Two Men.


There were two men in church this week that didn’t fit in.

Two men that made me wonder why they were there.

Two men that made me wonder where my heart was.

One wore a trench coat and had eyes that had seen much.

The other wore sweatpants and a too tight t-shirt and walked too loudly down the aisle in the middle of the sermon.

There are churches and ministries for people like them, my sinful self quickly thought. Don’t they realize that you dress nice for church on Sunday? Don’t they realize you don’t get up in the middle of the sermon? Did their mothers not teach them anything? were the thoughts I’m embarrassed to say flowed through my mind as I allowed myself to be distracted.

I’ve been thinking about this for a few days. What kind of Christian am I that I don’t want people who “don’t fit in” in “my church”?

Last year, there was a girl wearing Nike shorts at Wednesday night church and one of my guy friends casually mentioned that he couldn’t believe she was dressed like this for church. It was me who was so quick to jump to this girl’s defense. So quick to justify her reasons and point out his sin.

And it was me that found herself on the other side of judgementalism and sin this week.

I can justify a girl, probably much like me, wearing athletic shorts in church but question when someone outside the realm of people I think should be in “MY” church on a Sunday morning are there. .

But Jesus didn’t just die for the people who I think should be in church on Sunday morning.

He didn’t just die for the ones who have “done enough” to get to heaven.

He died for the homeless, the broken, the needy. For Them. ForĀ You. ForĀ Me.
Because we all fit into that category. Because yeah, I have clothes that fit and a roof over my head each night, but my brokenness stems from a less physical area of my life. And it might be hiding, but it’s there.

And He makes my need for Him known everytime I get too comfortable.

Everytime I think I have it all figured out. He shows up and asks “What about the least of these?” and “Who are you to judge?”.

**I wrote this about a year ago, and it’s back on my heart again. Funny how God has a way of doing that to us.



The past two weeks were kind of crazy. If it wasn’t obvious from my last post, I’ve been struggling with sin and its effects, so many that have become very obvious in the past couple months since being home. I don’t think it’s exactly anything to do with Africa per say, more than it’s having time away from “normal” that makes you reevaluate what’s “normal”.

But if there’s anything that can make this girl smile, it’s kids. I’m currently obsessed with this daddy daughter duo/trio and the precious videos they make. Dad, you think we could compete?


The Ugly Truth

I wrote this a couple of days ago and determined not to post it because it “ain’t pretty”. But sometimes real is more important than pretty, and real needs to get out and play a little more often.

I’m scrolling through Blogger this evening, catching up on my favorite blogs, pretending not to feel it. Pushing things down to the deepest parts of my soul.

But God knows. And it’s just a title, just three words, but I know God spoke through her fingers directly to me. That the title could have been a thousand different things, but instead it was “For the Hard Days”. And finally, I squeeze my eyes shut as I feel warm salt water run down my face. Because it’s been one of those days. It’s been a hard day. It’s been a hard couple of days actually. But not hard in the way that something tragic happened. No, hard because life is moving fast and excitedly all around me, and all I want sometimes is to fall at the feet of my Creator. And peace is all I want. And rest is what my mind needs. But there’s too much going on. And no rest is in sight.

And it’s hard because noone quite gets it. Because I’ve left and now I’m back. But I’ll never be the same. And culture tells me that I need to fit into all the old places, but my heart and my soul want to run as far away as I can. I spend a few hours early in the week at a rundown apartment complex playing with kids, many without fathers or living with aunts or grandmothers, and it gets me thinking. And I want nothing more than to rent an apartment there and live in a “scary place” and feed people and love on people and not have to be in this place where everyone acts like everything is okay, when really our brokenness is so much more tragic because we refuse to deal with it. Refuse to see it as a problem. Flaunting it instead, selfishness and greed and pride. And I’m just as much of the problem as anyone else is. Because I’m different, but in many ways I’m the exact same. I’m trying to find worth in everything because finding it in Jesus is so easy to talk about but hard to do when it just seems like you’ve been begging for a mission, and He’s refusing to answer, but is He really?

Because I know that my mission is to make much of Him. And I try so hard. But that’s the problem. Because I’m trying. I’m striving. I’m working. And I just haven’t figured out how to relax and not try to conquer the world, though I do know that’s already been done. And I want the perfect ending. The perfect few words to tie this all up and make you feel happy to go about your day, challenged but encouraged, but I’m not going to lie. Sometimes it’s just not there at the end of the day. And it’s more about pointing to Him and trusting that He’s holding your hand through the mess than knowing that it’s all going to be alright in the end.