Holla at this 3 day weekend! While last weekend was full of peace and quiet (yes, really!) that was much-needed for the sake of my sanity, these past few days have been packed full of so much goodness and exciting events! My husband facilitated his first wedding for a darling couple we have mentored for the last couple years in the young adults group we lead at our church, and birthdays of loved ones were celebrated. Our pool at our apartment also opened, and it finally decided to stop raining for a couple days so that all of us could truly enjoy it to it’s fullest right from the start! And then it started storming again. #WeEnjoyedItWhileItLasted
On another note, it’s Memorial Day! While this date can bring a wide variety of emotions for many of us, I think we can all agree that thankfulness is certainly one of them. As a fashion blogger who shares her faith openly, I am beyond thankful for the freedom I have to even do something like this without worrying about my safety and my life. Freedom is definitely not free, and I honor and remember all of you today.
For the past couple weeks as I was preparing this for you, a certain phrase has been on my mind amidst unloading the dishwasher, the car rides to work, and between the sweet hellos and high-fives with my high school students.
A phrase that was life-changing for me in that moment and still ministers to me deeply: “I care for you.”
A couple years ago, I had a horrible day at work that was over the smallest thing. While most people involved had probably moved on, I still felt embarrassed over my silly mistake and couldn’t believe that it had actually happened. Let me just say, what happened was somewhat a big-ish deal, but it was also the type of situation where my boss was like, “It’s okay, it happens! No worries.” I should’ve just pressed forward, but I didn’t for whatever reason. I even woke up thinking about it (*uhg*), and could barely focus during worship at church that Sunday morning.
Meanwhile, our campus pastor came up for a time of prayer. Prayers over broken marriages and people with cancer, and literally, people who were sick and facing their last moments here on earth. I immediately felt guilty for getting so worked up over something so minuscule in comparison to these people who I knew had more serious needs. I felt strongly that I just needed to gather myself together and move on, and yet somehow I just couldn’t, and I found myself getting slightly angry that this was a weakness of mine.
Fast forward a few days later, Jak (our pup) and I came back from an early morning walk just like we always did. Right before unlocking our front door, something caught my eye. I saw this poor little bird sitting very still. I stared at it for a minute as it was only three feet away. Then Jak saw it and leaned over to sniff the poor thing. The bird quickly and pathetically tried to bounce away, and it became obvious that it was hurt. It then hid in a nearby bush, and I decided it was just best to leave it alone and get ready for the day ahead. As I was putting on my make-up, I heard a voice saying softly, “I care for you.” I’m thinking, “What? Random…” And then I heard it again, and this time I knew it was from the Lord – “I care for you.” Overwhelmed, I began to quietly sob as I remembered.
I had been wrestling with an issue – a struggle, an insecurity – something that was eating me away, and was distracting me from everything else. And instead of “casting my cares onto [Him]” and giving my present reality completely to Him, I shoved it down, because I thought that Jesus was impatiently waiting for me get over this ridiculous thing that I was strung over.
At this point, my mascara is completely smeared, but there was more. He then reminded of Matthew 10:29, “Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground outside your Father’s care.” In that moment, I got another glimpse of the grace, compassion, and goodness of our God. Just like he saw that crippled bird outside our front door, He sees and cares about anything that keeps us in bondage. For this particular time, it was what happened that past Saturday. But Jesus died and rose again so that we could be free. Free from sin, doubts, and fears big and small. I even let an additional fear take place in my life: the idea that God did not care about the little things. Not to mention my pride: that God was truly only needed for the “big” stuff.
My friend, I want to tell you today that God not only cares for you, but that His grace is sufficient in every way for every thing. Don’t try and overcome something in your own strength no matter how small of an issue it may appear to be. You see, if something matters to you, it automatically matters to Jesus. And He wants it all. Let’s live in that promise!
This truth should also change the way we care for the people around us. Is there someone in your life who is carrying burdens that you cannot relate with? Or perhaps there is someone in your life who is troubled over an issue that you may find small and insignificant? This could be a peer, friend, family member, child, or even someone you hardly know. Let’s let the same compassion we have received flow through us as we love and care for those the Lord has placed in our lives. Jesus wants to not only change us, but call us.
Rest easy, – He cares for you!
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