Leaping towards holy ambitions

I believe God has given me a holy ambition.  A holy ambition is something you really want to do that God wants you to do. Something you want to do so much that doing it keeps you from doing other things you really like to do. Something you really, really want to do for the glory of God. Something that controls you. It helps you decide no to do this, go here, or join that yet. It gives you eternal focus and passion to your life. It is molded by a personal encounter with the living Christ. It is shaped and informed by the written word of God and fits into his overall plan. Finally, it meets a need in the world that is displayed as a form of love and not about self-exaltation. God gave me this last night and has been building it in my heart since the day He saved me. He gave me a deep, yearning desire to create provocative, relevant art for His glory. A desire to spread His love letter to the darkest places in His world. A desire to walk and disciple other artists to be a part of God's work. 

Paul talks about God's holy ambition in Ephesians 3. "By God’s grace and mighty power, I have been given the privilege of serving him by spreading this Good News. Though I am the least deserving of all God’s people, he graciously gave me the privilege of telling the Gentiles about the endless treasures available to them in Christ. I was chosen to explain to everyone this mysterious plan that God, the Creator of all things, had kept secret from the beginning. God’s purpose in all this was to use the church to display his wisdom in its rich variety to all the unseen rulers and authorities in the heavenly places. This was his eternal plan, which he carried out through Christ Jesus our Lord." (Eph. 3:7-11) Paul knew he was called by God according to His grace and power to preach to the Gentiles about Jesus. God's purpose of doing this is to display His wisdom to all the unseen rulers and authorities in the heavenly places. This is eternal plan carried out through Christ Jesus. This passage has placed its roots in my heart. God gave Paul a holy ambition for the glory of God to reveal His mysterious plan of reconciling mankind back to Himself. This is what God gave me yesterday....a holy calling that fit into His overall plan. He put my eyes up on a heavenly prize that I have never seen. It made my resignation from my job all the more sweet.

At the beginning of the month, I planned to put in my resignation to prepare for my big move to Chicago in August. I believe this time of preparation is bigger than Chicago. (Proverbs 16:9) Today I am letting go of a life I have known since 2009 for His glory. I am leaving because I believe God is calling me to a holy ambition that is a part of His overall plan. I won't know until years from now if this was truly the Lord's call, but I will earnestly pray for God's guidance and protection. 

"It is easier to serve or work for God without a vision and without a call, because then you are not bothered by what he requires. Common sense, covered with a layer of Christian emotion, becomes your guide. You may be more prosperous and successful from the world's perspective, and will have more leisure time, if you never acknowledge the call of God. But once you receive a commission from Jesus Christ, the memory of what God asks of you will always be there to prod you on to do His will. You will no longer be able to work for Him on the basis of common sense." - Oswald Chambers, My Utmost for His Highest

Moving

Yesterday I moved from my apartment to my sister's house. It is a 3-month pit stop before the big move to Chicago. I cried. I cried because of all the memories I made in that apartment. The moment I packed my engagement ring for shipment. The day I felt on bed in tears because it was finally over. The day Alexa moved in because she had no place to go. The nights my sister and I talked about her wedding plans. The days I made music with the bros. The quiet time with God. The long showers after long days. The short naps. The movie nights. The 5 hour therapeutic cooking sessions and so much more. That apartment had become my safe haven. God grew me so much there and now it was time to move forward onto new things with Him so I cried. I cried tears of utter gratefulness. My God was so faithful to me even when I wasn't. He held me in ways in that space that I have never felt in life. In that apartment, I learned that I was His beautiful beloved. That little apartment will always have a special place in my heart. Today, we are moving on......next stop loving my sister and brother in law deeply, seeing Christ centered marriage and parenting up close, and binge watching the Game of Thrones! 

Words.....

I know it has been awhile since I wrote anything, but it is for good reason. I didn't know if I should blog. I didn't want to be another voice. We live in a time when everyone has a platform whether it be social media, blog, YouTube, etc. We all have something to say. I love it because it gives us a chance to really see how people think, what moves them, what upsets them, and even a sneak peek into their heart (including our own). Because of that, I sat on my voice. As you have probably read, I struggled with giving my art to God. This time around I gave Him my voice.

We have this tendency to pick things up, mold them into our own image, and bow before it. We believe if it just becomes this and does what it is supposed to do, I will be happy. Oddly as it sounds, I felt this way about my voice. I believe if I said the right things, wrote a certain way, had the dope poems, etc. it will get me here or make me this person. It is a lie that constantly tricks me into believing what I mold, fix, make, or create will be worthy of dedicating myself to it. Foolish I am. Foolish I fall, but I rise. Rise as servant. Giving God my voice to serve Him because He knows what to do with it more than me.

God take my heart along with my voice. Give me the courage when to speak and wisdom when to share silence. Purify me for Your glory. 

A home away from home

I've been in Chicago since Friday figuring out if this is where God wants me to be. I can't lie I was scared and kind of still am, but God really reminded me of His goodness. I was afraid of being back home. To be honest, it's because DC is so comfortable. I have a good job, I have great friends, I'm serving, discipline a few women, learning a lot from my local church, live in a quaint little neighborhood...writing this makes me think about how I use to place my hope in stuff like this. I wasn't saved, but just replace some of these things with my boyfriend, old job, beauty, my connects, etc. It's no different. Serving, discipling, and learning are no different. It makes me question do I really trust the One who holds the world in hands and were nailed to a cross for you and I? Or do I trust in my plans, my savings account, or whatever else for that matter? To be honest, my flesh is wrestling. I'm fighting to follow God on this one because I just don't think there is anything for me here. (Writing in Chicago) I'm going to trust Him not because of my plans, but because who He says He is. 

