A friend of mine recently said something that shocked and angered me.
We were discussing child abuse and the effects abuse has on children long after they are grown. He went on to tell me that the abuse happening was not the child’s fault; however, that child, once they were at an adult, resumed responsibility for their pain. They were left with the choice to deal with the after effects of that abuse. They were in-charge of choosing to take the necessary steps towards healing.
What he said didn’t line up with my personal philosophy-of-fairness, at all… but that’s usually, isn’t it? We think we know what is best and choose what we see as the best options given our feelings. I tell you from personal experience, following our ever-changing feelings is like boarding a rickity ship into an onslaught watery disaster… I digress…
The way I saw it, those adults deserved to be beaten, drawn, quartered and slapped with a bill to pay for that child’s healing. Yet, what my friend was saying that the innocent, vulnerable child had to pay for the price of the adult’s sin?
Despite the anger rising like a serious volcano of heartburn I listened carefully and analyzed my thoughts on the subject. Difficult as it was, what he was saying was truth. Although it punctured holes in my millennial mindset it sprung wings of grace and gently resonated with my Spirit.
Ultimately our difficult yet fruitful conversation reminded me of the greatest sacrifice of all. Even though we have all sinned…
…if you think you’re a good person who has not sinned and is not in need of God, please do not be fooled by yourself. Stop and ask yourself: have I lied, cheated, gossiped or thought lustful thoughts about someone else? It’s no surprise to God that you have, that’s why He offered Himself, to make us pure in His sight…
He saw and paid for your imperfection before you even knew of its existence.
Now that’s epic.
Even though we have all screwed up and allowed sin into God’s perfect Word He still came to earth and gave His life for us. It wasn’t His fault that we chose the wrong road but He took responsibility for our actions and died the most excruciating death for our freedom. The thief, Satan, wants to steal, kill and destroy your joy. He wants to dangle tempting ways of escape that often manafest themselves as blame… oh, I’m just an impatient person. My heart was wounded, that’s why I am always angry. I am always scared because my parents abandoned me as a child.
Although I do acknowledge that each of these problems require healing I also acknowledge that they can trap us if we constantly ruminate on them and do not make a move to kill them. We ruminate on the unfairness of our situation day in and day out only to find out that we wasted our lives constantly blaming others and situations. Does that sound like a fulfilling, fruitful life to you?
Do you really believe God when He tells you that you are free? Do you feel oppressed by pain that has haunted you for years? Do you struggle with blaming others for the things you do on a regular basis?
I challenge you to step up to the throne of God, find a quiet space and confess your faults to Jesus. This isn’t easy and is something I find myself doing quite often. As challenging as it can be to admit our problems, it brings so much joy and freedom to our lives.
After you have told the Lord you are sorry for holding on to blame and anger ask Him to fill you with His incredible peace. As Him to hold you and heal you. He will bring SO MUCH freedom to places you doubted would ever feel full.
Come out of hiding, it’s safe where He is. He is the most safe, trustworthy and powerful Being you will ever encounter <3 He is so much bigger than any problems we could ever face and He wants to face them for us… now, that’s Love.
With His Love,
Last night was terrifying… I hadn’t experienced a panic attack or anything remotely close to it until the clock struck two Oct 12, 2017. Disclaimer: if you think this sounds anything like Dickens then thank you, I’m honoured. I imagine your next question might be, “so when does the ghost of Dairy Milk past come out to haunt you?” Haha, funny. You’re funny. There was no chocolate ghost. Not this time. Not ever… I don’t think inanimate objects have ghosts actually…
But, in honour of being poetically fancy I will let you know that the ghost of my “should have dones” and “what ifs” hovered over my head like ghouls on speed. They would never rest. They couldn’t settle. They jumped in and out of my brain. They clouded my judgement with their waxen, white robes. They wouldn’t let me be.
You might be wondering why I was in this mood of complete frenzy… well, my neck was killing me and I needed to wake up for cross fit in a couple hours.
More importantly, I didn’t do well on one of my University assignments and was told my highest mark would be a B + in that class. This wouldn’t be so awful if I wasn’t planning on applying for graduate work but indeed I am; when I am finished my Education and English degree this year I plan on applying to law school. As I’m sure you can imagine, the require a fairly high GPA (by fairly high I mean to the moon high… no… to VY Canis Majoris high… yep, that’s slightly more accurate).
