"White Girl"

"White Girl"

Monday, January 27, 2014

Where's My Life Compass?

I imagine that getting lost in the woods or a jungle would bring on an overwhelming sense of fear and panic.  I've never truly been lost, yet.  Its kind of lucky considering how many hikes I've been on, and that I can't really read a map, and that I also don't have the greatest sense of direction.  I've never experienced any gut wrenching panic and worry for being lost.  It must be a natural tendency, when getting lost, to experience fear and panic. No one likes to be alone in some creepy woods, without supplies, and not knowing how to survive.  As humans, we also like security. We like being with other people. We like having a cozy home. We do not like to be lost.

The fear of being lost translates so well into other aspects of our lives as humans. Currently, for about the past year I would say I have been lost. I think the initial panic set in when I first realized I was "lost".  I had thoughts like these, I have no idea what I am doing or what I want to do which translates as, I have no idea where I am in life, or how to get to where I want to be, let alone know where I am supposed to be.  Where is my Life compass?  I have a sneaky suspicion I am not alone in these thoughts, nor is it uncommon for other young folks these days to be lost.  Its a crazy world out there.  Full of so many paths and possibilities, with so many rapid changes going on, and so many different messages coming at us 24/7. 

In the Christian world, its a little bit of a negative thing to be lost. No, I would say its considered a horrible thing. Let's not talk about it, or better yet, why don't those who are lost, just stop being lost.  Like its a choice.  Nobody ever wants to be lost.  It also seems like  that if a Christian is lost, then that person is no longer in communion with God, and lacks a purpose.  Have you ever heard, "So and so is so lost right now. He just needs to find God. He just needs a purpose."  The message seems to be, You are lost, get un-lost.  First, being lost allows us as Christians to let God lead us somewhere. Secondly, it encourages us to trust God and to be brave enough to step out in life even when we don't know where we are or where we are going. Plus, it probably just helps us mature in general.

I would say, embrace being lost.  Woe, what? Don't let panic and fear overrun our lives, our judgement, our perception, our contentment, our happiness, and our trust in God. Even in being lost, as Christians we can serve God with praise and worship.  As humans, we can enjoy what we have been given even in times of lostness.  We still have a purpose. 

Being lost is a good time to just be. Be alive. Be grateful. Be whatever. Trust.  Don't worry about this world.

Being lost doesn't mean we lack direction.  It just means we aren't where we want to be in life yet.  It doesn't mean we can't get there.  On the flip side, it could mean that we are lost because we aren't supposed to be where we think we want to be.

Being lost makes other people uncomfortable. I have no idea how many times I have tried explaining my life right now to someone else, and what I am doing or not doing, or where I am going or not going... People don't know how to respond to those experiencing lostness.  They feel a little uncomfortable. They don't know what to talk about. They feel panicked and worried for us.  They want to go out and do the job of finding us for ourselves.  Now, there are a few who do understand, who have experienced it themselves and know how it can be life changing.  By the way, people don't like their lives changed either. 

I am blessed by those who recognize my lostness but let me continue my journey of lostness, because these people allow my life to be changed, and I feel pretty confident that is going to be changed in a better way. 

So I may not find myself in the jungle currently, and I may find myself a bit lost in life. But that doesn't mean I'm not with God or that God isn't with me, or that I lack a purpose. My purpose is to let God lead me somewhere new, to give thanks, and to step out bravely in the dark as I stumble along. Although, I have another sneaky suspicion that I know exactly where I might end up one day. 

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Happiness is...

Happiness is time spent with people we love, doing the things we love. 

Happiness can be found in achieving something, but rarely in gaining materialistic things. 

Happiness lies in forgiveness. 

Happiness lies within an attitude.

Happiness can be found in spiritual peace. 

Happiness is spending time in nature, protecting it and cultivating it, not using it up. 

Happiness isn't found in mindless consumption, but in producing something. Although some consumption can be fun.

Happiness isn't elusive. 

Its usually sitting in front of us waiting to be found by slowing down, prioritizing, and letting go of time wasters, and worldly goals and expectations for life. 

Happiness often means being a "loser".

Those who don't have happiness, don't understand the easy secret to having it. 

Happiness is thinking and living like a child. Innocently, full of joy and wonder at the beauty of the world. Getting excited by the most mundane of things and by the most amazing of things.

Love others. Live simply.

Its not difficult to find nor have. 

Happiness isn't spending hours on Facebook, using smart phones, taking Instagram photos, tweeting what we are eating, or spending hours on the Internet. Although, some joy may be found in these things. It won't make us happy.

Happiness is listening to others speak and actually hearing what they are saying and then caring about it.

Happiness is having someone listen to us and then caring about it too.

Happiness is sharing food and eating together.

Happiness is singing together in joy, in celebration.

Happiness is sitting in the sun and playing with children.

Happiness cannot be found in having a clean house, although satisfaction may be found. 

Being happy doesn't mean that we don't ever feel sadness or experience a blue day. It just means we can still smile in-spite of blue days sometimes.

Being perfect doesn't lead to happiness. 

Realizing your flaws, but recognizing your strengths can build the road to happiness and contentment.

Happiness is having nothing and being poor, but still finding joy in the world and love to give. 

Happiness is not having everything.

Happiness is not greed.

Happiness can be found in sharing with others. 

Happiness is a surprise note.

Happiness is found in receiving support from family and friends.

Happiness is counter intuitive. 

It is a surprise in its simplicity. 

Happiness is greeting one another with love and care.

Happiness is rarely found in isolation. 

Happiness is a warm hug.

Happiness is laughing with others.

Happiness is a warm relationship. 

Happiness is intimacy. Feeling close with another.

Happiness is letting go. Letting go of the past, of mistakes, of hate, of hurt, of destructive relationships, and of disappointments.

Happiness is found in enjoying the moment. In enjoying the small things.

Be together. Live in a way respectful to others, to our selves, and to the earth that was given us.  Give all the time, make time for each other, and happiness will follow.

Happiness is...