Wednesday, June 27, 2012

15 Day Challenge - day 4

One passion in my life...

I'm a very passionate person.

I feel things very deeply.  My struggle is often discerning which passion to calm and which to follow.  I'm grateful for the way that God made me--to feel so acutely--but I have not always seen the blessing of it.  Throughout my childhood I was hyperaware that I was different than most other people.  I could not understand how one could "not care."  I cared about EVERYTHING.  I cried whenever I felt deep sadness, anger, or joy--and I cried plenty.  As a big sister, being passionate meant that every argument with my baby sister was the hill to die on.  I fought for truth, right-ness, efficiency, and honesty in a way that probably definitely exhausted my parents.  I still fight for those things, but praise God that He also gave me a good dose of compassion on the side.  The Bible tells us to speak the truth in love.  For some people, speaking lovingly isn't the issue--the "speak the truth" part is a challenge.  For me, it's the other way around.

All who know me are reading that saying, "Mmmmhmmm..."

I'm a work in progress.  I love you all.  I'm learning and growing in a good direction.  Just be glad you didn't have to parent the precocious 7-year-old version of me.  Whew.

I've come through a fascinating journey in these 2 decades (and then some).  I now realize that I was created with this heart for a reason, and it is a blessing.  My goal is to focus this passionate heart well.  So though I have many passions, I must say that the most important one is a passion and focus on Christ.  If I forget (or ignore) that He is the most crucial element of my life, my passions become disordered.  Something else takes the lead, whether it is my passion for righteousness, learning, people, etc.  The deep care that I have for each of those is not wrong, but when placed first in my heart, I veer off course and the course becomes futile.  When Christ is my first and deepest passion, I have the correct lens through which to see righteousness and know how to respond to it (or to the lack of it).  That perspective helps to direct my passions in the way that they will glorify Him.  I can love people well and with more grace and patience than I ever have when approaching a situation without that lens.

I've talked with lots of girls about the importance of guarding one's heart, and also of loving and trusting someone who will guard it as well.  Usually we're talking about a boy in that second part.  Too many times in the past have I fallen for a guy who had no regard for my heart, and that disregard is the sign of a dreadful leader.  My prayer is that the men in our world grow a gentle and respectful regard for the hearts of the women of the world, and that we women would encourage that movement by not dating jerkfaces.  BUT there's another element to loving and trusting someone who will guard your heart--I have discovered on far too many occasions that I am incapable of truly guarding my own heart.  The safest place it has ever been is in the hands of Jesus.  When He is first, when He is my passion, all else is placed perfectly and I can see how He protects me and guides me in the right direction.  When I take my heart back from Him and believe [the lie] that I know better than He, my passions overtake me and I think and respond in a way that just is not best for me or for anyone else involved.  I lose perspective.  I revert to my exasperating 7-year-old-self who will be shaken and blown about by anything rather than the strong woman rooted in Christ who, by His strength, can be shaken by nothing.

Love yall :)  If you have a blog and you decide to do the 15 day challenge as well, let me know!  Leave a comment with your blog URL!

Have a beautiful Wednesday :)

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