Prayer: Lord, forgive me. Forgive me for placing my hope in something else other than You. It's so easy to do God. It's so many things promising me that they will keep me. Promising me they won't fail. But God I know in my mind that they will. I know according to Your word bless is the man who trust in the Lord for he is like a tree planted by water with roots by the stream. This man has no reason to fear when troubles come or the season of drought. Why? Because it is the water that is his nourishment, what sustains him, and keeps him bearing good fruit. Lord, I know this is my mind, but allow my heart to catch up with this truth. I want me hope to be in You and You alone. I love You. In Your beautiful name I pray. Amen. 

 Carved pumpkins with the church fam here. Did the one on the right...I guess this is how I feel about moving to Chicago! 😂

Carved pumpkins with the church fam here. Did the one on the right...I guess this is how I feel about moving to Chicago! 😂

Revive '15

This weekend......I have to admit I came to this conference to tag along with a friend. She was unable to come so it ended up being a solo trip. I didn't have any expectations or any idea of the conference. On Friday, I read it was a conference about women teaching women. I thought to myself, "Oh! This should be pretty interesting". The Lord blew my mind! This conference was everything and more! I learned so much about teaching women and the importance of it. I believe I came for God to reveal to me my calling. I have been called to teach women how to find their freedom, hope, and joy in Christ alone. It's crazy because I just wrote this as the mission statement for the future whatever God is planning. Lol I learned this weekend that the biggest tools to accomplish this mission is teaching women how to read God's word. Why? Not to fall in love with the Bible, but fall in love with the author of it. 

I just can't believe how much God poured into my little life this weekend! He gave me a coach for teaching women and everything. It's just crazy....last week I didn't know if I wanted to continue poetry and boom! God revealed my calling. I have to admit there is some fear there because of my age and lack of knowledge, but I know my God has me. If this is what He will have me to do, then I know I have a defender and protector. 

Lastly, thank you Jen Wilkins, Eric Mason, and Nancy Leigh DeMoss...thank you for your obedience to Abba. He used you this weekend to correct, shape, encourage, and guide my little life.  

 The Spirit of God filled this place...

The Spirit of God filled this place...

Changes

Today is Friday and it has been a tiring week. Change is never easy. Sometimes it is just painful. This week DC decided that it wanted to be autumn all of the sudden. Literally it was summer Monday and by Wednesday fall was here! lol So my sinuses have went haywire. Most of all, I have experienced a change in my poetry. I have no idea what God wants me to do with it. I am trying to trust Him, but it is hard. I had ideas for it, but I really don't anymore. I've been here before....I know God makes beautiful things out of nothing. Now, I am at a point of being nothing as an artist. Not in a way of demeaning myself or self-hate. The focus really isn't on myself at all. It has nothing to do with me, but everything to do with Him. This is the point I needed to get to with God. I needed to get here because I struggle with the notion that everything is mines because I planned it and worked hard for it. I hold on so tight and "act" like it is surrendered to God, but it really isn't. I make a list or plan throw some scriptures on top and call it God. Today, I know that I was lying to myself.

Today, September 16, 2015 I give You poetry. Not as something of my own. I give you poetry as an innocent child who gives her Father a gift she brought with his money. I lay it at Your feet and show me what You want me to do with it. 

Psalm 25:4-5 "Make me to know your ways, O Lord; teach me your paths. Lead me in your truth and teach me, for you are the God of my salvation; for you I wait all the day long." 

My art, wait....is it really mines?

Today was a rough morning. I had some difficult conversations about the changes that I wanted to make in regards to my art. I needed to scale back on some things and take it day by day. I have always been an ambitious person so understanding that everything belongs to the Lord is something I have to remind myself of constantly. Trusting God that He will use my poetry as He sees fit is hard for me. I like to know where I am going, why I am going there, and how we plan to get our ideas accomplished. With God, it is quite different. He says go and I will show you. Trust me.  

My morning prayer is:

Abba, I have been holding onto this poetry as if it is a gift of my own. I have wanted to do it my way with my desires...Today I don't want to do that anymore. You tell us in Your word that all gifts come from You. Each gift is to be used to serve one another and be good stewards of Your varied grace. Abba, I have not done that at all. I have been selfish and seen my gift as my own for my own glory. God, please forgive me of my sins and cleanse me of all unrighteousness. I ask that you bring brothers and sisters in my life to hold me accountable as a remembrance this gift is Yours. Lord, help me have balance to not neglect the gift out of fear, but to use the gift with love and a sound mind. Abba, I pray this for You to be glorified for all the glory belongs to You. Amen

Scriptures

1 Peter 4:10 - 11 "As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God's varied grace: whoever speaks, as one who speaks oracles of God; whoever serves, as one who serves by the strength that God supplies - in order that in everything God may be glorified through Jesus Christ. To him belong glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen. "

Romans 12:6-8 "Have gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, in proportion to our faith; if service, in our serving; the one who teaches, in his teaching; the one who exhorts, in his exhortation the one who contributes, in generosity; the one who leads, with zeal; the one who does acts of mercy, with cheerfulness."