It’s been exactly 2 months since my last post, but I am back in business baby! My 1st semester of grad school is termed, “the beast” by the students (and even some of the professors), and I definitely underestimated the beast until day 1 LOL.
Needless to say, I was drowning for the next 8 weeks. After that, I couldn’t even bring myself to open my laptop, let alone type cohesive sentences together.
But with school right around the corner again (ugh), I finally opened my laptop and logged back in to blogging!
To be 100% transparent, the last couple of months have been the HARDEST months of my life. From drowning in grad school, to feeling isolated from having no free time outside of school, to a close friend passing away, life hasn’t been all wildflowers and puppy kisses.
It’s been H-A-R-D.
There have been times that I have given Jesus the peace sign and told Him to catch me later, and there have been moments that I’ve decided to just go through the motions of religion and make it work because “I’m supposed to”. And between both of those options, I believe the second is the worst.
God makes it very clear that He doesn’t put up with “christians” who are somewhere in the middle with their beliefs. The ones that say that they fully rely on God, but then show differently in their actions. When we go through the motions of religion, that’s exactly what we are doing.
How easy is it to go to church on Sunday, raise your hand when the beat is bumping, tell everyone that you’re doing great as you walk out the door, highlight a verse on the Bible app so it doesn’t look like you’re slipping, post an encouraging quote on facebook, and craft a pretty insta story of you doing a “Bible study” when you don’t even crack a page open?
Playing religion is one of the easiest gigs in the world!
But that’s when life gets dangerous.
Romans 3:15 says:
“I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish that you were cold or hot.”
God would rather us walk away from Christianity as a whole than “play” religion. WHAT?!
That’s how I know it’s serious. That’s how I know that it’s damaging to my soul.
And not only my soul, but the souls around me. You know that if you are just going through religious motions and not truly saturating yourself in Jesus that you are going to spew out hypocrisy, anger, frustration, disgust, etc.
And what kind of image does that give God? Those who don’t know him see your “religious acts” and call you a sold out Christian because they don’t know better, only to see you acting like the rest of the world when something doesn’t go as planned.
Who are you representing? Jesus Christ or religion?
It’s hard to be honest with yourself, trust me. It’s a journey I’ve been on recently, but too much hangs in the balance to lie to yourself.
When I finally asked God to help me to be honest with myself and Him, He asked me a gut wrenching question:
“Are you doing all of this out of love or out of motion?”
And when I was really honest, it was the less favorable option.
I’ve briefly forgotten what it was like to be so head over heels in love with the man that lost everything for me. The one that was murdered for something that I did. The man that has always looked at me with grace and compassion in His eyes and said, “that’s alright, you can come back home.” every time.
When I listened to a podcast recently, the speaker told the audience to close their eyes and imagine that Jesus has set a table for you full of your favorite foods. And just when you see the most beautiful feast He’s prepared for you and only you, He walks into view. When you see Him, what does He look like? What does He say?
For me, He looks so full of love and grace. So tender and sensitive to where I’ve been during this season, but also so tattered and worn from the battle that He’s had to fight on my behalf. And when He opens His mouth, unconditional love spews out as He tells me that all I have to do is sit at the table. It’s already been prepared for me, all I have to do is sit and look into His eyes until I fall in love with Him again.
I dare you to imagine that same scene and listen for what He wants to say to you in this season. You may be totally head over heels for Him currently, and if you are, GREAT!!! Still listen for what He says to you and save this post for a rainy day!
If you’ve been where I have, don’t start the blame game. Just start back where you left off before all hell broke loose. It might not be an overnight flip of the switch, but every time you start to go towards the motions of religion, imagine Jesus at the table.
Do it for love.