Arks don't have rudders.

Noah was safe, but he wasn't in control.

When I give my life to God, when I put it into His hands, I can't steer myself anymore (not that I ever could). I'm at His mercy, and that's a good thing.
I don't know where I want my life to head. I don't know how to get there. There aren't maps for my future or stars I can track.
What good would a rudder do me? I would take control and proceed to lose myself. I wouldn't trust God.
As long as I toss myself into His arms, as long as I enclose myself in Him as I drift upon the seas, He will deliver me where He needs me to be.
I don't know where that is. I don't care where that is.

God destroyed the earth, but He remembered Noah.

When Moses' mother set him adrift upon the Nile River, the crocodile infested Nile River, she put him in an ark--a little basket made from reeds.
Moses didn't have a rudder on his little ark. His mother couldn't guide him after she let go.
Yet God brought him safely to a place Moses would have never imagined. And he was perfectly in place for God's plans.

God doesn't do things on a whim. He doesn't say, "Oh, shoot! Moses' mother just put him in the Nile! Now I have to save his life so my plans will work." He knows. His plan was already in place.
I'm tired of sticking my hands into the waters to attempt to steer myself. God will guide me and keep me safe and place me where I need to be--where my God-given gifts will coincide with my God-given values to affect the God-given people in my life.

"O, Love that will not let me go,
I rest my weary soul in Thee...
I chase the rainbow through the rain,
And feel the promise is not vain,
That morn shall tearless be."

I'm happy to be rudderless.



Is where the heart is.
Is sweet.

What if your heart is in two places? Can you be fully at home in two separate places?
I put my mom on an airplane today. There are almost 800 miles between Houston and Nashville and everyday my heart aches because half of it is in another state.

I'm comfortable here at school and when I'm "home" I want to be here.
I love being with my family in good ole Texas and when I'm away I miss my family and friends dearly.

Can I ever be complete again?
I'm hoping one day, when I have a family of my own, that place--where they are--will be my true home. It won't matter if that place is Texas or Tennessee or Turkey, it'll be home.

I'll never lose my Texas pride. My heart will always jump when someone mentions Nashville.

All I want is for everyone I love to be in one place. I don't care where.

That's what heaven is for, I guess. There my heart will be fully satisfied. It won't long to be somewhere else.

It'll be HOME.


Simple Joy

Simple joys.

Those things that don't mean much to anyone else, but for some reason bring you incalculable happiness--those things that bring you pure joy.

Clouds. Lucky Charms marshmallows. A day in pajamas with a good book. Hugs. Coming home to dogs.

Sleeping with a little kid.

It stormed tonight while I was babysitting my nephews and niece. I put my niece to bed, but she's never one to fall asleep in a reasonable amount of time. She sings and talks to herself. She told me tonight that she doesn't close her eyes because that makes it too dark. I tried telling her that was the point.
In the midst of the storm, she called down to me. I could barely understand what was wrong; she was having such a difficult time making any sense, stuttering. She was trying to be brave and hold back tears. Apparently, she wasn't scared, but one particular thunder scared her (her explanation). She asked me if I would sleep in her bed with her.


I didn't sleep. And actually, she still didn't either. But we cuddled.



Four Strands

There is nothing, nothing better than a day, or even an hour, spent with friends.

Oh, by the way, it's totally worth it.
I love them.

"Two are better than one,
because they have good return for their work:
If one falls down,
his friend can help him up.
But pity the man who falls
and has no one to help him up!
Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm.
But how can one keep warm alone?
Though one may be overpowered,
two can defend themselves.
A cord of three strands is not quickly broken."
- Ecclesiastes 4:9-12




It’s over.

An interesting year.

Milestones: 1. Finished my freshman year at college. 2. Left my teenage years behind. 3. Took, struggled through, and successfully completed what will be my hardest class ever. 4. Lost my almost 16 year old dog.

It was a year without much sleep. There’s way more knowledge in my head to show for those sleepless nights than there was before. I’m different. 2009 was a big year, but it didn’t change me in the way 2010 did.

I have regrets, of course. But it’s worth it.

The last day of the year I had a conversation (full of tears on my part) with a good friend. Things I had kept bottled up needed to be said. I’ve been frustrated. I’ve been taking it out on those close to me, but they were lost. I don’t share my struggles with others. My friend told me that I had to let others know what I needed. I thought that was selfish. I don’t feel right asking people to do something different for me. I have to learn that I’m worth it.

I’m not a very good friend. I realize that. I don’t keep in contact with the people I care about, family or friends. I don’t respond to letters or initiate conversations. I am not intentional in my relationships. I expect certain things of others but don’t let them know.

I’m a different person because I’ve struggled, but I’m losing those closest to me because I haven’t let them know that I’m struggling. I’ve just shut them out.

My friend blogged just the other day about relationships. She said that God has shown us how to love. 

My relationships with others are going to reflect my relationship with God. Before I can even attempt to fix things with my friends, I’ve got to go running back to my Abba. I can’t love well if I don’t understand how unconditionally loved I already am. I have no right to a low self-esteem. I’ve been made perfectly for a reason.

It’s worth it. It’s all worth it. Friendships are hard. Really hard. But they’re worth it. It probably wasn’t easy for my friend to sit there and listen to me say that I wasn’t sure a relationship with her was worth it.
I was blaming things on her that only had to do with me. I was being unfair and unrealistic. But it is worth it. Utterly and completely worth it.

So, some resolutions:

Cliches to live by (Regarding communication): Something is better than nothing; better late than never.
What I need to do:
1. I will joyfully and continuously make an effort to form and maintain my relationships- with people and god.
2. I will consciously communicate my needs and feelings to my friends, family and god.
3. i will make time with god my main priority, above school, family, and friends.
What I need others to do:
1. Ask me specific questions about my life.

There are other, pettier resolutions as well, but they don’t fit here.
I’m learning to focus on love.
To receive it. To give it. To ask for it.
Because I’m worth it.

Welcome, 2011.
I won’t pretend I’m ready, but I’m willing to face you with others, with God, by my side.