Monthly Archives: November 2014

use your words

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I like to talk. When I was in kindergarten, I typically got in trouble for sitting on my desk after I was finished with my work and jabbering away. I can also vividly remember having to sit in the hallway on the first day of school every year until 5th grade because of my blabber mouth. I finally learned how to get my business under control in 5th grade, I guess.

Now, one of my favorite things is sitting around a dinner or coffee table and having long conversations that lose all sense of time.

I like to talk.

I’m also living in a time when everyone likes to talk and loves sharing their opinion on any and every matter they can. Everyone has a voice, and I don’t want to dismiss that, but I’m also a little concerned that we don’t fully understand the weight of our words.

Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear. (Ephesians 4:29)

As Christians, I think we love to use this verse to shut down potty mouths. It’s simple to point to the first portion of this verse and remind those around us that we shouldn’t be cussing or tearing others down with our words, which I completely agree with.

But I think we’ve lost the last part. I think we’ve lost grace in our words. I don’t think we try to speak in such a way that our words give grace to those who hear. 

When you ask me about my dating status, I tell you I’m still single, and you answer with, “Oh what a bummer.” – that isn’t giving me grace.
When you ask me about marriage and I say, “Yeah, this season is really hard because I desire marriage and a family and I’m just struggling right now,” and you reply with, “Well, it’ll happen in God’s timing.” – that isn’t giving me grace.

Be okay with my singleness when I’m okay with it. Be a little bummed with me when I’m bummed about it. Don’t dismiss my feelings, but rather speak grace into my life.

Our words are powerful. Our reactions to situations and seasons in life mean something to those around us. As followers of Jesus we carry grace with us in our voices.

I know that I’ve not always used my words to give grace to those who hear, but I know that’s what I’m called to. I’m called to speak grace. And what an opportunity we have to build those around us up, speak life, truth, and grace into this world, and maybe, just maybe, show people Jesus with our words.

*watch Kristen & JT play Secret Word here!

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stuck in the suckiness

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I’m a pretty good complainer. I can take a 72 degree, puffy cloud and blue sky day and make it seem like we’re knee deep in snow and ice. And there’s definitely been seasons (pun intended) in my life where I’ve lived in the complaints. I’ve planted my feet firmly in the suckiness of life and not moved.

Disclaimer: please don’t tell my momma that I used the word “suck” – or some variation of the word – in this blog post. She hates the word and will make me run laps for it. Seriously.

Back to life being sucky.

I think we can get really good at complaining about life and not moving out of it. We can sit over coffee for hours and talk about how horrible we have it because we aren’t dating anyone, aren’t married, don’t own a house, don’t have any leftover pizza, etc. and just feel sorry for ourselves. We can get stuck in the suckiness, and that’s a dangerous place to be.

This summer I heard a sermon over the following psalm:

Will you not revive us again, that your people may rejoice in you? (85:6)

I think the writer was experiencing some suckiness. But I also think that the writer knew suckiness was not the place to stay in. They knew that they needed to go to the feet of the Lord and ask for revival, beg if needed.

As the pastor said during the sermon, revival may not come today. It may not even come tomorrow, or the next day/month/year. BUT we can’t sit in the crappy seasons of life complaining about how bad we have it and expect change. We can’t expect joy in our lives if we aren’t willing to go to Jesus and say, “Please. Revive my heart in ways only You can.”

It’s easy to stay stuck in the suckiness. It’s not always easy to pray for and wait on revival.

But staying stuck in the suckiness isn’t where Jesus wants us to stay. He wants us to stay with Him. So let’s agree to let each other be emotional people, to allow one another time to vent and express frustration, but to also remind each other that God is still God, God is still good, and we need to move out of the suckiness.

*get some travel advise from Judy Grimes here!!

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the voices in my head

I got to spend this past weekend at one of my favorite camps of all time: FCA Girls Weekend of Champions. It’s seriously the best. We had over 130 ladies join us for a weekend of competition and growth in our faith in Christ. It was a blast.

One of my favorite parts of Girls Weekend – and in particular this year’s camp – is how quickly girls get real with one another, with themselves, and with God. Our speaker did a phenomenal job of making the Gospel clear and real to these ladies. One of the things she talked about was our voice. She talked about how our voice got distorted in the fall, is effected by sin, but redeemed by Jesus.

And it got me to thinking – what is my voice saying.
Specifically, what is my voice saying in relationship to: others, myself, and Jesus.

I’d like to think my voice does a pretty good job in relation to others. I think I’m an encouraging person and that I build others up with my words.

But when it comes to myself and Jesus, I think my voice is less than awesome. My unchecked inner voice likes to tell me I’m not good enough. It likes to remind me that I’m alone. It prefers to keep me secluded and quiet with my struggles. And in that, I think it’s telling Jesus that He isn’t enough. That He can’t satisfy me. That He isn’t my refuge and rock.

My sinful voice is really good at lying to me.

But then I enter into the sanctuary of the Most High and find things like:

I am the LORD your God, who brought you up out of the land of Egypt. Open your mouth wide, and I will fill it. – Psalm 81:10

The LORD your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; He will rejoice over you with gladness; He will quiet you by His love; He will exult over you with loud singing. – Zephaniah 3:17

The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs – heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with Him in order that we may also be glorified with Him. – Romans 8:16-17

My sinful voice no longer has a say in my life. Jesus has redeemed me and made me His, therefore He gets to tell me who I am. He gets to tell me that I am good enough, that I’m not alone, that He is with me always. And I get to rest in His arms, reminded that He is enough. That He is all satisfying. That His voice alone gets to speak identity into my life.

It’s easy to let being single become my identity. It’s easy to let that voice remind me that I’m not married, I don’t have kids, etc. But it’s not worth it to let that voice win.

Let Jesus be your voice today and forevermore.

And for all you GWOC ladies…#suckitsatan

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