I'm trying to walk by faith while giving nothing but love along the way while seeking the love of our Heavenly Father. Will you walk with me?

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

The p word.

If there is one thing that our society loves to hate, it is purity. Yes, not having sex until marriage. As one who has made the promise to stay pure until marriage 5 years ago, I can attest to this. I can't tell you how many times I've been poked fun of for my decision or doubted because of it. My decision to be pure, along with the most decisions that Christians make, does not conform to society. And society doesn't like that. But I can tell you now, after getting out of a 2 year relationship, staying pure until marriage is one of the best decisions I have ever made.

Although it is one of the best decisions, it is also one of the hardest. God placed sexual desire into our hearts. We were made to physically become one with another person. As someone once said: "we were not made to stop." Wanting sex is completely natural. However, sex is made for marriage and that is how God intends it. I know people say that if you really love someone, you should be able to show them that love physically. But if they love you enough, they would be willing to wait for you. That is why waiting for your future spouse is the ultimate way to show them that you love them. That wait certainly is not easy. Hormones and emotions get in the way. But I know that it will be worth it.

It has already been proven to me that it is worth it. As I leave this 2 year relationship, I cannot begin to tell you how grateful I am that I made decision to not have sex until marriage. As this boy walks away, I am at such peace knowing that he is not walking away with something that didn't belong to him in the first place. Because I didn't give him myself physically, it is that much easier to let go of and move on from the relationship. The hurt has gone away and I am over it. I'm sure that had I given him all of me, I would have such a hard time letting him go. He may have a part of my heart, but he does not have my body. And I thank God for that. Making this promise to Him and my future husband has saved me tremendous heartache.

God's plan of sex only being in marriage serves a great purpose. It helps us guard our hearts. And for women, it helps weed out the jerks who only want you for your body. Keeping this standard will prove which men are willing to wait for you. These are the kind of men that deserve to be with a princess of the King of Kings. Why be with someone who isn't willing to wait for you? You deserve someone who will not only wait, but someone who will help you stay pure in the wait. If they pressure you and tempt you to to further, run away. They are not in it for the right reasons. Stay strong and keep God and your future spouse in mind. Purity is impossible without a relationship with God. The strength that is needed to be pure is strength than cannot come from us alone. Purity is also a way to show your love for Him and to show that you will and trust His plan. But how much should you sacrifice to show that? How far is too far? Well, a good way to judge that is to think of your future spouse. How far would you want them going with someone other than you? If you don't want them going that far, then why go that far with someone else's future spouse? It's also not just about being a physical virgin. It's about being a heart virgin. You cannot go lusting after the opposite sex. Strive to be pure in your heart and mind. That includes not watching pornography. You're future spouse deserves more than that. God deserves more than that. You deserve more than that.
"Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God." - Matthew 5:8

I know there are some of you thinking "it's too late for me" or "I'm damaged goods." But let me make this clear, it is not too late. God is the giver of second chances (and third and fourth and fifth chances and so on). We are human. We make mistakes. We fall time and time again. Maybe you're not a virgin. Maybe your virginity was taken from you. But know this, who you are is not what you do. "You are more than the choices that you made. You are more than the sum of your past mistakes. You are more than the problems you create. You've been remade." Whatever your past may be does not mean you cannot be pure. You can choose today to start waiting for your future spouse. You deserve to be loved and you ARE loved.

"For anyone who is in Christ
is a new creation."
2 Corinthians 5:17

Purity is so freeing. And it is fun. It forces you to be creative and to show someone you love them without getting physical. And showing someone you love them without getting physical really does go a long way. You may ask: how can I do that? Well here are a few ideas:
· send flowers or surprise gifts
· write letters
· send a cute card
· take them on a surprise date
· go on a picnic
· make them a craft
· cook or bake them something
· make a list of reasons why you love them
· do their favorite activity with them
· come up with your own list of ways to show your significant other you love them without getting physical!

I know I would prefer any of these things than a steamy makeout session. But maybe that's just me. ;)

My future husband is out there. I don't know who he is, but he gives me so much hope. I love him already. And because of that, I will respect him and I will wait for him. I will be the woman he deserves. Regardless of what society says, I will not have sex until the night of my wedding because the gift of my body belongs to him and only him.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Only Christ can satisfy.

