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Wednesday Wisdom, Thursday Thoughts

We can all have days when the expectations of life or the world around us weigh us down. Those are the days when I find Jesus speaks most clearly.

Sitting half awake with my eyes closed, it’s early morning, I need you. Can you say something to me today so I know you are here? Remember mindfulness Aimee, let the thoughts flow freely without judgement. There I sit and quietly think, Proverbs. Then a second thought, the number 10.

Naturally I turn to Proverbs 10 and read the scripture but it just doesn’t seem to make any sense to me in this moment. The scripture, although good and nourishing in its own right, only left me confused. I just didn’t really get what He was trying to say to me.

Not even an hour later sat my favorite devotion, what’s new in updates.

Within it…Proverbs 18:10. Whoa! Now it makes perfect sense. I just didn’t sit still long enough, just a little bit creeped out in a good, blown away, this is our Jesus sense of the word!

Because Jesus is the best of course!

Our Bible.

Loved By Grace,

Aimee

A psalm of David

It has been a long time since I’ve been awake late in the night with too many thoughts to drift asleep. That right there means I need to read my bible because He has something to say.

So Jesus, I really need you to speak to me and can you be direct in what it is you show me tonight? Pretty please? You know when I need to hear it most.

Psalm 37 ❤️

Loved By Grace,

Aimee

I’m Fine

I don't know about you but this week, this month, sure feels like a huge gigantic shit show. I would like to tell you that I'm drawing on the strength in Jesus, strength all us Christians have exponentially. While this is true, I am drawing on His strength, it is also true that I am not feeling fine.

How can we be fine with this? How can we just offer empty words that everything happens for a reason to someone who has lost everything? Whether it be from a hurricane, from an earthquake, from ever changing policy or opinion or at the hands of another human. This is horrific.

Everything happens for a reason is not a comfort to us. It might be eventually in our heavenly fathers presence but certainly not now. What does God want us to do when we just don't understand? When we can barely see past the tears struggling to hold on to our trust in Him? When we are angry and scared from tragedy and from things out of our control. What are we to do?

We can do one of two things. We can shut down our own humanity or we can pour our hearts out to Jesus. I'm not talking about the nice, well written, well spoken all positive prayers we think we should be saying to God. We can certainly speak those positive prayers and we very well should be thankful for many moments. But to pour out is to give Jesus ALL of our emotions. The good, bad and the ugly. Whether we speak them or
not we can not hide any thought from Jesus.

And the truth is I'm not very happy with God right now. I don't get it, I don't understand and I just want to make it stop. He could make it stop and He hasn't yet! None of this makes any sense! Yes, I have told Jesus every last emotion I've felt this week. He can handle it.

Shutting down our humanity because of shame instead of pouring it out to Jesus only subjects us to a life of sadness. Jesus lived in a human body, He knows humanity in its most intimate sense and while He did not succumb to the evil of shutting out good, Jesus sure faced it head on. Just like we do in all of life's tragedy and mess.

I truly believe what must be happening when someone loses touch with their humanity is they shut out good until gradually all that is left is the lie in their head that all they are is bad. Reinforced by the shutting out of good, reinforced by opinion around them, reinforced period. Once that lie is in place…why not the unspeakable or anything else for that matter?

One of the things that haunts me the most with all the news coverage of Vegas is that the shooter called his family just weeks prior to make sure they were not harmed in the wake of hurricane Irma. I don't want the focus of my blog entry to be on the shooter because his actions are horrific. But this piece of the coverage is not an indicator of someone being all evil. Yet evil prevailed in them just weeks later.

How did things go so wrong Jesus? I don't understand. I can't accept throwing our hands up in the air and directing people straight to hell. It's just not in me to give up on good.

Rewind back to school earlier this week. Children have an amazing way of restoring hope in humanity don't they? This is going to be a good day. At times I get the opportunity to work individually with at risk children and this was one of those weeks. If I had my choice this is what I would do full time, I just adore them.

