Monday, June 13, 2011

A Real Life

This weekend I was excited to have plans to attend church with a friend rather than alone and to have lunch together afterwards.  I have always loved and learned from Pastor Jason at Easthill and this week was no exception.

The lesson was about during times of sorrow, despair, heartbreak, financial or relationship woes, we tend to ask, Where Are You God?  Sometimes it seems as if the bad always wins over the good and we feel very alone and easily lose hope.

There was discussion about these times requiring raw grit.  Guts.  Sacrificial love.

I believe I am coming out of this kind of walk, where it took all I had to just breathe.  To sit up in bed in the morning and plant my feet on the floor took all I had.  But as I began to search for my way out of this mire, I knew the only person I could create change in, was me!

While I may have looked at others to pass off responsibility or blame, the bottom line was it was I who needed to change.  But how?  When I haven't looked HONESTLY in the mirror for, well, my entire adult life, how do I begin to unravel the tangles and snares that were made of my own hands and find the real me?

Pastor Jason said it Sunday.  "Real life begins when you decide to get real."

As you can read from the description of my blog, it has been my intent from the beginning that I be brutally honest here.  I don't want to cover up or smooth over or make pretty.  It is deceitful and also takes away from the meaning of the victory when it comes!

I love the word "authentic" because its very essence makes me "get" what real means.  Here is the dictionary version:

                               -adj 1.  of undisputed origin or authorship; genuine.

When I consider this meaning, I find it interesting that it means undisputed origin or authorship.  What if I could get back to the Author and Finisher of me?  The original Laura that was meant to be before all of the confusion and tangles of life?  It also means "not a copy" so there is only one!  Just one you!  Just one me!

But this is the miracle. We don't go back. When God forgives us we go forward with a clean slate. 

And the word "genuine" is good too.  Here is the dictionary version: 

                              -adj 3.  free of pretense or hypocrisy, sincere.

I truly desire to my real self.  Have you ever been around someone like that?  It feels so good and freeing to watch another person just be themselves with no excuses, coverups or masks.

I know the journey is not over but I am finally coming into a period where I really believe I am exactly where I am supposed to be in life.  God has moved and changed me and I am growing and loving and reaching out.  New opportunites appear every day.  We have to be on the lookout for them!

In church Sunday, I was sitting by a young couple that I did not know.  I just really felt that they had a serious need.  I was compelled to invite the young woman to my ladies friendship group, Heart Warmers, so I hastily wrote her a note with my contact info (yes, on the tithe envelope, sorry!).  I held her hand during prayer and gave her a hug.  After the service we talked and she was so excited about the invitation and said it was just what she needed!

I felt so touched that God had used me right there in my seat.  I never expected it.  I went to church thinking about meeting my friend and talking at lunch.  But I got more than I ever imagined and I am excited about the new me that God is creating and cultivating.

I am finally living.....A Real Life.