me and lil about a year ago with our lovely front yard tree
I have this vision. It has stuck with me for years. A tree, rooted firmly in the ground. In it, beautiful arrays of birds perching on branches, feeding families, and resting in the shade. A safe, comfortable, tree rooted firmly in the ground from years of growth.
My vision for this blog was that exact image. A place of spiritual growth, testing, community, and depth. It is so easy for me to stay at surface level and talk about surface level issues.
I have always had a hard time keeping friends. Making them was never very difficult. I did show choir and cheer in high school, Younglife in college, and always kept myself almost too busy and surrounded by too many people. I let really good friendships go when things got tough and conflict got real. I just sort of let the friendship slip. I was afraid of being real with women I loved. I was afraid to be vulnerable and honest. It cost me at least three dear friendships.
This past year I have been soul-searching to go deeper in my own spiritual walk and also with other loved ones in my life. Life is so short and fleeting, and often the things I want to tell the ones I love are not the things I talk with them about on a daily basis. Why is it so hard to be real and honest with the people we love? Why is it so hard to tell them what is most important daily? I so often think I will hurt feelings or be out of place if I lovingly bring up that addiction they are facing. I shirk back at the idea of being so intentional to tell someone what a difference they have made in my life and that I am ever grateful for them. I fear coming clean with a loved one about an issue we have that was never resolved.
Surface level. It kills all my relationships but it is so easy.
Going deeper into the soil.
I want to push deeper into my heart by uncovering messes I have made in my own life and recognizing my own need for growth and need to root out sin in my life. I desire to read my bible more and more for truth in these areas and real application to my life. I need eyes that see and ears that hear, that I might be more able to love those around me and not shy back in fear from relationships.
Getting my nutrients from the ground up.
I so often want to solve my own problems or cover them up instead of trusting God. I don’t “stay connected” to the vine, so to say. I disconnect, expecting to do things on my own. I end up disappointed and dry. Prayer and trusting God gives me the proper nutrients my soul needs to live life intentionally and not continue to make the dumb mistakes I make over and over again.
Extending my network of roots.
Any firmly rooted tree has a network of roots. It would be hard to uproot it. That is my dream for my spiritual life. That my walk with God would give me such deep roots that I would stand firm despite any storm or circumstance. Reading the bible, my church, my friends and family, scripture memory, prayer, reminder of my salvation, bible studies- these are all different roots that keep me secure in my faith. The most important root of all- Christ, and my assurance of my salvation in Him, keeps me grounded and grateful.
I yearn for spiritual depth. I yearn to be a person who grasps and understands the gospel. I desire to “love God with all my heart, soul, and mind.”
Rooted firmly in the ground.
I also yearn to love others well. I want to also know the practice of “loving my neighbor as myself.” I have grown to understand, that for me, this is the only process. It is painful, unrelenting at times, and grueling. It takes daily work, daily humility, and daily asking for forgiveness. It isn’t glamorous. Nor easy. Yet, I desire to be a woman who extends love to others freely, compassionate and joyful. I long to have others feel safe around me, well known, and like they can be themselves. I have known a few women like that in my life, and they are astoundingly beautiful. They didn’t get that way on their own, but by humble reliance on God to make them beautiful. I desire that. Someday.