Purposeful Searching

Life is like a game of hide and seek.

I remember as a little girl not really liking this game.  There were too many unknowns.  No parameters and certainly no strategy when who was “it” constantly changed.  Unable to really know your pursuor  and where they would go, the options became endless.  Upon discovering the best hiding place, you would wait with frightened anticipation in this cat and mouse game.  But it was only a game and everyone was always found.

Until they weren’t.

Not being found, though the goal of the game, was also my biggest fear.  What if I outsmarted them but in their childish distraction stopped looking?  Just how long does one stay hidden before you come out and make your presence known?  Like I said previously, no parameters and too many unknown variables.

Life is like a game of hide and seek.

You see every child yearns to be known, yearns to be found and not forgotten.  From the most flamboyant and outgoing child who garners all the attention with every entrance, to the quiet, introspective one who silently screams come find me we all innately want to be found and known.

Yet in a culture that screams “look at me” “see what I’ve done and where I am” we still play the hide and seek game.

What if all the “look at me” was really a lost searching cry of “help me find the real me”?

Transparency and openness will kill hide and seek.  With no where to hide, we are all in the open.

That was not very profound and very obvious but in many ways evokes more fear in us than the thought of hiding so long we are never found.  Thus leading me to purposeful searching.

When we search with purpose there is a plan.  We have some set parameters.  Like in a treasure hunt.  Looking for buried treasure is purposeful searching.  Armed with maps, a GPS or compass and a clear knowledge of what the goal is, we can launch a successful treasure hunt.

So what if we approached life like a treasure hunt versus a game of hide and seek?  What if we approached ourselves and our life as a treasure hunt?

Purposeful searching.

What is often forgotten is that we have the treasure map in our hands.  God says his Word is a “lamp unto our feet”.  It’s the dashed line with the path already marked for our unique journey.

In the movies, there are scenes where the treasure map is found yet the finder has no ability to decipher it.  It is only by learning the “code” or language or even seeing it at a certain angle that the truth of the journey is illuminated.  So it seems if the treasure to be found, then one must use the right eyes or hear the correct language.  Like in hide and seek…it’s always about knowing where to look!

So it is with all of us.  God has so uniquely made each of us that He uses what is our own unique code to seek and find us.  He is a relentless seeker, but the question remains if we want to be found and brought out into the light.  The age old question.

“Lost are saved (found), find their way a the sound of Your great name.” (Your Great Name – Natalie Grant)

When we fear not being found or not being able to find or see the way, when we feel our game of hide and seek has gone terribly wrong and no one will ever know we are there, we are provided an escape….Jesus.

All He wants is the “real me” the real treasure to be found…for the one He created to step into the light, to stop hiding and hoping someone will seek me.  He has been seeking all along, to bring us back to show us the treasure is not in the hidden places but in the light of His beautiful grace.

Purposeful searching…not for the things hidden, but for what was so close.  The search is really over, His plan was the purpose all along.

The real me is the purpose in the plan, to bring us each back to the place where, as in the beginning, there is intimacy and we are found.  It is only when we stop the hiding and we simply seek…that there we will find.

Just some simple ponderings….may your soulife be blessed and you find purpose in the search…Dee

Airports and Endless Adventures

That wanderlust thing…guess I’ve always had it.

The discontentment was never with life as I know it, but the discontentment of being in one place for too long.  What a realization as I walked down the long corridor toward the gate…I was meant to do this the rest of my life…I was always meant to do this.

Purpose.

“We are each born with a purpose, but we choose our destiny.” – Paula White

That truth rings in my ears, yet the fear silences it with the whisper of, “What if you choose wrong?”  Thus, keeping my feet planted all too often, forsaking purpose and the choice of an amazing destiny laid before me for the safety and security of a life well lived.

What is going on?  Sell it all?  Leave it all behind?  For what and for where?

A life of adventure, only to visit…never to stay.

So many cultures, so many people, everyone going somewhere yet many going no where.  Amid all the wealth and success, the bigness of it all, there is a dark, hidden, opposing factor of lack.

Heartbreaking how we can be asleep yet fully awake.

Fine lines are drawn between our opinionated right or simple choice to ignore and tolerance, acceptance and truth that loves bravely and does not speak judgement. Lines that separate and lines that can become walls, lines that rob us of a plan far bigger than ourselves keeping us stagnant yet seemingly walking forward.  I ponder those and closely examine the walls I’ve surrounded myself with first.

Appearing awake, yet really asleep.

