S*ngleness & Other Bad Words

After being back in Houston for about two months now, I was excited when a friend of mine reached out to me about the prospect of me visiting Nacogdoches (Nac) in the near future. A small East Texas college town that had a big impact on me, and where I gained some great friends, including this particular friend who had recently gotten married, moved to Florida, and had a new baby girl I couldn’t wait to met. I soon reached out to some other friends of mine (a newly married couple) to see if they’d be willing to grab me from Houston and bring me back to Nac. They were happy to, and I couldn’t have been more grateful!

Fast-forward to the evening I arrive in Nac at the house I’d stay at for my week-long trip. A young couple I lived with for a year before graduating, that are more to me family than friends, graciously host me for the duration of my stay. As I caught up with my friend for a few moments before bed, she mentions in our conversation that a mutual friend of ours (who I had strong feelings for, for a number of years) recently acquired a girlfriend. I nod (as though unaffected), and we continue our conversation and not long after call it a night. As I retire to my room, I decide to have a little chit-chat with The Big Man before catching some Z’s. Needless to say, I was…all of the things! Sad. Hurt. Frustrated. Done. All of it. And I told Him so.

As the week progressed, and I spent time with various friends, I noticed how much my singleness stood out to me at moments, like I could feel what made me different in a crowd. (A number amid the letters, so to speak.) For instance, the friend who was hosting me with her husband planned for her and I to spend time with our mutual friend (the one who moved to Florida and had a baby). We met up with her at where she was staying, and soon find out that more friends were headed that way. As the group grew, I at one point found myself with four friends who are all wives and moms. And I felt it. 

That feeling happened several more times that week, and is one that happens throughout my life, in moments that feel like my singleness is showing. It’s a very vulnerable mental, emotional, and especially spiritual state to be in, that I find is not easily concealable though I can’t help but attempt to.

Which makes me wonder: Why? 

What is it that makes me feel the need to hide what singleness does to me at times? Why is it something that I don’t want others to see too evidently linked to me? 

It was encounters with that friend of mine that’s dating now, and conversations with God that revealed parts of the answer.

I, during my visit to Nac, had to literally and figuratively stare rejection in the face and respond to it. At times I responded poorly, and at other times a bit better. But it was the sharp sting of rejection that shaped my view of my singleness. Reasons why aside, (which, thinking about all the possible why’s, has only been for me a web of lies and half-truths for me to get trapped in so The enemy can toy with my mind and perspective) being rejected itself places so much doubt on you about you that it very easily becomes you. Instead of someone who was rejected, you operate out of the identity of Reject, and it becomes who you are instead of something you’ve experienced.

(While discussing rejection, let it be noted that to reject someone, like any other action, should be done in a respectful manner, and that cannot be accomplished passively. Passive rejection is simply disrespectful and causes more harm than good in the end. While rejection done directly in love and honesty, shows a sense of respect for the other person. (Zech. 8:16; Eph. 4:15; Eph 4:25))

It also occurred to me, that my singleness was something I felt directly reflected my feelings of being undesirable and overlooked.  In the Bible, however, this is not the case. Paul, (who wrote a famous section of scripture spelling out just how beautiful marriage is and what it is to look like in Eph. 5:22-33) wrote on singleness and how he preferred it to marriage in 1 Corinthians 7:7, 32-35.

1 Corinthians 7:7, 32-35 (MSG)

7 “Sometimes I wish everyone were single like me—a simpler life in many ways! But celibacy is not for everyone any more than marriage is. God gives the gift of the single life to some, the gift of the married life to others.”32-35 “I want you to live as free of complications as possible. When you’re unmarried, you’re free to concentrate on simply pleasing the Master. Marriage involves you in all the nuts and bolts of domestic life and in wanting to please your spouse, leading to so many more demands on your attention. The time and energy that married people spend on caring for and nurturing each other, the unmarried can spend in becoming whole and holy instruments of God. I’m trying to be helpful and make it as easy as possible for you, not make things harder. All I want is for you to be able to develop a way of life in which you can spend plenty of time together with the Master without a lot of distractions.”

Clearly singleness is not a season/state of life God means to highlight your flaws, He instead means it to be a time that highlights your freedom. Now, if you’re anything like me you may want to read that and say, ‘Well that’s all well and good Paul, but that’s not how singleness has been going for me! Instead it’s been a time of rejection that has me feeling overlooked and undesirable!” It’s to that idea though, I think God and Paul want to ask you and I the question of,  ‘Are you going to let feeling over power Truth?’ Not to undermine feelings, which are real and powerful and should be handled with care, but to put it in it’s proper place in relation to The Word of God. I often feel, the weight and sting of rejection as I walk through life as a single. Yet, if I’m rejected by one, a few, or the majority, my acceptance in Christ not only does not weaver, but becomes all the more sweet and precious to me. Feeling overlooked and undesirable for me, and maybe for you too, often seem like truths that mock me at every opportunity. But The Truth says I am seen by the One who loves me beyond measure.

I don’t write this as though now I will be able to perfectly walk in singleness absolutely content, never again thinking poorly of this season or of myself in it. Let’s not get things twisted. I’m not perfect. I will fail. But, in my failings I want to, from this point forward run into the truth of God, not run to God believing false-truth. I want to come to a maturity level where when I am hurt, sad, and frustrated to instead of telling God how much I’m disappointed, to instead tell Him that despite it all I know that He loves me beyond what I am capable of knowing, I know that He sees me when I don’t feel seen, and that being accepted by Him is the sweetest gift I’ll ever receive and to forgive me in moments where I forget that. I want to come to a place where singleness is no longer a bad, bitter-tasting word or season who’s only company is rejection, and feelings of being overlooked and undesirable. I instead work toward the day when singleness feels sweet, and freeing. I also, very importantly, practice entrusting my heart to the One who made it and enveloping it in His Word always (Matt. 6:21; Phil. 4:7; Ps. 34:18, 73:26; Pro. 3:5-6, 4:23, 23:26).

I hope, you and I both, rise to the challenge of walking in singleness well, not allowing it to be something emboldened by negative characteristics, but experienced as God intends. A gift of freedom, where you and Him can devote all you want to each others time and attention. (Sounds like a pretty bomb relationship!)

 

 

 

Thanks for walking through this with me, and I hope to see you again on another Christian Journey.

Blessings.

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Walking in Your Worth

As most of you know I recently relocated back to Houston, Texas after completing my year of inner-city ministry at San Francisco City Impact as a student in their School of Ministry. Being back home with my family and friends has been such a blessing. And though I miss a lot of people from San Francisco, I was really ready to come back home and start a new chapter and season of life.

Beyond catching up on much needed time with my nephews, my hope in coming home was to enter into occupational ministry full-time. The search for such a position proved far more daunting than I had anticipated, and I soon grew restless and anxious. Instead of hoping for my ideal job, I soon began wanting just a job. I applied and interviewed for two minimum-wage jobs and was even set with attending orientation for one of the two when I had a talk with my parents on the matter. My dad especially had a strong opinion and perspective. According to him, I – having attained two degrees – was essentially ‘selling myself short’ and not setting myself up for success in being able to be independently sufficient. He also thought that in me working two minimum-wage jobs, I would loose valuable time I could devote to pursing a position that could allow me to be more financially independent, propelling me into self-sufficiency.

His points were solid, as usual. But I still struggled over the thought of letting those two jobs go. To me, settling for what’s in front of me seemed better than hoping for something that my take a really long time or my never come at all. I have that same thinking in multiple areas of my life it turns out.

My dad was trying to have me recognize that I am worth more than what I’m about to settle for by taking on those jobs. A message that parallels what my Dad tells me all the time with other aspects of my life. (Clearly I need to listen to my dads better.)

It has been a long standing theme in my talks with God that I do not walk in the worth He has put on me. I tend instead to operate out of the worth the world or just other people put on me. This either leads to debilitating low self-worth or a sort of strange arrogance. When the world tells me that I have an undesirable skin-tone, body, hair texture, that I’m not outgoing enough, girly enough, skinny enough, white enough, that I’m too big, too black, too Christian, too strong constantly through social media, TV, through my friends who unconsciously give in to these ideas, it equals very low self-worth. In the other hand is this low self-worth-rooted-pride that comes into play when the people around me think of me as good or even great in something. When my friends and family think of me as eloquent, intelligent, strong, or wise and for a moment I don’t feel low. I crave those around me seeing me this way often so that they are distracted from seeing all the things that speak to my worthlessness.

There’s an Oats family story about me that is remembered in the word “priceless”.

The story goes that one day the Oats family was driving around on a sunny California day and as mom and dad sat in the passenger and driver seats they started talking about a celebrity’s current worth. They mentioned that this particular celebrity was worth millions. It was then that the very young Chrissy asked her dad, ‘How much do you think I’m worth?’ ‘Priceless!’, her dad responded. Taken aback and flabbergasted Chrissy cried out ‘Dad!!!’ She was appalled that her dad would say such a nasty, mean thing to her. To her surprise the rest of her family thought the exchange was hilarious and laughed relentlessly. ‘What?!’, Chrissy demanded to know. As the laughing died down, it occurred to Chrissy that she had been mistaken. Her dad had said that she was priceless, the word she thought had been said of her was worthless.

I think a lot of Christians for some reason or another think that their Dad has said that they are worthless. But that is not the case. Our Dad, throughout the entirety of His Word has spelled out just how valuable He finds you to be. That value is not found in how many degrees you have, or your job, body, skin color, not even in how smart you are. It’s not found in the opinions of others. You possess an immeasurable value solely because Jesus paid an immeasurable price for you. Walk in it. So often I let a false worth dictate how I think and make decisions, it’s what was pushing me to accepting jobs when I can have better. It’s what has me over-think how friends and family feel about me and go to negative extremes, regardless of what they say and beyond what is reasonable. It’s a lie, and though convincing, remains a lie and does nothing to take away the fact that your true worth is what God has said of you.

Ephesians is probably my favorite book of the Bible as it touches on both the practical and profound. In Chapter 3 of Ephesians is a section that describes the love of God:

Ephesians 3:17b-19 (NIV) And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.

I go to this passage and the book of Ephesians for regular reminders of what being loved by and identified with God look like. It is when I have these attributes freshly on mind that I can better resist the lie that I am not worth much. Knowing that God’s love for me is wide and long and high and deep to the point of incomprehension, that’s when I can walk in my worth.

Thanks for traveling with me, and I hope to see you again on another Christian Journey.

Blessings.

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Cross Carrying

I believe it was a Friday.

Work, like many of you if not all know well, has its duties and responsibilities that are pretty much routine, occurring very regularly and almost always go about in the same fashion. For me, working within San Francisco Worship Center as an Assistant Church Coordinator is no different. I have a certain few duties that pop-up on my weekly to-do list all the time. Print out copies of the breakdown of Sunday morning service and put them, stapled, in my bosses mailbox: check. Update the announcement slides for Sunday morning service, download them as JPEG’s and email them to specific members of the worship team: check. These duties and the others like them are fairly straightforward. So when I saw on my to-do list that I needed to pick-up an order from the local printing store that I’d done a dozen times before, routine was my mindset, and off I went.

The three block walk to the storefront went on as a walk in the Tenderloin usually goes, a mix between casual and cautious. One tries to enjoy the nice weather San Francisco has to offer, while avoiding feces on the sidewalk and unwanted attention from people passing by. But, I get to my destination and the owners, knowing me by name at this point go and grab the order immediately. Routine. Monotonous.

What wasn’t routine was getting a seemingly small request from the owner. He asked, knowing where I worked, if I could take a cross to the Pastor of my church for him. “Yeah, of course,” I said. The box with my order wasn’t very large, I figured I could manage a decorative wall cross too. Little did I know, he didn’t mean what I thought he did. Instead, he proceeds to walk from the back of the store with six-foot tall wooden crucifix. Needless to say, I was a bit taken aback. Having already verbally committed to taking this back with me, I receive the cross he handed me wondering all the while, ‘how do I even carry this thing?’ 

It wasn’t until I stepped out of the store that the reality of walking holding this bigger-than-me cross through the streets of the Tenderloin hit me. I almost immediately began to wish I could become invisible. A lot of weird sights can been seen everyday in the Tenderloin but, maybe due to my personal proximity to this instance, I felt this situation at least takes a slice of the cake if not the whole thing.

As I started walking back to my office I grew frustrated and embarrassed. Why would he even ask me to carry this thing, knowing how big it is? Why does my office have to be so far away? Why are there so many people outside right now? Then, as His usual when I start asking these kinds of questions, God started answering them (as is His style, through more questions). Are you ashamed of my cross? Is not baring a cross a daily command I have given you? What do you think I felt when I had to carry mine?

Convicted three times over, I adjusted my stance to a strong, sure, unashamed one, instead of the hunched over, embarrassed posture I had before. As I walked, readjusted, the weight of the cross grew heavy in my arms. A box of booklets from the store in one arm and this cross in the other I had to persevere through the muscle strain and fatigue and keep walking. But I was growing tired. It was in that moment He spoke again, I know this is tiring for you, and as you get closer to your destination, consider the walk I made.

As we approach Easter/Resurrection Sunday this weekend, I can’t help but think of the time I walked through the Tenderloin literally carrying a cross. Luke 9:23 says, “Then he said to them all: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me.”” A beautiful and well-known section of scripture. I look back and examine how I responded when this passage, even just for a few moments, really was as visual as it reads. Though the command is given as one to make daily, I don’t think it should be seen as routine or monotonous. It’s not a monotonous task to, as the Amplified Bible expounds ‘set aside selfish interests’, and ‘express a willingness to endure whatever may come’. 

I find the parallel interesting that Christ, so often after performing a miracle told the person the miracle was directed to not tell people about what He did for them, but when He died He did it very publicly. On the other hand, so often in my Christian experience, I want to be seen doing these good Christian things (fasting, praying, teaching, correcting), but the moment I get the command to carry a cross I would rather it to be figurative, less visible.

Romans 1:16 states, For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes.” 

Preparing to remind myself of that dreadful walk Christ made unashamedly, on my – and your-  behalf and of the finished work of the cross, as I  walk my own Christian journey I have to pause and think: how have I been carrying mine? With shame, or with strength? Looking at Christs’ example or focusing on my surroundings? Recognizing that He did immeasurably more for me or thinking that what I’m doing is some great work? Monotonous or miraculous?

1 Peter 2:24  “He personally carried our sins in His body on the cross [willingly offering Himself on it, as on an altar of sacrifice], so that we might die to sin [becoming immune from the penalty and power of sin] and live for righteousness; for by His wounds you [who believe] have been healed.” 

 

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The ‘S’ Word: Submission

I Timothy 2: 8-14 “Therefore I want the men everywhere to pray, lifting up holy hands without anger or disputing. 9 I also want the women to dress modestly, with decency and propriety, adorning themselves, not with elaborate hairstyles or gold or pearls or expensive clothes, 10 but with good deeds, appropriate for women who profess to worship God. 11 A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. 12 I do not permit a woman to teach or to assume authority over a man; she must be quiet. 13 For Adam was formed first, then Eve. 14 And Adam was not the one deceived; it was the woman who was deceived and became a sinner.”

“Let’s talk about what this says. Tell me what you think of this section of scripture.”

This morning in class, my teacher made room for the open discussion of the passage above. A fairly controversial and polarizing topic, there was a tangible tension in the room. I was the first to speak.

I expressed to my classmates and teacher that I honestly don’t particularity like this section of scripture. It tends to leave a bitter taste in mouth and in my heart. The idea that in the church men should “pray, lifting up holy hands” and all I should do is “dress modestly” and “be quiet,” seems belittling and limiting. It feels less about order and more about inferiority and inability. I read this passage and perceive it to mean that because I’m a woman I’m less capable. If the reason for my incapability is founded on I’m one gender and not the other, that doesn’t seem like a good enough reason. In my mind, this passage paints the picture that regardless of my spiritual maturity or any leadership role I hold, not only am I not equal, but beneath. “Based on this passage should I even serve in leadership?” “Based on this passage should even be sharing this right now?” 

To someone who has served in leadership for years, works in ministry, and aspires to work in ministry throughout their life, this section of scripture and those similar to it can be really discouraging. To think that the biggest part of my life, that I do unto God, could possibly not be biblical is a rough thought. The best thing to happen was for me to hear the thoughts of others, and class was the best outlet. My teacher thanked me for my honesty and then went on to share a story about his wife. Before they were married, he prompted a conversation between the two of them about this passage and his stance on it and the role of women in the church. It caused quite the debate. Knowing her to be strong, independent, and a leader he wrestled with the thought that she wouldn’t want to submit to him as her husband, which is what he was hoping to be to her. After a time of prayer and fasting, he asked God to show him that she could and wanted to do that with him. Within a week she walked up to him saying that she felt that God wanted her to express to him that she would be willing and honored to have him be the man she would submit to as her husband. 

I see myself so much in that story. As someone who could be described just as easily as strong, independent and a leader, I think people perceive me to have an unwillingness or disdain to submit as a wife to a husband. But that can’t be further from the truth. My discomfort in thinking the Bible says I’m somehow less equipped or capable – which may not actually be what it’s saying – because of my gender is not saying that I don’t want to submit to a husband. [I find the difficulty in thinking that I, as a woman, have to submit to all men simply because they’re men. A man in measurable authority over me ( God, my boss, my pastor, my father, my husband etc.) I have no objection to walking in submission to. But to think that my male classmates and brothers in Christ have an authority over me just because they’re male, I don’t understand. Or that despite me having been placed in a leadership role within my church, that a male member has authority over me though he isn’t in leadership. I’m saying this is what I take the scripture to mean, not that this is absolutely what it is meaning.] The idea of being a ‘help-mate’ to a Godly, strong, spiritually mature man who would love me “as Christ loved the Church” (Eph. 5:25) is not something I would at all be against. In fact, and to be totally vulnerable, it’s something I continue to seek God about through prayer. I greatly want that, but struggle with not feeling worthy of it, and not being able to believe it’s out there for me – after all, ‘Who would want me?’

I don’t think any Christian woman is opposed to what I described within a Godly marriage. I think the issue comes down to two questions: As a woman, what’s my rightful place in church? and As a woman, what does submission mean/look like, and who do I submit to?

To be honest, I can’t really tell you the answer to the first question because I’m still trying to discover the answer for myself. I do know however, the only way for me find the right answer is through careful, objective, personal study of the scripture and to consider them as a whole, not taking anything out of context or on the basis of assumption. To the second question, I would deal with what submission doesn’t mean or look like first. Submission is not synonymous with inferior. Submission doesn’t look like being voiceless, subservient or restricted. Walking in submission doesn’t mean chained, but free. (A strange concept I know.) A classmate of mine mentioned the “beauty of submission” toward the end of class. A woman herself, I was a little offended that she could see it that way at first. Paired with  something else my teacher said I think I understand the beauty and freedom of submission within marriage. Now in married life my teacher mentioned how when a big decision is to be made his wife willingly submits to his ultimate decision. “She doesn’t have the pressure to choose and stand before God having made that choice. I do, that’s on me.” I don’t think God was trying to limit His daughters in the call to be submissive to their husbands – or to Him – but instead to be His carefree princesses.

As someone who is single, not in the clearer defined covenant of marriage, the question of ‘who do I submit to?’ is still a touch difficult to say. However, I know without shadow of doubt that I ultimately submit to God and that how I act to others should always be unto Him. My faith in Him revealing to me what submission means for me during this season is something I have to lean on, and find grace in. In no way do I think that my brothers in Christ, at whatever age, would say or think that I or any woman is inferior to them but only that the two genders have two different and specified roles within church and marriage, and through study of the Word can we discover what that means.

I certainly still have much to learn, and grow in, and am sure that there will never come a point in my walk with God were I won’t be doing those things. This topic is one that can be debated about for longer than I wish to write on it, but if you do talk about it, whether it’s on this page or with your friends and family, I would say to do so with this always in mind: the Word of God was given to His people out of His unconditional love for us, and nothing less. It’s when I think the Bible could be suggesting inferiority or the like through this topic, or when I am starting to give way to ideas that oppose what I know God has said and thinks of me and any of my fellow Christians, that I’ve forgotten that truth.

This encounter is just one of the many ways the Lord has impacted me during my time in San Francisco, and I’m excited to be able to share more with you in the future. Thank you so much for reading. I hope that God was able to use my experience to help you in some way. My time in San Francisco is going to continue for at least another nine months, but I still need help. If you would like to support me while here monetarily or through prayer, please don’t hesitate to contact me. My information will be at the bottom of this post. If you are confident, having sought God about it, that you would like to give in support of me – Thank you! – the best way to do so is through SurePaySM. If you have any questions, feel free to contact me.

 

Thank you for joining me on this – somewhat rocky – Christian Journey.

#ChristianJourneys

-Christian Oats                                                                                                                                                    chrissy.oats@yahoo.com                                                                                                                                404.682.8380                                                                                                                                                        https://christianjourneys.wordpress.com

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Entering the Filth

Remaining optimistic was proving to be difficult. The words “Room Clean”open up a world of disturbing possibilities in the Tenderloin, and I was questioning if volunteering for this assignment was a good decision. But the choice had been made, and I grabbed a bag filled with cleaning supplies and protective gear, and headed off with my team to 385 Eddy at the Hamlin Hotel.

San Francisco’s Tenderloin district is arguably the most notorious and nefarious section of the inner city. Crowded with stacked Residential Hotels, these single-resident occupancy (SRO’s) rooms are often housed by people of low-income, disability, and recent immigrants. Sometimes they can be fairly well-kept and prove to be a reasonable and affordable housing option. Yet, in my experience, more often than not these rooms and buildings can be in questionable condition.

This particular room was not only swarming with fruit flies, cluttered in piles of rubble, and littered with rodent droppings, but the resident had no way of helping herself with the state of her room due to chronic physical ailments and seemed to have gotten acclimated to the mess. Getting over my initial shock and after having introduced myself, I watched the resident sit, seemingly settled in the room. This may sound off, like “What’s the problem, she’s simply sitting in her room?” I found this bothersome because the moment I stepped into her room, I found it overwhelmingly unsettling. The jumbled disarray of broken, messy things left me uncomfortable and anxious. So to see her more or less content was strange to say the least.

As my team and I began our work I grew more and more disturbed by what all found. Being in the room in general caused feelings of compassion and sympathy. No one should have to live in so small a room. The knowledge of the high probability – later confirmed by the resident herself – that everything in that room, regardless of the state it was in, was all she had is a heartbreaking realization. However, coming across numerous empty bourbon bottles, handfuls of trash, a crack pipe, and having to swat away flies every five seconds also caused me to become increasingly irritated. I couldn’t wrap my mind around all the “why?’s” popping into my head. “Why do you have all this junk?” “Why don’t you get rid of all this stuff?” “Why won’t you let us get rid of it?” “Why do you live like this?” “Why are you OK with it?”

As I continued to ask why, God began to answer. “Who said she sees it as junk?” “How do you know she hasn’t tried to get rid of it?” “Can’t you see that she’s trying to let you help her now?” “Do you know if she knows there’s a better way to live, or that it’s possible for her?” “Why do you assume that she is OK with it, based on what you see?” My immediate response, like it often is when I’m questioned in such a way, was to get defensive and argumentative. I find, with God especially, to stay in such a mindset is not only unwise, but difficult. The more clearheaded I pondered His questions, the more I realized I couldn’t truly answer them. I had no way of knowing anything for sure because all I had were my preconceived perceptions. I was humbled in this realization, but God wanted to humble me further.

He showed me in that moment, the act of cleaning someone else’s mess is not unfamiliar to Him. In fact, beyond examples and depictions of this very thing in the Bible, He reminded me that I’m a mess He cleans fairly regularly. The swarms of annoying, buzzing thoughts that cause confusion and frustration in me, He has had to remove. The mounds and mounds of reasons I use to justify insecurities, He has had to sort through and clear out. All the debris from past situations that left random pieces of brokeness scattered about, He has to put back together. The mess of me, He has dealt with. Not only has He dealt with it, but the manner in which He did so consisted only of patience, love, mercy, grace, and favor. The manner in which I was dealing with cleaning this lady’s room: disgust, annoyance, pride, false humility and irritation. Not like my Father at all. I was humbled in this realization, but God wanted to humble me even further.

I couldn’t help but agree. He was absolutely right (not very surprising). I thanked Him for the lesson, and tried to adjust accordingly in response. But He wasn’t through dealing with me yet. He brought back to me my earlier thought of how this resident could be so conditioned to her present environment. It baffled me that she could just sit while all the flies buzzed around and heaps of stuff crowded the room. But I found that I’m the same way. It is not unlike me to get accustomed to me, every flaw and unrighteous thing, I can’t even see just how filthy it all is. God has seen how I sit in the mess of me, perfectly oblivious, and yet still cleanses me. I was humbled in this realization, but God wanted to humble me further still.

At some point during the Room Clean, my team and I wanted to start throwing away different items. These items were broken, filthy, unnecessary, and sometimes so damaged it was dangerous. Clearly needing to be thrown out. No matter the state of some of the things we asked to throw away, she insisted most of it stay. It didn’t make any sense to me. Again, why? “Why hold onto things like these? They’re broken and gross and aren’t any good for you. Keeping them is pointless.” “I could say the same to  you,” He said. Another convicting realization. All the things I hold onto, when all they are is junk. All the things I stubbornly won’t hand over to Him, all-the-while He’s offering freedom and betterment.

The experience humbled me again and again, and I am so thankful to have gone through it. Only God could use an unexpected Room Clean as a way to cleanse me of so much, and only within a few hours. This encounter is just one of the many ways the Lord has impacted me during my time in San Francisco, and I’m excited to be able to share more with you in the future. Thank you so much for reading. I hope that God was able to use my experience to help you in some way. My time in San Francisco is going to continue for at least another nine months, but I still need help. If you would like to support me while here monetarily or through prayer, please don’t hesitate to contact me. My information will be at the bottom of this post. If you are confident, having sought God about it, that you would like to give in support of me – first, thank you!! – the best way to do so is through SurePaySM. If you have any questions, feel free to contact me.

 

 

Thank you for joining me on this Christian Journey.

#ChristianJourneys

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About

Christian Journeys. Essentially  a play on words. Inpart about me (Christian) and the journeys life sends my way everyday, and also inpart about the journeys Christians tend to find themselves on as a whole, at least in my opinion. I’m a graduate from a University in East Texas, an intern at my local church, an aspiring writer and minister, a lover of nature, books, and fashion, and am completely infatuated with Jesus Christ. I hope you’ll join me as this Christian Journeys.

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