In walks E who I've known for a while because I taught him last year a few times. The para and I weren't sure if he would be in to see me today since Mom has had to find an alternative way of getting him to school. You see E was suspended off the bus for behavior but he is here and we are to work on writing. This is E's fourth grade writing story so far…

"The kids are at recess and there is a bully with them. The bully has a brick, throws it at the kids and hits a kid in the head."

E needs to add more detail to finish the story. What happens after the bully hits the kid?

"The bully tries to run away from them."

Who is chasing the bully E?

"The teacher guard is chasing the bully to try to catch him."

What was happening at recess to the bully, why did the bully want to throw the brick at one of the kids? Were they hurting the bully E?

"The bully threw the brick at the kids head for fun," said E.

This right here is heart breaking. This is a child who is emotionally at risk for shutting down his humanity and in some cases is already doing it. But here is the thing, we can not assist him in shutting out the good. We can not give up. We can not let the lie of bad win.

I'm also reading a book currently which I should possibly set down because one more tragic tale is just about one too many for the week for this girl. Why did I think this was a good idea? I'm not sure. Nevertheless my reading brought me to this family's story. Perhaps I'll do a book review in more detail but it is about differing opinions in which not all supports the others choices. At the same time they are desperately hoping this loved one will accept Jesus as their savior before death. At the end of the day, it didn't happen. They passed on not believing in God.

OH EM GEE, I can't take this sweet Jesus. What on earth am I supposed to take away from all of this? After hyperventilating for a few days pouring out to him I think I finally get it. We have to be very careful about winning hearts for Jesus and while we think we are speaking truth as God might want us to speak, we are in an equal position to reinforce love. When in doubt, choose love over anything else because it is the only way to win hearts for Jesus. He would rather have us in heaven then lose us from shutting down our humanity. Which means he will take us as we are, no other emphasis needed.

At the end of the day, it is an individual choice and therefore our impact toward others is not to be taken lightly.

Mental illness is one of the biggest killers of humanity. The gun, the brick, the bomb. Whatever tool used is the culmination of human experience screaming to say, you were right.

Satan is not right. Those at risk children throwing bricks for fun are the same children who reach in the closet for their snack, pull out two bags, hand one to the teacher and say "I want you to eat with me because you need to have food too."

We can all say…WHERE IS THE KLEENEX BOX!

Good is always there for the taking and we must do everything we can to have it win in us, for us and for our children's future.

Constant prayers to all lives lost, comfort for their families and loved ones even if it is just one breath at a time with peace only Jesus can bring.

Psalm 34:18 ~ The Lord is close to the broken-hearted; he rescues those who are crushed in spirit.

Loved By Grace,
Aimee

Peacemaker Is An Action

Let's be clear. Peacemaker does not mean silence. Work is a verb and peacemaker is an action. It is not passive. Jesus did not keep quiet in the midst of divided thought and opinion.

When in doubt, go to His words and reflect on what they reveal. The places in scripture quoting the direct words of Jesus are Matthew, Mark, Luke and John.

Jesus says…

God blesses those who realize their need for him, the Kingdom of Heaven is given to them.

God blesses those who mourn, for they will be comforted.

God blesses those who are gentle and lowly, for the whole earth will belong to them.

God blesses those who are hungry and thirsty for justice, for they will receive it in full.

God blesses those who are merciful, for they will be shown mercy.

God blesses those whose hearts are pure, for they will see God.

God blesses those who work for peace, for they will be called the children of God.

God blesses those who are persecuted because they live for God, the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs.

God blesses you when you are mocked and persecuted and lied about because you are my followers. Be happy about it! Be very glad! For a great award awaits you in heaven. And remember, the ancient prophets were persecuted, too.

Matthew 5:2-12

Wouldn't it be so much easier if God would just speak? Since sides seem to know and even worse, justified to extinguish lives. If God would just come here and tell us! Oh that's right, He did come here already and we, humanity, nailed Him to a cross.

I read Matthew, Mark, Luke and John often. Jesus always sides with human life, every last one of human lives are important to Him. He tried to show us divide over differences is not the way and we, humanity, silenced it.

