{Love Letters} Worth it.

My Dear Child,

Take a deep breath. Right where you are at. Physically, emotionally, mentally. Just take a deep breath. Do you feel that little shake, as you slowly inhale. Then let that breath out. I know it’s a little shaky at first, but that’s okay. What did you just think? Did moments of today flash through your mind? Did this whole week reply through your head like a terrible nightmare? Maybe it was more than today. More than this week. Maybe a season in your life. Will this ever end? Whatever it is that you just thought of, it certainly wasn’t full of peace. or Grace. or Love. And it wasn’t from me {Christ}. Put it from your mind.

Take another deep breath. Breathe in, slowly, but confidently. You will get better. You will get healed. Your breath is still a tad shaky, but know that that is okay and move past it! Are those recent memories and thoughts and bad experiences slowly starting to fade? Breathe out now. It’s okay, if this takes a while. You’re doing just fine. Start as slowly as you need to, and repeat as often as necessary for you! Your breath is slowly starting to resemble that of a normal human being now.

How are you feeling? Honestly. Cut the crap. Rip off that fake smile you’ve been pasting on for a couple days (weeks, months?) now. Remove the stupid excuses that you’re hiding behind. Allow yourself to be real with me for a second. Stop cowering behind fear. What’s up with you? Don’t mindlessly say “I don’t know” and move on. Think a little harder, Love.

What have I ever done, but love you? When you have gone through hard times, I created deeper meanings and purposes for you on the other side. When you have been in dry times, not really knowing what’s going on, I have loved you through it and never left you. I never gave up on you. Stop trying to give up on yourself!

Have I ever given up on you? So why do you keep trying to give up on yourself?

Have I ever told you that you are not loved? Then why do you keep trying to convince yourself that you are not loved and that people do not care about you?

Have I ever shown you an example of not being full of grace? Or not able to give you grace that is sufficient for you? Then why do you insist on living life your way? Why do you forget to constantly be an encouragement for others? Because I am able to give you the encouragement that you need each and every single day, if you are living the life that I have imagined for you!

Take that chaos that is inside your heart and mind today. That baggage. From today. From yesterday. From this past week. From last week. From last month. Or even last year. And tell it to simply go to hell, because that is exactly where it came from! Satan has so easily led you to believe that you are worthless. That this chaos is here for good. That you are not valuable. That you mean nothing to me, and to those I have placed in your life, including the ones that I have purposely placed in your life very close to you! This is not to say that you are weak. You are not. I have allowed you to go through some extremely deep waters and tough battles. You are strong. But those lies that you have believed, hurt me every day, NOT TO MENTION how much they are weakening and destroying you!

I see you take a hit, every time you tell yourself that you aren’t worth the effort. That you are worthless. That nobody loves you. I watch you slowly defeat yourself and deflate. That cuts my heart up like a KNIFE, seeing you hurt that badly. Baby, come to me…please… and know that this really will end. The chaos cannot go on forever. Happier days really are ahead. And I know that you are so tired of holding on. I watch you struggle to hold on to life and to me with everything that you have, every single day. I watch as you wipe your face of sweat and tears and from the exhaustion that it took to hold on for one more day of…this. I watch as your bloodied hands slowly return to their places, grasping on for dear life, literally, each and every day. You have no idea how strong you are and how strong you have been for years! You tell yourself that this is normal. You tell yourself that this is who you are and you need to accept it, because you can’t change this. It’s your destiny. You were MEANT to live in shame, guilt, worthlessness, constant craving, constant striving and proving, endless struggle, depression, anxiety, loss…The struggle for each shaky breath isn’t a sign of weakness. It is a sign of the ultimate strength. Because through all of this seemingly endless struggle, you’re still here.

Those shaky breaths just remind you to be more and more thankful for each new time you inhale, then exhale. Those bloody hands, cuts, and bruises just remind you that you. are. STRONG. This constant chaos, just allows you to be so, so happy when the chaos clears, even for a few moments, and clarity and light shine through like a sun beam. You, my dear, dear child…are ALIVE. And this life is worth fighting for and someday, you will be so strong that you won’t even notice the fight anymore. I’m working on your chaos. Here is my peace. Open your mind and your heart to it and let it in. Because it’s right here for the taking. And you’re worth it.

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Process {Mexico, Part one}

 

As most of you probably already know, I just returned from Mexico a few days ago. I went there on a missions trip over my spring break to serve at a Spiritual Emphasis Camp in Puebla, Mexico where we basically did whatever needed to be done.

Usually this includes being a camp counselor, and then being a part of different teams in the areas of our interests and skill sets. I went to the same camp last year, as well, so it was fun (as well as interesting) going back a second time!

Last year I really enjoyed myself. It was my first time out of the country and also my first time on a missions trip. And I loved being able to serve the kids there and build some relationships. I was a camp counselor as well as a photographer and on the worship team for chapel.

This year, a lot had changed. Looking back now, it was so so good and I really enjoyed it and I miss it terribly. But everything (pretty much) changed. When I got there, I found out that I was not a counselor, which completely threw me for a loop because that’s the one thing that I really thought I was doing for sure. I found out that we were doing music for the Elementary camp, but some other people were doing worship for the whole high school camp. The whole schedule had changed. We now had chapel, or chapel activities all morning, which was really different. After breakfast, we had what was called a ‘morning charge’, which introduced the theme for the day, then we broke up into our specific groups to participate in ‘initiatives’, which were basically games to get you thinking about the theme for the day.

Day one of being in Mexico was a terrible day for me. It was Saturday and the kids weren’t coming until later in the afternoon. But I found out that I wasn’t counselor and my heart sank. I asked God why I was even there. Was there even any point in me being there? I mean, I didn’t even have enough money to actually come on this trip this year…I didn’t get anywhere near fully funded (a little under 50% by the time we left the U.S.) and my parents didn’t have the money and I DEFINITELY didn’t have the money! So why did I make this sacrifice to come here when I have no idea how I’m going to pay it off and there’s literally no point in me even being there….

Also that day, an event happened that brought up TONS of wounds and stuff from my past. I was tired and grumpy and sad and annoyed. Eventually I just took a nap for about an hour (on the first day, before the kids had even arrived!). I woke up at 4, which is when I was pretty sure the kids were about to come. I had no desire to get up and I definitely didn’t even wanna see anyone (well, good luck with that because you literally can’t escape from people while at camp…that doesn’t work too well haha). So I made myself get up and go out and see people. I didn’t even want to be at camp anymore.

*****

God broke down a lot of my walls this week. I think He is in the process of changing me as I attempt to process all that happened this week and all I thought about, etc. Some of it was hard. Some of it was more amazing than anything I’ve ever experienced. I made life-long friends. God taught me much. And I just started to think about what He has done in my life in that one little week! [There will be more later!]