Noah

My story has been told again and again. It has been written down and read by thousands upon thousands. The ironic thing is that my story has reoccurred in children’s books and lessons for years. I know that as children, you often simplify stories because they just don’t understand things like adults do. But if you stop and think about it…my story isn’t really a children’s story.

****

When God told me to build an ark, I was scared. I had never done anything like that before and would God really send rain? I mean, come on! It hasn’t rained in forever! What will the others think of me? I must confess…those thoughts did enter my mind. However, I remembered the stories and the events in my lifetime that told of God’s provision so I decided to trust Him. Every day that I spent building that massive boat was a trial. It was hot and it was hard work. On top of that, everyone who passed by made some cutting remark or just laughed loudly. I tried to ignore them. While it was fairly easy to ignore those who I never or rarely spoke too, it was not so easy to ignore the laughter or jabbing remarks of those that I had once called my friends.

Believe me when I say that I tried to tell them. I really tried! Sadness filled my heart whenever I thought of what was to come…my friends and neighbors would not repent and would therefore perish. That stabbed my heart. It took a long time to build that boat, but it was finally completed. I’m not going to lie, it did look a little funny…a huge boat just sitting on the land like that when it hadn’t rained for such a long time. The jeers and taunts had become a part of my every day life now and they didn’t bother me as badly as they had when they had just started, though I couldn’t help but worry about them for the future. I still tried to tell them to repent and about God’s love…but they didn’t listen.

Before long, God brought the animals to me and I found myself sadly scanning the landscape where I had called home and the people that I had called my people…my friends and neighbors; before my family and I entered the ark with the animals and God shut the door. The ridicule didn’t stop when we entered the boat. One day passed, and the rain did not come. My friends and neighbors only laughed harder. I almost felt shame and embarrassment; but I told myself that what God had told me would come true in His timing. So I waited. I quickly got bored as the boat sat on solid ground for six more days after that.

Then, to everyone’s astonishment, it started to rain. No, it didn’t just rain. It poured! Out of the boat’s windows, I could see the people’s astonished faces as they exited their houses to see the rain that they had not seen for such a long time. Then, I saw their horror as we were quickly washed away from the dwindling dry land. But inside the ark, me and my family were safe. I thanked God every day for His amazing and abundant Grace that He had bestowed on us.

As the waters continued to rise, my heart throbbed for those lost in the roaring waters. I saw my friends and my neighbors. Even if I had wanted to help them, I was helpless to do so. They had lost their chances. Second chances don’t happen every day. Before those people drowned, their faces and their screams haunted me for weeks in my dreams. Such looks of horror and anguish, I had never seen before. Mothers, searching frantically for their small children and hugging them tightly before they were snatched from her grasp from the cruel waves; men grabbing onto anything and everything to keep them afloat. A piece of drift wood; a branch; anything that appeared to be floating. Men who had always been brave showed their terror. Children cried and clutched to their mother’s skirts before the current was too strong for them and ducked them into the raging waters, leading to their pre-mature death. The children had done nothing wrong. It was because of their parents’ sins, that these children were called to suffer.

The cries. The screams. The calls. They were endless. As I said earlier, they haunted me every night for weeks. They were all calling for someone. Their calls would often be cut short however, when a strong current would force their heads under the raging waters for a moment, before they managed to pull themselves up for some air for a few short moments. Dry land was almost non-existent now. The rain had still not let up. Trees and pieces of houses drifted past our boat every now and then. I thanked God that He had saved us from his wrath on the sins of His people. I sadly looked through a window again. I could see heads becoming smaller and fewer. A few people had still managed to keep their heads above water, but they were getting weaker. They had somehow managed to grasp onto a tree branch or a piece of wood, but they wouldn’t last long. The currents were strong; rushing, really. The heads of people that I knew soon dropped below the surface of the waves as they gave up their struggle. Even though the storm still raged, the air somehow seemed still and quiet. There were no longer any screams or cries for help. There was nothing. There were no longer any people or animals except for those on this boat. If only those people had believed. If only they had listened when I told them to repent and change their lifestyle. If only…

This is why so much of my story has been left out in children’s stories. Sure, it is a story of salvation for me and my family. Yes, it is an amazing story of God’s Grace and Mercy. But what about all of those people who drowned? The children stories never go into that much detail. There is much more to my story than some people realize. Don’t get me wrong; I am eternally grateful that God extended His Grace and Mercy to me and my family. But those cries for help and looks of anguish still haunt me every night. But God be praised that He saved me, his lowly servant!

Advertisements

Goodbye, Mommy!

