The Twin Cities Rainbow Chaser

moving across the country…to discover what God has in store

Post-Thanksgiving Slump

Thanksgiving was a much-needed opportunity to be with my parents.  And when I say “be with” I mean more than just spending time with them.  I can’t really convey how much that phrase carries.  There aren’t any tangible details into which I could delve, so I won’t bother.  But, the warmth that I received when I was with them made leaving that much harder.  I came home Saturday night and cried myself to sleep.  All day Sunday, I felt fragile.  This has never been me.  I’ve been the type of person who turns around and forgets about friends, family, connections.  My fragility scared me…it still does.  I question whether or not I am who I thought I was.  I wonder if some switch has suddenly flipped and I am now weak.

Monday morning seemed impossible.  The motivation that I normally have was completely absent.  I wanted to curl back up in bed and sleep until Christmas break.  Somehow I managed to get ready for school, though, and I had some time to spare.  So I turned to the warmth of my heavenly Father and this is what he had to say:

Be joyful always;

pray continually;

give thanks in all circumstances,

for this is God’s will for you in Jesus Christ.

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

 

He will supply.  No matter how “fragile” I feel, His strength will protect me from the knocks and bumps that the world throws my way.  Or, that arise from my inner angst and fears.  And when the path seems foggy, my prayers and joy and thanks should continue.  There is no better way to exist.

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Praying for Daylight

“Pray for daylight”

–the pastor at the church I randomly chose to attend this morning

I grew up in a fairly small town that has enough churches to “fuel” a much larger town.  But, I spent my whole childhood and adolescence attending one particular church.  While being home for the summer (in limbo between past and future), I’ve toyed with the idea of visiting a different church.  I know that the “home church” can’t support me in the proper way right now.  It is not an inherently bad church…it’s just not what I’m looking for.  I’m looking for something more authentic and raw.  So, after being out of town for two Sundays and missing Christian fellowship, I decided, on a whim, to visit this random church.  I arrived approximately fifteen minutes late, but that meant that I didn’t have to talk to many people.  And, it also meant that I arrived just in time to sit down for the sermon…which was about storms.

Go figure.

God would just twist my life around so that when I finally get around to visiting this church, it stabs right through to my soul.  The pastor spoke from Acts 27:10-29, talking about Paul’s encounter with a storm while out in the middle of the ocean.  I have encountered some pretty legit actual storms in my life (I live in Tornado Alley–yay!)…so I’m imaging that out in the middle of the ocean.  Wowzers!  And to think that I run and hide in the bathroom the minute the television starts beeping at me.  Chicken.

Anyways, that’s the physical…let’s think about the spiritual.  There is a storm raging on in my life and all I’ve been able to do is pray for God to open a door and open my eyes widely (maybe add a bell to the door, just to make sure I don’t miss anything).  In the midst of waiting for that door though, I’ve just been begging God to “be.”  I didn’t know the words to express what I needed.  I just needed to know that He was still there.  I’ve been lost in the darkness of this storm for so long…I just want to see a speck of daylight.  Hearing that sentiment from the pulpit this morning gave substance to my months-long prayer.

God, reveal yourself in the daylight.  I beg you not to leave me blindly fumbling around for a door nob.  You know what is best for me, you and you alone.  Allow me to remain in your ultimate plan and purpose for my life.  In your plan and purpose, I find hope.

*the photograph is not really the revelation of daylight…instead it is the passing.  did you really think that I would get up at sunrise???

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Time for a Change

When I started this blog almost two years ago, I was trying to find something more.  I knew that I had fallen into the normalcy of being a Christian and I knew that the normalcy was hurting the relationship I was trying to build with God.  In my first post, I said:

“I do not plan on discovering the purpose of life in general.  But, I would like to figure out what exactly God wants of me while I’m here, living.”

As the blog continued, I took readers on a journey through my past.  I talked about the faults in my early years as a Christian and problems that I have with the world today, in my own personal life and in the greater scheme of things.  Most recently, I wrote about the problem I am currently facing, ya know, figuring out my life.  As I have faced this inner (and sometimes outer) turmoil regarding my future, I have taken note of songs that I hear at church.  Almost every week for the past several months, I have taken the time to jot down a few lines from a song that spoke to my heart.

This week, we sang the song “Oh, Love that Will Not Let Me Go” by the Robbie Seay Band.  There is a line that talks about tracing the rainbow through the rain.  But, I didn’t hear “trace”.  I heard “chase”.  Since then, that line has stuck in my mind.  Right now, that’s what I am trying to do.

GOD has something in mind or my life.  Right now though, He isn’t showing himself to me.  I have searched through every crack and crevice that I have found, but He is still silent.  I think that, at this point, maybe I’m not listening well enough or asking the right questions.  That is why I am going to chase a rainbow.

