do not merely exist

What is life? Good question. Most people think about life as if it were dependent on getting from point B to point D. Birth to Death. That's all life is to them. Getting from one point to the next. Merely existing day to day without a sense of direction, and sadly without passion. 
What is life? It is the flash of a firefly in the night. It is the breath of a buffalo in the wintertime. It is the little shadow which runs across the grass and loses itself in the sunset. {Crowfoot}
Isn't there more to life than merely existing? I am no genius (half the time I can't even spell genius), but weren't we created by a God who sent His son on our behalf to save us from uncertain and unequivocal death? Not physical death, but spiritual death. A death far more agonizing and unimaginable than anything we could ever face with our earthly bodies. I love this verse: "Do I take any pleasure in the death of the wicked? declares the Sovereign LORD. Rather, am I not pleased when they turn from their ways and LIVE?" {Ezekiel 18:23; emphasis added}.

This is beautiful and vivid imagery to be able to see the perfect love of the Father. He loves His people so much-even those who have fallen astray-that He pleads with them about turning from their ways so that they might live! And in Christ we have precious life; "For in him we live and move and have our being.' As some of your own poets have said, 'We are his offspring." {Acts 17:28}.

We have been crucified with Christ! We are His. He gave everything for us. Don't you think we owe it to Him to live life abundantly with a spring in our step, love in our hearts, and tenderness in every touch? The least we could give is full and total surrender to our King by living with reckless abandon instead of merely existing. 

My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style. {Maya Angelou; emphasis added}
While driving I did some thinking; and shed some happy tears. I thought about the past couple of years since I was released from eating disorder treatment. I thought about how the three years leading up to my recovery had been wasted on a lie that spread and consumed me like a wildfire on a hot Californian summer. The lie was that to reach a grand level of perfection I needed to destroy all of who I was. The meals that I refused to eat, the binge sessions I partook of, and the numerous times I purged a day were all somehow related to the lie of perfection and the need to be in control of my life-to obtain a higher form of perfection within myself and those around me.

Those lies are what fed my soul and what consumed every aspect of my time, thought, and body. I was more interested in perfection from myself...and notice the bright and festive transition of winter into spring; or the hot, heavy Tennessee summers; or the crispy coolness of summer changing it's colors, turning into fall; or the vintage colors of fall commencing into the still, yet beautiful silence of winter. I knew not which way the world turned. It was all a blur. 

While I sometimes regret the damage I wreaked on myself and those around me, I do not regret the lessons I learned though those tough years leading up to 2014 and 2015. The journey to get to where I am today was one in which I had to learn the beauty of daily self-sacrificing or in other words: waking up every morning to the presence of the High King and dying daily to my wants and wishes in order to do the wants and wishes of the One who breathed life into my weary soul (Luke 9:23). I knew it was the least I could do for the One who not only gave me life during birth;  the life I was given when I became a new creation (2 Corinthians 5:17); and the life He gifted me when He saved me from my slow suicide. 

Granted, this has not been an easy process; nor is it a joyous lesson to learn. Self-sacrifice is not something that comes natural. It's not a normal habit for a self-seeking sinner such as myself. But perfect practice makes perfect and thus, I practiced the art of self-sacrifice by means of letting my guard down, becoming vulnerable to a Holy King, and allowing Him to infiltrate my entire being as a whole. This very revelation: that I needed to die to self daily was a huge stepping stone to my recover and to living life rather than merely existing without a purpose. 

Life is meant to be lived abundantly! To be lived recklessly in accordance to the Gospel and the unique calling of our Lord and Savior in our lives. Like the potter with his clay, our King created us to serve a purpose (Isaiah 64:8). Not one of the potter's creations are ever the same. Some might have the same talents, but they do not appear the same or even work in the same way. But they get the job done and with them the potter is very pleased! Just like the Lord is with us! We're all different, yet so very similar because we're the body of Christ. And in Him we were meant to thrive. To live the life we were given with joy and reckless abandon, not with indifference and mediocrity. We were meant for so much more than we can ever imagine.Why stifle the calling God has placed on your life and the blessing He longs to offer you? It's time to live, to thrive, to recklessly abandon yourself to the Lord and experience the most our of your life that He has to offer. Connect. Grow. Serve. Go. 


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