On top of that many other passions, options and things to achieve decided to pillage on my mind.
As I lay there, my head and neck aching, I thought of familial issues and my role to play in them, my responsibility as a loving wife, my book and publishing paths, my relationship with God, my relationship with friends and obligations, my reputation and credibility in the work force. I began to think of assignments that I might tank and stupid things I might say during my upcoming presentations. I started to think about all the extra volunteer work that was required of me and if my health, as it stands, would allow it.
In short: there was a circus going on in my head and I couldn’t sleep above the din.
For a while I lay there, allowing the clowns, acrobats and tamed lions to run rampant through my mind. I allowed fear to swallow me whole. After many too many minutes of paralysis by way of fear I realized something very important.
It was something that would change how I would react to the situation.
I remembered that I am the daughter of a God who is so much bigger than the anxiety, the fear, the worry. I am the daughter of the King of Kings, the Lord of all Creation! Why would I let one grade bother me? If one grade too big for the King of the Universe to work with? I would give my fear and anxiety to Him. I would let Him take it then not allow myself to take it back on. Yes! It had worked before.
In light of this fresh information, I stilled myself in the darkness and started reciting Psalm 23. It goes a little something like this:
The Lord is my shepherd. I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters. He restores my soul (no one else can do this). Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death I will fear no evil for your rod and your staff they comfort me. You prepare a place for me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil (with joy). Surely Your goodness and mercy will follow me all the days of my life and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.
After repeating this a couple of times, much to my relief, the wildly beating heart within my chest started to sink beneath waters of placid peace. The storm in my mind calmed to a dull roar then stopped altogether. My worries faded away. The throbbing in my neck subsided bit by bit. My body relaxed and I was pulled into the arms of the Prince of Peace. He watched over me as I slept. I could feel it.
The next morning, my heart felt so dry and exhausted. I needed something anything. I needed more than the materialistic gains I had been running for to satisfy me.
I spent a good amount of time with Him rehashing what I had felt and how desperately I needed His presence and His guidance. I felt like a creek bed, dry and without sustenance or life. It didn’t take long for Him to answer each one of my cries with that sweet voice of His… that sweet, sweet voice.
He calmed my fears.
I write this for a couple different reasons but one of the most important is so that you know you are not alone. If you are struggling with fear, anxiety of anything of the like today please approach God and ask Him to still your frantic heart. He longs to hear your cries. He will not judge you for them. He welcomes you with open arms and a gentle heart.
He wants you to live life to the fullest and not to be bound by societies (and your own) expectations. Allow yourself to rest in His strong arms today. Let His peace flood you.
If you need prayers for anything do not hesitate to contact me.
This sound is incredible to listen to when you’re going through a tough time. It helps calm me when I’m having super tough time <3
Romans 12:2 – “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.”
The bathrooms in the University feel so dark. So dark and gloomy and I don’t know why. There are plenty of lights. Maybe it’s the mood I’m in whenever I’m in here. That must be it. I tore off some toilet paper and used it to shield my hand from the latch then towards the sink, dreading the reflection that would come back to lock eyes with me.
“Hello there Monica.” The character in the mirror stayed true with my movements. She even smirked at me the same way I did. Yep, the sad story still remained. That creature was me. I studied her face a little more closely.
The winged eyeliner I had traced on earlier that morning was attempting to escape via running free off the side of my face. Great. No matter how hard I tried, the stupid stuff wouldn’t stay on.
I lock eyes with the creature in the mirror. “Please work for a change!”
Aka, I feel insecure about my looks and need to appear to have things together in front of others.
Ugh, I hate it when my heart translates for me…
Whatever. I don’t want to look like an oil spill. I checked my phone. Five minutes until class started. Okay… I grabbed some paper towel, wetting it and reefed on the liner. Smears splayed out over my reddening skin. Scrub. Scrub. Scrub. Success after three minutes. Two minutes until show time.
