Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Don't Give Your Man Your Leftovers

I have lately been struggling to get over a previous love interest (from before my ex) as well as to break free from some sin related to him. Lately, God has put the following phrase/philosophy in my head concerning this matter:

Don't give your future husband your leftovers.

Your "leftovers" are all the things left after you giving away your body, heart, and soul to other men whom are not the will of God for you - therefore engaging in sin. When you're done, you don't have as many valuables to give to your husband - at least not as freshly new and pure. Yes, God can restore purity, and if you turn away from your sin, God will certainly restore you and restore the value to the things you will one day give to your husband. But every time I am struggling with sin and with my feelings for this gentleman who is not God's will for me, all I hear is, "Don't give your future husband your leftovers." Or GOD, for that matter. When you're engaging in sin in romantic relationships, you're not only giving your future husband less than your best, but God, too.

There is a philosophy/practice/lifestyle within Christianity that advocates purity on a level far more than just saving the act of intercourse for marriage. It practices purity in a way that keeps a person as reserved for their future husband as possible. This translates to not engaging in dating if it's not the will of God, in daydreaming about men, in lusting after men, etc. etc. because it robs your future husband of things that should be meant for him. In essence, every time you spend any amount of energy, whether it be mental, physical, or emotional, on a man that is not God's will for your or that you are not even legitimately dating, you are robbing those things from your future husband and robbing them from your purity - even from God, who should be your first love.

I feel that the words the Lord has been echoing to me reflect that lifestyle. In fact, I have felt God encouraging me to live that lifestyle ever since I separated from my husband. I have spent so many years robbing my future husband of many precious things time and time again that all I want to do is finally do my best to preserve what's left for him as God continues to restore me and the purity I lost.

I feel that this is a valuable message for so many women and girls today. I know from personal experience that giving away your purity just isn't worth it. I'd give anything to go back and preserve my purity for my future husband, but the best I can do is to make the best choices that I can today and preserve what's left. I know God will honor that and restore me, but of course I do still have those regrets. I hope that in spite of those, I can still know the joy of having worked hard to be fully devoted to him long before I met him.

I would also add that even when in a relationship that is God's will for you, you need to preserve your purity up to the point that he IS your legally wedded husband.

Don't give God and your future husband your leftovers!

Monday, September 20, 2010

Answers to Prayer and God's Faithfulness

A week ago or so, I wrote about how difficult this transition into a new season has been for me, more difficult than usual. Since then, God has been faithful to provide the answers and experiences and outlets that I've needed in order to ease the pain and overcome the obstacles.

Shortly after writing that post, God helped me to realize that I hadn't been exercising for the few weeks prior. Praise the Lord he pointed that out to me. I had been exercising (nothing impressive, mind you, but enough to get my heart rate up for a while) more than I had in a long time, but I had never noticed the severe drop in endorphins and its effect on me when I've stopped before. Well, there was definitely a drop this time, that without God's help, I might not have noticed. I'm so thankful that I did. Now I realize how important exercise is, not only for my body, but my mind and emotions as well. I've since reinstituted it into my schedule as much as I can (which still isn't much), but it's helped.

Then, God faithfully began giving me social engagements to attend again. The two weekends leading up to that post had been pretty uneventful, after a summer of "eventful," and that was kind of a letdown for me. These past two weekends have been much more friend and fun-filled, and I'm so grateful for that. Good times with friends is so essential to staying emotionally healthy as well!

Another thing that was affecting me was not having as much time to spend with Jesus within the context of my quiet times. I really go for like 2 hours when I'm uninterrupted and I have plenty of leisure time, so only having like 30-45 minutes a day was really hard for me - it's hard for me to feel like it was "quality time." These past two Sundays I have actually skipped church because it was the only opportunity for me to just sit at home with a quiet house and be with alone with Jesus... but thank goodnes I did. I kind of go insane if I don't have that at least one day a week.

This week God really dealt with me on some sin issues and other issues that had been affecting my relationships with my roommates since I've been back in CO that hadn't been addressed. We'd had a roommate night planned for Sunday night, same day He led me through those things, and praise God, I was able to talk about those things in a really good conversation with my roommates. It was freeing, and I felt so much better. I think those things had been affecting me these past 3-4 weeks as well, and I'm so glad they're out now!

So all in all, God has done a lot of work to help me get through this transition time and resolve all of the issues that were difficult for me. I went to bed last night and woke up this morning totally at peace and content about starting another work week.

The only thing that sucks is that I still have two of them before I get to go visit my mommy!!! It feels like forever! I hope they go by quickly!!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

A High Note, and a Sort of High Note

Well, let's start with the sort-of high note first:

I have really been struck and burdened by the reality of the "ugly" parts of me - those realities of who I am that are not pretty, that I do not like - I actually hate them. The parts of me that became consistent occurrences somehow that I despise and want to get rid of as soon as possible. It's been sobering. I really do despise them. We all have them, and no one can argue that. But the high note part of it is that I can rejoice that God is shedding light on them and leading me through the journey of eradicating them from my life.

The true high note is that I am sitting here preparing for my meeting this coming Thursday with a ministry professional to discuss the ministry I am working on founding. As I make a list of the issues affecting teens that I hope to reach out to, I am both burdened by them as well as filled with the desire that God has deeply instilled in my heart to minister and bring hope to the teens going through these things.

In short: I'm excited.

