Today is day seven that Kirby has been away on his mission trip to the Philippines. Gosh, I’m so proud of him. I feel a glow around my heart thinking of him, hearing his stories over a crackly FaceTime, seeing the photos pop up on Facebook of children posing with him, smiles an ocean wide. Deep appreciation and love well up in my heart for him. Not because things or life is perfect, because most of the time life is far from perfect, but because at the end of the day, when I step back and zoom out, I remember just how lucky I am.
Do you know how valuable you are?
There have been many rumors circling around lately. They claim that someone I know is involved in being a murderer, a torturer, and that they have been orchestrating evil behind the scenes in people’s lives for many years now. I honestly have found myself more and more shocked at the reports that continue to surface over this case. This is why I wanted to bring it to your attention.
The age-old question has been lingering on my mind lately, “What do you want to be when you grow up.” We have all asked others this question and have had it asked of ourselves many times. My personal answer has changed over the years. It began like any little girl wanting to be a teacher. A few years later I wanted to be a Bush Hog salesman like my dad and after that, an ice-skater. Totally random, I know. Continue reading “What do You Want to Be?”
As marching and protesting roar ahead, my heart becomes heavy. The Bible prophesied that the world would eventually call good evil and evil good. With “Love Trumps Hate” signs plastered everywhere, I cannot help but finding that message to be an incredible misinterpretation of what true, God kind of love is. When I read in 1 Corinthians the definition of love, its characteristics seem to be noticeably absent from those who protest under a perceived banner of love in the past months. Continue reading “What Have We Done With Love?”
Reading is one of my most favorite pastimes. Give me a good book and you won’t hear from me the rest of the day with the exception of some “mmhmm’s” and “ok sounds good’s”. I’m super picky about what books I read to the point where it’s honestly a bit ridiculous. But man, when I discover one I like…whew, it won’t stand a chance. Within a day that book is read cover to cover. Continue reading “Pages of the Past”
Christmas…it’s hard to not love a holiday that encompasses such warmth. It enables opportunities for acts of kindness that may normally be ignored. It’s a season where love transcends distance and barriers. It brings people together and most importantly glorifies our majestic and mighty Savior, Jesus Christ: the King of Kings.
If you’re anything like me, you really enjoy your freedom and independence! You also relish quiet downtime and enjoy your space [so much so that your dad bought you a sticker that says “I need my space” at NASA]. So if you’re anything like that, this blog may be for you. And, if you’re not like that…well, I hope you stick around anyway! Today I’m sharing about my struggle with obligation. I hesitate to share because a) it’s not fun to admit you’re having a hard time with something [Surprise! I’m human!] and b) this can be kind of a sensitive topic. It may not make any sense to you right now what I’m talking about, so let me lay some ground work.
My favorite thing about college was my freedom. I was the executive manager of my own time and decisions…THE queen bee if you will. When opportunities arose to hang out with friends or sign up for something new I would, and if I didn’t want to…than I didn’t! Simple. I’m very orderly and all about routine, but I have a wild twinge of spontaneity. So, I’m a bit of a free spirit at heart.
Being married though, I’ve been made acutely aware of this new feeling of obligation. It’s strange really. This feeling that life is no longer about me or my time frame…ouch…that hurts more on paper than I imagined it would. Suddenly, the obligation of adulting seems to suffocate the excitement out of me and stretch me in far too many directions. It has made me feel really bound up at times.
So what is it about obligation? I looked up the meaning of the word and here is what I found:
- Something by which a person is bound or obliged to do
- Arises out of a sense of duty or results from customs
- To bind or oblige morally or legally by a contract or promise
- To pledge, commit, or bind
- Morally bound, constrained
Interesting huh? At its core, I think I really felt bound and constrained to unspoken expectations. Myself being the largest culprit, holding myself to an impossible standard of perfection. [This is something I’m putting a priority on addressing, because I can only imagine how crazy things will become once I take on the role of mom someday.]
My sweetheart of a husband always patiently listens to me as I think aloud analyzing and overanalyzing. If you’d over hear me chat about this with him it would sound something like this:
Babe! I want to be free to live life slowly…to see opportunities to minister. To be free to say no. To buy a new dress for a date without fear that one dress will put us over budget. Free to enjoy hard work and doing things for myself. To say I’d rather read a book than be around people. To be jealous for my your time, attention, and opinions.
Free to be independent. Free to sing and be goofy. Free to travel with my you more. Free to take a day to stay in my pjs and watch movies and tv. Free to completely turn my phone and computer off on occasion, going off the grid. Free to bake and experiment. Free to work out because I want to. Free to want to keep to myself sometimes. Free to be bold, share my opinions at other times. Free to set boundaries. Free to not pretend to be something I’m not around certain people. Free to give grace for myself and others. Free to speak blessing. Free to be confident. Free to just like reading God’s word and loving on Him. Free to have FUN! Free to BE ME!
A lot of the oppression of obligation is based on things I’ve seen or heard…things I feel like I HAVE to do or be, something other than me. It can come from movies, social media, or maybe for you it comes internally from your friends and family. I’m a bit of a people pleaser. I’d never want to hurt or disappoint anyone. Let me tell you though, feeling obligated to everyone and everything is exhausting!
“Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free” – John 8:32
I really had to come to the end of myself. After pouring my heart out to God about this, He gave me some verses that really set me free. I’m not saying I’ve mastered this, but God is definitely leading me to a life filled with more peace and simplicity. We aren’t meant to live life comparing and trying to measure up to an impossible standard. It’s ok to be different. It’s ok to not be perfect 100% of the time…there is nothing wrong with you! So I leave you with this prayer that I prayed myself recently and some verses that set my heart at peace. If you’ve ever felt this way, know you’re not the only one! It’s the truth you know will set you free – freedom is yours to experience today. Sending my love!
“I love you Lord and know you hear my heart. I surrender right now my pride and the impossible standard I’ve been holding myself to. I surrender my desire to want to constantly please others and meet their expectations f0r my life. Please help me break the oppression of obligation that’s been suffocating me. Please help me to be selfless, but also have balance and not neglect my personal health and well being in the process. Help me to be more present in life. To not miss out on life because I’m so busy doing what I think I HAVE to do all the time. Please bring me balance, security, peace, and freedom. Amen“
“The Lord gives freedom to the prisoners” – Psalm 146:7
“For sin shall not have dominion over you, for you are not under law but under grace” – Romans 6:14
“Do you know that to whom you present yourselves slaces to obey, you are that one’s slaves whom you obey, whether of sin leading to death, or of obedience leading to righteousness.” – Romans 6:16
“For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death.” – Romans 8:2
“For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.” – Romans 8:6
“Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Chris has made us free and do not be entangled (burdened) again by a yoke of bondage.” – Galatians 5:1
I will stand fast in the liberty which Christ has made me FREE and I refuse to be entangled again for a yoke of bondage.
Summer is slowing fading away like a sweet distant memory. I welcome the change of pace with open arms. Fall is truthfully my favorite season. I savor the scent of the warm fall air and crisp leaves, wearing light flannel tops, and going to football games. There is something comforting and peaceful about it. I’m nearly ashamed to say that I actually miss the buzz of starting school. Continue reading “Letter to Me”