I am so excited! I have been squished for way too long. It’s getting uncomfortable! Mommy, I wander what you look like? You have been carrying me around for months, now, but I can’t wait to be held in your arms with you lovingly looking at me…welcoming me into a part of your life. I can’t wait to meet you and all of my aunts and uncles, cousins, siblings, and grandparents. I have never been this excited in my life! It must be almost time to come out and see the world, now, isn’t it Mommy? It seems like I have been in here for forever! Can I come see you now, Mommy? I’m tired of just laying in here, not being able to move about or play with anything. Mommy, I want you to hold me and hug me tightly. I want to play with toys with you; I want you to sing me to sleep; I want to love you.

I wonder what the outside world looks like! There isn’t much scenery in here…I’m ready to see what must be a beautiful world! Mommy, can I come out soon and see the green grass, the blue skies, the huge, snowy mountains, the warm beaches, the gorgeous sunsets? I’m getting a little impatient in here!

Today we went somewhere where we don’t normally go. I heard you talking to someone…and you were talking about me. I couldn’t hear everything that you were saying, but it didn’t sound good. You were crying. We left that awful place before long, but I had a nagging feeling that we would be back. It made me uncomfortable. I could sense that you were feeling awful, Mommy. Why are you sad? What is going to happen? Who was that man that you were talking too and why were you talking about me? I don’t understand, Mommy! Can I please come out and see you soon? I want you to hold me and tell me that you love me!

About a week later (it’s a little hard to tell time in here), we went back to that awful place that was making you sad, Mommy. I don’t know why you went back, when it was making you sad. You kept rubbing your belly, as if to assure me that everything was going to be okay. I was nervous. I didn’t know why. I mean; you had never done anything to hurt me before. You had always tried to take the best care of me. Something changed that day. You talked to that evil man again. And it was about me. And it wasn’t good. I thought I heard you say something about you not wanting me, but I know that that can’t be true, Mommy! You love me; I know you do! When I can finally join you in the world, you are going to hug me and love me and play with me, remember? I don’t understand what is going on…please tell me what’s going to happen, Mommy. I trust you!

Mommy, what is that bad man doing to me? It hurts, Mommy! Why are you letting him hurt me? I thought you loved me! I thought you wanted me! What is he doing? Mommy, I’m scared! I trust you, Mommy! Why is he doing this? Do you know that he is hurting me? Mommy, why don’t you stop him? This doesn’t feel good. Please do something! Remember what we were going to do together, Mommy, when I entered the world? We were supposed to do fun things together and, when I get older, we can talk about things. Why are you letting this man hurt me like this? Even though I don’t understand, I have decided to trust you. You have never done anything to harm me before; but what is happening right now?

Mommy, if he continues with this, I will never learn how to walk. I will never play with other kids. I will never go to school and learn about this world or God. I won’t have friends. I will miss out on such a wonderful life! I will never know what it is like to have dreams for the future and to not let anything get in my way to achieving my dreams! Mommy, is this really what you want? I want to love you, Mommy. I want you to love me. I want you to hold me in your arms and tell me how precious and beautiful that I am. I want you to teach me how to live. I want to talk to you about everything that is going on! I want to have BIG dreams that nobody thinks is possible…except for you.

Ouch! Mommy, I don’t know if I can stand this for much longer! What is he doing? It’s hurts! Are you sure this is what you want for me and for you? I thought you wanted me! I thought you loved me! I thought you were going to hold me and softly sing me to sleep every night. I can’t do this anymore, Mommy. I have to let go. I wanted you to hold me and love me and tell me that I am valuable, precious, and beautiful…but I guess that isn’t what you wanted. You never wanted me in the first place. I wasn’t planned. I’m not valuable. I’m not beautiful. I’m an annoyance. I wasn’t supposed to happen. And now you’re getting rid of me. Even though you don’t love me anymore, Mommy, I still love you! I’ll miss you!  I hope we will officially meet someday and maybe, then, you could learn to love me even though you hadn’t planned on me. Goodbye, Mommy!

It’s a Mystery to me…

“…To make known the MYSTERY of the gospel.” -Ephesians 6:19

“This is a great mystery…” -Ephesians 5:32

 

We finished Ephesians! I love that book. While we were talking about the last two chapters, I really noticed how Paul wrote several times about the ‘mystery’. The mystery of the gospel…it is a great mystery! Mystery. That is so comforting to me, because it helps me realize that, even though some people pretend that they have it all together, they really don’t. Everything is just as much a mystery to them, as it is to me! My life is one big mystery right now. I have time…I have to keep telling myself that. God has really been teaching me how to wait on HIS timing lately….I know that He WILL show me what I’m supposed to major in and which direction my life is supposed to go at the RIGHT time. But what am I supposed to do until then?

 

“Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the Lord!” -Psalm 27:14

 

“For God alone, O my soul, wait in silence, for my hope is from him.” 

