I sit here, discouraged. Because it seems like I haven't done enough, like I'm not brave or passionate enough to be a real Christian. Why am I not like them? You know, the amazing missionaries who faced lions, did not deny their faith, and went to the dirty slums in Africa to share His love? Why am I not like Paul, who seemed so on fire for Christ?
Then I realize that Christianity isn't a feeling and for me, it hasn't been one huge moment where I knew everything and felt 'on fire' for Jesus. There's been times where I've felt full of God's love, but there's been times when I haven't. I've got to start somewhere and though it seems I'm moving slow, I'm still moving forward.
Paul probably didn't feel God's power or love while he was in prison. But he had faith. Even when he could not see, even when he couldn't feel, he had to trust that God was there and keep persevering.
A couple of months ago I was angry at God, angry because I didn't feel or have any desire to spend time with Him. I was angry and hurt because I thought God was supposed to be there by my side, never leaving me. I didn't understand that He was still there, despite the fact that I didn't "feel" Him. After that I got to reading in Psalms and while I was listening to times at 11pm at night, I literally burst into tears. I had blamed God, been angry at Him, when really it was my fault. And He still loves me.
So this is where I'm at now. Just being amazed by how God could love someone like me. I know it probably sounds cheesy when I keep going on like this, but I really can't explain it in words. I'm realizing that life is short. It could end any moment now. There are many people around me who I need to be pouring myself into. I need to remind myself that life isn't about me. It's not about what I want or how I feel. It's about giving all the glory to God and doing that by pouring myself into the many people around me.
I want to become a selfless woman. Even if I can't fly on an airplane to Africa right now, I can still pour myself into my younger siblings and teach them what God has taught me. I can still learn to trust God. It's going to be a slow process, slow yet steady. Jesus, bring me closer to You. I need You, I can do nothing on my own.
"Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us." HEBREWS 12:1
postscript: I got the camera back.
postscript number two: we just got back from a fantastic trip in Tennessee. more pictures comin' soon.