Last Sunday

This past Sunday, I filled in for the pastor of my home church, which is always such a joy – it doesn’t get much more fun than leading the church you’ve grown up in. Normally, I, being the sappy person I am, take time to write after each ministry experience I have, whether on the blog or on social media, simply because I love keeping the memories of the ministry that I have the privilege of being a part of, given every experience is special, different, and teaches me lessons that I want to carry with me as I continue on this journey. However, I didn’t make a post about this past Sunday, I wasn’t going to write about it at all, and I would have been perfectly fine with simply forgetting Sunday happened, if that tells you anything about how much I need to work on not being hard on myself for things I can’t control. While it may have taken me a little longer than usual to see the good in this past Sunday, I see it clearly now and finally wanted to write, because writing is therapeutic, and also because I think it’s important to share the wonderful ministry experiences, as well as the tougher and more challenging ones. After all, that is ministry – a beautiful mess, amen?

Sunday was one of the more challenging leadership experience’s I’ve had, not because of anything bad, rather, because it required a lot of quick thinking and leadership skills that I had never really put into practice before. It was just one of those Sunday’s where some things didn’t go quite right, and we had to improvise (which, I’ve found is rather frequently the case in ministry). If I’ve learned anything in so far in my ministry journey, it’s that you can only plan so much, which really goes for any field, I’d say.

So – last Sunday.

We had our 9:00 am blended service, and all was well. I did, however, have to essentially cancel Communion, although it was in the bulletin and already on the alter. I, someone who is not yet an ordained elder, am not allowed to preside over Holy Communion, so, while nobody wants to be the person to cancel Communion and change up the order of worship, I also didn’t want to be the certified candidate who got in trouble for doing something they weren’t supposed to. So, after granting myself a minute to figure out what to do in place of the Communion that was supposed to happen, I pulled my thoughts together, improvised, and led the best way I saw fit. I couldn’t preside, and I obviously couldn’t skip over it without saying something, so, I made the executive decision to nix Communion, and instead, provide a time of quiet reflection and prayer, which I would then close out in a longer, post-communion prayer.

It was fine. Before the moment of silent prayer and reflection, I told the congregation why we could not have Communion that day, and during the quiet time, people still took advantage of the alters and prayed, which I was so happy to see. It didn’t throw anyone off and there were no folks with torches and pitch forks coming after me after the service ended for canceling the Sacrament, so, all was well. In fact, after the service, people were quick to make it known to me that they understood why I did what I did.

So then, the second service rolled around at 11:00 am. Normally, I wear the mic that my pastor always uses, which goes around the ear, but on Sunday, the sound guy and I decided to use a different mic (shout out to Carl – he rocks). The decision to use another mic was mainly because that particular ear mic always gets stuck in my long hair, but also because I absolutely hate that mic (# preacher probs?). The mic that we chose to use clipped right onto my shirt and the battery box fit right in my pocket – simple, right? We tested it before the service, changed the batteries, and it was fine (for the time being).

During the sermon at the second service, the mic started giving me major problems. I thought my hair was irritating it, as per usual, so I flung my hair back, but alas, even when my hair was nowhere near the mic, or the chord, it acted up. The mic started making this weird humming noise, and normally, I would continue my sermon as though nothing was wrong, but y’all – I could not focus on the words coming out of my mouth which I knew meant that the congregation could not focus on what I was saying either. I quickly came to the realization that there was no way I could continue preaching with it, but, continuing to preach as though everything was fine was all I knew to do.

Our sound guy, Carl, was waving at me from up in the sound booth (which overlooks the sanctuary, towards the choir loft) and he was pointing to go grab the handheld mic. Well, I didn’t know where the handheld mic was. Normally, it sits right next to the pulpit on its little shelf, but it wasn’t there. He continued pointing, so, after getting to a point in my sermon where a pause would be a little less awkward and abrupt, I winged it, walking over towards the lectern, where I thankfully spotted the handheld mic.

