Last week was a bad week. They happen. I was kind of expecting it. By Friday morning I was convinced I was going to make myself feel better.
How? I basically just did a bunch of things that I always want to do but consistently tell myself I don’t have the time for it.
I bought Ben & Jerry’s ice cream at the Kletz. I finally registered for the 10K I want to run at Kennywood Park over the summer. On a whim I asked my friend to adventure to Tunnel Park with me to watch the sunset. Plus, she agreed to letting me take pictures of her because it had been forever since I had pulled my camera out of its case and had some fun with it.
As fun as all that was, it didn’t fix how I was feeling.
On Saturday night I made plans with my friend, Ashley, to go to The Point Church on Sunday. We had been saying for months that we should go sometime ever since we ran into a few girls from there on campus.
So Sunday morning we walked through the rain from my car to the doors of this church. And as some of the members opened the doors as we approached who was there holding one of the doors? Olivia who we had met back in December on campus when she and a few friends prayed for us.
Olivia showed us to some empty seats next to her spot and introduced us to Joanna, who had an adorable little boy, and her husband played guitar in the worship band.
It’s always nice to step off campus and into a community that is composed of people outside the age range of 18-22. We were surrounded by families, little kids who danced in front of their seats or in their parents’ arms during worship, there were a few other Hope students, we talked with people who asked us questions because they wanted to get to know us, and of course there’s the way God talks.
During worship, between songs, if anyone felt there was a word placed on their heart to share they got up on stage and shared it. What Josh, one of the leaders of this church, shared was from Hebrews 12:
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, 2 fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3 Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.
Josh then spoke about how our identity does not come from what people say about us. Our identity does not come from what people think about us. Our identity comes from what God made us to be. We are running this race for him, the one who defines us and who we are.
Bam. There it was. Exactly what I needed to hear.
Focusing and worrying about how people perceive who I am from what mistakes I’ve made, from what other people have said about me, from their own observations, etc., is trivial.
At the end of the day, I need to remember that my identity is in Christ. Because he is the one who has made me new. He is the one who continually makes me new. He is the one who can fix everything.
Thanks for reading,
For it is [not your strength, but it is] [a]God who is effectively at work in you, both to will and to work [that is, strengthening, energizing, and creating in you the longing and the ability to fulfill your purpose] for His good pleasure. ~Philippians 2:13 AMP