Hurting For His Glory 

I’m sweaty. I’m sticky. I’m getting a weird sunburn from sitting at a certain angle. I just feel gross. But a few hours later, my feet are hurting because I’m standing on them not moving a muscle. My nerves in my legs are yelling ‘Sit Down.’ There’s a pain in my right ankle that was killing me. I really didn’t care because I was standing in a gym of 500-600 college students that work at all of the camps. We were all just not giving a care in the world of HOW we were praising Jesus in worship. All hands were lifted in some sort of fashion. I was literally crying of the overwhelming sensation of every person in that gym that had the LOVE of Jesus Christ. Heck, I cried multiple times because it was so, so beautiful. I could not stop crying. I cried during the sermon the speaker was giving that night. I was filled with a mass amount of emotion for these people. It was just so dang beautiful. That was one day during our training week. 


This past week was a lot of pain physically. My ankles felt like mud. My legs felt like needles from one sharp pain to another. Just yesterday, I was crying about how much pain was in within my legs as a whole, especially in my right leg. 

But God shows just how big he is through the people I work with when someone is hurting. One of the acts of service was that the kitchen staffers prayed for me, this other guy prayed for me at the Friday picnic, and the rest of the kitchen staff were giving me bear hugs. But the one memory that tops the cake is one of my girls from my adopted cabin wanted my contact information because she wants to talk to me about Jesus and life. It makes my heart overflow and swarm with desire to grow my ministry. 

It’s not about the heat. It’s not about pain. It’s not about what we’re doing on the weekends. It’s not about what man thinks about what we’re doing. It’s about the hearts that need saving from the one who abundantly chases after us, the one who wants our hearts and lives to be like his for his glory. 

Love, Annie 

P.S. I may reveal my real name at the end of the month 😎 

Holding a Yearning For My Identity

Since I have been at this camp, I have learned a lot already.

  1. To get SUPER MAD CRAZY HYPE!
  2. Fitting in is not that hard
  3. Washing dishes is actually soothing when you have anxiety

At first, I thought I would not fit in because I am the whitest girl you will ever meet. I have basic and weird dance moves. I like my Starbucks at least once a week. And I have to have my Strawberry Limeade from Sonic at least 2-3 times a week.

But of course, I need my Jesus every day. When I got to the camp, I knew only one person, my best friend, from my school but I can’t see her since she works at the sister camp I’m working at. Sad day, sad summer. That’s another thing I’m adjusting to: not seeing her until (maybe) on the weekends. I know I’m going to ambush her every time I see her.

I was reminded today of this verse: “O LORD, make me know my end and what is the measure of my days; let me know how fleeting I am!” Psalm 39:4

We went to a church today and the pastor talked about how we are just a speck on this earth, just barely a dot within a timeline. If we were to touch about 300-500 people with the Gospel of Christ. It just blows my mind completely. I was in complete awe. Growing up I always felt like I was worthless and not good enough to make anyone to be my friend.

Ever since I rededicated my life, I have found myself happier since I find my true everlasting identity in Christ.

I say all this to say we should have never ending energy when it comes to being our true selves. No matter how low or high we may feel, we need to feel that yearning for the Lord God. No matter what we are doing, we do it with all of our being and doing it for the One who gives our breath in our lungs.

Weekly Reminder:

“In him all things hold together.” Colossians 1:17

 

Much Love,

Annie

One Blindfold At A Time

My room is a mess.

The reason why is because I am preparing to travel to a job in Missouri. I leave tomorrow and I am so excited. But I’m also so apprehensive.

I’ll be 7 hours away from home. I only get to have my phone on our one off day. The scariest part is I don’t know where this job will lead me after the summer is over. I have no clue how God is going to use the opportunity to strengthen my character and my relationship with Him.

I have always been on edge if I don’t know where my next step is going to be. This is one of those steps. It’s a giant leap of faith. REALLY giant for me.

I’m reminded that “Do not be afraid” is written 365 times in the Bible. The phrase is always appropriate when I or someone is anxious about a life goal or decision. The summer is screaming at me, “You have made a mistake. You should be with your family. You should take care of Memaw and Papaw. You should be with your friends. Maybe you didn’t have to break up with your ex-boyfriend.”

But the Lord keeps whispering in my heart, “Why are you fearful? What I have for you is what you can’t fathom. It far exceeds your plan. My plan is so much better than yours. Do NOT BE afraid. I will be with you 75 days of the most incredible experience of your life.”

“Take heart; It is I. Do not afraid.” Matthew 14:27. Jesus reminds the disciples in this passage to not be afraid, because he is the one that is walking upon the water. He is the one that holds their emotions in that moment. He holds and controls the way the water moves and our hearts to feel the closeness of his Holy Spirit. For me, I clasp on to my chest and figuratively take my heart out of my chest. I take my heart and throw it up in the air. I do this, because it is my way of giving it all to God. To get rid of the burden I have in THIS moment.

My moment now is my state of mind of the unknown for the future. I take it and throw it in the air and let out a full gasp of air.

“For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us.” Romans 8:18

I think God laughs at me sometimes because of the stupid stuff I do to get ahead of the game. He pulls me back in to put me back in my place. In those moments, I realize I think ahead and don’t think of what I have now. I always try to see the things God will reveal in his glorious future but that’s where he reins me back in. He puts the blindfold back on me and reveals to me very little at a time.

The blindfold is my worst enemy but also my best friend. I want that sneak peek but scared of what comes with it, whether it is bad or good. Now, I just want to be surprised.

I now keep that blindfold on for the sake of not spoiling the good parts and even the bad parts. I want my life to be a surprise.

I want my summer to be a surprise. I want my senior year of college to be a surprise. I want my future jobs to be a surprise. I want my love story to be a surprise. I want to meet my Maker and King with a joyful surprise.

