Hunger Pains and The Neglected Pen

When I started this blog in 2015, I wasn’t really looking for much of an audience. I was just looking for a place to find release. I needed to get the words out of me or they were going to silently consume me to the point of implosion. The thought of that outcome was too scary to even imagine. To be eaten by the very hunger that compelled me to write in the first place…how ironic would that have been?
So I wrote. I loved it and I loved the sense of being known as I carefully formed each phrase of thought.
But the past year came in like a flood and with that heavy rain came new growth opportunities that I never could have been able to anticipate. Good things have bloomed and I’m grateful for the downpour of blessings that have washed away yesterday’s old mindsets .
However, I stopped writing because I got caught up in the flow of the new. The refreshing rain gave me moments of tangible joy but that relentless ache started gnawing at my insides again. That familiar groaning that says, “Nothing else is going to satisfy your desire to write…except writing.”
So here I am at the end of a very full year and my soul is having hunger pains. My new experiences have drowned out my old restless ways. God knows I needed that baptism as a reminder of His amazing grace. But it’s not thirst for adventure that wakes me up at night anymore. It’s a longing for a recorded life.
What’s the point of living the dream if no one knows about it? Not for glory or glamour, no. For a chance to point to the One who brings wholeness as we allow our hunger and thirst to draw us closer to Him.
After all, a satisfied life means that we are to  live at the intersection of the external and the internal. Always. If we are drenched from the rain but our hearts are weak from starvation, we are still half-empty. If our inner being feasts on manna but our bones become brittle from neglect, then we waste away.
To be made whole is my greatest desire and to do that means I must respond to the hunger inside by documenting my thirst-driven life. So I choose to drink of His grace and I pray that my well lived stories ultimately reflect the Story Giver.

Learning the Language of Love

As many of you know, I am reading one book per month as a personal growth goal for 2016. (See the list of books I’m diving into HERE.) February’s selection was an amazing book by Bob Goff called “Love Does.”

love-does-goff

This book had been recommended to me atleast a dozen times before I actually got around to reading it. Now I know why! Here are a few things I learned about love from this life-changing book:

  1. Love is personal. Each chapter gives the reader a story from the author’s life where love was shown to him or through him. I was in awe of the many different ways he was able to recognize God’s love on his behalf. Goff has a natural knack for story telling and leaves us in a place where we are motivated to look for God’s ever present love in our lives as well.
  2. Love takes risks. Every story Goff weaved brought a level of challenge and adventure with it. He claims that “Jesus invites us on an adventure, He shapes who we become with what happens along the way.” (p. 130)
  3. Love doesn’t need a mission statement. You don’t have to join an organization that claims they are in the “love others” business in order to actually love others. He calls people who don’t flash their love around “secretly incredible people.” No capes to show off your love. No signs to promote your love. Just loving for the sake of loving.
  4. Love isn’t afraid of failure. In fact, love thrives off of going after our dreams even when the probability of success seems low. Goff says that failure is just an opportunity to think differently about some things.
  5. Love is audacious. It goes to extravagant measures to ensure others know that they are, in fact, loved. It doesn’t matter if people think you’re going overboard or caring too much. Love is more concerned with loving than with what onlookers might have to say about the way you do the loving.

I hope these reasons encourage you to check out this book. I know it is one that I will read again. I’ll leave you with my favorite quote from the story he told about his beloved, yet beat up JEEP:

“I know it sounds goofy, but I want to be like that Jeep. I want to leak from having been hit by Jesus. From having something crazy happen to me, something that flipped my life upside down. I’ve met people like that, people who leak Jesus. Whenever you’re around them, Jesus keeps coming up with words and with actions. I don’t suppose everybody gets hit by Jesus, but those of us who have talk about Him differently. We start steering funny; we start leaking where we stand. And it’s because we got thrown from our lives in a terrific collision.” 

 

(To see January’s book review, click here.)