When He Leaves and You Need to Know Why

We are so hopeful, excited to find someone that we can love without reservation like a waterfall pounding on rock. Two weeks in, or maybe it is a year or three or four, the beauty ends when that boy you wanted to drown in all your love walks away.

Your heart is broken so you eat too much chocolate and turn up every song on the radio, making your tears fall so fast your heart starts to hurt a little less. Your girl friends are there like good friends are and you start trying to answer all the questions. In all your answers, you start to see how horrible he was, what a villain he could be, how selfish and immature he acted. You  hate yourself for being blind and blame yourself for loving. Dear girl, what if you are wrong? What if he was not an awful jerk? What if he was just an insecure past beating out a poor rhythm on your banged up soul and his pounding mixed with your own tough story broke the good you had? What if he is a nice guy and he kinda just blew it this once? What if he does not know how to make good relationship decisions and this was like a kindergartner trying out high school? What if he does not know why he did what he did anymore than you do?

What if you were so strong in Jesus that who he is and what he did does not even matter? I know it is breaking you up and shattering all your ideas of love but do not let it. Do not tie him to your heart with a cord of insecurity and bitterness. Let him go like a balloon drawn to the clouds so you can both be free to live, learn, and love. Be brave darling, braver than who he may or may not be.

"For if you forgive other people when they sin against you,
your heavenly Father will also forgive you."
Matthew 6:14

The Souls That Captivate Me

I love people. Everywhere I go, I know people. I hug people. I laugh with people. I talk, smile and listen. I love most people but some people I fall in love with. It is as if all of the sudden my invisible radar picks up a spark of magic in their soul and I am in love. My heart aches with theirs, breaks with theirs, takes their life and makes it mine.

I remember this one soul I fell in love with. It was a soul aching and trembling under the pressure of a difficult past needing to prove a positive future while fighting a war against submitting to God. I knew I was there to share Jesus with that soul. I knew I was there to love fiercely with a selfless love. It was beautiful but then it ended, with one last PM it was over. I did not know why but I knew it was. Months later, I was driving home from work and with a sad aching pain, I told God that I missed them "SO much". Immediately, I was comforted with the reality that God knew and then it hit me from out of no where - I must miss them this much if I were to have loved them that much. Jesus must be shared with love and when the task of sharing is over and the person gone, sometimes the love still remains.

Dear Girl, maybe you know that feeling of having loved without the return you prayed for. Remember, the love you had was a gift from God to be used for his glory. Let's never let the loss of love plant seeds of bitterness that become a weapon we use against God. Let's not let it fill us with bitterness when it does not bring us what we wanted. Dear Girl, mostly do not lose that fierceness, because a fierce love is a beautiful love.


My First DUI

We like our products neatly packaged and beautifully wrapped in America. We buy our chocolate wrapped in gold foil and our advertisements in the mail come with scratch off scents to help us know if we want to buy the product. Neat packaging took on a whole new meaning for me, however, when I encountered my first DUI.

PTSD, OCD, DUI, sometimes these letters just become a way of wrapping up the unknown pain of another and fitting it into our everyday vocabulary. I remember the first time I knew someone with PTSD. It meant any-time-of-the-day panic attacks. It meant tears and fear. It was not just a textbook diagnosis but an everyday heartbreak. I remember when I first met the three letters DUI. I had only known those three letters as representing someone who broke the law and risked the safety of others. For the first time in my life that faceless crime had a name and it was "hopeless", "afraid", "lost".  I saw that people who got DUI's did not do it for fun but that those three ugly letters were the neat title we had stamped on their pain and insecurity. I saw a successful friend embraced by a new identity.

I am not condoning drunk driving. I am confessing my own ignorance to the every day battle of those in our society who struggle with mental illness or addiction. Meeting these capitalized and sterilized letters in the faces of people has been more than educational, it has been humbling. It has taught me about grace. It has challenged the way I view others.

I am reminded about the importance of living life with eyes wide open. It is so easy for me to see my own pain. It is so easy for me to understand the complexities of my own struggle and its everyday hindrances. It is so easy for me to focus on myself but the problem is that I can only focus intently on one thing at a time. Let's try to focus on Jesus, that way your pain and my pain will become catalysis to love Him better and thus love one another better.

To My 18 Year Old Self

Eighteen was the hardest year of my life. I lost someone I was very close to and grieved for the first time while hiding my pain from the world around me. Through all the pain and grief I was disappointed in myself. I just knew that I could be doing this whole thing better. This is the letter I would have written to the girl back then. P.S. Yes, that is a picture of me at 18.

Dear Moriah,

You will not look a day older at 20 but your world will be drastically different than it is now. It will scare you at first but in the end, you will find yourself soaring on wings you did not know existed. I see you know and realize that you do not know any other way of living than to open your heart to the whole world and let it in. That is beautiful, though you will also find out it is painful.

I know this has been a hard year. Maybe the hardest one you have lived through but it is going to be okay. You are okay. I am really proud of you for being such a fighter. I am proud of you for who you want to be. I know life is not easy and you are disappointed in yourself. You cannot figure out the why, when, and how. You are so young you have not yet realized how weak you are . . .  but you will. When you do, you will smile at yourself. You will even start giving yourself the grace that you so badly need right now. That is the word I want to give you - grace.

It is okay that you do not have all the answers. It is okay that you are sobbing your heart out. It is okay that this hurts so bad. It is okay that you are confused. It is okay that you cannot do this. Take a breath because it is okay. You were not meant to be perfect you were meant to be perfected. That is what this is - the work of being perfected. Yes, it is messy. Yes, it is ugly. Yes, you are imperfect but that is kind of the point.

You are surprised, though. We all are. We realize we are imperfect but we did not know we were this imperfect. Jesus is not surprised one bit, however, and He loves you more than you can imagine. I know you cannot feel it right now but one day I promise you that you will look back and see a love you did not know existed, a love much greater than the one you are grieving right now.
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