Seeing as how I typically only blog maybe once or twice a year, I think it’s safe to say that full-time blogging will never be my career and that is a dream in my heart that I need to let die. The least I can do, however, is keep up my routine of posting sporadically, inconsistently, and really late at night when I should most definitely be asleep. So, on that note…
For those of you who don’t know (which is probably all 2 of you who are reading this), I took a break from social media for two and a half months and just recently returned to the world of Facebook, Instagram, and all the other weird crazy ways we normalize stalking, bragging, and altering our brains (Don’t believe me about that last one? Check out this article. And this one. And this one too if you’re still interested).
So, last night I was looking at Instagram and catching up on some things I had missed during my hiatus and I ended up going back to my own profile and reminiscing while looking at some of the photos I’ve posted over the last year or so. I clicked on one and read what I wrote and it struck me. It was as if God was speaking the same life into me that He spoke to me then and it was just what I needed to remember.
The truth is simple, but the truth is good, and the truth is– I need to remember to remember Jesus. I need to remember who He is, who He has been, and who He really will always be. I posted that specific Instagram during a time when I was really growing in intimacy with God mostly because I was just so desperate for it. It was during a time when I was navigating a lot of change, I had a lot of fear, and a lot of hurt that I was walking through. As I stared at the picture all the memories came flooding back in. I could literally look at my life in picture-form on my phone and I could picture the way Jesus had rescued me over and over again. He always came. I saw photos I posted after a dear friend passed away and I remembered how the presence of God truly became my sustenance and the only thing that got me out of bed and reminded me to keep breathing during that really painful time. I saw the photo I posted the day I finished grad school and I remembered vividly how I had never felt more grateful in my life. I saw photos I posted when me and my roommates had to move out of our house and into several different hotels for 3 weeks due to a flea infestation and I remembered how I experienced the peace of God deeper than ever before during that time. I was looking at the last couple of years of my life and it just dawned on me– It has been in the hardest places that I’ve seen my Father the most clearly.
This has been His theme with me recently. He’s been speaking to me– and not in one of those, “this is what I’ve been learning while faithfully spending an hour with God every morning and poring over the scriptures”, kind of way. But more like one of those, “I’ve been trying to control my own life and avoiding God and yet He is still kind enough to pursue me and speak to me in those still small moments between one Netflix binge session and another,” kind of ways. Gosh, He is relentless like that. I’m so thankful that Jesus is that kind of Man.
All that to say, I think what God has been showing me recently is that I have to stop avoiding the hard places because He is there. Change, trust, transition, vulnerability, risk… These kinds of things bring the possibility of pain and I spend so much energy trying to run away from them. But after spending a few minutes just looking at my own Instagram profile, I have to ask myself– why?
I don’t want to be afraid of the unknown. I want to walk boldly wherever God is leading because my heart is one that depends exclusively on my Father. I don’t want to exhaust myself in an effort to perfect my circumstances. I want to risk and trust and find life that is big, beautiful, and messy but full of grace, full of rest, and full of Jesus. I don’t want to avoid the hard places because I know Jesus is there. So, friends, if you’re reading this– please feel free to hold me to it. Ask me about my hard places. Let’s do this together because I need it and you need it and I think there might be a whole lot more life to be found on the other side of this deal.