(I’ve been having a load of epiphanies these days, been feeling how amazingly my relationship with God was stretched and now like a pair of stretched out denim my mind wants to contort it back to what it once was, but my heart won’t allow it. It wants to continue growing and moving.
It doesn’t want to be pushed back into a box.
So I’m fleshing out things in my mind that I know about God, and what the world knows about God and I’m contemplating the places where they don’t match or where I don’t want them to match. This is one of them)
I was recently looking back at some old journals of mine, mainly one that I used when I was at training camp for the World Race in October of 2012.
It was the first time I ever heard my squad coach Betsy Garmon speak. I heard her speak many, many times after that. Sat across from her in noisy hostels and coffee shops around the world. My journals are filled with nuggets of wisdom , encouragement and hard, stretching truth that I will always carry with me.
I remember specifically that first time she spoke to all the women of the MNOP squads. She hit us with some good stuff that day, words we had to mull over more than once, words that I mulled over months into the race
But the one simplistic truth I took from that day was this:
Ever since I went back to that journal last week I’ve been thinking about those words and about my walk with Christ. I wrote a bit about it here. About how I am seeing my walk with Christ so much differently than I once did.
How I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that I am His and He is mine.
But why am I His?
Is it because I’ve held orphans on 5 continents or logged more church hours in 5 years than most do in their whole life?
(top is VBS worship leading//bottom is my first time in South Africa with the academy kids)
Is it because I do without the knowledge that someone will give me back the time I have given them?
None of those things are what saved me.
I remember back in Ecuador last January my team and I went rappelling down some waterfalls. I was terrified.
I got through the all the trials and then came to the last one.
Hell to the no.
We basically dropped off a cliff into some rocks.
I have never been more afraid in my life. Like, life flashing before my eyes, afraid.
(and I’ve been hit by a car)
And just when I should have hit the rocks underneath me, I landed in the arms of two of my teammates, Emily and Cassie.
(cassie and emily about to jump off a bridge in Banos, Ecuador)
Later during feedback Cassie reminded me that they were there for me, they weren’t going to let me fall.
They saved me.
I remember sitting in a parking lot (more specifically, my counselor’s office parking lot) wrapped in a blanket on the Sunday before my third year of day camp began.
I had started a new anti depressant about 3 weeks prior and it had messed amazingly with my system.
I was sitting in that parking lot, wrapped in a blanket, on the phone with my counselor because I had contemplated killing myself.
He talked me through it, my roommates walked me through it, my day camp coworkers laughed with me and provided me with endless entertainment (I can’t confirm or deny that they snuck me into Disney one night)
(these crazy people will never know or realize how much they saved me this summer)
They saved me.
What am I getting at?
Your “shiny” doesn’t need saving.
It’s those moments where you are at rock bottom, where you don’t know up from down, where it’s so dark and you choose to cling to Christ.
That’s what saved you.
It’s when you get to that moment, that place, that only HE can be your strength. It’s the moment in the darkness that makes you search for the light.
The darkness makes the light SO MUCH BRIGHTER.
That’s not the hard part though.
It’s easy to look for the light while in the darkness.
But how do we look for the light while in the light?
How do we remember that the shiny isn’t what saved us?
It’s not hard to see the glory of Christ in the light. It’s always easy NOT to need Christ in the Light.I don’t have the answer to that. But I do have the reminder that my shiny is not what saved me. Christ doesn’t love me for all the light in me.
He loves me in spite of all darkness I choose to allow myself to walk through.
So in the moments where I’m doubting, or in pain, or wanting to walk away because I feel like a failure, or a feel useless, or like I’m not going anywhere, I remember that the good things in me aren’t what saved me.
It’s the fact that I know Christ is on the throne and in the midst of my darkness I chose to lean on Him.