go green.

Don't worry, this isn't environmental hype, although I do believe in taking care of our environment - the habitat God has given us to be good stewards of. These are just my recent thoughts on recycling...ourselves, not trash.

I find myself daily wanting new things when old ones break. My computer has been slow lately due to the lack of space on it, and my mind has been fixated on only one thought - how fast can I figure out how to get a new computer. I don't even consider the idea of clearing out memory, or investing in an external hard drive. I want the easiest fix, even if it's more expensive.

I think my mind may work that way spiritually. I find something wrong with me, and I want the Lord to rip it out of me and replace it with a brand new part. I want the quick fix that removes the virus and programs the latest edition software that is working at optimum speed. I'm not interested in taking the time to meticulously take something apart, find the problem, and slowly rebuild while accounting for the weak area.

God reprogrammed us once - when we gave ourselves to Him. He makes us new when we believe in Him and replaces the old. From that point on we "work out our salvation with fear and trembling" with Him (Philippians 2:12). To continue with the computer analogy, He doesn't keep giving us new hard drives...He already equipped us with a brand new one that is fully-empowered and very specific to us. So when we run across kinks later, He doesn't ditch what He's given us, He works with us to perfect what is there. He gave me new life, so when I "break" it, He doesn't throw out the life He gave me, He painstakingly picks up the pieces, putting them back together - reformatting me so that I "work" again.

All this to say, it matters when I let viruses in...it matters when I sin. There are consequences. This new body and soul that He gave me when I accepted Him are not invincible to the troubles of this world - to Satan and sin. Sin and its consequences will put dents into my new frame, and may even penetrate and try to reprogram me. And sometimes, it will succeed.

But the Lord is faithful. I have to be patient and realize that God is not going to throw me out every time a virus invades, or I let down my firewall (now I'm just being way too nerdy). God is going to take me apart, piece by piece, help me find where the damage was done, and then slowly put me back together in a different order to counteract that damage.

My experiences, dings, and dents don't disappear, then. God doesn't wipe them away. He uses them to create new software that is more developped - wiser, maybe. New programs are created that are not susceptible to as much, and they are created around the damages, and even in spite of them.

I just have to be patient. But it's worth it, I think...well, I hope, and I believe. It just takes time.

I've already been recreated once, and that was enough. Now that I'm recreated, I just need to be refined. Refinement is harder, and it hurts more, but I think God will show me in time that it's worth it.

Malachi 3:3 "He will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver."


growing down.

This is the first post under the new title of the blog - "rooted." Previously, "wanderings," I have been thinking a lot lately about growth (see previous post). As an adventure seeker and romantic, I tend to wander a lot - in my heart, my mind, my decisions, my hobbies. I end up covering a lot of ground, but there is constant unrest in my soul if I'm not careful.

God is teaching me some things lately. I don't think it's bad to wander...for a time. We need experiences to learn. We need new settings to attempt new things. We need change to develop. C.S. Lewis describes this phenomenon as "finding your face." He illustrates it in his fictional story, Til We Have Faces. His idea is that we aren't who we are until we have "found our face" - until we find and know our identity. Then we can live as we were meant to live, and be the person we were meant to be.

I believe that finding face means finding a spot to grow - not a physical spot, necessarily, but a place in Christ. We are, after all, made in His image. We are His body. What part am I, then? What part are you? That is the place to find. And in that place do we begin growth. We're not growing up, however, we're growing down. Roots.

After finding our place in the body of Christ, I believe we then dig in for the long haul, and begin the slow process of penetrating the soil and reaching downward and outward. Downward, of course, into the depths of Christ. Outward, then, is reaching for the other plants or believers planted firmly in Christ alongside you. This process continues until we cannot be moved by any outside force, and until we have connected and intertwined with the believers around us.

My initial thought is of horror. Firmly planted? I can't do that...my heart will burst. I have a friend who says all the time that she goes where the wind blows. I relate completely. My heart cries freedom, and I envy the herds of wild horses that run free and passionate, and move at will. But who created me? Who made me free-spirited and passionate and on fire? The Lord, of course - the one in whom I am now firmly planted, or beginning to plant myself would be a more accurate discription. He knows my heart and soul; He created them. He made me the way I am. When I "find my face," I am not really finding anything new, I am merely realizing how He has already made me, and where my place is in His body, in His plan.

I'm beginning to see that if I will firmly plant myself in Him, and dig my roots in deep, then when He moves, I'll move with Him...I won't be left behind because my roots will hold me fast.

I'm tired of wandering, but I'm not tired of adventure. I am ready, though, to relinquish my wanderlust for the desire to grow deep in Christ. I'm ready for Him to take me where He goes. I have a feeling His adventures are better than the ones I've dreamed up.


to grow.

I've been quite nostalgic recently. Maybe it's because I'm getting ready to graduate in 6 months, maybe it's the change in weather, or maybe it's because I'd rather reminisce than study for finals.

I haven't written in a while...been busy thinking. I do that a lot. My thoughts have been disjointed at best, but they've been there nonetheless - whirling and twirling like a tornado, ripping a pathway through my mind, grabbing from where it will, and leaving nothing but dust.

It took my first three years of college to "grow up" and really figure out who I am in the Lord. Now that I'm here, I'm getting ready to have to leave...to make more changes. So what happens now? More growing up? Or maybe just growing better.

As children we have growing pains. Growing hurts - physically, emotionally, sometimes spiritually. Especially as children when we are growing so much. As we age, however, the growing process lessens its intensity and becomes more gradual. Instead of adding a couple inches a year, maybe just a single wrinkle forms on the face. It's less painful, but better...we've learned how to grow, and it's a natural process that we are accustomed to, rather than just beginning to figure it out.

We resist this process of growing up all our lives, until we figure out how it works. We don't want to be old or taller until we realize that everyone grows old and taller...and until we see our friends growing old or taller. Then we're ready. We don't want to be the last ones to reach the monkey bars on the playground.

Change is one of my favorite things, now. It's why fall is my favorite season...the leaves die, shedding all the old growth off of the trees, the trees rough it out during the winter months, braving the cold wind in preparation for new growth - for beautiful change. And that change brings life. The wonderful process starts with losing leaves, though...a step that seems to take a step backward.

Growing is beautiful. To grow and change is hard and wonderful and necessary. To grow is to die and be reborn, over and over. To grow is to redeem and be redeemed. If that's the case, I can't wait to grow and keep growing, to change and keep changing, in order to retain life.