Even The Plunging Of Anothers’ Poop

No resolutions. No vision board. Nothing.

Just a few words to live by for the year.

And here goes…

Being loving and kind towards another when he or she is loving and kind towards you is easy and smooth. And not in anyway messy.

But I want to be mean, to blow up and just be downright honest in a mean and destructive way. But I can’t. Because I can remember clearly the times when I terribly wished that someone was kind to me when I was ugly and all I deserved was not.grace.

And then I also think about the ones that drew near when they should’ve stepped back like others did.

I think about the One that reached in, drew out and pulled near.

I can’t save another. Even when I sometimes foolishly believe that I can. But I can see another’s brokenness, and even though I’m tempted to look away and maybe take a step back, I can dig my feet deep in the dirt and stand in the gap.

All with the help of the One that can reach in, draw out and pull near.

This year, I can come out of my shell even when I just want to crawl up into a ball of self-pity and self-centeredness.

I can choose to text first, call them and check in first. Even when the why-can’t-she-text-or-check-up-on-me overwhelms my mind.

This year, I can let go of the idea of doing big things for God while believing that the mundane, day to day, ordinariness of it all matters too. Even the plunging of the bad smelling poop of – I believe, one grown man and a couple of kids – that refused to flush down the toilet on its own.

I can choose to see something beautiful in when she walks into the room late at night to discuss something, that she could’ve easily discussed with her friends, with me.

Choose to believe that the combing of hair, pulling of textured weaves, locking together of braids and faux locs matters too.

I can choose to do justice, walk humbly and love mercy. Even though I no longer believe that I truly know what that means.

I can let myself be embraced with grace. Extend grace to myself and freely give it to others. Starting with my family members.

I can let myself be deeply loved by the God who has saw it fit to give me my life. All because he knows best.

This year, I can accept the invitation to “Come, let us reason together”. More often. Freely. Without shame and without fear.

I can choose or choose not to believe that my God doles out gifts, blessings and goodness according to how big our faith is.

This year, I can choose to press on. To press on to know the Lord.

And when I fail in any or all of these things, I will choose to trust in the One that has already reached in, drew out and pulled near.

Happy New Year Folks!!!

The Goodness Of God

Goodness of God

God is good, all the time. All the time, God is good! All things work together for good. He is a good God. God is for my good, always for my good.

Most of us have said it at least once in our lifetime and it sounds almost empty after awhile.

Yes, the kind of statements that have turned into cliches.

We say it, recite it and we occasionally encourage others with them.

But when I think about the word good, it was not until last week I realized that my understanding of goodness is actually sort of warped.

My idea of God’s love towards me has always been wrapped around the belief that God will give me the things that will make me happy. That my desires will be met. And of course, positive and good things will happen.

I’ve never given much thought to God being good or loving towards me even in the NOs of answered prayers. Never understood the idea of God being good in the taking away of certain things or not meeting a particular desire I have.

On my bad days, I would find myself questioning how God could claim to love me and allow these things to happen. And on my really good days, I would comfort myself with the word of God. Continue reading

Scars, Wounds & All.

Empty Bed

No one said it would be easy, the Christian life I mean.

Well, maybe they did but they lied.

It is filled with highs and lows, scars and wounds.

A servant cannot be greater than his master (John 15:20). And in this case, the hands and feet of the master was pierced on the cross. But we desperately wish for ours to be whole.

NO to pain, rejection, persecution or disappointment.

If any man will be my disciple, he must pick up his cross, deny himself and follow me. -Matthew 16:25

And the truth is that we cannot pick up our cross without expecting it to leave some scars. And when it does, we’ll get to show Him our scars and He’ll show us His. He’ll comfort us and remind us that we are being conformed into His image through them.

And maybe we’ll pray for Him to come (Rev. 22:20). We’ll ask for Him to come quickly because we are desperately looking forward to the new heavens and the new earth where our tears will be wiped away for all eternity (Rev. 21:1,4).

And there will be times when we will truly and painfully wonder if the scars are worth it and we’ll consider walking away. Continue reading

Counting The Cost Of Following Christ

Counting The Cost
Being a Christian can be uncomfortable and painful at times.

Being a Christian is truly not about everything working out for your “good” in the sense that we have come to know the word “good”.

It’s a big disservice to tell people that when they give their life to Christ, everything will be perfect, life will be good and they will now get whatever it is their heart desires.

Aside from that, I also know that many people are afraid of failing Christ, they feel like they don’t have what it takes to be a Christian. And maybe that is true. I’m not too sure if anyone of us have what it takes to be a Christian.

If you are counting the cost, there’s nothing wrong with that. Please do count the cost.

But while you are counting and trying to figure out the things that following Christ will cost you, you should also consider the things I’m about to tell you. Continue reading

Our Bones Are Dried Up

Valley Of Dry Bones
“And indeed, the bones were very dry.”

When God took Ezekiel, in a vision, to the valley of dry bones, He commanded him to prophesy life into the bones. He prophesied, commanded and brought back to life the “very dead” and very dry bones.

Then he said to me, “Prophesy to these bones and say to them, ‘Dry bones, hear the word of the Lord ! This is what the Sovereign Lord says to these bones: I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life. I will attach tendons to you and make flesh come upon you and cover you with skin; I will put breath in you, and you will come to life. Then you will know that I am the Lord .’ -Ezekiel 37:4-6

And through the word of God, the bones lived. Continue reading

In The Deepest Valleys

Deepest Valleys

“How long, Lord ? Will you forget me forever? How long will you hide your face from me? How long must I wrestle with my thoughts and day after day have sorrow in my heart? How long will my enemy triumph over me?” (Psalm 13:1-2)

There are moments when I’m really good and I feel like my faith is strong.

And then there are moments when I feel really low and I just want to cry and ask why.

These moments can occur more than once in a day. Of course, it seems confusing that a person can experience these surge of emotions, these highs and lows a few hours apart from each other.

But there is someone that we can all relate to in this, King David. Continue reading

Faith In The Midst Of Uncertainty

Faith In The Midst Of Uncertainty

Now faith is the assurance (the confirmation, the title deed) of the things [we] hope for, being the proof of things [we] do not see and the conviction of their reality [faith perceiving as real fact what is not revealed to the senses]. (Hebrews 11:1 AMP)

While I’m currently waiting on God to do something significant in my life, I’ve come to the realization that faith is not about mustering up enough faith to get God to do what we want.

Rather it is about trusting that God will work everything out for our good.

Faith is about trusting that God’s will is always good and better than what we may currently want.

It is being sure and holding on to the fact that God is still good no matter the outcome of our situation. Faith is believing that God is never against us no matter what we may or may not get from Him.

The moment we start believing that we can propel God to do something for us through our faith, we are in danger.

Danger of feeling like a failure for our inability to muster up enough faith. Continue reading

Suitable Covering For Shame

Covering for Shame

As humans, we tend to believe that we are capable of covering up our shame.

And of course we do try, we cover it up with flimsy things that can never last, things that have no substance and will soon fade away.

We cover up our shame with lies, denial and/or blaming others.

When Adam and Eve sinned, they realized their nakedness and this gave birth to shame. Not only did they realize that they were naked but they went on to believe that they could cover up their shame with clothing made out of fig leaves.

At that moment their eyes were opened, and they suddenly felt shame at their nakedness. So they sewed fig leaves together to cover themselves. (Genesis 3:7)

But God had a better plan. Continue reading