The biggest lie ever told is the notion that "us versus them" or "us versus different" threatens our own survival. It is the perfect diversion tactic because it takes our hearts off God and puts it on to the divide where it can infiltrate the condition of our hearts.

This is a two thousand year old piece of human frailty right here. We, humanity, couldn't even recognize God in our own flesh. God said here, I'm sending myself to you! And we, humanity, said Jesus was different and different was bad. But His willingness to speak peace, heal, care for, be oppressed and die is precisely what will put an end to it someday.

Our survival is only threatened without Jesus.

If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor. ~ Desmond Tutu

#Charlottesville ❤️

Loved By Grace,
Aimee

One Step At A Time

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Breaking in the beach this week which feels great. I didn’t step foot out there until mid June while forcing myself so this is good progress. ☀️

It is nice downtime in the midst of teaching with D again this week.  The anger from this kid is just heartbreaking. I’m usually in the middle being concerned about the other kids safety but feeling helpless witnessing his self-destruction when the anger takes hold of him.  When D is calm he is the a different kid. I’ve seen and heard his tender heart. But then the anger hits and he doesn’t know how to control himself.

He wanted to stay with me today, he didn’t want to go to lunch or recess. I asked him what happens when he won’t go to lunch and he said it’s either go to lunch or don’t eat. I said to him that really hoped he would consider eating because that just makes us feel worse. D said he doesn’t care because he is used to it, he has gone a week without eating so missing lunch is no big deal. That right there is heartbreaking.

This is not a well liked kid in school. This is a child who was removed from a different school. The kids here deliberately pick on him to get a ride out of him. It’s a vicious cycle. D is kid who could likely harm someone without his anger in check. But this kid has feelings, this kid does not want to be bad.  I truly know he just wants to be loved. This kid is loved dearly by Jesus.

But he is lost and much of it is out of his control. I can’t pray with D in public school but you can better believe I say prayers for him at home. And I said a silent prayer for him today right then and there as he was curled up by my feet.

In the moments when I have alone time with D I just talk to him and I ask him how he feels. I remind him that one step at a time is all we need to worry about when he feels angry. Take a deep breath, read your book and if you need to go under the desk and wait for Mrs. J to talk with you then that is totally fine with me. You matter D, don’t ever forget it.  Your anger does not have to define you D and you are not fooling me. You don’t like feeling this way because you tell me that all the time.

He did decide to eat lunch today and that makes my heart happy.

When I think my struggles are in vain Jesus reminds me that pain is used for good.

Prayer is powerful stuff even in silence.❤️

Loved By Grace,

Aimee

Clockwork

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I’m not doing so well physically at the moment.  This is normal, it is something I’m used to but it stinks, it is not fun, it is a beautiful hot mess.  It started Monday and I get so angry at myself when it happens.  Never something I go looking for but here it goes and smacks me in the face nonetheless.  When it does, there is nothing else I can do but pray.

This is what it feels like to live with my experience and it never goes away.  I do not care what the reason, nobody and I do mean not a single person deserves to feel dehumanized. But as I’ve said before, shit happens in life doesn’t it peeps.  So this is me, the product of shit happens.

This is Us, #3 – OHEMGEE I MISS MY FAVORITE SHOW!  Maybe I’ll have to re-watch the whole season again.

It doesn’t matter the circumstance, it doesn’t matter the intention, if it enters my consciousness along with it comes the paralysis.  The very real fact that complete disregard for human life exists and in a flash of that moment I would rather be non-existent.  Then all I can do is wait for the physical reaction to set in, it always does.  This is a physiological fact as it is drilled in to my brain and I am told repeatedly that I’m to have very low expectations for myself when it happens.  Two days later…here we are like clockwork.

