I have mentioned this before, but I get a very unique sort of joy from coming up with three things for “Word to the Wise” posts that cause people to say: “WHAAAAA?!?” I think this one probably qualifies as one of my best.
This one is very simple. For as far back as I can remember, there has been a simple truth in my life. The sun rises in the east, the earth spins on an axis, and I get sick the week before a concert. I mean it never fails. I have gotten a little bit better at anticipating it and murdering the germs before they murder me, but as you probably know, I had a big event last night. So Monday night, when I was laying in bed and realized I had a sore throat I thought, “Better medicate tomorrow!” I should’ve medicated then. The ensuing sinus cold has been one of the worst ones I’ve ever had. I have thrived this week on a homemade combination of Mucinex, Alka-Seltzer, and Advil. And hot tea.
Here is something you should know about me: I LOVE coffee!!! I seriously drink at least two cups a day. My Keurig comes on at 6:00 a.m. and turns off at 5:00 p.m. I also have a pour-over and a French Press that I use just as frequently. Coffee is my jam! But this week, with the sore throat and the stopped-up face (not nose, face), I have turned to hot teas. I love Beth Moore. And in her most recent Bible Study The Quest, she says something in one of the video sessions that has really stuck with me. She is talking about a time in her life when she heard God speak, and she is sharing that she has received a lot of backlash from people about it. They insist that God doesn’t speak that way. This woman, conviction and tears in her eyes, stares into the camera and into your soul and says: “I was too naive to know that God didn’t speak that way…so I thought He did.” I share that story to say this: if you think Jesus has not been sitting across from me every time I had a cup of tea and the 5-10 minutes of relief that bought me, whispering through the peppermint and herbal infusions: “I will comfort you. I will make you better than ever!” (Ps. 27:1) then you may be right. Only, I didn’t know He doesn’t do that…so I thought He did.
Next up…is workbooks. Last night I celebrated the release of my first book! No Camping: Refusing to Stay in Fear is a project that is very close to my heart. What not many people knew is that I wrote a companion Bible study complete with workbook (I told you I love Beth Moore). Last week, my editor and I (a.k.a. my mom) finished formatting and putting in all the apostrophes I had forgotten and this week, my workbooks arrived in the mail. And you know what they look like?!? Workbooks.
I have struggled over the past six months or so with a burden I placed squarely on my own shoulders: the burden of uselessness. I haven’t had a job, I was accomplishing nothing. That is what satan was whispering in my ear, and that is what I unfortunately chose to listen to. But then I’m sitting on the couch, drinking a cup of tea, looking at a book I wrote…and a Bible study I wrote…a four-week Bible study with five nights of homework for each week. And finally, my brain switched over to listen to the Holy voice in my ear: “Tell me again how you’ve been wasting your life?”
I am searching for the place God has for me. I pray that you will…pray that He reveals it and brings it quickly. I also pray that you will follow that prayer by asking for God’s will above my timeliness. But I refuse to harshly judge myself for inactivity when that is the least accurate description of what I have been up to in the last six months. NOT TODAY SATAN!
Ahhh…His Holiness. This means a bunch of different things to me so buckle up and try to hold on. First of all, (we’re learning so much about Maggie today!) I love to read! I am trying to control myself this year and only read two books at a time, a Christian living book and a fiction/biography. I just finished The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver so it was time for a biography-type book. Last year, I bought The Book of Joy: Lasting Happiness in a Changing World. To be completely honest, I bought it because of the picture on the front. You see, this book was turned into a book by a man named Douglas Abrams, but the text in its pages comes from a conversation on joy had between Archbishop Desmond Tutu and His Holiness the Dalai Lama. This must be one of the greatest books of all times.
Not only is the wisdom put forth by the Archbishop and His Holiness insightful and inspiring, but some of the most fascinating information is found in the segue paragraphs written by Mr. Abrams. This book is revolutionary and I recommend it to anyone who reads.
When I was at Appalachian State, I worked for a B.S. in communication studies, but I minored in religious studies. It was a hugely eye-opening experience! One thing that dumbfounded me was the more I learned about other religions…the more I learned about mine. The more I learned about Jesus and what He is to me. This book is reiterating that fact; because as I learn about the Archbishop and apartheid, and as I learn about the Dalai Lama and his exile, I am also learning about His Holiness the King of Kings. His Holiness the LORD of Lords. His Holiness the Love of Loves. And the more I learn about His Holiness, the more I long to —