Saturday, January 28, 2012

Too Soon

The average person gets around 36 million minutes on this earth. Thats 36 million minutes to love, to hurt, to try, to fail, to hate, to waste, to give, to take, to stress, to rest, to laugh, to cry, to fear, to trust... to be... That's the average person. Not everyone is average. And we do not get to know if we will be average.
For some, that time is split in half, for some a quarter, and yet for some, they get even longer. There has to be a rhyme or a reason for that. There has to be.

We are one out of billions of people. In the big picture, we aren't special.. To most of the world I am no one. But in my world, the people in it are what makes it go round. So why not give everything I have? Why not love with my whole heart? Why not laugh absolutely every chance I get? Why not be passionate about what I do? People are not perfect, so sometimes I will get hurt.. but living in fear of hurt is not actually living..After all, not one of those 36 million minutes are promised to us.

Leaving a legacy won't be about how much stuff I have or accolades. It will be about who I loved, how I loved and what I have given and done for others.

If the worst things people say about me is that I cared, loved or laughed too much.. Is that really the worst thing?

I actually wrote this post about a month ago.. when a couple of young people in the community I grew up in were suddenly killed in a car accident.. shortly after, my friend lost her mother..

and just days ago, a friend I went to college with was killed while serving in the military in Afghanistan. We were freshmen in college together. He was my age.
He is a hero. He left a legacy and will be remembered forever. His impact on the world was a big one.
It's hard to believe that he's up with Jesus right now.. and that the next time I see him won't be at a homecoming at Evangel.. but in Heaven.... Death is inevitable. It is bound to happen. It's just hard when it seems far too soon.

Sunday, October 16, 2011


To influence or impel:

I ran a half marathon today having trained little to none. I'm a solo runner so I'm used to my runs being me and the path before me. Running with others has it's positives and negatives. There is discouragement when people pass you but there is also motivation to do better.

13.1 miles is a long way and my 13.1 miles gave plenty of time and space to go through different emotions and ups and downs just in that run. During the beginning of the race, I was getting pretty bad shin splints which are, needless to say, painful. I decided to run through them hoping they would just go away.. and about mile 4 they did. But in that time, there were runners before me who don't know it but were motivation and inspiration for me to keep running.

I've decided that the races I run are going to be for my little brother who is currently beating Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. He's in remission and less than a year shy of being through with treatment. I wear my "My Brother is My Hero" t-shirt and I head on my way. Well- those runners in front of me were also running for someone. One man's shirt said on the back, "Running for my wife. Cancer survivor." I teared up having knowledge of the difficulties that cancer brings to a family. This man's inspiration was his wife.. And in that moment, they were both what inspired me to keep running.
About a mile later, a lady was running in front of me and on the back of her shirt it said, "I'm running because my mom couldn't." Now, I don't know her story or her mom's story, but this woman's mother impelled her to take action. They were the reason in that moment that I kept going.

I am fortunate enough that my little brother could meet me at the finish line. I knew he'd be there.. so I kept running.

About half way through the run (that'd be about 6.5 miles in) there was a couple in front of me wearing matching shirts with the scripture, Hebrews 12:1-2 "And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God."
We run with perseverance and don't give up. We fix our eyes on the Author of life.. the giver of each breath and we keep running.

The last mile of the race was tough. I was tired, sore and it felt like every step was like lifting bricks. A woman ran up from behind me and thanked me for letting her pace with me. She talked with me for a bit and said, "Don't think about your pain. We're almost there. You got this!"

These people do not know me and I do not know them. But each one of them affected my life today. Each one of them inspired me to keep going. It just makes you realize that really.. we can't do much on our own. That stepping outside of ourselves to say or do something for someone else has so much impact. Those people don't know they were what compelled me in those moments.. but they did none the less and I finished every last step of 13.1 miles!! Next.. is the real deal! 26.2

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Maybe It's Not So Great.

During a conversation with a great friend recently, I was spouting off about my views on God's call on my own life. I talked about how I feel that God put desires in my heart which he allowed me to pursue and has opened doors so that I could use them. I talked about how I had gone to one of my professor's in college my senior year expressing anxiety about my unknown future and how he said to me, "Alicia, I don't think God cares what you do so long as you are serving Him and serving others." I remember I was so offended at the time because I had thought I had this great purpose and reason to live.. and when he said that it took me for a loop. But I have found that he was right.
My friend and I (mostly me..I talk too much) talked about how some people have specific callings and some people make bigger impacts than others. I think about all those army's in the old testament. Thousands of people, yet, we only know the leader's name. Then my friend says, "I believe some of us have defining moments. Like Esther. Her life's purpose was served in a moment." What a great perspective, I thought. We know little about Esther's life before she was chosen to go before the king, and little after. But an entire book of the bible was written detailing that moment she spoke out and ultimately saved an entire people group. That was her defining moment, and one of greatness that God had planned for her. He made her beautiful for that very moment.
There is not one answer or one way that God uses people. And there is not one specific way that is the best. Whether it be many moments or one moment, God does what he wants.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Antonyms 1. love.

I was filling out a health questionare today that required me to list medical history of my family. I hated that I had to check the cancer box.. and list my brother on the line. I thought about how for every health paper he'll ever to fill out for the rest of his life he'll have to check that box. I don't think I ever knew how much I could hate something but watching for two years as Graham has gone in and out of the hospital and watching him suffer for weeks while the doctors were unable to bring relief to his pain, this has made me hate cancer.

I'll never understand why he has had to go through this. I will always have a place in me that will hate cancer. There is simply just no reason for it at all.

With that said, I couldn't be more grateful for God's protection on his life and I couldn't be more thankful for the research they have made in science in curing cancer because I couldn't imagine my life without my little brother in it.

My brother graduates high school in a couple of weeks. Just another step toward God showing Himself victorious in his life. There is nothing greater than the sovereignty of my Savior and His ability to work things out for the good of those who love Him.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Faith is my Middle Name?

I remember telling someone when I was about 11 years old that my favorite scripture verse was Matthew 25:35-40. I remember it so vividly because the speaker at a youth service asked the audience what their favorite passage was and I raised my hand. He called on me and I stumbled over the words to the verses as my memory verse skills were below par (I ended up getting cut off by the speaker.) It was kind of embarrassing... But- thats not my point.
This passage talks about feeding the hungry and clothing them. It talks about taking care of the sick and visiting people in prison. It's a call from Jesus to treat others as if they were Him. Ironic now how my current job involves doing all of the above. In fact, every day I talk to people in jail and give them resources to food, clothing, health care, housing and the list goes on. It seems like I have never been closer to doing what Jesus asked us to do in that scripture... Yet- somehow I feel so far away from the person I have spent my whole life so desperately trying to imitate. I am doing what He called me to do but something really big seems to be missing.
I was reminded in church today what it takes to receive the Kingdom of God.. It takes becoming like a little child...(Luke 18) I remember much of my childhood and growing up believing with no doubt that Jesus loved me. I asked Him into my heart and I remember so shamelessly sharing with other kids my age just how much He loved them too. I trusted because I had no reason to doubt. I believed because I knew no different...
Well- times have changed. I've grown up under countless Christian leaders who have fallen into sin. I have had "spiritual" people chew me up and spit me out. I have developed this ability to think things through and question everything to the very core. I have been to numerous churches where judgment and condemnation seem to linger from the platform to the pews. My relationship with God has come under scrutiny as if it involved anyone else. I have tried and failed so many times I've lost my ability to believe that God will pick me up...again.
Everything I used to say "I believe" is now separated by my "want" for it. This stage of my life has proved to be difficult and frustrating yet the world keeps spinning and I wake up everyday with an open opportunity to love as Jesus did--only something so very big seems to be vacant through it all.

Monday, April 5, 2010

I haven't been this disappointed/angry/sad/hurt in a while.
I have forgotten how to deal with it.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

I'm Learning

I'm learning...
that things are not going to be handed to me on a silver platter.
that no matter what happens to me in this life that I have a family that will always love me.
that thinking I have life figured out doesn't exactly qualify that as being true.
I'm learning to enjoy the simple things in life and not get caught up in the unnecessary ones.
I'm learning to let God fill those places in me that there may be lack.
I'm learning to praise God no matter what, who, when or where.