Tuesday, July 8, 2014

What is love?

So I get songs stuck in my head constantly (well, okay, not when I'm sleeping).

It doesn't matter what happens, I'll probably be reminded of a song. Like when I finish a task, the song "Looks Like We Made It" by Barry Manilow runs through my head. Or at least the first line of the chorus does ("looks like we made it..."). Same with when I finally get a point someone's trying to make. Only then it's usually "And at last I see the light..." from TANGLED's "I See the Light".*

The annoying part of it is, I don't always remember the entire song. It's usually only the first or second line of the chorus that runs through my head, and then I usually find myself wondering what the rest of the song is about, and sometimes that leads to an internet search.

Which is what happened today. This time, the song was "What is Love?".

And after reading the rest of the lyrics, I can tell you one thing: love is NOT what that song describes.

That song is a pretty good picture of what lust is, but not a chance it portrays love. At least not the Biblical, holy love that God encourages us to seek.

Lust is seeking your own satisfaction. Love is putting others' wants above your own.

Lust is using others. Love is serving others.

Lust is blaming others. Love is working to fix the problem.

Lust is focusing on your needs. Love is focusing on others' needs.

Lust is quitting when it's too hard. Love is striving even when it's tough.

Lust is giving in to pressure to sin when your boyfriend asks/demands sex. Love is holding yourself back from sex until marriage, saving yourself for your future husband.

Lust is letting your mind dwell on perverted fantasies. Love is taking every thought captive.

Lust is easy as anything. Love is tough as a week-old bagel. Tougher, in fact.

Kick lust to the curb. Choose love. It's not easy, but it's worth it.

*Yes, it is very fun being me, in case you were wondering. I enjoy my random outbursts of song, though I don't know if my friends and family do.

Saturday, July 5, 2014

3 things I've learned about faith so far

So yesterday was my birthday (yay! another year farther away from twenty and closer to thirty!!!). And while I've still have a lot to learn (and hopefully I'll learn a lot before I reach thirty), God's also taught me a lot about what it means to have faith in Him. So today, I thought I'd share three things I've learned so far.

1. It's okay if you have no clue what's happening

This has almost been the state of my twenties so far. Not knowing what's going on, how God is going to work this whole thing out, what exactly He wants me to do with all these varying interests and talents He's given me. But He's shown me that it's okay. I don't need to know. I don't need to know exactly how it's going to turn out. After all, what He has for me to accomplish in my twenties is probably far different than what He has in store for me in my thirties. All I need to do is trust that He's got it covered, and strive after doing His will with all my heart and strength. Charge!

2. It's okay if this whole life thing doesn't make sense

God never promised it would, actually. And just think of all the people who went out and did things which must've looked crazy to those around them. Jesus, for example. At thirty, he leaves a steady carpentry job and goes out preaching servanthood and suffering to a nation looking for victory and freedom from the Roman oppressors. Preaching turning the other cheek and loving others to a nation who thought they were the best people in the world. Declaring He was the Messiah, Who would be slain for our sins, when they were looking for a king who would free them. Does that makes sense for getting ahead in the world?

In fact, God's way is going to seem crazy to the world, because it's on a whole different level. The Bible actually tells us that the world considers the things of God to be foolish (1 Corinthians 2:14). Chances are, if He hasn't already, God's going to tell you to do something which, from an earthly perspective, makes about as much sense as sticking a wet finger in a car outlet. But I can assure you of one thing: when God's telling you to do something, you better get to it, no matter how ridiculous it seems.

3. It's okay to feel like you can't do it anymore

Because, honestly, you can't. But God can. We can't do anything worthwhile in our own feeble strength, but when we rely on God, we can do great things for Him. You can't do it alone, and you don't have to. God's there, waiting to help you out. Because God "gives power to the weak, and to those who have no might He increases strength" (Isaiah 40:29, NKJV). 

He never meant you to go through this whole life thing alone. But often, we shove Him aside and try to do it on our own anyway (by the way, I'm definitely including myself in this. I kind of personify "Independence").
Don't do it alone. You're not a super Christian if you rely on yourself. Rely on God. 

We don't always know what's going on. Life doesn't always make sense. And we'll often feel like we just bombed life. But have faith, because God's got it covered. He knows exactly what's happening, how it will all work out, and He'll give us the strength we need to pull through.