(If you’ve ever found yourself preaching a sermon while watching someone try to tell you something using only hand motions as a humming microphone is buzzing in your ear, it is not particularly the easiest thing in the world.)

But, I retrieved the handheld mic, made my way back to the pulpit, where I would finally be able to finish delivering my sermon with a mic that was much clearer and worked much, much better.

(or, so I thought)

Would you believe that not even 1 minute after beginning to use the handheld mic, it, too began not working, fading in and out every other word that I spoke?

I could see people in the congregation shaking their heads (which is really never something you want to see, ha). I saw the sound guys up in the booth scratching their heads and wracking their brains trying to figure it out. At that point, I (mentally) threw my hands up and kept preachin’ on, because at that point, there really was nothing else I could think to do. Thankfully, the sound on the handheld mic eventually started consistently working (still not perfect, but could have been worse). The service ended and I swear I have never taken such a big sigh of relief.

I am grateful for the encouragement folks had to offer me following the service, given the difficulty that we had had with the mics. Being told by others that they were proud of how I handled it really lifted my sunken spirits, even though it didn’t change how bummed I was, to say the least, about all of that. It is by God’s grace that I held my own and remained calm and collected, because I wanted nothing more than to climb into a corner and cry a few tears of frustration. But I am glad to have chosen to lead, rather than having given up or crumbled under the pressure to “fix it quickly.” And I know a large reason as to why I was able to press through that was due to the wonderful leadership of my pastors through the years who have modeled well for me how to handle these types of situations gracefully and calmly. (thank you, pastors!!!)

I am such a perfectionist, so although I could have controlled none of what happened on Sunday, I was hard on myself afterwards, because ministry is my heart, and so, I put my entire heart into leading these church services. But let me tell ya – ministry is a really great field to have your perfectionism challenged, and maybe even one day, these things will be able to happen without being a worry wart about it.

I am still super good at beating myself up over imperfections, even when I have no control over them, but I am working on it (as are all of us). I may be 21 and I may have been preaching for a while now but I am still human. No matter how old I am or how many times I lead church, I’ll always be human and I’ll always want to do my best. And on Sunday, I did do my best, it was just clouded by the mishaps. But I see it now!

While you and I cannot control everything that happens, we can control how we respond. Sunday, while I wasn’t able to choose to laugh it off or forget about it right away (hence why it took me till’ Thursday to write about it), I am able to laugh at it now, it just took me a couple days to let that lesson sink in – that you don’t have to be perfect even at the things you’re passionate about doing. And also, you choose whether you let something continue to bother you or not. You choose whether you’re going to keep on keepin’ on or whether you give up. Remember that!

Lastly, I just have to say that I am so thankful to be learning these lessons young, and gaining these different experiences, whether they are good, challenging, or somewhere in between. Ministry will always surprise me and throw new challenges my way, but I am so very confident in God’s ability to help me handle it all (something I neglect to remember often). Somehow, however, I have found somewhere in me enough crazy ti count all of this as joy, because ministry is just that – a joy, and it is something God has called me to. It’s beautiful, it’s difficult, but it is nothing less than a joy. To be in ministry everywhere we go, all for Jesus himself – to know him, to preach about him, to tell others about him, to share what he’s done in our lives, to have his call upon our hearts, to fill us with passion and his spirit to pursue those passions and calls, to go be disciples and to make disciples – what a life!

Today (& every day) I am grateful that nothing – no technology complications or any unplanned circumstances – can get in the way of the Holy Spirits power, which comes upon us and enables us to be witnesses of Jesus Christ.

We love ya, Jesus, & thank you for enabling us to press on — it’s all for You.

 

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He is worthy of our praise

I needed to take a minute (or two…million) to praise our awesome God.

He is so good.

These past couple weeks have been the busiest ones I think I’ve ever had. With exams to study for, and then exams to take, retreats to attend, classes to attend, study sessions to go to, exercising, sleep to catch up on, and trying to keep in touch with the Lord, I’m exhausted.