This new season of my life got off to a bit of a rocky start, but I am filled with a feeling that the word defining this season of my life is "Journey." It seems as though God is beginning to take me on several different journeys (within my overall life journey) that will be filled with both highs and lows, but at the end will be hugely rewarding and worth the hard work. Of course, all for His glory alone.

Thanks for staying tuned to my journey and supporting me as I seriously pursue launching a ministry that I pray God will use to impact the lives of hundreds... maybe even thousands, someday!

(I dream big!)

Friday, September 17, 2010

Bowen's Heart

Lately I have been posting a few status updates on Facebook about praying for baby Bowen. Baby Bowen is the newborn son of Matt and Sarah Hammitt. Matt Hammitt is the lead singer of the Christian band Sanctus Real, whose song "Forgiven" is a favorite song of mine and my current ringtone. It reminds me that I am free from all of the shame and guilt of my past because of Jesus dying on the cross for my sins and forgiving me... but that's a whole separate blog post :)

Baby Bowen, when he was still in the womb, was diagnosed with a heart defect. He had to have a risky surgery right after he was born... and sooner that expected (for that condition), he is already stable and doing very well - though he almost died.

I have heard stories about parents whose children were going through a medical crisis before, but I have never been moved as much as I have by this one. I'm not sure why. I think it has something to do with the fact that Matt and Sarah were so transparent with their emotions and what they were going through. I have been touched by their strength as a couple and their commitment to each other as well as to their family throughout this struggle.

I think the great suffering that we experience as humans in this world is one of the most beautiful things about life - because I truly believe that without it, there would be no need for or any such thing as redemption or true joy. I am most moved when I see people holding tight together through a struggle and the joy of coming out on the other side. That's why I want to minister to teens going through their struggles - so that they can have the joy of coming out on the other side that is only possible with Jesus.

Matt and Sarah have been blogging about the developments with Bowen and their feelings/experiences on a website they created called "Bowen's Heart." Below is what I found to be a very poignant and beautiful passage from Matt's latest post:

"As I lovingly stared into Bowen’s eyes just before midnight, my face only inches from his chest, I thought, “this love is an awesome mess.” I know I’m not the first person to think or to say something like that. Many great works of art have titles that are reminiscent of those words. I believe it’s because tension is the place where the worst of life and the best of true hope meet to unveil our eyes to God’s artistic work of redemption. What a mighty and creatively loving God we serve. He allows us to know great pain, so that we can know the greater pleasure of trading it in for purpose."

To read more about Bowen's Heart and leave comments of prayer and support, click Here.

Friday, September 10, 2010


Well, I certainly haven't been posting as much as I wanted to lately. These past two weeks have been weeks of adjustments.

I started a new job, which is going well. I have been struggling, however, as I transition into a new season, with finding time for my quiet times with God in order to still get as much time as I need with him. I've also been struggling to define my priorities as I move into a new season of working and seeking to start moving forward on my ministry.

My weekends have ended up being much quieter, however, since Heaven Fest and No Excuses has ended, and that makes me unhappy. I don't like consistently quiet weekends... I like getting out and doing things and having social engagements to attend! So now I feel like I need to seek out more activities and more friends.

I've been adjusting to new terms within a friendship, and navigating those have been a struggle...I'm doing my best. I'm just waiting for a groove to be found and for things to calm down and just get into a consistent and comfortable pattern.

Overall... these have been a hard past two weeks. All the adjustments and things I'm struggling with have translated into me not really being a nice person to live with when I'm home... i.e., my roomies are getting the pleasure of my bad moods when I'm home - or my tiredness and thus me withdrawing quickly to my room. I feel bad about that.

I'm looking forward to, and already enjoying some, of the pleasures that fall brings. I'm thrilled to be enjoying Saints' games all season, thrilled that it's getting cooler, thrilled that cozy fall things like pumpkin spice drinks are back.. excited for sweaters/sweatshirts, hot drinks, fires, blankets... all my favorite fall things. I definitely have great things to look forward to, like finally getting to see my mom for a weekend (it's been more than a year, and usually is between visits). I am looking forward to visiting family for Xmas (that hasn't happened in 2 years). HOPEFULLY also going to a Saints game in person over the holiday.

But still... my heart has definitely been discouraged and suffering through this season transition, and I'm just longing for things to get to a comfortable place and a routine, a groove... so I truly CAN enjoy everything about this season instead of being unhappy the whole time.

Here's hoping, and DEFINITELY praying. God will be faithful to me.

Have a wonderful day, friends.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Cupcakes, Sprinkles, and other Happy Things: Tough Topic Tuesday

Dear Friends,

This is one of the most moving, truth-filled, and sobering blog posts I have ever read. These are the people, the youth, that I want to reach. These kids are my heartbeat. This is where I want to go, why I want to do what I want to do. This is my calling, my mission. And Jenny from Addison Road puts it into words so beautifully. I strongly encourage you to read on. I hope it stirs you to move like it does for me. I hope it puts a burden on you to live a life filled with crazy love just like Jesus did. We are all called to live that life, and it's true that it's hard... but like Oswald Chambers says in My Utmost For His Highest for Sept. 2... (paraphrased) "We are not called to live a life filled with blessings. We are called to be holy... are we ready to pour ourselves out for him?"


Cupcakes, Sprinkles, and other Happy Things: Tough Topic Tuesday:
"There is something sobering about meeting students with stories that sound fictional. Their mom’s practice witchcraft and their dad’s and u..."