Here's the post you've all be waiting for. As I mentioned in my last post, life hasn't been ideal lately. And here's the inside scoop to that.

My boyfriend of almost two years and I broke up. I have never experienced a break up before. And let me tell you, breakups suck. They suck a lot. I didn't expect it to hurt this much. I've always been an independent person. Even throughout the relationship, I've said: "I don't need a boyfriend." And the truth is, I don't. I do not need a boy to be there to tell me I'm beautiful and worthy. Quite frankly, I know that. But it doesn't mean it doesn't hurt. I think what hurts so much is that you give your heart to that person. Your heart is in that person's hands and they just let it drop. You put your heart and soul into the relationship and you give it all the effort you've got, just to have that person walk away without putting up a fight. You let that person into your heart and they get comfortable there. Then they decide that they no longer want a relationship, and take a part of your heart with them. All of sleep lost so you can talk to them, all of the hours you've driven to see them, all of the planning, constant support, and love that you've given to them: gone. With one phone call, it's all over. The past two years of your life are gone to simply become a memory. All of the good moments, laughs, sharing, dancing; gone. Just like that. You lost them. You lost that relationship. You lost a part of you. Just like that. And what makes it harder is that he is such a great guy. He has so much to offer to this world. I have no reason to be mad at him. I understand completely why he did it. I may not agree with how he did it, but he had no intention to hurt me. He did not do this out of spite or to hurt me. He still cares and he is still a great guy. He will always be a part of me and he will always have a part of my heart. Some girl is going be so lucky to have him some day. And right now, I'm not what he needs.

But God is up to something; as He always is. This breakup has forced me to think about my relationship with Jesus. I've always thought about my relationship with Jesus while dating this boy. But now that he walked away, I've been kind of forced to turn to Jesus even more. Jesus is the only one who will never walk away. He will not let you down. He will never, EVER leave your side. And when your heart is breaking, He will hold it and put the pieces back together. When you are hurting, He will give you peace.

This breakup has also forced me to think about myself and what I deserve. To the ladies, don't ever let a boy determine your worth. The only man who can determine your worth is the One who died on the cross for you. In His eyes, you are precious and you are a treasure. You are a princess of the King of Kings. You deserve nothing less than being treated like the princess that you are. Jesus has all that you deserve. And Jesus has SO much more to offer than any boy. Jesus will constantly fight for you. He will constantly put in effort to your relationship with Him. He will support you and love you to no end. He will always let you know how much you mean to Him. And all of the flowers He put on this earth? Yeah, all of those flowers are for you. He died on the cross for YOU. Yes, you. You, my dear friend, are SO loved by the One who give up His life out of love. No boy with be able to satisfy you the way Christ can. You can have the most amazing boyfriend ever, and you will still find yourself searching for something more. "The only one who can satisfy the human heart is the One who made it." In Him, you will find joy, peace and the love you have been looking for. Chase God, and along the way, you will find a guy who is chasing Him too. "A woman's heart should be so lost in God that a man needs to seek Him in order to find her." As women, we deserve a guy who will pursue us and who will love us to no end.
"Your relationship with guys should be a reflection of the Father's love, not a replacement for it. Instead of looking for the ideal man, become the ideal woman and let him look for you. Keep your eyes on God and know that when it comes to finding a decent guy, the patient girl gets the prize.” - Crystalina Evert.

This breakup has caused me to remember this once again. I know what I deserve and I will not settle for less. I will keep my head high and my standards higher. If someone is going to walk out of my life so easily, I'm not going to chase them. I deserve more than that. They lost me. I now have an amazing opportunity to go out into the world and grow. I will be able to do the things that a relationship would not have allowed me to do. I am free and I have so much to experience. I accept that he's gone and I am moving on.

"What doesn't kill you makes you stronger
Stand a little taller
Doesn't mean I'm lonely when I'm alone
What doesn't kill you makes you fighter
Footsteps even lighter
Doesn't mean I'm over 'cause you're gone

What doesn't kill you makes you stronger, stronger
Just me, myself and I
What doesn't kill you makes you stronger
Stand a little taller
Doesn't mean I'm lonely when I'm alone

Thanks to you I got a new thing started
Thanks to you I'm not the broken-hearted
Thanks to you I'm finally thinking 'bout me
You know in the end the day you left is just my beginning."
- Kelly Clarkson

So here's to the new beginning. Here's to the new me. Here's to the new life with Christ that I will be living. I trust God and His plan. His plan is better than my own. I know that He has someone out there someone so amazing for me. And I know my future husband will appreciate this so much. He's out there. I will wait for him. But for now, it's God's plan for me to focus on Him because He is all I need right now. I will focus on being madly in love with Him. He is more than what I deserve. He is enough for me. I trust Him.
I trust Him.

"Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
your own intelligence rely not.
In all your ways be mindful of Him,
and He will make straight your paths."
- Proverbs 3:5-6

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Life hurts but God is bigger.

So things in my life haven't been ideal lately; but honestly, is life ever truly ideal? Not to sound like a Debbie Downer, but in this imperfect life, something is always going wrong. And some times, life just hurts. And I mean really hurts. And well, God has been teaching me one heck of a lesson through this hurt. Actually, it's pretty amazing.

Sometimes God has us hit the bottom so we start looking up at Him. And boy, have I been learning this. We are going to get hurt. It's inevitable. Sometimes we put our heart out on the line just to have the line cut by someone else. And sometimes, we give so much of our time and effort for it to just seem like a waste. We give until it hurts. We love until it hurts. We lose someone we love. And that's what happens, it hurts. We hit the bottom. But the hurt isn't the end all and be all. That's where God comes in. God is more than your hurt. He is more than your pain. And He will never ever give you anything you cannot handle. And "if He brings you to it, He will bring you through it." This cannot be even more true. In the midst of the pain, God will bring peace. We just have to let Him. We must use our God given strength and open our hearts to accepting His peace even while feeling such pain. We have to look up. We cannot do this on our own and we are not alone. And God has given me some of the most amazing people to prove this. He will always give you what and who you need in times of pain. God will never leave you hanging.

It's easy to question and get angry when feeling pain. If God loves us, why does He let us feel this pain? Well, let me ask you this: if you never know what it's like to feel pain, do you really know what it's like to feel joy? As much as it can hurt, pain is necessary. Because then how can we truly be happy if we don't have a reason to appreciate it? It's in the pain where I feel God the most. He has to let us hit the bottom so we start looking up at Him. And in Him, there is so much hope, peace, joy and love. And once we experience pain, we can truly appreciate that and love Him more and grow closer to Him. So as crazy as it may sound, be thankful for the pain. Thank God even when you hurt. Because He is up to something and only good can come from it. God is good. That will never ever change. God is good even in the midst of tears. Sometime we don't know what He's up to, but we don't have to. We just have to trust Him. He knows us better than we know ourselves. Trust Him. We may not understand what He's doing, but just trust that it's for the good.

I've heard it said before that life is like a puzzle. We only see one piece at a time. But the best view of the puzzle if from above. God sees what will come out of this puzzle. So trust Him.

What you may be feeling now will not last forever. The night is darkest just before the dawn. After every good Friday comes an Easter. "This too shall pass." God will get you through. He will hold your heart with the same hands that created the universe. In Him, there is hope. Don't lose hope.

"And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts. For as members of one body you are called to live in peace. And always be thankful." Colossians 3:15


Friday, October 12, 2012

Ch-ch-ch-ch-changes.

Today I went back to CYFM to cook for a retreat. It was so awesome to go back. But at the same time, it was a little bit weird-a good weird. I was looking at the pictures on the wall. I happened to come across the ones that I was in. I couldn't help but think about how that girl in those pictures is not the same girl. I'm not who I was when those pictures were taken. Those pictures were taken only 3 years ago, but since then so much has changed. I've changed.

I've never been a fan of change. Life after my dad died seemed to be a never ending change; which it was. I got to the point where I was so sick of change and I just wanted it all to stop. But now I'm realizing that life never stops changing. We never stop changing. And I'm learning that I need to accept the change. I cannot prevent change. I have to embrace it and let it happen. Change is good.

