Sunday, December 26, 2010

seemed kind of significant.

well, i just checked up on the ol' blog for kicks and turns out the last post (and only post) was EXACTLY a year ago. well, pretty much. seemed kind of significant. so, here i am. one year later. my hair is long again, my heart has been to hurtville and back, (it's good for you) a handful of new melodies have come, a pocket full of goals and dreams have grown and become more real, and i've stumbled upon some incredible, incredible lifelong friends, new and old. it happened in a blink, didn't it?

this year has been quite a life changing one. i suppose they all are -- but this one has included my first time to move away from home, alone. in early june, i moved to nashville for the summer, into a house of a couple of strangers who weren't strange at all. they were welcoming and generous and kind. i looked up to meet friends around the neighborhood who i'd spend every waking second with, all summer long. we're talking some of the most incredible people i've ever met. some of the most encouraging, lively, hopeful, and exciting people i've ever met. i recorded, co-wrote, wrote alone, played little shows, went to shows, went to church, just went, in general. everywhere i went, there somebody was. somebody who knew somebody who knew somebody who knew me. people are so incredible. every single one of them.

seriously, how incredible.

i wish i always remembered how incredible everybody is.
you and i each have our own world of wonder. no one has exactly what you've got and no one has exactly what i've got.
how completely thrilling and liberating to understand that!
lately i've been completely wearing myself out with measuring myself up against everybody else. i don't realize im doing it at first. it's miserable. have you done it? compared everything you have, every ability to someone else's? it gets you no where, and it's so easy to do. tricking yourself into thinking you have to prove yourself as excellent, good, worthy of love and attention? oh my goodness it's exhausting.

and then, when im tired and silent, finally, some thread of grace sews its way into my inmost being and reminds me of the simplest truth that i so easily forget : there is nothing i could ever do to earn love. to be worthy of it. there is no use in trying to prove myself. there is no use because i don't have to prove myself at all. there is no use, because on day 1 i was loved. without doing a single thing. without writing any song, without treating anyone with any small bit of kindness, without doing anything excellent, without encouraging anybody, without being intelligent, without being beautiful. i was loved on the first day of my life because i was God's creation. i am loved today because i am His. and i will be loved on the last day of my life because i will still be His. when the fact that God loved me and loves me defines who i am rather than any other measure of anybody else's attention for me, life gets easier. joy gets easier. i mean really. what is the the thing you are good at? what's your thing? what's the thing you use to make you feel like you're great? take it away, do you still think you're great? because you are. it seems like a childish lesson, and it is. i didn't even know i was doing it. im a child, and i need this lesson over and over and over. ill need it when im 90.

so if by chance, you're trying to prove yourself by being good at something or by being beautiful or unique or intelligent or brave or witty or successful or likable-----stop. God made you and thought you were incredible on day 1. let that define you, not anything or anyone else. not how good your next EP is. (what?) not how good your grades are. not how people categorize you in their minds. not how many dates you go on. not how funny you are. you are incredible and worth saving. he saved you from boring. from comparison. from regret. from tallying up compliments. from measuring success. from wanting what somebody else has. don't make yourself miserable that way. i know you've heard it a thousand times, because i have too. God loves you. how cheap have we made that statement? how old has it become? it even sounds and looks cheesy, because it's been said so many times without realizing the weight of it. CHEESY. but it's not. it's the heart of the matter and it's the truth that has the power to change the way you and i live. it is new today and tomorrow and yesterday. there is no reason to fret. you have an entire empire of mystery and beauty within you, because you have the very spirit of God in you. that is AMAZING. and when you do the things you're good at as a response to realizing that you're already loved instead of trying to win the approval of the world, it changes people. it changes people, and it frees you from comparing yourself. this is why people are incredible. absolutely incredible.

this is why you are incredible.

ephesians 4:6 --one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.