Month: February 2015

Born-Again Facebook

When someone becomes a believer, they are considered born-again. They were once born in a hospital or in a house, delivered by a doctor or a midwife or a nurse. That was their physical birth. When a person decides to follow Christ with all of their being, they are born again, but spiritually this time. They are beginning a new process of taking all the things they have done/learned/heard and applying those things in a biblical way- and if those things can not be applied biblically, they are thrown away.

Generally, this is a process. When a baby is born, it does not automatically start talking and walking and pooping on the toilet. That baby has to be taught how to do such things, as does a Christian when learning how to behave like a follower of Christ. Like a person learns and grows for a lifetime, Christians grow and learn throughout their whole lives, not just in an instant.

Basically, I am going through another phase of weeding out bad or unnecessary things in my life. Recently, I memorized all of 1 Corinthians 13. (I will type it up at the end, as practice in remembering it and as a good reminder of what love looks like for all of you) The part of those verses that God has highlighted for me today is this: “When I was a child I thought like a child, I spoke like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put childish ways behind me.” This is AMAZINGLY true, because so often I struggle to let go of things like a child who does not want to relinquish a toy or a piece of candy that their parent is taking away for their own good. 

But I digress.

To get to my point in the longest way (because I can never use shortcuts in writing and storytelling), my Facebook life has been a roller coaster. Since the 8th grade (at which time I was 12 or 13 years old), I have had a Facebook account. At some point during junior high or high school I became best friends with a very sweet girl named Mercedes Anderson. Her and I started this silly competition of who could “like” the most pages on Facebook. My memory deceives me, but I believe over a couple years we reached upwards of 2,000 pages “liked”. Now, don’t get me wrong, we did not just go willy nilly liking all these pages we had no interest in. They were, for example, “Like if you remember the Powerpuff girls” or some kind of joke page like, “When you still didn’t hear the person after the third time they repeat what they were saying..”

We made up a laundry list of pages and things we were interested in. Back in the day, Facebook didn’t have “like” pages. The button you had to press to follow that pages’ posts was then called “Become a Fan”. When I clicked that button, I “became a fan” of whatever musician, tv show, joke, or otherwise.

Now my Facebook feed is filled with garbage from all these pages that I “liked” or “became a fan” of. This is exactly like our born again lives. We spend our entire lives (up until the point of salvation) “liking” things that are just going to pile up and get in the way when we decide to focus on what’s good. At this point in time, every single time I see a page post something that is inappropriate, or when I see an actor or actress who is completely against God post something, I go and “unlike” their page. My life is already full of my own junk, why would I want to read up on everyone else’s junk?

If you’re still with me or this post was TL;DR, my summary is this:

Changing your life to live for God is like changing your Facebook. You can’t get rid of the junk until you decide to throw it away.

Love you all,

Elise

1 Corinthians 13: “If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a clanging or resounding cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I AM NOTHING. If I give all I possess to the poor and offer my body as a ransom to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing. Love is patient, love is kind, it does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self seeking, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices in the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease, where there are tongues, they will be stilled, where there is knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when the imperfect comes, the imperfect disappears. When I was a child I thought like a child, I spoke like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put childish ways behind me. Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror, then we shall see face to face. Now we now in part, then I shall known fully, even as I am fully known. And now these three remain: faith, hope, and love. But the greatest of these is love.”

God Talks

Okay, so to start this post off I just wanna shout out to whoever invented/whoever designs the covers for “Decomposition Notebooks” because they are super awesome and every time I see one I want to buy one. You can find them online at: http://www.michaelroger.com/Decomposition-Books_c_72.html

Being an English major and a huge fan of reading and writing, I tend to collect copious amounts of empty notebooks, generally just because people know I write and it is an easy gift to give. Also, I find myself seeing notebooks that are really pretty at the store and spontaneously buying them because they are unique. Recently, I bought a dinosaur Decomposition Notebook because dinosaurs are super cool and God should bring them back to Earth (just kidding, I want to live). Anyway, it was very cute so I bought it, but I had no plan of what to use it for. Fast forward to a couple days ago- I went through this thought process regarding notebooks and my uses for them. First, I was thinking, “Wow, I always rip out pages and restart journals because they don’t look pretty,” and then I was thinking “Okay, I started a prayer journal last year that worked out pretty well,” which brought me to, “I have a journal of my prayers to God, but I never write down things that HE tells me and teaches me in my life.”

So I took out the dinosaur notebook, and I wrote on the front cover in pen (pen is permanent): “God Talks”. I then put in some things that I thought I heard God telling me, which later I ripped out because it was more of my wishful thinking and possibly some of the enemies’ taunts and tricks. But the other day, I opened it up and prayed to God, “I’m listening. Remind me of the things You have been teaching me.” I filled a whole page of encouragements, verses, and prayers that God has been putting on my heart and giving me to get through this time of trials. Any writer can agree with this- getting your thoughts down on paper is a HUGE relief. I not only felt relieved, I felt some healing and honestly I felt really confident while writing these things. There is something about breaking down your own walls and being real with yourself and with God. You are the most vulnerable, but you are also the most powerful and uplifted during that time.

Tonight, February 9th, while at the womens’ bible study of Philippians, God was revealing so much to me about myself. I really sat down and listened to all the girls who I just met a week ago talk about the bible and about their research and their in-depth studying of it, and I was so humbled by all of their wisdom. There are so many things He said to me, so I will just make a list for you, as much as for myself.

1. I have so much to learn.

These girls are so smart and so good at gleaning information from scripture and cross referencing and just diving into Gods word not as a duty, but as a joy and as a way to connect with Him and listen to His teachings. I have never done a bible study so in-depth, and I have alot to learn when it comes to reading and studying the Bible.

2. I have built many walls around myself.

Although I have felt safe to share some very deep, very personal things with these ladies, part of me is still testing the waters and making sure I am in a stable environment. I have too much experience being around gossipy, cliquey girls who so openly criticized and judged others, and it has caused me to not trust people. I can see I was very naive and did not do a good job of guarding my heart, and probably even absorbed the judgmental mindset of many girls my age.

3. I am a little bit cynical.

Because of my past experiences with relationships and broken friendships, I have a really hard time believing someone is genuine. I was completely BLOWN AWAY tonight as I spent more time with these ladies, and was brought to joyful tears when two of them (Grace and Rebekah) hugged me during prayer without question. I looked around at each of the girls and I just saw sisters in Christ, and I am so thankful to have met all of them. I see no ulterior motive, I see no malice, I see no jealousy or judgment. All of them are so full of love and genuine desire for God and for fellowship, and I am humbled by that. God has a lot on his plate when it comes to the state of my heart, and these women are amazing examples to follow.

There are probably like a dozen other things that I learned or heard from God tonight that I just cannot remember. I will be writing those down in my dinosaur notebook! Overall though, tonight was just a small piece of a large puzzle that the Lord is giving to me bit by bit. My heart is bursting with so many emotions right now, but mostly I am SO humbled. I am so blessed and encouraged by these friendships, and I am so thankful that these girls have so much wisdom that they can pass on to me. To be honest, I am still fighting to tear down my walls, but I know that holding them up takes much more effort and causes much more pain. So, this is my first step into a beautiful place of learning and growth.

On a side note- I have made a commitment to blog once a week on this site, and once a month on Youtube for a video blog. I’m not sure if I even have the proper knowledge of video editing for such a task, but I will be attempting at least to create a video blog to update people on my life and share things that God is teaching me. Next week’s post will contain more information on that, so be sure to follow me/check back once in awhile to see where I’m at with my commitment.

Much love and God bless you all,

Elise