You see, to chase a rainbow, you must focus your eyes, not on the end goal, but on the journey.  If you lose sight of the rainbow or you get distracted by the rain, then you are not going to make it to the end.  And so, I am on a journey to chase the rainbow.  This is no longer about being lukewarm…it is about wholeheartedly committing to a journey…the journey that GOD wants me to take.

Feel free to share about your journey, where it’s taking you or prayers that you need.  You are also welcome to pray for me on my journey!

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Anything But the Box

We are verging on two months.  My other blog is going strong…but that is irrelevant here.  What is relevant here is that I am beyond the breaking point.

Just over a year ago, I admitted to myself and to those around me that I did not want to be a teacher.  I didn’t really know what I wanted to do…but I knew that I didn’t want to settle into a classroom and get stuck there for 30 years.  So, for the past 365+ days, I have been seeking an alternative.  The first thought was social work.  I pursued graduate schools with appropriate programs (I’ve been rejected by one, accepted to another, and told that I will probably get rejected from a third).  In the midst of applications though, I thought that I might want to be a counselor…so, I started looking at psych programs…short-lived ambition.  I set my heart on teaching in France and applied to a program.  One and a half weeks ago (April 4), I received an e-mail rejecting me from that program.

I had just known in my head and my heart that it was so right for me!  I wasn’t ready for graduate school or a “grown-up” job.  I just needed someplace to go for a year while I cleared my head.  It was the perfect scenario–go teach in France for a year and come back with a fresh outlook on my life.  But God broke my heart.

And thus, over the past eleven days, I have gone back to square one, via the five stages of grief…well, I do not think that I have quite made it to the final stage just yet.  At this point, I don’t even know what to think.  I spent some time feeling that the whole world was full of opportunities; but nothing is clicking.  I just want to see one job somewhere…and fall in love with it…the way I did with France.  Nothing is happening, though.

I feel like I need to remind God that I am here and that I am willing to GO.  I want to beg him to let me GO because right now, one of the options is moving back to Arkansas.  Supposedly I could find a job teaching French somewhere down there.  I don’t want to go back to Arkansas.

God, I am willing to move to Africa…Asia…an inner city where my life-expectancy is lessened due to drive-by shootings.  You don’t need me in Arkansas.  DON’T MAKE ME GO BACK IN THE BOX.

That is how I see Arkansas.  I spent the first 18 years of my life there.  The last four have been spent in Missouri…not that much better.  I am itching to get away to a place where people’s minds and hearts are open.  I am tired of people who judge and people who hold tight to tradition.  Anywhere but there…but here…please God.

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Disordered Me

Trust…that’s what my last blog post was about…that was over a month ago.  I wrote that on a particularly good day.  I don’t remember all of the circumstances, but I’m sure that they included a pretty empty week (i.e. no tests), cool weather, a nice breeze, and the perfect pot of coffee.  I haven’t had many days like that lately.  I haven’t had a “pretty empty” week in a while.  I had a presentation, a test, and a paper last week.  This week, I’ve had a presentation, a quiz (worth 30-50 points), a paper, and tomorrow I have two tests.  So…what am I doing “wasting” precious study time writing this random blog post that no one is going to read?

I have no stinkin’ idea…well, maybe an idea…I’m not sure about its stink-factor, though.  Last night, I had a conversation with God.  I’m just going to practice trust and be perfectly honest with you.  That was the first REAL conversation that I’ve had with him in a while.  So, what constitutes a “REAL” conversation with God?  Well…let’s just say that I wasn’t doing all of the talking.  I was actually being still and quiet and trying to hear what He really want me to hear…instead letting my obsessively logical mind do all of the talking.  I think part of my problem is that I have several characteristics of a couple of personality disorders (one of my roommates is currently in a class called Abnormal Psychology).  #1: Schizoid personality disorder.  Google it if you really want to know…then read some of my other posts…specifically the one on Trust.  #2: Obsessive compulsive personality disorder.  Not OCD, but OCD-ish.  And, I’ve always said that I have OCD-ic tendencies.  So, it fits…in my mind.  Google it if you really want to know more.  The problem when I was having this conversation with God arose from the OCPD: letting other people have control.

I like to do things the way I like to do things.  Group projects are pure torture because I have to trust other people and let them do things their way.  I have to let them have some control.  I can’t delegate.  We need to do a handout?  I’ll do that.  PowerPoint?  Why don’t I do that too…and the six page paper…I’ll knock that out too.  That’s pretty much how group meetings go when I’m involved.

So, that being said…you can get an idea of how the conversation with God went last night.  He wants to have control over my life but…I like running the show myself.  For some reason, I think that I can do a better job than He can.  But, ya know, He has a lot more experience with the whole “life running” thing.

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