Monday, May 27, 2013

Self Help, Honeysuckle, & Sacrifice

I was walking through the Christian living section at our local Hastings tonight. There were a lot of books I wanted. Some were devotional books, some were those "help yourself" books, others were just simple good reads [like C.S. Lewis]. All of a sudden as I picked up a Beth Moore book that is an oldie, but one I'd never read, God spoke to me... and this is what I heard. "It doesn't matter how many of these books anyone reads. If their relationship with me is not top priority, and the most important thing, then books aren't going to help them." Ouch. Except it didn't hurt me. It liberated me! For so long I lived a life that I read book after book on how to not be insecure, how to win the battle over my mind, how to forgive, and so on. It wasn't until I made Christ my center and living for Him with every breath of my being, that my world started falling into place. Do I still have moments where I'm insecure or struggle with my mind? Yes. In fact, I have to pray for my mind on a daily basis. That's the key though... prayer. Just because Jesus is my center doesn't mean my world doesn't seem chaotic, but in the middle of that storm I know who I can turn and run to. The one shelter I ran FROM for so long. Too long. Truth be told I could dwell on all that wasted time I used running and rebelling. Do I wish I hadn't done that? Yeah. However, if it weren't for that crazy path of turmoil I took myself on... I wouldn't be where I am right now. Which is exactly where I need to be, and I wouldn't trade that for anything. Every single thing I've gone through [whether by my own fault or someone else's] has molded me, and given me ways to help others. It wasn't the most conventional, but it was my choice that God allowed me to make.
Here's the thing... all those books... most of them are fabulous. Beth Moore. Phenomenal writer. Such an anointing. I'll continue to read her books, and many other Christian authors books. The difference is that now I read those books for growth... not a spiritual fix. They're to aid in taking me deeper in my walk, not pacifying a haphazard, lukewarm walk of rebellion... which is exactly what I did before.

Change of subject...

We didn't have church last night. I typically don't like when we cancel, but I got to spend the afternoon with my second momma, and one of our friends from church. We went shopping and out to eat, and just had an all around good time of worship and laughter. We dropped Carrie off about 7:30ish, and were driving back to Cindy's house. We had the windows down, Jesus Cultures "Consumed" cd blaring, and were just worshiping. We could smell the rain that looked like it was inevitable. We love rain!! :) We pull into her driveway, and neither one of us moves. We just sit. Singing. Praising. Soaking in His presence. We didn't want to get out of the car. So Cindy put it in reverse, and we drove. For nearly two hours. We sang at the top of our lungs. Cindy had to practice great self control since she was driving, and not close her eyes. The Holy Spirit was so heavy in that vehicle that at times all I could do was take a deep breath in and let it out. Every once in a while, if we were in a spot that was okay to do so, we'd stop and as the breeze came over whichever hill we were on, the sweet fragrance of honeysuckle would flow into the car. At other times we'd smell the scent of something burning [whether it was a grill or a burn pile].
As she drove she started going down roads I wasn't familiar with. At one point she asked if I was uncomfortable, and my response was, "No. I trust you." Then I followed with, "I do this a lot at night when I can't settle down, and just need to drive. I don't go down unknown roads alone at night because it isn't safe. My car may break down and I may not have reception on my phone." We kept driving. I was so lost, and at one point I made a comment about a place she'd stopped on a back road. I said, "What if someone tops that hill? They can't see us, and are going to rear-end us!" She just looked at me and said, " Do you trust me?", "Yes.", "Okay then. I can see if someone is coming up behind us. You are perfectly safe." So we drove and drove. Nothing looked familiar. Then all of a sudden we pull to the end of a road, and Cindy said, "Do you know where you're at now?", "No.", "Just look around at your surroundings." I did, and nearly cried... we were in her hometown. It's where my mom now lives. Where my Cindy's family lives. A place we both spend time. Cindy looks at me and says, "Even if God takes you on a path that you aren't familiar with... it may be bumpy with lots of twists and turn. You may not have a clue where you're at sometimes. He'll always bring you back to familiar territory." That drive left me breathless. After we were back in familiar territory again she took me on back-roads in that town, and said, "Look around. You don't even venture to see the beauty that is right here at your fingertips." She was right. On a huge spiritual level. I get so caught up in the "now" that I miss the simple beauty of the things He is doing around me.
I can truly say that I've never EVER been on a car ride like that one. We go back to her house, and I just laid down on her bed. I was disappointed. I felt like I was a disappointment because it's taking forever for some things to happen that aren't in my control on any level. [Told you I had to pray over my mind yesterday!] Cindy had laid down on the other side and just looked at me. She told me that we'd just spent nearly 2 hours in God's presence, and that I didn't think I'd gotten anything! It was that "being focused on one thing" issue. I was so focused on one thing, that I struggled to enjoy just basking in His presence.
Just like any momma... I had to text her when I got home. I told her that I HAD learned something during that ride... Remember when she asked if I was uncomfortable, and I told her no because I trusted her? And that I didn't venture down unknown roads alone at night? IT'S THE SAME WITH GOD! If I let Him guide me on the unknown roads I'll always come out in familiar territory. BUT if I just use my own devices and sense of direction I'm bound to end up in the middle of nowhere, broken down, with no reception. 
Then today He got me again... that sweet fragrance of honeysuckle. The strong aroma of sacrifice [the grill or burn pile... not a real sacrifice. It's just a metaphor.] At one point last night during that ride the two scents mingled together. I got a whiff of the burning, and then all of a sudden there was that sweet smell of honeysuckle. Is that not just like God? Just when we thing we've done all the sacrificing we can do, all of a sudden we get that fragrance of new life. Spring. Something new.

