Friday, February 7, 2014

Being a Regifter

Have you ever been given a really good gift? Like a really good one that didn't even need to be regifted? That gift was probably so on point that you used it until it was falling apart. You may have even accidentally "shot your eye out" you loved that thing so much. "Things" have a way of becoming a part of us, whether we intend for them to or not. I want my life with Jesus to look like that.

You see, we have been given this gift of life. By grace through faith we have been saved by someone who wants us to do more than just exist. Why do we work so hard to keep our lives perfectly in line and then fall to pieces when we realize we were never really filled in the first place? My theory is that we treat our lives like gifts we are so afraid to get dirty, messy, or worn because we are professional "regifters." We're too busy to even take care of ourselves because of school, kids, friends, jobs, whatever it is. We regift every last bit of unused life to anyone and everyone that will take it. We give it way like we really just don't appreciate it enough to use on ourselves.

For so long I was terrified of appearing flawed to the people around me. I needed them to know that I had everything under control so that if anything ever came up, whatever it was, I could be there to help. I was always "regifting" my life. I kept up with these habits until one day when my entire world shattered in an instant. I stared down the barrel of three unbelievable words: You are replaceable. Instantly my heart was ripped so far out of "perfect" that I still hurt, months later.

But you know what happened? I changed. Suddenly I was at ground zero with nowhere to go but up. I decided that I needed to invest in what I loved. I started to write, read every day, run more than ever, spend more time with my boyfriend and girl friends, and wear my life out. I began to be so filled with what God had for me, what I was passionate about, that I couldn't help but smile. All of a sudden worship became more beautiful, people became more of a blessing, that "C" on a test wasn't the end of the world, and a thousand other little problems I didn't know I had corrected themselves in light of my Savior.

I want my life to be so filled, stretched, worn, and torn that I begin to bust at my seams only to have love flow from my weakest places. When I'm not even trying to give patience or mercy or kindness but I give it anyway because that's who I am in Jesus. 

In her book Anything, Jennie Allen recounts a time right before she and her husband adopted their Rwandan son. After praying "Anything" to God she writes,

"Just because we were willing didn't mean it was easy. I still wanted God to be more clear, so we could be more sure. I asked a friend who had adopted if they were 100 percent sure when they adopted their two kids from Rwanda. I expected her to say yes; instead she laughed out loud, hard. She said, 'Of course we weren't sure. At some point you just jump, doubting all the way down.'"

-Jennie Allen

I have decided that life is worth the risk or failure. I don't want to look back at the end of my life or even this year and wonder why I'm not different. Jesus deserves more than for us to stay the same year after year. Today I challenge you to find out what you love, what brings you more joy in the Lord than anything else in the world, and go for it. 

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Oh! And if you're thinking you may need a little bit more of a pep talk to get you passionate about life, here's kid president to help you out: