I find advent as a gentle reminder of where to put my hope: in a small baby who would one day cover all of my sins to save me from them. A simple season of anticipation of what’s to come - in my own life and for the world. A time to reflect on what God has done in my life and hope and pray for what He will do. Advent may be my new favorite season of the Christian calendar.
It's my prayer that as we walk through this life together, we would always remember the lessons we learned early on in our marriage. I pray that we would use every trial we face, not as an excuse for self-pity, but as an invitation to walk beside someone else in their pain. That's literally what you've chosen to do for a career. And I couldn't be more proud on your graduation day.
You've realized that life isn’t always rainbows and butterflies. That rainbows come after a storm, and butterflies are birthed through a time of change and growth. You're holding out hope that your rainbow is coming. That their is purpose behind the pain.
It can be tempting to not go deeper. Oh believe me, it can be so tempting. Staying hollow, staying laid-back, it can seem so safe. But as women (though this trait often gets attributed to men) we're born for adventure. We're born to make an impact, and above all, we're born to live knowing we're loved by God. He designed us to soak in His strength each and every day.
We live in a time where tolerance and acceptance is the anthem of our culture. We are told to love and not judge. And usually that means accept anything, even if it doesn’t line up with our moral convictions.
I get it. It can be confusing knowing how to live out your faith in a practical way. You want to love Jesus and be a good Christian, but sometimes it can be hard to know how. Sometimes Christians do a great job demonstrating what it looks like to “Be a Christian”, but sometimes Christians are completely uninspiring or conduct themselves in a way that makes calling yourself a Christian seem downright embarrassing.
Sometimes I just want to lead an easy life, to fit in instead of standing out because of my convictions, to feel comfort in the midst of what can be a lonely life. Thanks be to God that my deepest desire is to lead a life that is committed to passionately pursuing Him. But my flesh battles against the Holy Spirit within me...an easy, comfortable life has a luring appeal.
My husband and I are celebrating our five year anniversary. In some ways it seems new. Like we got married yesterday. And in other ways, knowing him feels like knowing every last word to my favorite song.
I remember the feeling. I was fourteen years old, lying in my dark bedroom, staring wide-eyed at the ceiling like a starless night sky. I’d pray to feel something, see something. A constellation of His presence. A confirmation of His love. I just wanted to feel close to God.
We'd just celebrated our second Valentine's Day as a married couple. I loved my job. Life was good. And then I got the phone call that no wife wants to get.