GOD IS SO GOOD!!! He's blowing my mind teaching me stuff. Who needs self help books?! Not I! Ha!
This is long enough for now. I'm sure no one even made it to the end.

Thursday, May 23, 2013


It's been a month. I can't help it though. My excuse [and it's a valid one] is that I've been covered up with helping my Cindy get ready for retreat stuff. It was this last weekend. I can't believe it's been a whole week since I was there!

It didn't start off easy. I was so excited for the retreat, but for a week or so leading up to it I was not in a good spot. The enemy was fighting me as hard as he possibly could to get me so distracted by life that I would miss what God had for me at the retreat. Thankfully I have a God momma that lovingly, but sternly, got in my face and told me to chill out. Even the day of the retreat I struggled. I was feeling guilty over selfish feelings I had. I listened to the first devotional Mrs. Judy did, and it hit home big time. However, the prayer time after was quick to overwhelm me, and I just sat watching everyone else. I knew if I stood at that moment I would try to leave. I was so frustrated with feelings. Then it's as if God said, "you did NOT come here to sit on the sidelines and watch!" So I got up and went to pray for someone. Before it was all said and done I ended up laying in the floor next to my Cindy while she prayed for me. I don't even know how that happens. I thought she wanted me to help her up and instead she pulled me up close to her like a mom and child. But it was a peaceful moment where I didn't feel like my mind was running. I know she must have seen the unease on my face in the midst of the crazy, loud prayer. It doesn't normally bother me, but I got so overwhelmed... and that's why I know that the enemy was doing everything he could to make me miss out on the weekend. He was trying to seclude me. We had a fun night, and Cindy ended up pulling me up in front of everyone after dinner and bragged on me [which I seriously was mortified... partly because of the selfish feelings I'd yet to apologize to her over, and partly because I really hate being center of attention].  Our room went to bed pretty early. We were back in the room at 8:30 and completely out by 10. We were worn out.
Friday was insane. It was just a fairly calm, easygoing morning and afternoon. I came back from a walk with Ash, and I went into mine and Cindy's room to take a shower before dinner. Cindy was studying, and asked if I'd finish putting together the rain sticks. Sure. No problem. Carrie and Judy came to help. Well at one point I'm in the floor on laid back in my bed [because I moved my mattress from on top of the bunkbed death trap], and we started discussing weird ways we've seen or had people want us to pray for them. Without going into detail with THAT awkward convo, Cindy decided to be funny and pounce on me from her bed where she was suppose to be studying. She bounces me off my bed, and then proceeds to tickle the MESS out of me. It was one of those mom/daughter torture sessions. I screamed for mercy like she was killing me. Ticklish spots. They aren't okay. Before it was all said and done we all ended up in a praying session. Cindy slathered anointing oil on my arms, legs, feet, hands, face, and THEN proceeded to pour it in my hair. Then... THEN that crazy woman tried to lift my shirt and pour oil on my stomach... I flipped at first, and then I'm not sure what came over me, but I raised my shirt just a little bit, and let her put oil on my stomach. We ended up in the floor praying for 2 hours. This whole time Cindy was suppose to be studying for her fast approaching sermon. So we finally get up and get ready [amongst several things going on that made it really hard to focus and get ready when we really just wanted to soak in His presence]. 
So we headed to service. Cindy... that woman does an incredible job at bringing the Word. It's not just that though... she has a way of taking a seemingly boring passage, and makes it relatable to whoever is in the audience. She's crazy anointed with the ability to speak. She spoke on Rizpah in 2nd Samuel 21. This woman's sons were taken from her and killed, and it was all because of someone else's mistake... she got caught up in someone else's whirlwind. The officials were suppose to come bury them after they'd been put to death, and they didn't. The left them. And Rizpah stayed. She put burlap on a rock and stayed there. For 6 months she beat off buzzards and wildlife that would come and try to harm what was left of her sons bodies. Her babies. Her dreams. No matter how decayed and smelly they got... she stayed. Because they were her dreams, and she loved them. Eventually the rains come, and King David sees her on the mountain, and realizes what's happened, and calls for a proper burial of Rizpah's sons. 
