Yet we must wait on the other end. We must have open arms and a wellspring of grace when they have been spent dry. We must not say, ‘I told you so.’ We must still tell the truth, not in superiority, but with teary eyes and shaking hands. Don’t give up: because maybe you’re all they have. All the long while, be the voice of healing. Cheer for them, and say the thing that no one else has told them: ‘You’re so much better than this.’ Believe there is still yet hope, for God is sovereign and He is still in the business of rescue."
Recently, I have come to realize that my imagination belongs to Jesus. I have allowed outside images to pollute the imagination He gave me. Whether it be lustful images, past experiences, or images of violence or terror. Before I could practice listening prayer, I needed to clean out all these images from my heart.
As I sat on my bed, eyes closed with my hand on my forehead… I saw Jesus dressed in white. His hand extended towards me. It was so vivid that I started to cry. Slowly, I began to “pull out” the images in my mind, one by one, dropping them into Jesus’ hand.
I was piling nasty, rotten garbage into His hand. Some of them were sticky.. and stretched like gum. That’s how long some of these things have been festering in my mind/heart. Jesus waited patiently as I paused at times, uncertain if I was really willing to give up the deeper things.
Overall, it was difficult. But Jesus showed me that He can handle it all. And that I can be free.
I have committed to pray every night. Because the time I go to bed, is the time I am most susceptible to my temptations. I made a list of the people who’ve been on my heart, and have started to pray for a couple of them each night.
Honestly, I wasn’t sure what was going to happen. I wasn’t even sure if God was going to show me anything for these people. But I think the only thing I need to worry about is saying “yes” to Him. If I am open and willing, He answers. This experience has been so life-giving and has been drawing me closer to Him.
Moment by moment, heartbreak by heartbreak, God is changing and molding you, equipping you to be the tool He will use to build His kingdom. He is filling you up, so that He might pour you out. It is never an easy thing to be poured out for Christ, often times it is with a call to die to self; but its glory will outshine all that we do here on earth.
To be used by God is to be chipped and bent, immersed in fire and hammered out on an anvil, it is the defining thing that will set a course for eternity; the call to holiness starts when we say “Send me.”
And when we are in the process of this change, our lips must be quick to praise, for we are being made into something wonderful by a God who is altogether good."
— T.B. LaBerge // Go Now (via tblaberge)
"Once you are able to love yourself, heal, and trust God, my hope is that you will find someone who will sharpen you. Someone who can humble down and love when it is hardest. Someone who can partner with you, and affirm your gifts and passions. Someone who chooses to stay by your side when it feels like there is no reason to."
- Journal entry
When grandma’s words slipped slow
poison down my throat,
dying a little each time,
no one protected me.
When that drunk man entered the restaurant
and hovered behind me…
leaving me shaken,
no one protected me.
When Stephanie pulled me around school
by my hair, helpless and humiliated,
no one protected me.
When Stacey insulted me everyday-
hitting and stomping on my feet-
no one protected me.
No one stood up for me.
Was I not worth protecting?
Was I not worth fighting for?
Am I worth the effort?
Hardened heart, brick-built fortress;
I learned to protect myself.
By not letting anyone else in.
"Keep Out" "Turn Back"
Until I met “the one”
who invaded my high fort, and
left me underneath the rubble.
Laying in the ashes, I ask
Is it worth it to love?
To show my true self?
I need to protect what is mine.
I need to protect myself,
always have my guard up.
Don’t show that you’re weak.
If those tears fall, you’ve failed.
Don’t give them the satisfaction of
letting them know just how far
they’ve pushed you.
Keep that mask on.
Shake off the pain.
Or absorb it like a sponge.
But I gotta admit:
it’s lonely in this tower.
Ragged breaths, shuffled steps,
exhausted from the countless battles.
I’m tired, but I have to stand
Who else will fight for me?
You don’t need to carry that anymore.
I am your shield.
Lay down your armor because I have
come to fight on your behalf.
I want you to rest.
Why protect someone like me?
I love you.
There’s no other reason needed.
The time has come!
Who knew I would someday give a talk on this…haha! God, You knew. Tonight, I’ll be talking about Agape Love, through the Scripture of the Prodigal son and pieces of my own story.
Wow.. After going through my talk a couple more times, I suddenly had an urge to read my old journal. My OTHER journal- the one I used from Freshman year all the way to part of my Junior year.
As a Sophomore after Mark Camp:
"Lord, thank you for being with me the entire time. Thank you for blessing me and providing me with the love I don’t deserve, the people I could only dream of, and the patience I longed to gain the past year, which was full of stumbling blocks and mistakes.
Help me find my identity in You alone.”
As I read my entries.. I laugh at the silly things I did, smile at the memories, and feel my heart twinge through my broken cries. I had so many questions. Some are still unanswered. I had so many doubts and fears. Some are still there. But I am blown away by the full picture of everything that has happened in my life. I’m still learning things about myself and about You.
Who knew I’d someday be on the other side: On the stage.. when I used to sit in those chairs. As a speaker, I believe You are moving in the lives of these students. Each and every one. I mean, hey, I’m still here, right? A living, breathing testament of what You can do! XD haha Anything is possible with You.
It’s so clear to me now.. that as a Freshman, I’d been searching for love. But it wasn’t rooted in Agape Love. I dove into Philia(Friendship) and Eros(Romantic) without You, and made a really big mess…But You were able to redeem it all, and still show me so much grace. I’ve gotten to experience so many new things. I’ve gotten to meet more wonderful people! And I’m thankful for the ways You’ve used me to love others…that I get to see You moving in their lives.
In the ways that I’ve been hurt.. the ways that I longed to be loved… You prompted me..and asked me “Why don’t you demonstrate the love you wish to feel? How should we love one another?”
Love is patient, kind, not envy, not boast, not proud, not rude, not self-seeking, not easily angered, keeps no record of wrongs, doesn’t delight in evil, always protects, trusts, and perseveres
Love never fails.