 

From a joyful heart

Much Love,

Annie

 

Having The Godly Mindset

There has been this prayer that keeps coming up in my head. I saw it a couple of years ago and I had saved it in a Word document on my computer. I have felt selfish for keeping it to myself. Here it is:

“I pray that he is a worshiper like David.

I pray that he can make bad situations better with just a couple of words.

I pray that he is wise like Solomon.

I pray that he is a prayer warrior, and not a worrier.

I pray that he is brave like Jonathan.

I pray that he leads our family with grace.

I pray that he obeys God like Abraham.

I pray that he has a heart for the nations and loves traveling just as much as I do.

I pray that he has faith like Joshua.

I pray that he has a really good sense of humor and can make me laugh.

I pray that he has Jesus as his closest friend like Peter.

I pray he has a sense of adventure.

I pray that he is willing to suffer for the cost of spreading the Gospel like Paul.

I pray that he can handle my crazy family and even crazier friends.

I pray that his belief in Christ is so strong that he would be willing to walk through the fire like Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego.

I pray that he is prepared for lots and lots of pictures and hugs.

I pray that his love for Christ is so strong that it radiates through every crevice of his being.

I pray that he is patient, silly, grounded, passionate, and caring.

I pray that he loves me in the midst of all the really weird things I do and that love would only grow stronger every day.

And in my own selfish ambition, I pray that he is ready for my random bursting out into song at random times and old movie marathons, especially musicals. Amen!”

 

This prayer became essential to what I wanted in my husband, my Godly husband. I now realize that I had settled for my previous romantic relationship. At the beginning and almost seven months in, I thought he was THE ONE. After many hurdles, I realized he was not making me a Godly woman, even though I thought so at the time. After we broke up, I cried for days. Heck, I even cried every day for about 4 months in our relationship. I was broken for so many reasons. Too many to even say on here. The point is the hurt I felt from him should have not been worth it. Yes, I learned a lot about myself but also what I wanted in my future boyfriend/husband. He was my first and I am glad he was my first. He taught me how to encourage myself and to realize “I am human.” He always said this phrase because of the mistakes I would make or just feeling not pretty enough. That is every human. As I entered my single season, I came across girls, even guys that would have this mindset. Apparently, I did not have it. I felt ashamed but I quickly gained the mentality like the rest of my friends.

This prayer is so important because the prayer should be a constant reminder of what a woman should look for in a GODLY husband. The last line is a personal touch that makes my prayer unique. I challenge girls and women that see this, use it as your prayer for your future spouse and make it your own. The future spouse that will give you his undivided attention and loving affection will be worth it ­­but also should make you a second priority because Jesus will be his number one priority and best friend. His mentality should be to have a prayer that his future wife will be Godly as well. Ladies, I hope that we will open our Bibles to seek what the Lord has in front of us, to serve in our churches, pray on our knees, follow on your convictions and see where it leads, give to your community, and to love with your whole heart, soul, and mind. The exceeding love you have for Christ should be out of this world. That is what should be the sole attraction from the man that is going to whole-heartedly pursue you. God will finally see that you are ready because you are pursuing after His heart. May the man see Jesus in you.

Much Love,

Annie

Here is what my home-girl Jamie Grace says about men being godly:             https://youtu.be/kEfCO_C8CAE

Being In The Here And Now

There has been an unsettling in my heart lately. I think it has been the conviction of starting a blog for the longest time. Here I am writing to people I do not know. I am not going to lie: that terrifies me. Putting myself out there has never been my strong suit, but my walls are slowly coming down. I shared on my about page that I have come across many fake people in my life. This was the reason why I was never able to open up to people until I was about 19 years old. I am almost 22 years old, and I have been more open about what I struggle with and how I am overcoming the hard truth. 

Story time:  

I dated someone that gave me wisdom but also led to some depression in my life. Last April (2016), I was struggling with flashbacks of my suicidal past. The thoughts were not going away as he was driving me back to my dorm. He could tell that there was something wrong with me. He pulled over into the Humanities parking lot and told me he was not going to leave until I told him what was bothering me. I finally told him.  He proceeded to tell me, “Your past does not define who you are.”  

Present Day: 

Obviously, the phrase has been a stamp quote in my life. Back then, I was living in the past and in constant fear. I was not living in the here and now. That was the beginning of my walls coming down. It was the starting process of opening up to people. I have learned that my past nor future defines me. Being in the here and now provides new ways of seeing what I am capable of doing with my life. The present is what I want. It’s what we all should want. 

Turning Bitter to Better

Confession time: I have held grudges. One time I held a grudge for 5 years when I was in middle and high school. I was in that anger for far too long when I look back on it. Even though that girl had done me wrong in so many ways, it took me forever to forgive her, let alone with myself. Forgiveness can be easy and hard. There is no in between.

To fully forgive someone is to know where you are with God. Are you treating Him as a frenemy or an acquaintance? What I mean here is, if you are treating him as a frenemy, you are treating him great one day and bad another day. If you are treating him like an acquaintance, then there’s little to none contact whatsoever. Either way, it’s destruction to our relationship with Him. I’m not going to lie, that’s what I was like in high school. I regret it. We all regret it if we have ever been there.

But by our Heavenly Father, it is the love from his sovereignty and forgiveness that we seek when we fully lay our knees down on the ground crying our eyes out. This is where we lay our full trust: At the very foot of the cross.

Confession time (again): I have held a grudge against someone in college too. It was not fun. I was stubborn and didn’t want to talk about it except with my best friend. I didn’t want to let anyone know what I was going through at the time. I have now let go of the grudge ever since I rededicated my heart to the Lord. All the guilt I had is gone when the burden was lifted off of my soul and heart.

Being bitter is not worth it. Christ showing us the better is worth it.