So often we get convinced by others to get off the rock. To stop fighting for what we've dreamed of... things that are ours. We HAVE to beat back the buzzards, dry our tears, and stay on the Rock!! 
Cindy finished her sermon. I think I always hold my breath the whole time. I was so enthralled by what she was saying. It would be nothing for me to sit at her feet for hours and hours and just listen to her knowledge. She's just incredibly wise, and doesn't even realize it. So we were praying for people... and I usually keep my eye on Cindy to make sure no one with less than Godly intentions comes up to pray behind her. It's just a thing. I can't exactly explain all that happened that night... I'm still processing what I can remember. I've figured out that when the Spirit is so heavy you don't remember what happened or what was done or said. I do know [because Cindy told me] that unbeknownst to me I prophesied all over that retreat. Me? Prophesy?? Surely not! I saw it happen though, and was reminded of things I'd said prior. One of the older women [whom we all adore] came and pour anointing oil over another lady and Cindy's head [this was after two women came and washed Cindy's feet], then the same woman turns to me and pours oil over my head! [Side note: this was the 2nd time that day that had occurred... which means I took THREE showers that day. 2 because of anointing oil. Crazy women...]. This is the biggest thing that happened that night... someone washed my feet. Because they had been angry and jealous of me. I don't know why. They didn't elaborate, and didn't need to. They apologized and washed my feet, and all I could do was weep. Who am I? That God would use me in someone else's healing. I didn't need to worry about why it was done, and what I had "done wrong". I just needed to realize it was for that woman's healing, not mine. That was such an intense moment for me. It was made all the more significant when Cindy told me that 6 years ago at a retreat, another woman had done the exact same thing for the same reason, and washed Cindy's feet. She got up and said something to the rest of the women while my feet were washed. The only thing I remember or heard was that the same was done to her, and I was following in her footsteps which was fitting since I called her "momma". 
I still think back on that night and just get a blank stare. I know this is all choppy, and may not make sense. I just know that God moved, and I was changed. Again. I'm so unworthy for Him to choose to use me. But so thankful He does choose to use me.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Table for One

This has been a tough week in single world. Most of the time I'm good. Just taking it all in stride because I know God has plans in that area. I know this is just a season. However, in my head, it's been a 27 year season a couple of years... since I'm trying not to be dramatic. God showed me this past year (by allowing me to absolutely get my heart broken) that I can, in fact, love deeply... and it be real. Because honestly... I didn't think I was capable of falling for someone. I figured my heart had been so ruined over my years of having a very absent father, that the ship had sailed on ever finding love. Boy did I find it... and it was unrequited. And my heart was shattered. I had to see for myself that I was capable of loving... and boy was I crazy about him. One of those- get giddy when I talk about him. Can't speak around him because I turn into this giggling idiot of a girl. It was bad... less bad... more uncharacteristic. There. That's a better word. It's been almost a year... and sometimes it still hurts. God showed me that He'd healed my heart though. For some reason this week has been particularly difficult. I'm in this awkward waiting time. I know He's bringing me someone. I also know that right now He wants me all to Himself. My selfish mind is going "you've had me 27 years!", then I hear His gently voice say, "no. I've had all of you for 2." Noted. Ouch.