I am now home for winter break, which is a month long (that is a good thing as of right now… I’ll get back to you in a couple weeks)

When I got home and finished unpacking all of my things, I sat there for a minute, on my bedroom, simply thinking about how great our God is. How much he has blessed me. How much he has helped me through. How insanely unlimited and eternal his love for me is. How incredible he has been to me.

I would not have gotten through the end of this semester if it had not been for Him. I’m not saying that to make this a sappy, “good little Christian girl” post, I’m saying it because it could not be more true.

Last week, I had an exam for my Old Testament class. I had a D for a pretty long time because I bombed a test I had had earlier in the semester. I had to get a good grade on my final exam or else I would fail the class (a D is not passing in college) I studied for over a week and a half for that exam. The weekend I went away to lead a small group at a youth retreat, I stayed up until 2:00am each night studying for this exam. That’s how badly I needed that good grade. I had to get at least a 76% to pass the class. I thought that was impossible. And did I forget to mention the fact that this final exam, was on 22 books of the Bible?

YEAH, NOT REASSURING WHATSOEVER.

I’ve never been one of those people who can get decent grades without trying super hard. This past semester, I tried harder in school than I ever did in school, ever. It paid off- I got an 84% on my final Old Testament exam.

Praise the Lord.

Today, I had two exams. English and my intro to church ministries final.

I got an A on my ministry final (yay!) but I went into my English exam feeling somewhat prepared, and left the exam when I was finished feeling as though I had just failed (if that was the case, I would fail the class)

I was so discouraged and almost brought to tears. My stomach was in knots the rest of the day until I finally checked my grade, and there it was. I got a C.

I know a C may be very unappealing and unacceptable to some people, and that’s fine, we all set different goals and standards for ourselves, but I was overjoyed, and brought to tears.

C’s get degrees, right?

I know my final grades for this semester were a result of me studying hard and being determined and dedicated to my education, but I know God was on my side. I know he was rooting for me. I have to try really hard for my grades. School is not something that comes naturally to me, but I did it. I am doing it. Thanks be to God.

I survived my first semester of college! That is so insane and awesome to me!

I am going to write another post about the things I learned my first semester of college, but for now, I really just wanted to give the glory to the Lord for getting me through this semester in one piece.

It was hard. I was challenged more than I had ever been. I doubted myself, I questioned a lot, I even doubted God. But my faith actually grew more than I ever thought was possible. I learned so much, about myself, about life, about God, and I learned more about the Bible because of the challenges I faced. That makes it all worth it in my mind.

I struggled, but I grew. I grew closer to God, my faith grew, my strength is greater than its ever been.

I made friends with some people who I already know are going to be lifelong best friends. God blessed me with these people and they have helped me so much. They have taught me things, they have loved me, they have been there for me, they have inspired me.

I am so thankful for this first semester of college.

I never imagined my life would be anywhere near the way it is now, but seeing it now… living it now, I wouldn’t want it any other way.

God is so good, and he has this plan. This plan is perfect. It’s His plan, FOR us to follow. My trust in the Lord wavers all the time. I know we need to have trust in God at all times, but I am so imperfect. I am flawed. God knows that.

We are not called to be perfect. We’re just called to love and trust our PERFECT God. Our Almighty God.

I am so excited to see what plan God has created for me, and I’m excited to see how he reveals it to me. My life has certainly been a journey, even just in these past few months, but I wouldn’t change a thing. I wouldn’t change a thing because if I did, I wouldn’t be the person I am right now. And I know God allowed me to go through the things I did so that I would become the person I am today.

And I kind of love her, because I know my perfect God helped me become her 🙂

I just wanted to write this for two reasons. One so that I personally could process all of my thoughts and feelings and emotions by putting them into words on a screen, and two because I wanted to praise God for everything. I know that’s vague, but really. Everything.

