If you do well, will you not be accepted? And if you do not do well, sin is crouching at the door. Its desire is for you, but you must rule over it.”
Living life without distractions is something I hardly do in my own strength. Coming from someone who is ADD, at times it seems impossible especially when it comes to following the Lord. Sometimes throughout our walk with God, if we have one, is rough when the world is throwing interruptions such as social media, music and entertainment even considering most of those don't glorify the Lord. Boys seem like they want to walk in the way of everything and friendship issues can take control of our lives at times to. It can feel as if we can never stay on track because there are countless things blocking us from the light of God!
However the sad thing is life is always have distractions. Family losses, self esteem issues, friendship troubles and ordinary tasks such as social media or TV can especially block us from what God wants us to do. Have you ever felt like homework is keeping you from every reading your bible? Family issues are blurring Gods faithfulness? Here is what I have to say to you... In a midst in a world full of sin continuously being thrown in your face and life issues are consuming your heart focusing on the Lord becomes a true struggle and it's our job to lay the pile of distractions in the Lords hands along with the problems and interruptions that keep us from glorifying Him.
Philippians 4:8 says:
Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.
I encourage everyone of you to lay down your phone, turn off the tv, answer an email later and sit down with a bible in your lap and a prayer in mind. Throughout our busy bustling world that never stops our mind frequently needs to be refreshed and to become set on the things of the Lord.
"Be still, and know that I am God! I will be honored by every nation. I will be honored throughout the world."
Written by: Alexa
Happy New Year to all… It amazes me that I have the privilege of time right now… Time to sit down, time to be still, time to enjoy and laugh and do all things wonderful… Lately, I’ve really had time to think about my life. And while I still know that I have much to learn, I wish I could go back and tell my “old self” a few things… Mostly I wish I could tell that girl, “It gets better.”
I remember being so sad… Not just a high school girl, “I hate the world” sad… But really, truly, sad. It was a sad that I didn’t think could be cured. My heart was broken. I didn’t have a group of friends surrounding me and cheering me up. I lost my faith in a dark and scary way. I forgot what it was like to belly laugh… Really laugh. I wish I could look back and tell that sad 16-year-old girl, “It gets better.”
I remember driving my black Eclipse car towards North Carolina my senior year of high school. North Carolina was a place where my extended family lived, where my summers and holidays were spent, and where I really didn’t have a place. I remember walking into West Lincoln High School for the first time, and I was mistaken for a new teacher. I remember feeling like I just wanted to hurry my days up and graduate. I wish I could tell that senior girl, “It gets better.”
I remember Speed Street with Emily Carpenter the summer before college… I remember FINALLY, for the first time in my life, thinking I had found a home in Lincolnton, North Carolina. I remember screaming Cory Smith songs in downtown Charlotte, and staying up all night at Lake Norman. I remember Katie Dellinger looking me in the eyes and telling me, “You’ve chosen the right people to be friends with.” I remember everything falling so perfectly into place, and then feeling like my world was being ripped from me when I went to college. The first night in my college dorm room was the LONGEST night of my life. I wish I could tell that baby freshman, “They will still be your best friends YEARS from now… It’s going to get better from here.”
I remember college… Thinking that I NEVER wanted to grow up. I was dancing until the wee hours of the morning at Rum Runners, carefree about who or what I wanted to be, only thinking about what I was going to wear to the next N.C. State game… I remember not wanting it to end. I wish I could tell that 20 year-old girl, “Trust me, it gets even better.”
I remember the summer I met my husband… I remember thinking that I didn’t want our relationship to change. I wanted to stay right where we were at, because I feared that I would mess up this incredibly perfect part of my life. I feared that this boy who had completely rocked my world would come to know the deeper parts of me and run off. I feared that growing older would cause the little world we had created to lose its magic. I even feared that marriage would somehow damage what we had created. I wish I could tell that girl who was falling in love, “This will only get better.”
Oh our wedding day… There are moments that truly seem like photographs in my mind. I remember my mom holding my hand, right before my dad walked in the door to see me in my dress for the first time. I remember trembling while making my promises to Wheeler, because I knew that it was the biggest promise I would make, other than to my God. I remember dancing so hard with my gorgeous sister and my best friends (the ones I didn’t have so many years before). I remember leaving in the limo that night and thinking to myself, “Nothing will ever top this.” I wish I could tell that new bride, “This is only the beginning, because it just gets better.”
And oh, Hawaii… I remember our first Christmas here, just a year ago. FaceTime with family brought nothing but tears, and it left Wheeler to tend to his new bride who hysterically cried the entire day. We were without a church, without real and genuine friends, and surrounded by boxes that I couldn’t make myself finish unpacking (as if somehow that meant we would return home). I wish I could tell that homesick adult, “This is not the end of your world. This place will get better.”
Graduate school and the job search… There were many nights of tears, exhaustion, and restlessness. I would cry to Wheeler and tell him that I didn’t believe any of my efforts would pay off. I would beg God for just an interview… Just a chance to show someone I had something to offer. I started losing my fire to even finish the race… I wish I could tell that frustrated student, “There is a plan… This will all get better.”
As I sit here tonight and think about my life… That’s what I have truly come to realize. Every heartache, every major mistake, every person who walked in and walked out of my life, every right turn and wrong path, every beautiful moment… Somehow it led to a place where I’m finding that life is STILL getting better. Ecclesiastes 3:11 promises, “He had made everything beautiful in HIS time.” I think we forget that sometimes… I think that we always focus on the “New Year,” because it gives us a sense of hope that somehow the trials and tribulations of our past will be made new again. We feel that somehow we are given this new chance to create change in our life and in our world. We set this day of the year on a platform, and we force it to promise us a better life… But if we look back… Really look back… We can see that it’s already gotten better, because without the bad… even the really really bad… we would have NO idea how “better” truly feels. He truly does make everything beautiful in His timing. It’s a timing that molds us and shapes us into a better image of ourselves than the one before. So while during this New Year I hope and expect great and exciting things for my life, for my marriage, for my career, for my education (yes, I think I’m going BACK to school), for my spiritual life, and for my family… I also am grateful, SO incredibly grateful, for the years that didn’t fulfill all those anticipated hopes, dreams, and expectations… Because isn’t that what makes us the people who we are and the even better people we become? Because as life gets better, so do we…. and so does our world. Cheers to everything you have to offer 2016, along with all the great and not so great years before your arrival!
Written by: Logan