Friday, July 29, 2011

How Do You Fall In Love With Jesus?

How do you fall in love with Jesus?

The same way you fall in love with anyone else.

They show interest in you, and you show interest back.

Someone initiates a conversation, and begins investing their time.

Talking to them becomes a priority because there's SOMETHING there that you don't understand yet, but just want more of.

They write you a love letter, and you read it over and over.

You write one back.

You make them a priority in your life, and begin carving time out of your daily routine because you want them. You want their attention, you want their love, you want to know who they are and how they work.

You sacrifice something here to show you care more for them than that, and you give up something there because you want to know what will happen if you spend just one more hour with them now.

You share your secrets with them. You tell them the best parts, the worst parts.

Give a little time every week, and you'll find you want it more than just on Friday or Saturday nights. Give them a little time every day, and you'll wonder why you thought that one thing was so important.

You talk about the things you'd rather not, but kind of do - just to see if they'll still want you.

The more you invest, the more you'll love.

This is what we were supposed to understand when we heard, "Where your treasure is, your heart will be also."

Somehow we turned it into a currency of money instead of a currency of time and intimacy.

Spend all your money on a person, and that's a cheap reason to stay.

Spend all your time and secrets on a person, and that's a heart you won't be able to leave.

Invest your treasures in Jesus, and your heart will follow.

Few of us love at first sight; we need beauty, passion, or interest to slowly reel us in.

Stop waiting for Jesus to be any of these things for you; he already has.

Beautiful enough to design the mountains and rivers for your admiration, passionate enough for you to die, and interested enough in you to sell off the whole world for you.

He wrote down his entire life story for you, a love letter thousands of pages long - just so you would know him and fall in love with him.

He fell in love with you before first sight.

And he's stopped at nothing - not even death - to show you how much he wants you.

He's waiting for you to start falling in love back.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Friends With Benefits for Relevant Magazine & Identity for DeeperStory

Friday, July 8, 2011

New Shop Launch!

Soooo those of you who have known me for awhile know that I used to have a cute little online shop that I loved - but it's been down for awhile.

And now it's back! I've quit my 9-5 job & am 100% freelancing, so the shop is quite necessary. Plus, I love it. :)

Come take a peek ♥

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Art, Relationships, & The Lie That Keeps You From Having Both

I do a lot of things. I say that I do a lot of things. Photography, blog design, graphic design, writing, making jewelry, painting - I have a really bad case of, "oh that's amazing - I want to be able to do that!"

So I try. Really hard. Because I want it. Really bad.

I experiment, I Google things, I research it. I spend an ungodly number of hours reading, observing, and trying over and over and over.

I used to hate that I never had anyone to teach me what I wanted to be able to do. It's frustrating. Discouraging. Sometimes I feel like it's not worth it. Too much to tackle. Like I'm on my own. I've never had close friends or teachers that help me, guide me, & enable me to get better at whatever artistic endeavor I've got my hands in.

But over the years, I have started to see it as a gift. I am slowly perfecting the art of teaching myself.

We live in a world that admires "the self-taught" above everything else. "You TAUGHT yourself?" It's the ultimate compliment.

People look at someone who learned something on their own and ask, "HOW did you teach yourself that?"

How? Because they fully believed they could throw themselves into it and eventually figure it out.

Anyone who has learned anything on their own knows how frustrating it can be to be "self-taught." To spend 10 solid hours on something little and stupid, because you can't get to the next part until you figure it out. "If only I could just take a class on this." "If only I could just ask someone and get the answer."

But everyone who has spent 10 hours on something little and stupid also knows that they will never forget what they learned.

Everyone who has sought something with their entire heart has discovered that the greatest lie they can believe is that they "can't" unless someone else teaches them how. They learn that belief is everything they need to propel them forward.

And it becomes permanent to them. It becomes what they understand, not just know.

What they are capable of, not just what they replicated.

In a way, it becomes part of their identity.

It becomes worth it.

I like to think that God's primary characteristic is an artist. Genesis 1:1 says, "In the beginning, God created."

When we were created in his image, we were created with the innate ability to create and initiate on our own. More than that - the desire was embedded into our heart. We can initiate change; we are active, not passive creatures.

Last week I was asked, "how do I get a relationship with God like yours?" A few days ago, "how did you get past everything that happened to you?" And in the last 24 hours, several people who don't know how to pray or hear from God have crossed paths with me.

And everyone wants to be taught. Because in the moment, that seems impossible.

We all want to be "able," immediately.

We feel utterly directionless before we take the first step. We think we don't even know where to begin. We base our potential options off of failed actions in the past. "I tried that for like three years, it never worked." "I can't that."

And so we decide, "I can't." Until someone comes along to teach us.

But what we're always forgetting is that God created us with the ability. God designed you with the ability to create. God MADE to have a relationship with him. The relationship you see other people having with him. God created you with everything you need to get past what happened to you. He designed your heart and soul explicitly for the purpose of communicating with God - sharing yourself with Him, and He sharing himself with you.

What we are forgetting is that God created us.

And just like everything else, a relationship with God is simple, but not easy.

You were born with the ability to have the relationship with Him that you want but don't know how to get. Believe it.

You were born with the ability to speak to a God you cannot see. Believe it.

You were born with the ability to overcome everything that has happened to you. Believe it.

You are able to chase God with everything you have, no matter what. Believe that in the end, it will be worth it.

Because it is when you doubt the possibility that you lose the ability.

If I didn't believe I could figure out how to use a camera, I never would have become a photographer.

If I didn't believe I could find the answer to my stupid broken code problem somewhere on Google, I would have stopped looking & never designed anything.

If I didn't believe that I could mess with paints enough to finally get it to do what I wanted, I would never create anything.

You must believe before you try.

If I didn't believe God would answer me, I would stop talking to him.

If I didn't believe God would love me the way I needed to feel love, I would have never asked him for it.

So, this is my encouragement to believe. And to try. To try hard.

Choose to believe. To experiment. To run, and fall. Climb, and slip. Mix things together, and find that they don't work. But slowly we get the answers, piece by piece. We master the next step, eventually.

And before you know it, you will have created. You will understand, not just know. You will have the relationship with God that you didn't have last month, last year, ten years ago.

Because you will have tried all the wrong ways - and it was hard - until you found that you could obtain what looked out of reach.

Because you were created by God. In His image.

- - -

"You will seek me & find me when you seek me with ALL your heart." Jeremiah 29:13

It is written: ‘They will all be taught by God.’ Everyone who listens to the Father & learns from him comes to me. John 6:45

No longer will a man teach his neighbor saying, 'Know the LORD,' because they will all know me, from the least of them to the greatest," declares the LORD. Jeremiah 31:34

"I will put my law in their minds & write it on their hearts. I will be their God, & they will be my people. Jeremiah 31:33

- - -

PS: I am raising money to get back home by selling photography from the first half of the trip! Please consider helping us out! <3

Come join me on Facebook! > >

Friday, July 1, 2011

Selling Photography From The Trip To Get Back Home!

Please come peek around at the online shop, and spread the word if you'd like to help us out. :)

We are in North Carolina at the moment, next stop is Nashville-ish & then making our way to Dallas. If you're anywhere between here, there, and LA (the final destination), get in touch with us! We'd love to meet you.

Oh, and Max wrote this on Wednesday & I think it's awesome: What Men Really Want.