Everything I’ve been through and all that I have done and accomplished has been because of him, and I am eternally grateful, for the good and the bad.

I’m going to write another post very soon about the things I learned my first semester of college, so look out for that, and hope you all have a wonderful rest of the week!

Holy spirit, you are welcome here

Have you ever felt God nudging you to do something? Have you ever heard him speak to you? Have you ever felt the Holy Spirit working inside of you?

If so, isn’t that such an amazing feeling?

I hate to say it, but I almost forgot what it felt like- to feel the Holy Spirit moving me to do something.

I had almost forgotten, until last night.

A couple weeks ago, my pastor asked me if I would give the sermon for one of our Christmas Eve services at church. Excited and terrified, I immediately told him yes. (why wouldn’t I?!?! That’s an incredible opportunity!!)

Since then, I have been preparing for that sermon, bit by bit- figuring out which scripture I’ll use, what I’m going to say, how I’m going to say it. It’s exciting, and I can’t wait to deliver this message- this message about the significance of Christ’s birth. I’m SO excited. (a little nervous, too? yes.)

Long stories short, last night, I was sitting at a table in my school’s dining hall with a friend, and I was working on this sermon, and I could not, for the life of me, figure out what I was going to title it.

I kept referring back to the scripture, trying to find something, short and simple, but nothing was standing out to me.

After a while, I sat back in my chair, took a deep sigh, and that was it.

“God is still with us”

That is the title.

You see, the scripture which this sermon is stemming from, is Matthew 1:18-25, and in that scripture is when we are told that they named Jesus, Emmanuel, which means, “God is with us.”

My sermon is called, “God is still with us,” because he’s not dead. God didn’t come and go as Jesus did. Jesus was born into this world so that the world would know God. Well, we’re still talking about God. We’re still spreading his word, and his love. We’re still preaching His Word.

God is still with us. He hasn’t gone anywhere. The Holy Spirit is still alive in us.

So, that is why the sermon is called what it is.

Last night, when I heard that- when I felt that in my heart, that that was what God wanted me to title this sermon, I was in awe. I can’t even explain it. I hadn’t felt the Holy Spirit in me, in that way, in such a long time. I am still amazed at this little occurrence. It sounds like the simplest thing, but it was so significant to me.

Ask the friend I was with, all I could say was, “oh my gosh.” I put my elbows on the table, covered my eyes, and not going to lie, I was pretty close to tears.

My heart– my heart was filled with such joy. Such peace.

There’s no way to understand what an incredible feeling that is, unless you experience it first hand, which you will if you haven’t already. And if you have already, you will again.

God is so very present in our lives, you all. He cares. He’s there. Right. there.

God knows how much this sermon means to me. He knows I want to do a good job of glorifying him and the significance of his Son’s birth. I want to please my family, my pastor, and everyone listening to this sermon, but most importantly, I want to please God. I want him to look down and smile at me when I finish giving this sermon. That’s why he had the Holy Spirit working in me last night. He has a message that he wants to be told and heard, and he gets that message heard by speaking through other people. That’s how he works. And his works- his works are wonderful.

I’m so excited, but I’m terrified. I want it to be perfect, because it’s about the birth of a PERFECT Savior!

My heart has been so full ever since last night. After I figured out what the title of the sermon was going to be, my fingers could not stop typing. I went at it as if I had to deliver this thing tomorrow.

God is so good, you all.

He is with you. He hears you. He hears your prayers. He knows when you’re frustrated. He knows when you’re upset. He knows when you’re confused. He knows when you’re sad. He knows you! Your every need, he knows it!

So welcome the Holy Spirit into your life.

When you feel a nudge to do something, odds are, it’s probably that Holy Spirit inside of you- listen to it.

