness is one of the greatest things you can bestow on another person. But I wont say that it is the easiest thing to give. In actuality, it's one of the hardest. But that's why forgiveness is such a beautiful thing, because in all the struggle we go through to give it, the reward is so much greater.
God forgave our sins without a second thought. Jesus gave His life for the forgiveness of our sins. So why not strive to be like Jesus in every way? We cannot comprehend His love for us, and what He went through to give us our chance at eternity with Him, but the least we can do is be the best we can be.

"Since Christ died for us, we should live for Him." Try to do it. Follow Him through the good and the bad times. Believe in Him when it's hard to believe in anything else. Love and forgive and be neighborly to your brothers and sisters. Take care of everything that God has so graciously given us.

Don't think forgiveness is impossible. Because it's not. Forgiveness is for yourself, not the other person. To be relieved of everything that's holding you down, every chain and every rope cut, and to experience a moment of freedom and relief from that weight? It sounds amazing to me. And how badly I wan't to experience that. But like I had said before, forgiveness is not easy to give.

Even though forgiveness is for you, not the other person, it is a great thing to recieve. No one is perfect, no one is going to have everything down perfectly and never make a mistake. No one isn't going to do something to eventually hurt someone they love. And that's a sad thing to think about, I admit, but it's going to be okay.
In  the end, it's always going to be okay.

Without forgiveness I wouldn't have my best friend, my sister, today.
Without forgiveness I wouldn't have everything that I have been so lucky to recieve.
Without forgiveness none of us would have the most amazing thing we could posses. A relationship with God.

If the world had a glimpse of how much God loves us, I wonder how it would be different.
Just something to think about.

Thanks for reading the stuff that probably didn't make sense, but I hope it spoke to you. In some way. Then, mission accomplished.

Until next time (:

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Break the Chain

First blog post - ever. My hands are kind of shaky and I'm having trouble with finding the right words to type. Here it goes.

For the two of my friends that probably laughed at the title, I'm glad. For those who didn't think it was amusing in any way, I'm sorry for the confusion.
I thought the title (for the two that laughed) was a good way of explaining the way I'm feeling. I felt when I said "break the chain", I meant breaking away from people's expectations, making your own expectations, and starting something new. Begin something that wont, or can't, be stopped. I had titled my blog "Breaking Free" because I felt like everyone needs to take a look at things and get away from the burdens that are tying them down. Chaining them down. Don't worry, we all have our burdens. But that's why we look to God, He helps us through them.

For the people that haven't found God, or haven't experienced His awesomeness yet, don't worry. It's never too late. If you're afraid He doesn't love you, don't be. He loves every single person, He knows you completely. He knows everything about you, and loves you enough to send His only son to die for us. To take away all of our sin so we could have everlasting life with Him. I used to be afraid to go to Him, and I promise that my relationship with Him isn't perfect. But that's the beauty of it, you don't have to go to God already perfect. You go to Him completely broken, ruined, and He fixes you. I guess this was the purpose of my blog after all, to speak my mind about God and try to inspire others to find and follow Him.

I have my own troubles with God, and they're not easy. I'm not going to lie. One of my main struggles used to be the belief that He was even  there. Bad things happened in my life, and I couldn't believe that a God that loved us as much as the Bible or people said could let such horrible things occur. But I realized that life puts us through tests, our faith puts us through tests, and through God we will prevail. I believe that things also happen for a reason, and that there is good in the bad.

For the people that say "Oh, there's no proof that God even exists.", I'd just like to say that there is. You can find proof of God in many different things. I find my proof in my youth group, and just being there and worshiping Him moves me to tears. A friend of mine also told me that believing isn't seeing, and seeing isn't always believing, and faith is the ultimate test. Even if you can't see Him, He's there.

So back to the point I was trying to make - break the chain. Follow your heart, do what makes you happy, love God with every fiber of your being, and don't let anything hold you back. Inspire people to be the best they can be, and spread the Word.

Thanks (: