Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Distraction



It flits before your eyes, calls from the various rooms of your house, shapeshifts to cover itself with the frosting of that fresh baked cake on the counter.

Distraction.

The very word is a dangerous one that I almost hesitate to speak for fear that it will find me when I least expect it.

It comes in the form of a message that pops up on the black screen of your phone. It comes in the form of a bird fluttering outside the window to your right. It comes in the form of friends desiring your company for the day.

None of these are bad things. In fact all of them can be most excellent. A message from a friend or loved one could go so many places. A bird--you can wonder at the creation of the Creator. Friends...well, people are at the forefront of where our attention should be.

But are they distracting you from the purpose God has put into your very heart and mind to complete for His Kingdom?

Not all distractions are bad. But if they are keeping you from fulfilling what God has called you to do in this moment (as I stare at the bird hopping around our feeder outside the window), then you need to buckle down and get your horse blinders on.

Focus.
F O C U S.

We need to be faithful.
Does this mean we don't take the time to answer messages or marvel at creation or perhaps we just seclude ourselves away in our rooms for the rest of our days and never speak to another human being again?

No. This just means we manage our time, we ask God what He would have us do, and we don't take too much time away from what He has called us to do.

Please, answer the messages. But don't spend hours messaging and zero pursuing what God has called you to do. Please, watch the birds fly outside your window. But don't watch them so intently that the day has passed and you've done nothing of what God has called you to do. Please, spend time with your friends. But don't spend all day everyday with them unless that's what God has called you to do (but I have a feeling there's more to it than that).

If we are not being faithful with what God has placed in front of us, how can we expect to get to Heaven and hope to hear "Well done, my good and faithful servant"? We are only good and faithful servants if we grab the oil for our lamps and wait for the bridegroom, being faithful with what we're supposed to do. (Matthew 25:1-13).

We must pursue Him all our days.

"Do what you can, with what you have, where you are."
Theodore Roosevelt

Song: Bull In A China Shop by Switchfoot
Passage: Matthew 25:1-13

Friday, July 15, 2016

So Fridays

So Fridays. (A little side note, I guess I really like beginning things with "So", so that might become a thing from now on). Fridays are supposed to be reserved for whatever in the flowery world I wish. Today I wish to talk about everything I've been doing. Buckle in for the ride, my friends. It's going to be a bumpy one.


WATTPAD
username: waterandpen          (shocker, right?)

I've been uploading my novels to Wattpad! Wow! Woo! *crazy cheering from somewhere in my head* There's two on my account. Sound Effect and Intention Man (title work in progress).
Sound Effect is a novel I wrote a few years ago. It's undergoing its second round of editing and I'm putting chapters up as they receive the sparkly seal of approval.
Intention Man is my work in progress (just like the title) and it's going up as I finish actually writing the chapters. This means no editing whatsoever.
Generally I like to write my books so each chapter is equates to approximately ten pages or less. Because, although I adore reading, long chapters can become tiresome. I like to make it so there's no twenty page chapters to get utterly lost in.


SOUNDCLOUD
username: Water & Pen          (another SHOCKER!)

Something that I've felt heavy on my heart for a while is a need to be more vulnerable with people. It's easy for me to cover up and hide everything with a fake smile and a "Fine" when asked how I am when it's not exactly the truth. And, for those of you who don't know, I write poetry. Lately I've been recording this poetry in a spoken word style and uploading them to Soundcloud. I want to be authentic and honest with people. I'm not better than anybody else, but I'm struggling in life just like the rest of you. This is sort of therapeutic for me. And if you want some honesty, go head over to soundcloud and give a listen. My longest recording hits just over three minutes and my shortest at thirty-one seconds.


MISC

life. My summer is coming to an end. In less than a month I'll be back at my university for student leader training. A lot of people dread the beginning of a school year. I welcome it with open arms. I'm excited to get back into the swing of things, love on the people God places around me, and see what God has in store.
What I'm doing: Writing letters to the people who've supported me for my upcoming December serving trip to Kenya. I'm beyond words excited but the reality of it hasn't quite sunk in yet. But AH!

What I'm listening to: SWITCHFOOT. AHHHH. Their new album came out only last Friday and wow it is beautiful. It's cool because a lot of the themes that were recurring in my writing before this album released are crafted into the songs like a personal message to me (I know it's touching others as well) but it's amazing.

What I'm watching: Poldark. Go watch it. Ah.

What I'm reading: Polaroids and Postcards by H.M. Wilson, Where the Ghosts Lie by Wendy Greene, and Gospel Wakefulness by Jared C. Wilson


What are you truly beautiful people up to in your busy lives? Are you working on any novels? What are you listening to/watching/reading?

With much love,
Rachel

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Set Your Words Free

So I have a blog. Sure. So I have post ideas. Sure.
But something keeps me from writing for this blog of mine.
Fear.
Oh, that age old pester at the back of my mind and in the recesses of my heart. It keeps me from setting my words free. It keeps my words locked up within, struggling to fly but forever holed up in a cage to watch as other birds enjoy freedom.
This fear often stems from comparison of self to others. There are so many bloggers who are successful, bring in traffic, have dozens of comments, hundreds of followers, and a seemingly never ending supply of blog posts.
I look at these bloggers and authors and my heart and mind simultaneously begin pounding.
I look at them and think that I’ll never be good enough. So I keep myself from putting out there because I think people won’t relate to or enjoy what I have to say.
But in doing this—in keeping myself reclused and bottling up my words, I’m making a great mistake. See, everybody has a starting point. Platforms and the like take time to build up. It takes being disciplined and working hard to continue. It takes being proactive. It takes authenticity and being oneself.
And I know that God has called me to set these words free. So no longer can I remain in the shadows, but I must dance in the light. I must speak and write and be active. I must pursue the calling that the Master Creator has placed upon my life.
And to do so I must be brave. I must stop comparing myself to others but begin reveling in the Truth of who God says I am. I am chosen. I am loved. I am accepted. I am free. I am unique. I am called. I am a new creation. I am forgiven. I am redeemed. I am so many things.
Now to believe.
Now to live.
Now to write.
Not only do I pursue these things for myself, but I pray you will realize the truth of them for yourself as well.

Now, let’s go set our words free together.