Feeling Downhearted? Worship First…

worship

Good Monday morning, Brave Ones!

It’s been a while since I’ve posted but mostly because I’ve been struggling with some relationship stuff and didn’t have the mental strength to share. I had been talking to a guy the last few months who lives out of state, and although I’m aware that long distance relationships rarely make it, I made the decision to hope that this could stand up to the distance…

It’s proving not to be the case and the hardest thing about this is, this is the first guy I’ve liked in a long time who I could see myself fitting well into his life and him into mine. I liked/like him a LOT and so the loss of our diminishing communications has hit me hard.

So what are we to do with sadness and deferred hope?

Weirdly enough, God gave me an answer through different online teachings and my daily devotional (the same message from completely unrelated sources): worship Him first…

I’m like whaa? Not ask for stuff first…or demand answers first, but worship FIRST. I’ll admit, I’m not great at worship. Words can fall flat with how I feel about God, and sometimes I worry that the worship songs I sing are more about the music than about Him…But all that aside, it is REALLY hard to worship when you feel like God has let you down or when you’re in pain. But that’s the message He was sending so I made the attempt.

And the crazy thing is, it has helped to ease the pain and begin to put life in the right perspective again. I believe all the love, care and “worship” I was giving this man was making me sick in my spirit because I was simultaneously giving too much and having to hold back. Not to mention, worship never belongs to a man anyway…it belongs to God.

As Christians, when we invest in someone, I think that is one of our greatest strengths, giving our praise and admiration to the ones we love. But it only works when that devotion is rightly placed. In worshiping God, His arms are open wide to receive it. We are able and encouraged to worship Him vulnerably, passionately, and with an embarrassing amount of abandon. We never have to hold back our intense excitement to adore Him. He welcomes it!

So today, when a sad or grief laden thought enters your mind–turn to God and worship Him. A worshipful heart is a heart fertile to receive joy! My prayer is that, we would all have that today.

Because of your unfailing love, I can enter your house;
I will worship at your Temple with deepest awe. -Psalm 5:7

Letting Ourselves Be Loved…

twohearts

Hello Brave Ones! I have a story to tell you…a tale about two cats…

So my neighbor and I both own cats. He has a big, sweet furry mountain of a cat named Sam, and I have a smaller, soft princess diva cat, named Sophia.

My neighbor and I stumbled upon this amazing idea that we could watch each other’s cats during our respective vacations. (AKA free cat sitting!) He’d check in on my kitty when I was out of town, and I would check on his while he was out of town.

Back in June I went to New York and he got the first go…I only got one text about my kitty when I was gone: “I don’t think your cat likes me. But you do have a really good guard kitty!” Yikes…not what a cat owner wants to hear. I think the world of Sophia, but as far as cats go, she is a little bit high maintenance. She is very picky about who she wants around and loving her has always taken extra work on my part. (It’s okay though because God has given me an endless amount of patience for her. )

Now this week, my neighbor left for his vacation to ride across Iowa on his bike. The first day I cautiously crept into his apartment and looked around for Sam. I had never interacted with Sam one-on-one and didn’t know if he’d be receptive to strangers. I found him hiding under the bathroom sink and reached my hand in to let him sniff me. He did so and then proceeded to rub his head against my fingers.

He’s been very affectionate so far and on this third day I decided to pull him out of the cupboard and settle him into my lap. He purred and purred and purred–so happy to have someone warm to hold him.

Besides me idly considering stealing my neighbor’s cat, this reminded me about something very important that I see with both men and women…Sometimes we are afraid to let someone love us.

My dear Sophia, who I care for very much, is a bit of a fraidy cat. No, it’s okay–I know this. She wouldn’t let my neighbor give her cuddles while I was gone so I know she ended up being extra lonely the five days I was out of town. Now Sam on the other hand, has let down his guard and even though I’m not his person, he’s trusted me to love him to the best of my ability.

How incredibly different would our lives be if we let others in and let them love us when we need them. How incredibly different would our lives be if we let God love us like He says He does? Have you ever struggled with allowing someone to love you? Or do you have someone in your life who has a hard time letting you love them?

Let us never be afraid to let ourselves be loved!