If I had told myself, “oh that’s a stupid title,” or, “no, I’m not titling the sermon THAT,” I probably wouldn’t have most of my sermon done yet. I would probably still be stressing about what I’m going to title it, and what I’m going to write about and focus on (besides baby Jesus of course)

Welcome the Holy Spirit. Welcome the Holy Spirit into your life. I can tell you, great things stem from doing just that.

my life in Your hands, my Jesus, I am Yours

Tonight, I reached my breaking point.

Yeah… it’s been one of those weeks. (and it’s only Tuesday)

It has been an already stressful and overwhelming week- with tests to study for, rather big decisions to make, and various conflicts that have risen, I finally got to the point where I simply broke down. I didn’t know what else to do.

I finished studying with a friend, came back to my room, sat on my bed, and completely lost it.

I knew it was coming. I knew a mental breakdown was long overdue. That sounds so depressing, but I’ve been overwhelmed lately! It happens! There is no shame in letting the tears flow every once in a while!

After crying out (literally), I whipped out the closest devotional I could find, which was once again, the one I talked about last night, by Joyce Meyer. I opened it up, and 2 Corinthians 12:10 was the first thing I laid eyes on-

That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

Paul is saying that he was glad when he was weak, because then he got to experience the strength of God.

This week has been very tough for me, but reading this was such a great reminder that when we are weak, we can confide in the Lord, because He is strong. He is capable of overcoming what we cannot. He is All-powerful and Almighty.

As I was reading through this devotion, trying to understand and truly believe what it was saying, the song “I Have Decided” by Elevation Worship came on my Spotify (that’s where the title of this post came from)

The lyrics really caught my attention, mainly because they were literally exactly what I needed to say to the Lord:

“Everything (and I will follow, my heart surrenders)
All I am and all I have to bring (my Jesus I am Yours)
I will give to You my everything (and I will follow, my life in Your hands)
All I am and all I have to bring (my Jesus I am Yours)
I will give to You my everything

I need to give God my everything. I need to surrender it all to him. I need to follow HIM and not follow the path my worries lead me down. I need to remind myself that I am HIS. I’m not my eating disorder. I’m not my struggles. I’m not the grades I get in school. I don’t belong to anything or anyone other than God. I am not defined by anything or anyone other than Christ. My identity is in HIM.

Tonight, that little breakdown I had, taught me, or, reminded me, of something that I had forgotten. I had forgotten that I can and should surrender it all to Christ, because he is capable.

Tonight, I wasn’t feeling too capable of anything. I wasn’t feeling capable of acing this test I have in a couple days. I wasn’t feeling capable that I’ll ever be able to recover. I wasn’t feeling capable. But Christ- HE is capable.

I wasn’t putting my life in Jesus’s hands. I wasn’t putting my trust in Him. I wasn’t acting like I was His. I was acting worrisome, and honestly, lately, I’ve been acting like a slave to my eating disorder. A slave to my fears, anxiety, worries… I need to give those things up. I need to surrender them.

This eating disorder has been in my life for over four years now- it’s comfortable. It feels safe, and secure. But it shouldn’t. I’ve literally been putting my life in the disorder’s hands, not in God’s hands. I’ve been surrendering myself to the disorder, not to the Lord. I felt ashamed of that, and I hated to admit that. But today, I did admit it- to someone, and it felt great. It felt great because hey, isn’t the first step to recovery admitting you have a problem?

Not trusting God, not surrendering to him, not putting my life in his hands, that is a problem, and I admitted that today.

Now, for me, it’s time to start doing those things. God’s not angry at me for not having done those things lately. He’s not angry. He’s proud that I acknowledged it and want to change that.

You guys, I love the Lord. He’s freaking awesome. I screw up, I don’t please him, I don’t deserve his love, I don’t deserve what he’s done for me. BUT He has forgiven me, he loves me, he cares about me, he has plans for me- plans that don’t include suffering from an eating disorder forever.

He is my God, and that is true. That is real. That is satisfying. That is enough.

That gives me hope. It gives me hope that I will recover one day. That I can and will put my life in His hands. That I will surrender my good AND bad days to Him.

