Blogging. What a silly concept. And yet…I caved.

I love writing. I’m obsessed with actually. Nothing gives me more peace and clarity than all the thoughts in my head being transferred onto paper. And as silly as blogging is, I’m starting to see just how beautiful it can be. Why wouldn’t I want my closest friends and family to have a window into my soul? To read my thoughts about God, life, humanity, etc?

So for my first blog, I want to write about perspective. Perspective has been on my mind alot lately. Many things have happened or not happened in my life lately that have required me to change my perspective on the situation in order to maintain positivity or..lets just be honest…sanity?

I’m currently reading an amazing book. It’s called “The Inner Voice of Love” by Henri Nouwen. Everyone should read this book. I really have no words for how much I’ve learned from it. Go get it now! The last chapter I read was called “Remain attentive to your best intuitions” and I would like to put some of the best quotes from that chapter here, because this is SO where I’m at right now.

“You sense that nothing but God’s love can fulfill your deepest need while the pull to other people and things remains strong. It seems that peace and anguish exist side by side in you, that you desire both distraction and prayerful concentration. Trust the clarity with which you see what you have to do. You are becoming aware of how close Jesus is to you. He holds you safe in his love. At times, memories of past events and fantasies about the future pierce your heart, but these painful incidents have become less frightening, less devastating, less paralyzing. It almost seems as if they are necessary reminders of your need to stay close–very close–to Jesus. You know that something totally new, truly unique, is happening within you. It is clear that something in you is dying and something is being born. You must remain attentive, calm, and obedient to your best intuitions.  You feel a strange sadness. An enormous loneliness emerges, but you are not frightened. You feel vulnerable but safe at the same time. JESUS IS WHERE YOU ARE, and you can trust that he will show you the next step.”

WOW. Jesus is where you are. I’m not sure I’ve ever heard more exquisite words than that. I feel Him more than I ever have before. It is simply because I am allowing myself to feel him. He is ever so slowly and painfully pulling back the old, tattered blindfold that has shrouded my eyes for so long. My perspective is completely shifting to Him. My faith feels more genuine, nitty gritty, and true than it ever has before. Than I ever thought it could be.

I love my job. I never knew how fun it could be to walk around in nature with a bunch of middle schoolers teaching them about how amazing our world is. I learn more about myself and the character of God through the awe-inspiring faces of these children than I ever have in the first 23 years of my life. This past week we had a Christian school of 7th and 8th graders. It was a tough but amazing week. Tough because my kids were really disrespectful and I had a hard time trying to get them to challenge themselves. Plus, it was super intimidating to have older kids. Like..they were my height! But the whole week was culminated in one experience we shared together: night hike. For the age they are I was really suprised how terrified they were to go on their solo walk. I was talking to them before the walk about God and how much He yearns for our attention, to spend time with us, just us. And that I wanted them to use their solo walk time to simply talk to God, because nothing makes Him more joyful than His child’s undivided attention. As always, I went ahead to map out the walk with glowsticks so they wouldn’t get lost. I had them remain silent at the end of the walk until all the kids were there (so much easier said than done with middle schoolers!) but I wanted them to continue to stay in that place with God. When we started to talk about what was going through their heads as they were alone with God, tears instantly came to my eyes. Because it was dark, the kids didn’t seem as afraid to speak up about their feelings since noone could really see eachother. The thoughts and questions that came out of their mouths were wise beyond their years: “Why does God give us mercy?”, “I felt Him speaking to me for the first time in my life”, “The glowsticks made me feel safe. I knew someone was waiting for me at the end, God is the one waiting for us and the glowsticks are the road we travel in life”, “This solo walk made me love God more, because I had to lean on Him in order to get through it”. 

Responses full of beauty, confusion, peace, fear, and love. They summed up exactly what our relationships with God often look like.

I wanted to write about perspective. My perspective of God is shifting. I am one step closer. That night those kid’s perspective on God shifted. They are now one step closer. This is why my job is amazing. I get to actually watch this happen for these kids and grow with them along the way.

TOGETHER THROUGH LIFE is the title of my blog. I liked it because not only is it a Bob Dylan album title (whom I adore) but it sums up what I want this time in my life to look like. Together through life with Mount Hermon. Together through life with Santa Cruz. Together through life with these kids. Together through life with my God.

Happy reading. 🙂