Assumption.

“I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” -Galatians 2:20

It was about a year ago when I made a decision that would change the way in which I was perceived by others, specifically Christians, forever.

I bought a house and my boyfriend moved in with me.

We made a garden, did projects together, got a dog, argued about what looked best, and made this amazing crazy house a home together. As an unmarried couple.

It was the hardest, easiest thing I ever did. And as a Jesus loving gal, I was slandered for it.

Though people couldn’t see in my walls-they automatically assumed what was going on. Be that their business or not.

So much said to me that I left the church I’d grown to love because it no longer felt like love. Being called out for being a sinner by other sinners is this crazy, weird, mind blowing oxymoron I wish upon no one. For a sin that is out front and center while they are able to hide their own sins in the shadows.

& I’m here today to say that my heart is a little angry still.

Not for myself though anymore, but for others who will one day make decisions that go against what is said in the Bible, and will be told that they are unworthy of the term “Christian”.

People who are too busy worried about others’ sins are quick to judge as they shove their own back into the closet in which they want them to belong.

If you’re a Jesus loving person who knows that Jesus Christ came to this world to physically die a gruesome death in order to save YOUR soul, you are a Christian. That incredible title cannot be taken away.

It doesn’t matter that you don’t live a perfect life on the outside. That you have major demons that you have to fight every day. That you struggle with obedience to God.

YOU ARE LOVED despite it all.

You are forgiven despite it all.

I refuse to accept the notion that God can no longer use or love me because of the choice I have made.

Because I am living out loud in sin, this Christian was no longer able to serve in a traditional church setting. So God took this girl who was outcasted and reminded her of the talents He had bestowed upon her.

Today I still have the great honor of writing this blog which reaches people.

I do my own online women’s Bible study which reaches more people than ever before.

It forced me to go around and see other churches and learn different things about my Savior through them, which lead me to the church I know have the pleasure of calling my new church Home.

God took me from a place where I didn’t realize I was actually stuck and has brought me to this place of freedom, change, and growth.

I’m not saying to throw everything out and run away from God and His will. But if you’re like myself and you find yourself going against the grain and feeling like the world is against you: remind yourself that you are a Child of God.

Beloved.

Cherished.

& That nothing in this world will ever change God’s love and plan for you.

-Kristin

Playing Chicken.

 

“Don’t have anything to do with foolish and stupid arguments, because you know they produce quarrels. 24And the LORD’s servant must not be quarrelsome but must be kind to everyone, able to teach, not resentful. 25Opponents must be gently instructed, in the hope that God will grant them repentance leading them to a knowledge of the truth,” -2 Timothy 2:23-25

chickies

A few months ago, a friend and I were driving home at night from a fun time out with friends.  We took the highway and I got off at my usual exit, but unfortunately found out that the road had been closed temporarily due to construction. So we turned and went down a different, dark, back road that we hoped we lead us back to where we needed to be. We went down for a ways and realized it was not taking us where we needed to go so we turned back around and headed back for the highway.

It was very dark out there and it was only two lanes with no real shoulder on the road.  We saw ahead of us what looked like one car passing another. The car that we assumed was passing was in my lane but they were a ways away so I assumed they’d get back in their lane before reaching us.

But they got closer. And closer. And they were still side by side with the other car.

Suddenly, I realized that they were not going to move.

So I quickly pulled off the side of the road-luckily not falling in the ditch below-as these two cars raced by at lightning speed.

They were racing. Playing chicken. With our lives and theirs.

I am very blessed and lucky to say that we did not lose our lives that day, but I think about it often.

Many of us do not like to try anything like that. Risking our lives and seeing who will give first-making it a matter of life or death.

But we do it often when it comes to arguing with others-especially those we love.

Who can be the meanest?

Who will play the victim?

Who will give in?

Who would rather ruin the friendship than lose the fight?

In 2 Timothy 2:23-25, it is discussed how it is a waste of time to fight over silly things. Instead we should focus on the good and come to agreements about things in a civil way. Not in a mean way, not with anger, not with malice. To make it a calm talk in which something is agreed upon together.

But that is easier said than done.

If we quit playing chicken, and offered to listen to another’s side before ours, what good could it do for our world?

-Kristin

 

Hostage Situation.

“Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.” -Ephesians 4:31-32

forth

Forgiveness.

An easy word to say, not such an easy word to live out.

The thing with human beings is that we are incredibly, beautifully flawed. We are also so very unique and different in our own ways. Sometimes we are able to find others who are weirdly flawed in the same ways as us and we make them a part of our own personal tribe of friends.

Then life happens.

There are ups and downs and you support each other through the good and the bad. You love each other through the break ups, the miscarriages, the divorces, the job losses, the health declines, the loss of loved ones. You rejoice with each other through the weddings, the birth of babies, the buying of new homes, the new jobs, the remissions, and the opportunities.

We spend so much of our time and energy with these people. So when something happens and they no longer are a part of tribe, it can deeply wound us.

Forgiveness seems like an impossible and nasty word when it comes to YOU having to be the one to give it to another.

But it truly is like setting yourself free when you are able to overcome your own pride and pain, and are able to forgive that person for whatever it is that brought this whole thing on.

I think the hardest thing about forgiveness is that people often do not understand what it means to forgive. When you forgive, you are not giving that person a “get out of jail free card”.  They have done what they’ve done and the past cannot be changed. Forgiveness is saying I recognize what you have done, I no longer will allow my anger/pain from it to take over my soul, and I free myself and you from these thoughts because I am at peace.

Who are you holding hostage in your mind that you need to set free?

If we are being honest here, it is not the other person who is necessarily being held like a prisoner…it is yourself.

Find a way to live out that forgiveness, and be free.

God never intended for us to live a life as a prisoner of our own minds—set yourself free from that which holds you down.

-Kristin