Our trash gets picked up on Fridays. Sometimes it’s easy to forget to put our trash can out by the road. We hate when this happens, why? Because the trash keeps piling up and eventually the trash can is overflowing–also, the garage begins to really smell.
Wouldn’t it be so cool if we could put all of our junk out by the road too? Like think about it. All of the crap from our past is put outside on Thursday nights and by Friday afternoon it’s collected and you NEVER have to see or think about it again.
I think most of us are discouraged by our past.
When I look back at my past, I see a lot of disappointment and failure. I started things just to quit them. I loved all of the bad boys. I spent my time using my fake I.D rather than spending time working on my GPA. I avoided Christian friendships because I didn’t like the conviction and guilt that came along it. I broke a promise that I made to Jesus, myself and my dad.
I was the girl that hid upstairs in her bedroom because I knew I was wrong but I continued to live it.
Over time, I forgot what conviction was. I never felt convicted by my actions–maybe I ignored it or maybe I had just forgotten. Who knows??
I have found the importance of being real.
When I met Jesus in 2009, I was a Christian that put up a front. I went to church and youth group every week and put on the sweet girl act but deep down, was I really a sweet girl?
I am ashamed to say it, but it’s true. I found security in the phrase, “we have to make our own mistakes.”
That phrase led me to believe that “Hey, this is MY life. You’re wrong. I am right. And I am going to do it regardless.”
It’s kind of like my dog Tucker. He is a Boykin that wants to eat EVERYTHING. Even the grossest things. I know that he shouldn’t and it’s super bad for him–so I try and stop him by closing doors, saying no, and tapping his nose. However, if you look online or ask around, people always say, “oh dogs will be dogs” and he wants to do it anyways because well, he’s a dog.
Yeah, sin is in our human nature and very inevitable. But we have got to remember the freedom that is involved. We are no longer slaves to our sin because of the hope and grace that is found in my Lord.
Yeah, I hung out in bars, hugged many toilets from late nights, stayed with boyfriends, quit sports, and tried to drop out of college. But, all of that is yesterday.
I don’t know where that girl is anymore. Thankfully I haven’t seen her in a very long time. Thankfully the Lord’s grace and mercies are new EVERY single day.
It’s kind of exciting though, right? I mean if you think about it, I can compare my life now to what it was then.. and wow! It’s so different–completely different.
I also have a cool story to tell. I love a good story and even though it’s full of shame and guilt it’s also full of forgiveness and grace.
This change is beautiful. However it’s very lonely.
Running towards Jesus is lonesome yet very rewarding.
Friendships fade and you discover what’s truly important.
Today, I can maybe count on two hands the people in my life that check on me, pray with me, and just truly want to be there for me. I can also promise that there is so much richness and sweetness that are found in those friendships.
I remember wanting to give up. I remember telling Jesus that it wasn’t fair how he was taking people out of my life. These were my girls!
If you are feeling like this, I am sorry. I know it’s hard. I can also assure you that the more you plug into Jesus the more change you begin to see. It may not happen over night but over the course of time–you begin to see it. You will see the silver linings and spend your time investing in people that also invest in you. Trust in the Lord.
What does the Bible say about this? Let’s see.
“But to you who are willing to listen, I say, love your enemies! Do good to those who hate you. Bless those who curse you. Pray for those who hurt you.”-Luke 6:27-28
“Be on guard. Stand firm in the faith. Be courageous. Be strong. And do everything with love.”-1 Corinthians 16:13-14
“If God is for us, who can be against us?”-Romans 8:31
“Do not despise these small beginnings, for the Lord rejoices to see the work begin.”- Zechariah 4:10
You’ve got this, sister.
Share your story.
Remember His mercy.
Run towards Jesus. Pursue THAT relationship. Don’t worry about the others.
You are so loved.