All I can do is hold on tight Jesus because You are all I have…especially in these moments when they occur.  We are not going there right now buddy.  Can I just feel a little better first before we get bombarded with this stuff?  Would You like Your answer Jesus or mine?  Because mine would be not a chance in hell, see above! But this is the point isn’t it, not my answer but Yours.  Lovely.  Thanks but I think it would be much easier to embrace my name…can I just be that for a few minutes?  You won’t let me go down that road so that is good.

I don’t ask for this on my blog but today I could use prayers if any of you could spare a few. Short, simple, honest.

Psalm 51:17 ~ The sacrifice you want Jesus, is a broken spirit. 

Psalm 34:18 ~ The Lord is near the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. 

However, this is also Jesus reminding me that He tends to recruit from the pit, not the pedestal.  So my special gift to the world is this Loves…do not feel bad for me, learn from me. ❤️

Loved By Grace,

Aimee

 

Setting The World On Fire

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Saw these signs at Tarpon Springs yesterday, I'm a big fan of signs. This is my happy place have me like… YAAASS!!!!!! But honestly the only signs I listen to any longer are Jesus signs. Which can still be confusing at times so still working on that in between my smack in the face tantrum demands. He is bombarding me this week which is overwhelming because I don't have my reading and writing, sit still, shut your mind up Aimee and listen to Jesus time. My devotions have been a mess, reading them on the fly and it has been good stuff. I'm here saying okay, mental note Jesus, got it. I am ready to go home so I can sit still and listen.

Went for a run this morning to make time. Which is rough because I haven't exercised much these days. I don't know, just too many triggers for the kind of exercising I enjoy, too much to handle so I feel better to just sit it out. But I'm old, this exercising thing needs to resume peeps. It's good for us, I'm trying.

So back to the run. Devotion was great, thank you Jesus. Now I'm going to put my ear buds in and disappear, maybe see what is up in this mind to write about, music on shuffle. First song, okay thanks Jesus. Love this song as I do many songs. But this song, like exercise, is overwhelming.

We stayed at a Disney resort this week which was lovely and I love Disney. But I hate hotel rooms, hate them. My son is in travel baseball so that brings quite a few traveling hotel stays during the season. Don't get me wrong, I love traveling places, always up for an adventure. But the hotel part, the dead of night quiet is just too sad for me. I usually lay there for a long time and I can't sleep, sometimes cry a few tears. Most of the time cry actually. I shouldn't know what the highs and lows of the dead of night story bring but I only have myself to blame for it. And while there is accountability to take in this fact there is also incredible happiness to remember.

I had a moment last night talking about my biological father to the table and I was probably rambling but it was still a moment nonetheless.  I was twenty-four the last time I spoke to him and before that I was maybe six. One thing I know for sure is that I grew up never wanting to be like him. He wasn't in my life, I was adopted by my step dad when I was in first grade. At twenty-four he wanted to re-enter my life so I agreed and he came to Michigan for a weekend visit. I was exhausted from the conversations, oh my goodness deliriously tired and me are not a good combination. The bottom line was that his perspective against my moms on their relationship situation did not match. Everybody makes mistakes and needs forgiveness, myself included. He sat across from me the entire weekend and didn't acknowledge his mistakes, the attitude was he doesn't make any mistakes. My mother raised me my entire life, the first five years by herself. She would sing to me, you and me against the world. Of course I'm going to have an issue with this denial. All I needed was for him to ask for forgiveness and he couldn't do it. For whatever reason he couldn't do it.

Back to now.  This moment I had last night, it is hard to make terrible mistakes and I have made plenty of them. That does make me like him, it makes me like every human on this earth. I've been too hard on him. I'm sure both my Mom and John shared in the mistakes of their situation. And that is okay, Jesus loves us all anyway. Perhaps I didn't give him enough time to get to acknowledging the need for forgiveness. I don't have hard feelings toward him but I really haven't given him much of a chance since that meeting many years ago.

Okay Jesus, I get the point and that is some pretty heavy stuff. Crap, I have a lot of work to do when I get home.

I'm FAR from perfect and I've learned these lessons too, life happens. It just does. So while it's our fault we know the highs and lows of the dead of night, it is okay to know, which ever way it ends up.  It's going to be okay either way, grace wins all of it.