The problem also lies in my constant telling God that He knows the desires of my heart, and that He gives people the desires of their heart. Then the next words out of my mouth are, "God take me where I've never been with You. Guide me footsteps. I don't want to do anything that is out of your will. I don't want to be in it if you're not." Then I get all nervous because I'm wondering, "what IF God doesn't plan on me ever marrying? What if He plans on me getting married so late in life that it would be silly, and irresponsible to have kids?" The list could go on. I've never been in this place before. The aching heart for companionship. The hurting heart because I love my friends kids so much, but so deeply desire to have kids of my own. It doesn't help when my mother makes comments like, "I'm never going to have grandkids", or "Are there any prospective men at your church, because if not you really need to get out and look more", or the most recent one, "you're nearly 30." For real? Because I had no idea how old I was. Seriously? And NO I will not leave a church just to go find a husband. God brought me to this church for a reason, and I have no doubt that if I'm going to find someone, it'll be there. I just want to ask my mother what happened to her thinking I was so responsible, and level headed. I was a school/career girl first, had my head on straight, and had plenty of time to get married and have kids. Now she acts like I'm failing because I've not done any of the above. 

To add to it, all my friends are either married, or married with babies. It's one of those moments where it's like you're standing still, and everyone else is rushing by moving on with their lives. Their "God plans". Mine is not moving that way. I mean... I'm in God's plan. No doubt. It's the first time I've NOT doubted whether I'm where He wants me. It's just... for once I feel like a piece of me is missing because I don't have "a person". I can honestly say that I've never in my life felt that way. It aggravates me a little to feel like that.

For now I guess I'll just pray for contentment in the moment, and continue to be the "fun pretend aunt/tagalong girl/table for one".

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Still Learning...

So today I went to lunch with a friend. We normally go each week. It started off as "counseling" but with lunch. Now it's just two friends talking life and fellow-shipping. I love it. However, it is always horribly obvious how much phones, and media control our lives when we're together. It's constantly being on the phone. Whether talking or texting. It truly drives me nuts. I left lunch frustrated and with hurt feelings. I felt walked over and taken advantage of. Would she have had a 30 minutes conversation on the phone with someone if she'd gone to eat with some of the other ladies we're friends with? No. Most likely not. I really struggled with feeling like I was just backup that is easily pushed aside.
I was talking to my Cindy about it. My second momma. My anam cara [soul friend]. She told me to say something. And later on in the day I typed up a longish text. I even asked Cindy if it was okay. Then I couldn't send it. The same friend who is constantly on her phone? She's also the friend that the enemy has attacked the mess out of over the past 6 months. The one that is like my big sister. The one who depends on and looks to me to love her unconditionally. And I couldn't send the text. Cindy told me to use my own judgement on whether or not I sent the text. Frustrated Megan wanted to send it, but deep down [where rational Megan was temporarily stationed] couldn't do it.
I told Cindy I'd rather be hurt than risk hurting her feelings. She said I had to make up my mind. Huh? What does that even mean? So I asked. "About what? Letting people hurt me or confronting?" Then she blew my mind... which isn't uncommon. This is what she said, "Both. Do you know she will love you through the confrontation or do you love enough to not confront. Yikes... that stinks." That'd be a direct Cindy quote. Stinks? Holy cow! It more than stinks! But it made me think. It made me realize that I'd rather love enough to not confront, but I'd rather be confident and sure enough of her [my "sister"s] love for me that I CAN confront without fear of losing her love. Then I realized that I know she loves me. However, the only person whose love I don't question anymore, and know I don't just get used, is Cindy's. It's a self-worth and confidence issue. It's still working myself out of the grip of my past. I still struggle with the fact that just because you confront someone, it doesn't mean they're going to get mad, yell, and/or walk away from you. Confrontation does not and should not equal loss of love. Jesus confronted didn't He? People confronted Him! He still loved.
So I'm still learning. This love business... it's confusing for this formerly broken, shattered heart girl. God is at work though. He's got quite a job cut out. Fairly certain He can handle it though. ;)

Monday, April 15, 2013

Check me OUT

It's only been 9 days!!! That's not too shabby for being a horribly, inconsistent blogger.

