easier said than done.
Wow. Christmas is already over and the New Year is almost upon us. Christmas for me was a blur. I was at home for a good 10 days, and they were well spent. I got to catch up on some much needed sleep and spend time with my mom, dad, and sister. Besides Christmas, it snowed a lot where I am from, and so being able to shovel the driveway and see the snowflakes falling down was a really big treat. You just don't get snow like that here in Langley.
I think the words "easier said than done" could be my life motto. Not necessarily a good one, but nevertheless one of the many that I am sure come into play on a daily basis. Imagine anything in your life, and those words ring true - honestly! I thought today at practice, it is 100x easier to say that I am a multi-event athlete than to actually do the sport. I can say that I do five events until the day I die, but I don't actually fulfill that truth until I put my body through the test that is those events. Besides track and field, I believe this rings true in my faith life as well - anyones faith life for that matter. And when I say faith life, I guess I mean life in general, because I think it makes sense that your faith is what you live out and shouldn't be separate from who you are. I guess what I am trying to say is that I struggle differentiating between what I know to be true about God and what I say that I believe and what is easiest to carry out.
Now, I am not saying that I don't believe in Jesus, or that I don't believe in the fundamental truths that the Bible proclaims. I just find it hard that in our deepest valleys, we are called to put Jesus first and look to Him when we are faced with trials. Of course it is easy to look back on times of weakness and recognize, hey! that was God! and of course He was looking after me!, but sometimes I feel like there is a wall between trying to put my faith into action, especially when it comes to track. How ridiculously hard is it to continually put your faith in God with a single jump, a single throw, when the outcome can be poor? I guess that is where we build character, and the choice between choosing to consider God and consider His word and His truth in those moments is the turning point. We choose Him and we choose to try and see His way, versus just forgetting about Him altogether. That is the moment Jesus calls us to. Choosing the moments in which we can surrender to Him, and remembering our calling in those moments.
With that, there is something else that has been on my heart that ties in with this. I talk about this a lot with a close friend of mine. Over the past semester I have been presented with extremely difficult situations. Not big ones, but just little times where I know that God is asking me to surrender my thoughts and ideas to Him. In those moments I am as weak as anything, my thoughts wander, and I sincerely want to start bawling my eyes out. I want to run away, hide under a couch, and my mind turns to the "dark side". In those moments, I believe that Jesus calls us to surrender everything to Him. And it is not until we can honestly surrender that we can feel peace about knowing that He is in control. I also know this to be true - God calls us to surrender again, and again, and again. This isn't a one time thing, sort of like how Christianity is not a one time deal. These same situations arise, almost every day, and God calls me to lay down my life to Him, every moment. That's hard! I am sure you have experienced something similar. To lay down your thoughts and your mind to him - to surrender everything you are and everything you have to something greater. It is a terrifying feeling, but also something that can give you peace.
Entering into a new year, I have two challenges for you. The first is to consider the times when you can lay everything down to God. That means that you are no longer in control. I can tell you that you will be filled with fear, potential pain, and possibly anxiety, but know this: God heals those things with His perfect love. Your pain, our pain, is filled by His love. It's the only thing that can and will heal it.
The second thing is more of a thinking task. In my dorm in both first and second year, my RA's challenged me to think of a word that best described my hopes for the upcoming year. It can be a single word, or a phrase, but it needs to be something that reflects who I want to become as a child of God, and someone that I hope to grow into. I have my word, but I won't share that until the New Year. ;) I would love to hear what yours is and how you see yourself in relationship with the Lord or those around you in 2016.
I leave you with Luke 1:45, the new tagline for my blog. This is something that lies deep within my heart and a verse that I return to because it gives me hope. Remember, we serve a radiant Father who is capable of amazing things. He calls us into his grace and hope and gives us the desires of our hearts.
"Blessed is she who has believed that the Lord would fulfill his promises to her"