Jesus, I am YOURS.

You have my life. You have me.

So, you guys, If you’re having a bad day, remind yourself of this. Remind yourself that all you have to do is give it to God. It’s not easy, it takes practice, and lots and lots of trust, but the result is so incredibly worth it. It’s so worth it- to feel that weight being lifted, all because God loves you that much.

So to look back at the scripture above, just know, as the devotion said, you don’t have to give up just because you feel weak, or tired, or mentally/physically/spiritually drained. You don’t have to give up. You can find hope and strength in Christ. In your weaknesses, you can be strong because the GOD is strong.

It definitely sounds silly and very difficult to “delight in your weaknesses,” but that’s something God wants us to do, because it will draw your towards God, by confiding in HIM for all the strength you need.

Just as the song says! “I have decided to follow Jesus, no turning back.” There is no turning back! I will not turn back to my eating disorder. I will not turn away from God. I will follow Jesus, love him and trust him, because with that comes great strength, a great reward, really.

If you’re having an already busy, difficult, and overwhelming week, I urge you to read some devotions, dig into scripture, PRAY, and ask God for strength. Don’t give up because you’re struggling. Use those struggles as a way to draw close to God.

He cares so much about you. He doesn’t want you to be sad, or frustrated, or stressed out. He wants you to trust him. He wants you to give him your everything. He wants you to put your life in his hands.

If you’re having the kind of week that I am, we are in this together! I believe in you, and I believe God is going to get us through this. We’ve all heard the clever quote, “tough times don’t last forever, tough people do.”  Well I’d say we’re in pretty good hands, since we have a pretty strong and tough God.

Where is peace found?

This was the title of a devotion reading I did this morning. I needed this. I need peace. (who doesn’t?)

A few days ago, I attended something called Scaremare. This is basically a haunted house that my school puts together each year around Halloween, however, there’s a little bit of a twist when you come to the end of the haunted house- after having freaky clowns, ghosts, and people with chainsaws jumping out at you, you walk into a room where you are told the Gospel.

As I walked into this big open room filled with steal chairs, where I knew I would soon be sitting down listening to the Gospel, I didn’t have the best attitude about it. The only thoughts running through my head were, “I’ve already heard the Gospel,” “I already know Jesus,” but I had the wrong mindset because I did end up taking something away from that experience, and I’m sure a lot of other people who had never even heard the Gospel before did too.

As the girl was talking about Jesus, she was telling us how, when you decide to follow Christ, you have to leave all the things behind that you were filling that void with, that Jesus should have been filling all along. You have to let go.

That resonated with me- somebody who’s gone to church all her life, and decided to live her life for Christ 5 years ago.

I began to think about my recovery, and how I have to continuously choose to allow Christ to fill the void, when I’m stressed, overwhelmed, fearful, or anxious. I have to fill that void that nothing else in this world can fill but Jesus. Filling that void with my eating disorder, will not satisfy. Only Christ can do that.

The words that girl said at Scaremare, have stuck with me ever since, and I’ve been in constant thought about how I can continue to choose Jesus to fill that void, and not my eating disorder, not anxiety, not isolation, not denial, not shame. None of those things can fill that void!

The scripture for the devotion I was reading a few minutes ago, was Romans 14:17-18, “for the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit, because anyone who serves Christ in this way is pleasing to God and approved by men.”

Everyone needs, and longs for, peace, and that peace is not going to be found in earthly things- technology, food, alcohol, social media, your boyfriend or girlfriend, it’s going to be found in Christ- in the Holy Spirit.

You will find peace in knowing you are loved. Knowing you are cared about. Knowing you have a God who absolutely adores you. You will find peace in knowing you are not alone. You are worthy. You have a purpose. You will find peace in knowing you have a divine plan which God has created, perfectly and specifically for you.