Dear BF…(that means biological father), let's talk. I'm not a big fan of talking shit out after that weekend but that is what Jesus wants us to do. But I swear, if you just sit there and say "I was there babe" when you and I both know damn well you were not at the hospital with me…well, then I will lose my shit again. Just ask me to forgive you, that's all I need John Leabu. And I will take the blame for the wrong things I've said and done too.  I don't need to be the perfect princess to make up for BF, I'm done with the princess business. Well mostly because I do love beautiful hearts. Love, your daughter.

Loved By Grace,

Aimee

I Listened

Where do I even to start. So thankful for His grace, His love, His peace.

I cried, I prayed, I put all of it in YOUR hands. You answered …let her be at peace, let her be a kid, let her heal. Not yet, not now. I listened.

I listened because YOUR love, YOUR peace, YOUR blessings are what brings happiness.

My girl, well she is so incredibly happy and it’s not necessarily  what the world says is happy because the world doesn’t put You first. And while that might feel happy, the world also only shows us the highlight reel, not the pain in the background when happy, isn’t so happy afterall.  That is when You say if only we can recognize different…because it makes all the difference.

Peace might be described in a lot of ways but peace is in your hands and so are the outcomes.  As for my girl, she knows what love is not…all on her own.  We all need hearts filled differently and so we no longer hang outside of grace.

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I might not be able to be Jesus but I don’t have to be because Jesus will be Jesus for me. As for anyone else…He simply wants us to grab hold of His grace.

That’s my Jesus, He is the best! ❤️

Loved By Grace,

Aimee

To That Other Woman

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To that other woman,

I had a memory about you last night.  You know, the moment two years ago when you couldn’t make it to the kids music concert. How did it get that bad?  What a hot mess of day that was, what a waste.  For starters, you were under a lot of pressure, I get that. Trying your hardest to make a bad situation better and my dear…this equals a whole lot of stress.  So what did you do?  You guessed it, put matters into our own hands.  Where was God in all of this?  Yeah, we weren’t listening.  I will give you this, it certainly didn’t help dancing with the devil who is all too happy to lead us right down that path.  So now have a look at you… and it was only March.  That towel rocks though and I love those slippers.

My devotion today, God shows us all of the warning signs, disobedience left unchecked always grows.  We can not ignore God and hope good will come from it or that God will bless it.  Hmm, totally get that point.

Okay, so back to you, the frazzled woman.  To that other woman, this is what it feels like to walk by sight, not by faith. You had faith but it wasn’t very strong.  Rest assured, where there is faith it will be tested and through it adversity will introduce us to ourselves and it’s not always pretty.  It is so true and me myself and I well…we crumbled under the weight.  Before you knew it, there we were full of stress, full of anxiety, full of fear. A towel hair slippers of a hot mess without hope trying to find the good in something that can not be changed without God.

My devotion today, when we feel afraid we should trust Him and wait.  He will help us. Let go and listen.

I watched that annual music concert last night and just smiled from happiness.  I smiled because while adversity does introduce us to ourselves which isn’t always so great, it also brings us back to God.  I no longer feel crippled by negativity, by what the world says is good, what the world says is true, what the world says is real.  We still have our fair share of problems loves, shit happen at times.  Nobody ever said it doesn’t, beautiful hot mess right there!  That photo though…cracks me up.

Rewind back to March two years ago.  A few months prior I spoke a prayer to connect meaningfully with others, you know, connect with a healthy support system and I asked for God’s help. While I had faith, I wasn’t willing to wait patiently for Him to answer.  Now two years later, that prayer is not only answered but answered in so many abundant ways and with blessings I could have never put in to words myself or have accomplished on my own.  But I had trust Him to answer.  So happy when I finally did.

I still have struggles that I’m working through but seriously, who doesn’t?  Wonder who I’m trusting to handle it though?  You got it!  Ahh, Jesus you are the best! ❤️

Loved By Grace,

Aimee

 

 

 

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