Funny how being in the middle of a crowd you can feel completely alone, endlessly connected but in a cave of loneliness.

Noise everywhere but the loudest noise is inside me.  And if in me then it’s likely in many others.

Where do you find yourself today?  Fully awake?  Alert times 10?  Or when you really look at yourself, are you missing what is right in front of you and going on around you because of the chaos and discontent within?

Appearing awake, yet really asleep, walking toward the next adventure, yet having no where to go.

In a world of striving for success, for the next big thing, the next business deal, the next investment, the next big adventure are we missing what is placed right in front of us?  Are we missing the simple in the midst of a complicated life we’ve created for ourselves?

Funny how an airport can spur such thoughts that have evolved into ramblings.

Then, as I settle into a few moments of simple quiet to muse over and pen my thoughts, the voice comes across the table.  Random comment concerning a physical attribute leading to a conversation, leading to a connection, leading to an opportunity to plant a seed.  How easily I could have missed it.  How easily I could have brushed it aside and ignored what was right in front of me for the sake of being distracted by something I thought so important at the moment.  How easily I could have checked my phone, gone back to typing and missed a moment…one that would be lost forever.  But response birthed conversation and we left better than we arrived.

How many times has the rush and the wanderlust caused me to miss what is right here? Yes there are conversations to happen, connections to make and purpose to fulfill.  But this traveler needs to enjoy the journey and not just look at the destination.  Every step, however small, is one more opportunity, every kind word a place to show love and impact a life.

Yes, I was purposed with a wanderlust, a yearning for more, a restless spirit never to settle.  Yet, on the journey toward the path called destiny there is even more!

Purpose?  Have one.  Destiny?  Moving toward one.  Journey?  The joy in both!

Here’s to living one moment, one day, one experience and one simple, kind word at a time. Here’s to seasons and change and death that brings growth.  Here’s to a Papa that loves enough to never leave us even in the valleys and who celebrates with us on the mountains.  Here’s to friends, conversations, tears and journeys….most of all, here’s to the fabulous, fearless, unique you….love big, live loud and laugh more…it’s all good for the soulife!

From a heart in overflow…Lots of love…Dee

 

Today I Choose…

I hate choices….

By nature I am indecisive.  Some will call it free-spirited, creative, innovative but basically I can call it what I want but… I’m indecisive.  And this does not work well in real life, and especially not in my life with Jesus.

Making a decision for some comes very easy.  That’s who they are…organized, decisive, goal-oriented, sensible.  But for people like me who are emotional, compassionate, who desire to be goal-oriented but just can’t decide what to do next this is the daily struggle. These days God is trying His best to teach me a few things about choices.  You see, the God who created us created us with a will and the ability to have a choice.  That’s what separates us from every other living being…choice.  We choose who to love, choose who to serve, choose what to do next, choose to run or to hide.

Choice…

I have realized that every choice I make comes at some sort of a cost.  This can look like giving up time, or finances or even, here lately, relationships.  I have also realized that since in the kingdom it is people that are it’s currency, it is the price of relationships that seemingly are the most costly.  My time can simply  be a  rearrangement and the finances can be recovered but the relationships lost actually leave a cavernous void.

Choices, both in and out of God’s will, cost us.  When choices we know are in God’s will cost a relationship that creates the place of questioning, of doubt, and of confusion.  Why would obedience come at such a high cost?

But then there is Jesus…

I guess it always comes back to this place.  In the intersections of choice I often respond, react and question as if Jesus doesn’t understand…I know, silly, right?  But my humanity wants to function on feeling and what “looks” right or not right, what’s fair and not fair. Yet stepping back to the place of surrender, I then see that no relationship, no thing, no money, position, or even my time is my own or is a guarantee in this life.  Then in that place of surrender….and I realize that too is my choice, hold on or let it go.

Full circle…God gave us the choice to love Him, the choice to serve Him, the choice to be obedient.  He knew that it would cost us to belong to Him.  And at times that cost would be very high.  That’s why he sent Jesus…the perfect example of the high cost of the call.

Today these lyrics ring true…

“My heart beating, my soul breathing…I found my life when I laid it down.  

Upward falling, spirit soaring…I touch the sky, when my knees hit the ground” (Hillsong United “Touch the Sky”)

Upside down God-life, upside down choices, things that make no sense and cost so much in our finite mind but with God it’s just part of a much grander plan.  Choices, sometimes hard choices with high cost.

The constant, decisive, pivotal place in the Jesus life.