You will find peace in Christ, our Savior. The Man who died for selflessly on that cross for our sins. Not his sins. He was perfect. He suffered and died for us. He then rose from the dead. He conquered DEATH, you guys. I don’t know about you, but that brings me an overwhelming amount of peace, knowing that I have a Savior who can defeat death, and therefore, what do I have to fear?

God is SO GOOD, you guys.

Your peace is found in HIM. Let HIM fill the void. Let HIM be in control. Let HIM be at the center of your life- of all your decisions, trials, and triumphs.

Your peace, is found in him.

The same power that rose Jesus from the grave, lives in us.

“We will not be overtaken we will not be overcome… The same power that rose Jesus from the grave, the same power that commands the dead to wake, lives in us… The same power that moves mountains when he speaks, the same power that can calm a raging sea, lives in us.”

Just listen to those lyrics, man, how can you not feel empowered by that?!

The same God who did and can do all of those incredible things, lives in you. He is in you. The holy spirit is at work in you.

The same God who created the mountains, who rose Jesus from the dead, who overcame DEATH, lives in YOU. He loves YOU. He cares about YOU.

How incredible is that?

If you’re facing something in life right now, that you don’t think you can handle, just look at what God has done, and think about what he can do. Just imagine- if God has the strength to send his one and only son down to earth to be crucified for you… if he has the power to raise him from the dead. If He created this entire world. Just imagine what he can do in your life. You may be struggling more than you ever have before, but guess what. God knows that. He knows you’re struggling. But he also knows who HE is, do you?

He is the Great I Am. He is Healer. He is Redeemer. He is Love. He is Comforter. He is Strong. He is Almighty.

He is YOUR GOD.

The same God who rose Jesus from the DEAD, lives in YOU. God is so powerful, you all. He’s so powerful.

He is powerful and that power lives inside of you.

Because of this. Because of this incredible power, you will not be overcome. Just as the song says. You will not be shaken. You will not be overcome by evil, because God is within you. He will strengthen you. He will uphold you. He will carry you in his precious hands. He will guide you. He will be there for you, and he will be there, empowering you, because that’s what the holy spirit does.

There is nothing you cannot do, because of this power.

This should make you feel so on fire for God, and for life. This should make you want to go out into the world, live your daily life, with a smile on your face because God is GOOD.

God’s power lives in you! You are strong, because His strength is roaring inside of you. You are loved, because God loves you with an everlasting love. You are capable, because God’s power is inside of you.

The enemy has already been conquered. You don’t have to fear it anymore. You are free!

The same power, you guys. The same exact freaking power that rose Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior from the dead, lives in us. That’s amazing.

That is something worth proclaiming. That is something worth getting excited about. That is something to remind yourself of every single day.

If you haven’t heard this song, go look it up. It’s called Same Power by Jeremy Camp. It’s great. This is the type of song you want to listen to if you are feeling discouraged, or weak.

You are so not weak, especially with God on your side.

You should not be discouraged, because God is FOR you.

He loves you so much!

So remember, the same power that was and is capable of doing all of these things- creating mountains, creating human kind, raising Christ from the dead, overcoming evil… that same power lives in you.

You do not need to be scared, you don’t need to feel weak, or burdened, God is Almighty and All-powerful. He will uphold you. He will strengthen you. He will keep you safe, protected, comforted, and brave. Because HE is the power inside of you, that is going to get you through, all the way until the end.

To give you a personal example, this song is very relatable for me in terms of my eating disorder. The disease likes to think that it has power over me. It likes to convince me that I can overcome anything with it. That stupid thing thinks it has all the power over me in the world. But it doesn’t. The holy spirit has way more power than that thing ever will. I like to think of an eating disorder as the devil, honestly. It is evil. It sucks the life right out of you.

Despite all the negative things that an eating disorder brings into ones life, I know God’s power is way stronger than the disease. I know God’s power is the kind I want in my life, and in my heart and soul. Why would anyone want power from a deathly disease inside of them? Not me. I want God’s power, all the time.