I thought about this the entire drive home. I'm not the same person I was 2 months ago. I've changed and college is changing me. But I think that this is a good change. I've been learning so much and my mind has been opened to a lot. I've been learning about myself, others, and my faith. I'm learning what my limits are and how to react to certain situations that I never had to face before. I'm questioning things that I've never questioned myself. I'm questioning myself. I'm questioning my faith. I'm questioning the ways of this world. It's actually pretty awesome to be own my own and free to question these things. As a religion teacher in high school once said: "question everything." And, let me tell you, I am. But with the questioning, comes change. I am changing. I got my nose pierced and I cut my hair shorter than my boyfriend's. I'm not entirely sure who I am, or what I believe. I'm not entirely sure what God wants me to be. But you know what? That's okay. And in the midst of the change, I'm finding that there is one thing that is unchanging. God. God doesn't change and that is such a beautiful thing. Although I may be questioning and changing, He doesn't change and His love for me never changes. That's a pretty amazing thing. It gives me so much peace. I wish word could describe how comforting it is to know that among the change, questions, and uncertainty, God is a rock; He's not going anywhere and He's not changing. Whoa.

College is a whole new world; a whole new ball game. It's a world that instantly throws you into the unknown and leaves you to find your way. I have to say, it was a pretty easy adjustment for me. But my world has changed. College is the time for change. I'm starting to find that change can be good.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Wedding bells are ringing.

The craziness of last weekend is finally staring to settle down. As crazy as it was, it was such an amazing and beautiful weekend filled with love, laughter, family and fun. But before I go into it, a little background of my family is needed.

I am one of 5 children. My mom had me when she was 45. I was a surprise baby. My oldest brother is 39. There's 21 years between me and the oldest and 14 years between me and the next youngest. All of my siblings are now married and I have 9 nieces and nephews. My dad died 5 years ago on July 19, 2007. My dad was the best dad ever. He was such an amazing man.

Growing up, I was practically an only child. However, there was one sibling that was around the most; Mark. Mark is the next youngest. He was 14 when I was born. Although I am close with all of my siblings, and they have all impacted me greatly in such awesome ways, Mark has impacted me in a slightly different way. When I was growing up, it was always Mark and I. It's hard to put words to describe our relationship. He was around the most because all of my other siblings were off in college, starting off jobs and getting married and simply becoming adults. When my dad died,  all of my other siblings had their spouses. Mark and I had each other. He understands me and he is half the reason why I am the way I am. He's a big part of the reason why I think things the way I do. Simply put, he was my best friend growing up.

Last weekend, Mark got married. I wish words could describe how amazing of a weekend. I also wish words could describe how amazing Mark's wife, Lizzie, is. If I had to create the perfect woman for Mark, it would be Lizzie. Mark and Lizzie are so perfect for each other. They balance each other out and they complete each other. The love they have is an amazing example of what love is. They met at a soup kitchen and then reconnected at a wake of a close friend of both of theirs. Their story is a story of hope. That beauty can come from pain. They are a couple that brings so much love to every one you meet. They are the dynamic duo. Their love is the kind of love that is contagious and you can't help but feel joyful around them.

Their wedding was so beautiful. I'm not a crier, and not once have I ever happy cried. But let me tell you, I was a mess the entire ceremony. I was so happy for the to the point were words couldn't express, so I cried. All it took was one look at Mark's reaction to Lizzie walking down the isle. Once I saw him tear up, I lost it. I was just that happy for him.

The love that Mark and Lizzie perfectly example that the love that God has in mind for us. They're not perfect people. But they are perfect for each other. They give so much hope that one day we'll be able to experience a love like this. Their love reflects the love of our Heavenly Father.

God is the author of love and He is writing our love stories. It's easy to get caught up in the idea of marriage and to so strongly long for this love. I'm guilty of it. I often catch myself day dreaming about the kind of wedding dress I want to have or what songs to I want played during the ceremony. However, I remind myself that I must live in the moment. That's where trusting God comes in. So often society tells us that we need to have that love, or a significant other in order to be happy. Although they will make us happy, they cannot satisfy us the way God can. We have to focusing on falling more in love with Christ. He's the only One who will never let us down.

For those who want to bad to have a significant other, I encourage you to focus on your relationship with God. "Dance with Jesus and He'll let the perfect person cut in." God is enough. Once you are happy with Him and yourself, then you can truly be happy with another person.

"Do not arouse, do not stir up love before its own time." - Song of Solomon 8:4

God has an amazing plan for us. Your future spouse is out there. And one day we'll be able to experience an amazing love like Mark and Lizzie. But for now, trust God. Walk with Him. Let Him write your love story. Don't go looking for love in the wrong places. God's love will always, always be enough.