So my friends, choose well today, choose surrender and find your life…your true soul life.

I find my life….when I lay it down…

Counting the cost yet trusting the reward today….bless your soulife!

Dee

 

P.S.

Enjoy this….take a moment and breathe!

Touch the Sky – Hillsong United

Transparent Grace

Grace…underserved, unmerited favor, to esteem, honor, favor, dignify or distinguish.

Transparent grace…a funny concept that has just been wrecking my world lately.  I keep rolling those two words over and over in my head as they in many ways are set to oppose one another.

Grace, we often understand as a covering, something we walk in, something that elevates. Yet the concept of transparency is raw, open, uncovered, and often is the very thing that will depose, shun and cause hurt.  So how then, can they be two words that would seemingly at this moment fit together like a hand in glove?

As always, my pondering, searching and questioning leads me back to the heart of God.

Revelation 1.

God made Himself transparent when he came to earth in human form.  Jesus laid the heart of God bare for all to see, not just to hear.  He never ran away, covered up nor did he hold back the true heart of God from anyone, no matter what their current life status was!  He transparently confronted those things that grieved the heart of God in an effort to reconcile them back to or show them their Father’s heart.

So that was true of Jesus, but what about us?

Revelation 2.

As I have pondered and even wrestled with this with God I am realizing a few things about myself and the culture at large.  First, we love to talk about grace.  We want it, we need it and when we accept it we wear it like a royal robe.  The problem lies in the fact that it is often that very robe of grace, which was meant to empower and strengthen us, that becomes the grand cover up.  While yes it covers our sins, we often use it to insulate rather than radiate.  You see Jesus never insulated himself from anything or anyone, but radiated the Father’s love and grace to those around him.

It was not a grace that elevated but a grace that humbled, not a grace that set apart but a grace that welcomed and included, not a grace that judged but a grace that loved.

You see the Pharisees, like us sometimes, wore a cloak that kept them set apart. This was the cloak that they were elevated above, which bred a mindset of judgment and much religious activity.  Yet Jesus, God in the flesh, took on a robe of the common man, transparent and open for all to see, assimilated yet not conformed, humbling himself to the ordinary.

What I realize is this is the definition of transparent grace.

And it is here I realize that I have lived anything but that.

Revelation 3.

You see for many years it was a life of covering up, a life of competition, being right and doing right things and “cloaking” all that was not right for the sake of acceptance and love of people.  Unfortunately, in many religious arenas that is the very thing that measures success of that person.  I looked like I had it all together, could say all the right things and could be whomever I was needed to be.  All the while, cloaking the insecurity that caused me to compete, the envy that caused me to judge, the pride that blinded me, and the fear that allowed me to insulate myself from the broken and dying.  What I had received as grace offered freely became walls of captivity for my soul.

Leading me to my now….

Transparency…walls are down.  Transparency…the grace Jesus died for so willingly I abused for the sake of fitting in and acceptance within the church culture and community. Funny how God can use the very thing that is wrecking our lives to reveal to us the depth of His love.  Funny how the desert heat can cause us to lay down all that we “cloak” ourselves in.

I now realize it’s the transparent grace of Jesus that I can only wear.  The grace that loves the hurt ones, the ostracized, the least the broken and all the ones that are basically as I am…a hot mess girl!  But the transparent grace that we are loved with is also what transforms us.  Jesus sees through it all, past the “hot mess” to the beautiful creation we are.  Then then for as much as we have received we must now give…

A life of purpose is not a big church, a big job, a ministry, a successful career or even the perfect family.  It is a life lived ON purpose, transparently honest about what we are not and ALL that God is.  A life that loves big, loves loud, takes risk and embraces all we were created individually to be.

My heart cry now forever will be one of transparent honesty, with myself, with others, with God.  It’s time to not just talk about grace like it’s some illusive concept that we just accept one time, but to walk grace, to be transparent, with no fear of others opinions, to tell our story to the world around us where we are placed, to BE the church and to BE the grace and love the world so desperately is crying for.  The world at large and this generation are tired of too many words…they are crying for real, transparent lives that exude the grace that God sacrificed all to give to us.

Today, love big, don’t make excuses, do the risky thing and most of all be true to who you were created to be.

Transparent grace….oh so amazing and a grace that saved my life…only so that I may be used to save the lives of others.

Bless your soulife today…you Are so dearly loved!

Gracefully wrecked….Dee

Came across this from a dear friend and bold man of God…great follow up!

Church Gangs