The halls are filled with us. We are the students who obediently wear overpriced scarves, tights, plaid sweaters and varied colours of ombre hair. Everyone trying to be the same and yet wanting so desperately to be unique, different. Or rather, we all wanted to be the best. I could see it in their eyes. I could sense it in myself. This place is a breeding tank for competition. Who gave the best presentation? Who dressed the nicest? Whose hair is the shiniest? The stress of it all oppressed me, stressed me, overwhelmed me.
I could see it in their eyes. I could sense it in myself. This place is a breeding tank for competition. Who gave the best presentation? Who dressed the nicest? Whose hair is the shiniest? The stress of it all oppressed me, stressed me, overwhelmed me.
I tried to be all these things, which further proved my follower status. I was just like everyone else, a follower, a nobody. Why couldn’t I be someone’s somebody?
The plaque on the door reads A358. A couple students bump into me as they pass. I think I’ve seen them before but I don’t think they recognise me. Maybe they do… did they hate me or think I am annoying for being vocal about my opinions on social media?
“Sorry…” they mutter. Their eyes are glued to the ground. I nod my head to acknowledge their apology but they are gone already. I want to tell them that I’m sorry if I have offended them but there is no time.
So here I am at class again, ready to cower in the corner, afraid to make a mistake, ready to be the one no one notices, ready to fail… again.
Although this character and her life are fictional, she reflects aspects of people I have spoken with as well as things I have noticed about my own thought processes. She strives for attention and is satisfied when she receives it but the feeling is fleeting. She wants to be known and noticed for being perfect but at what cost? Is she willing to lose herself entirely in the process?
As you walk the hallways of the University, your workplace of wherever today I want you to be reminded of the fact that you do not to embrace fear or anxiety. You do not need to sell out either. You do not have to be like those people who appear to have it all together. You do not have to put so much pressure on yourself to be the best for everyone.
You are allowed to be unique, individual. You are allowed to take risks and not fit into societal molds. You do not have to appear to be “perfect”.
You have a voice. You also have love on your side and perfect love casts out all fear.
Do you know why you are a conquerer in all these things? Because there is a God who called you into existence and has a plan for you. He has a purpose. He sees you! It doesn’t matter how many others are in that room. He sees you, He knows you and He loves you through and through.
Plan to spend time with Him today. Sit down and tell Him about your fears. Tell Him about your dreams. He cares so much and wants you to know how filled with joy life can be when you’re looking into His eyes and not into your own.
Many blessings and much love to you <3
Please, take the time to listen to this song. Please take the time to ask then acknowledge how much He delights in you. He sees you. He knows you. You are not alone. You’ve never been alone, no matter where you are.
The day before yesterday (to be incredibly specific) I was scrolling through my feed on Instagram. A couple minutes passed before I moved on over to feast on the succulent offerings of Youtube.
While there it didn’t take long for me to notice one thing: that almost everyone had a perfect ombre and flashy, white grin. The people I was viewing acted great on camera and sold their product, usually themselves, like it was no one’s business.
I started to focus on all folks who were my age and now making millions. I waved a microscope atop my “inadequacy” and didn’t waver in my analysis of the obvious.
Basically, I gave myself the permission to start to feel a little sorry for myself.
Thoughts like: why didn’t I start a Y channel sooner or win that prestigious writing competition? Why didn’t I get into acting or some kind of dramatics when I was younger? I could be a millionaire by now! The world could be blessed by all that I have to offer them.
Ultimately, my pondering boiled down to one key question: why is it that I am not good enough?
Friends, it doesn’t take me to tell you that we are bombarded my media everywhere we go. We are often told that the definition of success lies in fame, money and doing good things for others. While none of these things are inherently bad, they can’t define us. Just because we haven’t succeeded in those areas does not mean we aren’t worthy of love, attention and affirmation. It also does not mean that we are going to like where we end up for eternity. It also doesn’t mean that we don’t have anything to live for while we are here on earth.
If you struggle with the same thoughts and feelings that I do I would like to offer you a challenge. Take a three break from the media world and spend some of that time with Jesus. Instead of turning to the media with questions about your worth ask Him to show you how He sees you.
Not only will you be amazed by how much extra time you have to do other things, you will also have the chance to see yourself through the lens of the One who made you and sees you as invaluable, no matter how many figures you may have to your name.
Joy & Blessings <3