Focus.

Why do I esteem so high the opinions of others?
Why must their eyes be the ultimate judge?
What is it that draws me to notability?
Why must I have all credit?
For these feelings of bewilderment and loneliness—
Overwhelming as they may be,
Are not credible, but false representations
Of what is important.
Can I never be satisfied in knowing that You care?
Day after day, year after year,
Wishing I was other than myself—
Clouded eyes, plastic smile.
Where is my true and genuine self?
No false fronts and no apprehension.
I want my true and real compassion—
Not for the satisfaction of others
But for the fulfillment of Your call.
Let me see the low and downtrodden
Instead of rising to the top as a goal.
Give me Your clear, unfading eyes
To see the beauty of a fainting soul.
Let me see Your visions and plans.
May I never miss what You want to do
By my being oblivious to Your greatness.
All I need is You—Your approval.
And everything will fall into place.

His Presence.

Your presence—an enveloping love soothing
Me away from the struggles of this life.
Your truth speaks softly into my ear to continue on,
And your peace is a beaming light, a place to withstand my fears.
Your face is a treasure to my heart—
Even though I’ve never seen Your tender eyes and warm smile,
I know that they are sweeter than the greatest joys on this earth.
When I call Your name in the midst of a turbulent storm,
It is You who responds to my need.
Even when I look back at the troubles of life,
I witness Your outstretched arms that cradled me.
Though the many winding paths may perplex my wandering mind,
I trust that You will show me the course.
And even when I am not trusting, and I struggle to complete Your will,
Your voice speaks words of reassurance and comfort
That allow me to gaze at Your purpose once again.
This world can be blinding with its flashy invitations and show-stopping routines;
But even in the core of the world and its desires,
Your ways are drawing me close.
May I never stray from the way of Life, Your blessed calling for me.
When the distractions and heartaches attempt to thwart me head on,
It’s You I will trust to be my stillness and refreshment.
You will never fail. You will never abandon.
So I will trust You.

God’s Way.

Galatians 1:10

“Obviously, I’m not trying to win the approval of people, but of God. If pleasing people were my goal, I would not be Christ’s servant.”

The more and more I grow up and see more of this world, the more I realize that God’s ways and the world’s ways are completely different. The world operates in a self-centered “me” existence, where the main goal in life is to accumulate the most awards and notability. However, God’s way is just the opposite. God wants us to stay humble; instead of becoming noteworthy, we should minister to the poor and the oppressed. And in our humility, the Lord will eternally honor us.

If our goal is to live our lives in order to please people, we will not find ourselves totally pleasing God. On the flipside, if we live our lives in order to please God, we will not always please others. But God’s way is perfect. Even though this world and the people in it may not agree with the way we live our lives, in the end, we’ll be Christ’s servants.

We cannot be in the middle, or lukewarm Christians. When I was younger I learned about not being a “lukewarm” Christian in Kids’ Church. It always seemed so easy to be on fire for God, especially being in a Christian school. However, as I get older, and “fitting in” seems to require being more worldly, I’ve realized how easy it could be for a person to take the easy route. It most definitely is easier to not follow Christ full-force with full-passion. But God desires a fulfilling, true, and complete relationship with us.

Revelation 3:16

“But since you are like lukewarm water, neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth!”

So may I shine brightly in the darkness, live a life of passion, and be totally on fire for God. Never do I want to be in the middle.

Childlike.

This world is full of distractions. Whether we realize it or not, we are being plagued by the television, computer, and other electronics.

As I step back and look at my life the past couple years, I realize that this technology has taken a big place in my life. First, I joined it all to connect to other people; but then I just found myself using this technology exorbitantly. Though not necessarily bad, this lifestyle has left me a lot less productive.

When I was a kid, I had no distractions; I had no hidden motives. Everything was simple. Pure. Exciting. What has changed as I’ve gotten older? It has to be the distractions. The only way to pursue those aspirations and goals that I haven’t had time for before is to get away from those things that pull me away from what God wants me to do. I need to be like a child, giving all my attention to one thing at a time and enjoying the moment.

From now on, I’m going to try harder to be more childlike. To have undivided focus on what God wants.

A New Kind of Glory.

2 Corinthians 3:7-11

“7 The old way, with laws etched in stone, led to death, though it began with such glory that the people of Israel could not bear to look at Moses’ face. For his face shone with the glory of God, even though the brightness was already fading away. 8 Shouldn’t we expect far greater glory under the new way, now that the Holy Spirit is giving life? 9 If the old way, which brings condemnation, was glorious, how much more glorious is the new way, which makes us right with God! 10 In fact, that first glory was not glorious at all compared with the overwhelming glory of the new way. 11 So if the old way, which has been replaced, was glorious, how much more glorious is the new, which remains forever!

I read this passage this morning and I was like “Wow! I never thought of it like this before!” Moses had an amazing and overwhelming glow when he came down from Mt. Sinai, one that the people noticed markedly. But this was under the old law and the old ways–even before Christ died on the cross and the Holy Spirit came to reign in our hearts and souls.

What an amazing thought that God can do even greater things through us now than even Moses experienced! That means that we must keep having faith and believing that God can and will do great things for us and through us.

Such an Amazing Week.

About a week ago I got back from my first time at Royal Family Kids Camp. I was support staff to help with the kids there that have been in foster care and/or abused sometime in their lives. To be honest, I had no idea what to expect when all of the kids arrived at church for registration and we boarded the bus to camp. I was overwhelmed to say the least. I felt like I was to be responsible to help give these kids a beyond perfect week at camp, and beyond perfect is usually a pretty tall order. 🙂

But when we arrived, I sort of let my worries go. And I also threw out any expectations I had for myself and just wanted to help the kids as much as I could. Day by day, I realized something funny. It was as if the kids were giving to me just by me having fun with them.

I’d never experienced such a love from kids who had supposedly been so broken. It just left me speechless. In turn, that week at RFKC was one of the most unique experiences, one of the most rewarding times, and also one of the most peaceful. That peace I felt just being with the kids was the kind of feeling that made me feel like I’m supposed to do something like this in the future.