Give the power to your recovery. Let God have the power. Let that power help you fight the disorder. Direct all the power you have in your body, and in your life, toward recovery, and toward self love. Direct it toward God, the One who’s always going to be there for you. The disorder likes to tell you its always going to be there for you, but it won’t. And even if it was, its a sucky best friend. Let God be your best friend. The power inside of you is the same power that rose Jesus Christ, your Savior, from the dead. That is some incredibly huge power right there. WAY more powerful than your eating disorder.

Let that power motivate you. Let it empower you. Let it comfort you. Let it put your mind at peace.

Let it consume you.

Don’t let the eating disorder consume you.

God can do a way better job than it ever could.

Regardless of what you’re facing, with God’s power and fire burning inside of you, there is nothing you can’t overcome. There is no battle too big for our God.

Remember the amazing power that lives inside of you. Don’t let go of that. Don’t forget it.

That power is going to help you through this life. It’s important to remember you have it.

Give me Jesus

I heard this song for the first time this past weekend while I was at church. I loved it, not only because the praise band was singing it beautifully, but because this right here is exactly what I needed to hear- Jesus!

His name just makes me so happy. So much has been about him lately, and I love it.

Today in convocation, Jesus was the name we were lifting up. Jesus was the name we were proclaiming. We were singing his name out loud. Rejoicing because he is so good, so loving, so generous. He laid down his life for us- it only makes sense that you would want to lay down your life for him and his glory, am I right?

This past week, my pastor asked me to give the sermon for one of our Christmas eve services at church (YAY). Now, obviously giving a sermon on Christmas eve involves talking about Jesus. After all, Christmas is about His birth.
He is everything. If you have Jesus, you have all you need.

These past few days, I’ve really been in need of Jesus. So desperately in need of him.
I’ve been struggling with some personal battles, I’ve been overwhelmed, I’ve been exhausted and drained, I’ve been sleep deprived, I’ve been anxious, and I’ve been in need of Jesus. I’m always in need of him. Through everything, he is the one I need. He is the one who is going to deliver me from the battles I face. He is the one who is going to help me through each trial, and through every ounce of sadness I have, he is going to be there, to wipe every tear, and listen to every prayer.

Just as this song says, “you can have all this world, just give me Jesus.”

That is how I feel right now.

I’ve been struggling with finding something to post about for days now, and then I finally decided, why not just write about Jesus, simply because he deserves the praise. He deserves to be written about, and he deserves to be spoken about.

I’m so excited to preach on Christmas eve. I’m excited to share the gospel, and talk about how Jesus was born and given to us, from God, knowing His only son, Jesus, would be killed for my sins. I’m excited to say his name over and over again, and stand in the presence of him, while I tell a whole congregation about him.

I’m so glad I heard this beautiful song this past Sunday. I’m glad because now I have a simple song that I can turn to when I need a reminder, that at the end of the day, Jesus is all I need. He is all I need.

I don’t need this world, and I don’t need the things in it. no. My soul longs for something more. Jesus is more. His love is eternal. His life was laid down for mine. His grace is sufficient. His goodness, it’s never-ending.

I’m so thankful for you, Jesus.
You are my rock.
You have given me life. You gave me life when I didn’t think I wanted one anymore. You gave me strength when I was all out. You were and are my best friend. You’re there for me when no one else is. You’re there to be a shoulder to lean on when I’m alone.

You are Christ. You are my Savior, my Redeemer.

I love you so much.

I know this was a short and simple post, but I wanted to remind you all, and remind myself, of how great our God is, for sending such a person as Jesus.
Such a kind hearted, loving, compassionate, generous, and forgiving being.

He deserves to be praised, you all. He deserves to have all the posts in the world be about him.

If you’ve had a busy couple of weeks as I have, just remember how good your Savior is. Remember how much he loves you. Remember how strong he is.

When you’re struggling to get through the day, just look up, and pray, “give me Jesus,” and surely, he will be there.