-Psalm 62:5

“But they who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.” -Isaiah 40: 31

“I wait for the Lord, my soul waits, and in his word I hope.” -Psalm 130: 5

“Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him; fret not yourself over the one who prospers in his way, over the man who carries out evil devices!” -Psalm 37:7

“I waited patiently for the Lord; he inclined to me and heard my cry.” 

-Psalm 40:1

 Those verses seem pretty clear. “Wait for the Lord, Wait in silence, wait on the Lord…” That is definitely something that I need to work on.

 

Now for one of my pictures 🙂

Image

You. Are. Valuable.

It amazes me at how insecure so many girls are…about their looks, especially. But hey, I don’t have any room to talk. I’ve been there. I’m still there. But I know that my view of myself can change, just as it can for you, too.

 “Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes. Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight.” 

First of all, you are beautiful. I am beautiful. I know that, because God knows that. He made you, He made me, in His image. You can’t get more beautiful than that! So, look pretty. Put together some really cute outfits that look great. I think what you wear on the outside helps give you a certain confidence about yourself. But that’s not the only thing, the main thing, that you should be thinking about. In 1 Peter, God says that your beauty comes from your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit. It is so much more of a compliment to be beautiful on the inside, than on the outside, because the beautiful outward appearance won’t last forever. I love the last part of that verse, too. It says that the inner self, is of great worth in God’s sight. Great worth? Yes, that means valuable. 

Why is it so easy to look around us and constantly see other girls who are so pretty! If I only looked like that, I wouldn’t complain about my looks anymore! You know, those girls probably are thinking the exact same things, you just don’t realize that unless you hear them say it. Those girls most likely have the exact same problems as you do. Maybe she doesn’t feel as confident as she looks. Comparison robs you of joy. It’s true. But somehow we convince ourselves that that other girl must feel pretty darn good about herself because she’s so pretty and she doesn’t even have to try! Guess what? It’s probably an act anyway. 

 

Psalm 45:11 says, “Let the king be enthralled by your beauty; honor him, for he is your lord.”

 

You   enthrall     Our     King    with     YOUR      BEAUTY.

 

I love that verse. I love the word enthralled. Just the thought that God is enthralled with my beauty, gives me a sliver of hope. 

But I know I need to change. I think about myself far to much. How do I look? I’m constantly wondering what other people thing of me (my appearance as well as other stuff), and that isn’t good. That’s on the path to becoming insecure about everything. Nobody likes the girls that are so totally insecure all the time, and is constantly fishing for compliments. I will try to NOT be that girl. 

So, the bottom line is this: You are valuable, girls (and guys, but this post is mainly for girls lol)! So, stop believing those lies that you keep telling yourself! Go be confident in who you are and who God made you to be. Because the King is enthralled by your beauty!! 

 

This is a picture of my beautiful best friend that I took last summer 🙂 

 

Image

Jumbled Thoughts…

I am absolutely amazed at how much I feel like I have changed in such a short time. Before I started this crazy adventure called college, I never really felt like I changed much at all…I know I probably did, but it just happened so slowly that I never really realized it. And trust me, I know I have SUCH a long way to go! It’s kind of exciting to think about how different I will be in four years when I (hopefully) graduate from college. I can’t even imagine what I will be like, but I know that I will be different. I have to believe that God has a picture in His mind of what He wants me to be like, and He is starting to change me and fashion me into that woman that He wants me to be, and knows that I am capable of becoming, only through His grace and strength.

My thoughts have been swirling around in my mind lately. I have been trying to figure out what God wants for me…what His will for my life is…and what major I should pursue. To be honest, it’s exhausting! And, even though I have been thinking about it for several weeks now, I haven’t really come to any conclusions about anything. Again, everything is just kind of swirling around in my brain, not really sure which direction I should choose. I think part of me is afraid of choosing ‘the wrong path’ so maybe I will completely mess up my life with this one choice…but I know deep down that that’s not really true. I mean, God will eventually get me where He wants me, even if it takes longer than it should. There are a couple things that sound interesting or fun or whatever, but I really just don’t know if I can see myself doing that theoretically for the rest of my life.

None of the majors that I have looked at so far have given me a spark of passion, you know? Maybe I’ll have to start taking classes in those majors before I get passionate about it, but maybe not. I am taking a class called ‘Intro to Electronic Media’ because I was exploring broadcasting and digital media, but it’s not helping me decide anything at all because it is pretty much a history class about media and it’s basically been really boring. Broadcasting and digital media is a possibility still, I guess, but, again, I don’t really know if I really want to do that for a living. I just don’t know WHAT I see myself doing in the future. It makes my head hurt to try to think that far into the future. I can barely keep track of today, much less the rest of my life! How am I supposed to know what I’m ‘supposed to do’? I wish I was that person who is perfecting sure what she wants to do with her life and has always been sure of it and it has never changed. I used to know what I wanted to do…I wanted to major in English and minor in creative writing and become an author. Now I don’t think that’s what I want to do. I think it would be fun to write novels on the side, but not as my main job, because I think that would take the fun out of it for me, and then what’s the point?

