what do you imagine if you were to run into the ocean? i imagine the waves hitting every inch of my body as the sandy water engulfs me, leaving me refreshed. in a much less dramatic way of saying things: i imagine getting wet, at least. now, what do you imagine when you take that first sip of coffee in the morning, or when you order that extra shot of espresso and pray it wakes you up? i simply imagine that feeling that you longed for, the energized feeling that leaves you buzzed for at least two hours before you’re onto your next cup of the day. or in a much less dramatic way of saying things: i imagine coffee breath that leaves me to feel a little less dead, at the least.
to believe you can do either of those things, like to jump into an ocean and not get wet or to sip a cup of joe and not feel the buzz, is equivalent in believing that you can love God without being changed by Him. instead, to truly love Him is to acknowledge the mere fact that your life will be wrecked from the inside out, in the most beautiful ways imaginable. He will rebuild your life into something lasting, something incredible.
i do not exactly remember the times as to when i wasn’t deeply walking with Christ, but what i do know is that they are not as life changing as the times when i am. as i was raised in a Christian home and in attendance of a Christian community as long as i can remember, there wasn’t a moment where everything changed. however, that doesn’t mean my life is all in for Jesus at all times. there have been times where loving God and living in accordance to Him has been last on my list and time with Him has been overlooked by my earthly goals and mindset. in light of comparison, i’ll give you this. the times i remember my heart being changed the MOST are the times where i am serving on missions. i know, it sounds redundant and basic because “everyone comes home on a Jesus high from a missions trip.” i’m not trying to argue with you there, but doesn’t that prove something. it is the times where we go undistracted, stripped of all things that “define us” back at home where we feel God the most. why is that? is it simply because when we have those times, we are most in love with God, and in turn, change happens. He wrecks our hearts to be more in tune with His. our earthly mindsets are traded for Kingdom mindsets. our broken hearts begin to feel a little less shattered because of His love. isn’t that something. it is as if we are “doing the most” with God.
i decided this week to read the book of John. simple. one of the gospels. you know, i expected to read through it quickly and do a little note taking here and there. HA SIKE. that was funny because i am still hooked on the first five verses. let me hit you with them real quick-
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.”
i was overwhelmed because i couldn’t quiet grasp the last verse of that section. the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. in some translations it reads, “the darkness has not understood it.” how BEAUTIFUL. i took that and dissected it, asked questions, referred to more scripture because i was HOOKED. here’s what i got:
- the world became flesh (yep, that’s us.)
- Jesus is the one who shines in the darkness(the light)
- this darkness does not overcome Jesus (our sin is the darkness- the broken world we live in)
- ^ how am i so sure?
- the Light is the life of the Son of God
- the Life is the life of the Creator of all things
- the Light and Life is God
i was mesmerized for some reason. i was fixated on the FACT that Jesus shines His light from God onto this world that is captivated by darkness so much so that the darkness cannot beat it. the light wins. Jesus wins. God wins. how wildly beautiful and incredibly crazy is it that we get to love the same God that drives out darkness. the same God who humbly drives out the darkness is the same God who takes our hearts and changes them to raid the darkness with Him. (John 12:36 “While you have the light, believe in the light, that you may become sons of the light.“)
that’s just it. there it is. the same God who we have the ability to love because He first loved us is the crazy creator who wants us to live the wrecked life. the wrecked life for me is very similar to the feeling of a rushing wave on your skin, or the buzz i get from espresso. the way Jesus has wrecked my life ever since i truly have chosen life with Him is incredible. being in love with God does not mean that my life lacks the battles, imperfections, and chaos. however, as i have fallen more in love with Him, God has allowed me to see so much more beauty and joy in life rather than the destruction and death that surrounds me. it was wrecked, but in the best way. (if you haven’t gotten that yet) my heart now beats wildly for a good sunset or sunrise because i see His love in it. my heart gets excited over the simplest of things just because i see Jesus in the simplicity of life. my community has grown and i am blessed to do life with the kinds of people i have prayed all my life for. i see Jesus in the music i listen to. i see jesus in the way my body allows me to honor it by going on a run or killing a workout. some of the most joyous of times are where i find myself just reading His word. the list could go on.
all in all, i am truly EXCITED about life. and YES, i face trials everyday. my trials look a lot like insecurities, emotional and physical hurts, heart pieces, etc. i can even say i am going through one of the toughest trials i have yet to face in my life CURRENTLY. however, His love for me has changed my heart. i see my trials differently. it took my earthy heart and made it to be more like His. now, i look forward to all the incredible things God has in store for me and my heart and all the change to come, no matter if those things include trials and tribulations, because i know He will be there doing life with me. all i have to do is take the first leap into the water, or the first sip of espresso. i hope everyday mirrors a little bit of what a mission trip looks like, where my heart is devoted to Him in the same way His is mine.
life is truly such an adventure with Him, and i can only pray you allow Him to humbly wreck your life in the beautiful ways He can. heres to more of that!! more “Jesus highs” lasting much longer than a week !! more change !! more waves rushing on your skin !! more coffee buzz !! more love !! more light !! more lasting moments !! more beauty !!