It's been quite a week. I'm kind of in a season of being really, REALLY busy. I'm loving every bit of it. However, sometimes I'm a little worn out. The season is short though... we're coming up on our Awaken Women's Retreat. I'm so anxious I can't hardly stand it. It's going to be incredible. I mean... the name of it is "Intensity"!! All this has kind of put me "in charge" as the fundraising coordinator. It totally freaks me out. Mainly because I'm kind of, sort of in charge of raising money for the retreat. It's a huge responsibility... and a huge sum of money. I know God is faithful, and will provide what is needed for our women's ministry to be successful.

With the retreat drawing near... the enemy is working overtime. I don't know why it surprises me. He's a hateful, mean, conniving, deceitful little booger. He ticks me off. Big time. The fact that he is attacking my God-mom, my God-sis... ugh. I would take him with a water pistol. God has really been teaching me how to fight and intercede for people in pray. It's hard. It' makes you mad. Breaks your heart. Wears you smooth OUT. God is building my faith... because when it comes to the "spiritual gifts", faith is one of my lowest. That hurts my heart for some reason. So I'm really working on trusting Him. Being still. Quieting my frequently anxious heart. I get feel like I can take blows all day long, but I can't stand to watch those I love suffer. I had a good friend tell me that in one particular situation she felt like maybe God was using this to grow me. Even though it took me a little while to figure out what she was trying to say. I do feel like He is revealing some stuff to me [like my lack of faith].

I'm coming up on my two year "anniversary" of the night God totally rocked my world. He has continued to blow my mind every year [all 2], every month, week, day! Same friend who thinks God is up to something with me in these situations posed a question to me. She probably meant it to be rhetorical, but I'm gonna answer it. What would I have thought last year if someone had said you'd be where you are? I would have rolled my eyes, and probably done an uncomfortable laugh... accompanied with a sarcastic, negative remark. Seriously. He's done such a work in me. The more I reflect, the more I see His hand in everything that's happened [good or bad]. Go back two years... if someone had posed the same question... well... that's a whole other blog. Maybe. Lots and LOTS of personal stuff. NOT internet worthy. Because let's be honest... people put too much out there about themselves. Let's keep some privacy people!
Until next time...

Saturday, April 6, 2013

one year [kind of]

I could wait and write a new blog post... one year after my last one. Though I'm sure NO ONE reads this thing anymore. This last year. Wow. I graduated nursing school June 22. I took [and passed] my boards about 3 weeks after that [July 20th I think?]. After a long, and what seemed torturous, waiting period of countless interviews. Being promised a job. Then it not working out. I finally got a job at a clinic. It's in a building with a LOT of other different specialty clinics. We're urgent care so I see something different all the time. Sometimes it's boring, but other times it's cool. There have been a few doozy stories that I just have to laugh about cause they're just ridiculous. I've grown so much this past year in my relationship with God. It still just takes my breath away. HE takes my breath away. I've found out that I can have really strong feelings for someone, and then I've had to pick up the pieces of a very broken, shattered heart. I have an incredible God momma who has my heart, and I absolutely adore. She has taught me how to love God, love people, and give my all for ministry. She has helped me to see a whole, big world in front of me. That I am loved. I can love. She's changed my world. It's not all been fun and feel good. The closer I get to God, the stronger the enemy has tried to take me out. He's pulled out all the stops. My family isn't having the easiest time because my Pawpaw [who is the most incredible, Godly man I know] is sick. He has early dementia, and it stinks to watch him change. I grasp strongly to the fact that he is still extremely with it. The situation could be worse, it just stinks because there's not a cure. So needless to say the enemy has attacked my family on a lot of levels. I've also watched, but continued to fight with all I had, as he has attacked my friend's and their bodies, their families, and their faith. In fact, the past 4 months have been really hard to deal with. There have been a lot of tears. Questions. Anger. Frustration. Sadness. There's one thing he can't take though, and that's my joy. Even with all that happens I know God is faithful. Some days it takes a little bit more convincing, but a good friend of mine at church told me about a month ago that when I feel like saying "I'm worried" to say "God is at work". Because He is. That's all I have for now. I'm hoping maybe, MAYBE, I'll update this a little more frequently then once a year, or once a month. Maybe we'll shoot for once a week. Baby steps.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Nursing school makes the absolute WORST blogger. Yesterday was a year since I gave Smith my letter. Friday it will be a year since Awaken III. What a different a year has made in my life. When I look back on it, it kind of takes my breath away. Must study before worship practice. Not enough time in my day.