Another possibility is journalism. Some of those classes sound really interesting and fun, but some of them not so much (I’m not really into news reporting and stuff like that…) but there’s some editing and design classes that sound cool and a photojournalism class, too! That sounds interesting and fun! Then there’s another major that is sort of similar, but it’s different, too. It’s Technical Communications. I’m not so sure about that one. But I don’t know. How am I supposed to make this decision? Like I said, my thoughts are so jumbled right now I honestly have NO idea which direction I should go. I think that I have decided to not decide yet, and to think about it over Thanksgiving/Christmas break and over the summer as well, so that I can think about it and pray about it without having to go to school and think about all of that at the same time.

I met with my advisor this afternoon to talk with her about different majors and everything. She tried to help, and I think she helped explain some of the majors a little better, and we looked through the catalog a little deeper, but we only had about 40 minutes and I don’t really feel like she helped me all that much. Part of me just wants someone to come along and tell me what to do. I wish God would just call me up on my phone and say, “Hey Emily, this is what you’re supposed to major in and this is what your future looks like. Don’t forget that I’m here with you every step of the way, so go on the path that I have designed for you.” Why doesn’t He do that? That would be SO nice!

So, all of that said…I still have no idea where I’m supposed to go or what I’m supposed to do. How does a person figure something like this out? I know, this is normal, right? At least I hope so! It’s so much easier for me to have faith in other people than in myself. Before I was in college, like when my siblings were and didn’t have majors yet, I was like, “Oh, You’ll figure it out and you’re going to be awesome at it” lol. But now that I’m in their shoes, it’s a lot scarier. Or, like when my brother moved to Colorado, I was really excited for him (sad that he was leaving, but exciting for him) because I knew that that was probably where God was calling him too and I knew that he would enjoy it. But if that was me, I would TOTALLY be freaking out! Why is it so much easier for me to have faith in others and what God will do in their lives, than in my own life? I guess that’s an area where I need a LOT of growth.

So, I know, this is probably really boring to most of you and if it is, I’m sorry. But I guess I’m kind of hoping that maybe writing out some of my thoughts will help me to sort of sort through my thoughts. Because right now they are so jumbled and tossed about and random.

“For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.” 

-2 Timothy 1:7

At the end of my blogs (and maybe sometimes throughout…I don’t know yet) I thought I would add one of the pictures that I have taken lately. Kind of as promotion, I guess. I don’t know…They aren’t really that great…I’m still learning! I don’t have a camera of my own yet and I don’t even have a good editing software at ALL (those things are probably good investments). So, that’s what the random pictures are at the end of each blog entry 🙂 The following picture is really the first time, this past summer, that I tried my hand at photography. This is my adorable Niece! I hope you guys have a great weekend!

Image

The Journey called My Life

Well, this is a start of something new…a new blog! We’ll see if I actually keep this up…knowing me, I’ll probably get too busy and forget about it so I won’t write in here for about a month and then I’ll post something else that is of no importance to anybody. lol. 

But, if you’re brave enough, keep reading 🙂 

I have been trying to really figure things out lately. Thankfully I am meeting with my advisor tomorrow and I’m hoping that that meeting will help me sort some things out. There are just so many choices out there and I’m just not sure if I want to do any of them. It’s a big decision. But people keep saying that a lot of people don’t even end up doing what their major is anyway, so what’s the point of going to college if you end up doing something completely different from what you studied? So that means you have to go to MORE school, which I don’t really want to do, unless I absolutely have too! 

It’s funny how, when I was younger, I knew what I wanted to do…or I thought I did. I wanted to be an author. I would probably major in English and minor in creative writing and then write novels for the rest of my life. Funny. That’s no longer what I really want to do, though I think it would be kind of fun to do that on the side for fun. Then, I was thinking about broadcasting and digital media (editing videos and stuff sounds really fun!) but I’m taking this Intro to Electronic Media class and it is sooooo boring! That’s probably just because it’s a history class, so it’s really not helping me decide anything at all-but I’m not so sure about that at all now.

NOW I’m thinking more along the lines of journalism maybe? But I have no idea if that is where God wants me either. Parts of that sound really cool, but some parts don’t sound as fun, but I would probably run into that in any major. 

Ahhh…everything just seems SO complicated right now! It REALLY helped to just slow down a couple nights ago (Wednesday) and read the Bible and pray with some really close friends. I really need to go to bed, but all this to say…my life has been getting more complicated and confusing lately and I have no idea where I should go!

“For I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, plans for welfare, and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.” -Jeremiah 29:11Image