I'm not going to be funny, wordy, clever, or sarcastic. (Which I usually delight in.)
I'm not going to describe every detail of every adventure I had in 2013. (And there were a lot!)
I'm not going to make pic collages of all the favorite moments. (There are about 5,000 pictures.)
I'm not going to spiritually and deeply reminisce over the depth of what the Lord's doing. (Obviously that'd be easy to do. I ended up in several states for Living Proof Live, went to Kenya, and moved to Texas. You'd better believe there's a whole lot that goes into all that!)
But I AM going to say something that's very important to me. I AM going to ask a few things of you. And I'm NOT going to be shy about it or beat around the bush. Because I care and I love you too much to do that anymore.......
This is a new year. Today. Right now. A new beginning. For all of us. Let's grab the beauty and freshness that a new year ushers in. Let's set aside the shallow resolutions and be something so much more than that. We are called to be mighty and deep warriors. We are called to change this planet we've been put on. To literally free those enslaved in bondage. Heal disease. Bring hope with us, lingering in each place we walk long after we've left the building like the richest and finest of perfumes.
How many people do you know who fit that description? Come on-Let's become that.
This life is not a game. It's not a free-for-all and it's no choose-your-own-adventure. And it's so much more and better than what every magazine, T.V. show, movie, and even book says it is. Don't get jaded. Don't get lost in the things that don't matter. Don't fall for the lies that are so many it sometimes seems we must be wrong because we're in such a minority. Don't you dare believe it, you hear me?!
If you're in bondage, if you're overwhelmed, wrapped up in some form of brokenness, heaviness or addiction-unable to even take a step-that's understandable. I get you. No, really. I get you. I promise I've been there. No, REALLY. So when I say what's next, know I'm coming from where you are:
It's time. Look up. Do NOT give up and lay down over the thing. Defy your emotions about it. Do not EVER tell me that this is probably what it'll look like for the rest of your life. Scream and holler for help. Seek it with every fiber of your being. Accept the help. Be willing to do the hard work Jesus will ask of you. But trust and know He desperately wants to and will redeem you. If you only let Him.
(And if you're angry and wondering why He'd allow you to be here in the first place, my answer is that absolutely nothing is wasted and He means it to be your very ministry someday soon. It will be the very thing you flourish and work in. Just you hold onto that for now!)
If you're free and healthy, good! If you've studied and know the scriptures back and forth, that's wonderful. We need that. But don't stay there. It's time. Time to be different. Time to be drastic. Time to get the nose out of the books and into action. There is NO reason to have a "normal" life. Not one. Whatever your reasoning, God can blow it out of the water and is absolutely desperate to show you just how powerful He has designed you to be. Don't you dare live your life refusing to experience that just because you're afraid. Afraid to go, give up things, be in danger, be laughed at, or become misunderstood. Listen to me now:
Your WAISTLINE is just not worthy of that much obsession.
Right now-Stop defining yourself by it!
Your CAREER is not the most important thing.
Your INCOME isn't worth that much worry and contemplation.
Your RETIREMENT isn't as secure as you imagine it is.
God has promised you in His very Word that if you seek His Kingdom and the active spreading of it (bringing hope and healing to all you encounter as your daily mission), He will take care of your needs. He's got this. So why then are we so often living as if WE'VE got this? Why is life all about having it taken care of and lined up?! Isn't there something in you that deep down wants to bubble over? Something that is silently screaming in your own ears that you were made for more than this?!
That's because you WERE!
Let's take this day to begin something beautiful. Let's each do whatever is needed-TODAY-to begin the journey of rising up to be something different. Something unique and brilliant. The blazing hope and answer for those who need it. The powerful-and quite literal- royal sons and daughters of a very real and living King. Sons and Daughters who've been given the incredible authority to do unbelievably powerful things. No more excuses. No more waiting for someone else around us to do it first or even join us. Let's just go. Let's rebel against that around us. Let's be the difference.
It starts where we are. Being open and willing.
The most amazing part?
Choosing this way of life ends up being a much more wild ride than anything we could dream up ourselves, anyway. It's truly a win-win.
2014......let the adventures begin!