Truth: She will Save your Life

I like to think that if tomorrow I suddenly stopped breathing and fell over dead, somehow the world would stop spinning. Just for a moment. The foundation of the earth would tremble, just slightly, just a little, because I was gone. That if I died, people would cry, people would grieve, people would miss me everyday. And when I’m gone, I would leave behind a emptiness in people’s lives that can only be filled my laughter, my voice, my smile.

I like to imagine that me, little ol’me, actually matters to the world. That my tiny soul weaving in and out of crowds of 6 billion people, is actually significant to the ebb & flow of the world’s tide.

The rock-hard, heart-hitting truth is I will not make the world stop spinning. The world will not notice or care when my soul no longer roams this earth. My once beating heart, will be replaced by the thousands of newly beating hearts born into the world each day.

We are all desperate for some sort of significance, starving for some sense of worth. We are so hungry for value and we look for it in all the wrong places. In the end, it does not come from the things we accomplished or achieved or gained. If we die with everything in the world but have not loved another, have not invested in other people, poured out our hearts in the things that matter, what have we done with our lives?

Without love we are nothing but an element eroding on the surface of the earth, dust in the wind, clouds bouncing in the sky.

My life may not be essential to the foundation of the earth but if I love & invest in one person, maybe there will be someone who’s world will shake when I depart. Even if it is just one individual. Even if just one heart has trouble beating because I’m no longer here. I want to make myself count to just one person. In the end that’s all that matters. We don’t need to matter to the world, we simply need to matter to a few special, close to our heart people. 

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Today I find myself sick to my stomach full of lies from a world that does not care.

My heart infested, my mind toxic. Believing that my worth comes from people. Believing that my single-relationship status is a reflection of who I am. Believing that God isn’t really worthy of my trust. Believing that somehow I ought to be in control of making things happen & responsible for the salvation of people’s souls.

The lies have got my heart all tangled up in a giant knot of insecurity, worthlessness, doubt and fear. & it is not conducive to your life to live with you heart stuck in a knot.

All our thoughts of: I’m ugly. I’m worthless. No one will ever love me. God can’t be trusted. I must do this on my own. I don’t need grace. We hear these things so often. They become so ingrained in us, that we mistake them for what they truly are. False. Evil. Toxic. LIES.

Adolf Hitler’s words ring true: If you tell a big enough lie and tell it frequently enough, it will be believed.

Fed these lies over and over again, day in and day out, it is no surprise that we begin to fall for them. The crux of their façade tearing into us syllable by syllable, letter by letter. We believe them and before we can see the gleaning silver of their double edged sword and run fast in the other direction, they invade our veins. No longer a mere thought floating around our head but a cold, potent, fact. At worst, they become our mantra- the melody that plays it’s way through our head, guiding our decisions and ultimately eroding our soul.

It sounds dramatic perhaps but I warn you: Lies, they are dangerous- they infect & destroy all things good and beautiful. They distort your perception of the world, God and yourself. Leaving you broken & confused & feeling like nothing but damaged goods.

You try to combat these lies & the internal emptiness they create by filling your life with more. More people. More activities. More achievements. More opportunities. More exercise. More fun-filled Friday nights. More parties with people you’ve never met. But more is not enough. Your efforts just turn into one large pile stacked high with years of trying & striving & attempting & searching but never finding peace & satisfaction & joy. Where does it end?

As people have spoken into my life, I want to tell you, I need you to hear me:
It must end. You must be brave and say no more, not today, not ever. You cannot keep believing this mantra of lies that names you worthless & invaluable & undesirable.

But, dear, I can’t do it for you. It must be you. It must be you to tell those thoughts- all the ones you have believed so deeply for so long- tell them they are garbage & false & label them what they really are: Lies.

I know it isn’t easy. You’ve been programmed your whole life to believe them. Killing these thoughts, it feels like you are killing part of your self. It’s confusing. It’s painful. It’s scary. But without struggle, we will never triumph.

Start by identifying. Declare that what you once saw as truth & fact are actually damaging, dangerous and false.

Next, clothe yourself with rock-solid and beautiful truth. Go find Truth. Chase after her. Pursue her. Give up everything you have to get her. Run up the steps of her house, knock fiercely. Hug her tightly, apologize for neglecting her and tell her how much you have missed her. Invite her to come back and beg her to never leave your side again. Because Truth can save a life. It can bring healing to all the pain caused by the bitter things you believed about yourself and the world. It can redeem the hearts trained to know nothing else but falling short & never ever, being anything close to enough.

Because I dream of seeing a generation set free from lies. I long to see a people who walk in bold step with the Lord, covered by his truth & drowning in his grace. I promise you, Truth, she will save your life. Cherish her & seek after her always.

love, mikayla

To My Best Friend

I’ve been working on this post for weeks, my heart softening and turning. These words I type are the proclamation of the work being done inside me.

You need to know. Here it is:
I understand now. I get it, finally. Not just with the words of my mouth but in my heart, I understand.

It took some time, away from the computer screen & people talking. Bathing in the silence of me, our friendship and all that has taken place in these last months. I curled up in the corner of the airport, my arms hugging tightly around my knees, watching the endless waves of people walk past me. It seems to be that often it takes going away from the place that you’ve always known, away from the town & people that have shaped you, to really understand some things.

We boarded that air plane, and I found my seat located right in the middle of two over-sized woman, squished between them to the point of restricted movement. There was no comfortable way to sleep and I neglected to bring my phone or any other form of entertainment, so I resorted to a long 5 hour stare down with the back of the seat in front of me.

Thinking, contemplating, wondering. My mind going over and over all the events & emotions of the last couple months.

And right there, in the middle of the plane, between the two ladies, tears rolled down my face. The strangled tears soon turned to sobs, luckily my hysterical state was unbeknownst to the ladies beside me who were lost in their own world of sleep and ear-bud music. All this because I saw how much I had hurt you. & I realized how much I have hurt others. The realization physically ached, twisting my inside heart chords together. I never knew that little ol’me had the power to actually hurt people, I had thought who am I that my actions & words really affect people? But with so much distance between me and God, mingled with harboured judgements and bitterness, clouded by selfishness- I neglected the people that I should have been loving most dearly.

And the story goes like this, what will become part of our story- In your time of utmost hard & struggle, (Esther’s For Such a Time as Time), I abandoned you. Instead of care, I showed a disregard to you and what you were going through. Instead of praying for you, I resisted all conversation with God. Instead of wading through the silence with you, I rushed to fill the space with selfish words.

You must know the regret that I have. How I wish I could have been your “hero” during that time. The person who loved you & encouraged you & when glancing back you’d say, I don’t think I would have survived that without you.

But more than anything, it’s very humbling to realize that I was undoubtedly not that person. I was no hero, no great friend, no glamorous Christian. And the thing is, I could never be there for you completely if I am not doing it through the wisdom & patience & love of Christ. Without a constant returning to His word, clinging to feeble words offered in prayer and seeking His face always, how can we ever love people right?

You asked me if I thought my careless attitude was a result of the status of my faith during that time, and I dismissed the question: as if my neglect was rooted in that, as if that was the problem. Oh but you were so right. I was frustrated with God, I hardly wanted anything to do with prayer and that red-leather book- and as a result my heart was cold & careless, caught up in wanting to have fun & enjoy the moments. Hard hearts never accomplish marvellous things.

I have come to see that compassion is not one of my top 5 shining qualities. Goodness, I don’t think it would even make the top 10. I wish, and I have prayed many times, Lord grant me compassion. Let me see the struggle & the hurt and be compelled to to move. Let me be compelled to care, and feel their pain like its my own. When your best friend’s dad dies, you don’t offer words of judgement & malice. You don’t talk their ear off about your petty problems, while their eyes sit before you vacant of joy. Their green colour, starving for hope, desperate for answers.

All our jagged words exchanged. The conversations where we cracked our hearts open and exposed ourselves raw and real. Admissions of hurt and mistakes came tumbling out. Emotions got in the way of handling our words with care and love, instead malice and bitterness coated our words.

I know it’s not enough to say I’m sorry but it’s something. I’m sorry I wasn’t there when you needed someone. I’m sorry I’ve judged you. I’m sorry I’ve treated you with contempt.

But I hope you remember these words: Brothers (and sisters) they may fight, but brothers (and sisters), they work it out.

And we have fought to redeem our friendship. And God has shown us His grace and we are stronger because of all this messiness of the last couple months.

———–

I have learned that when someone you love is in the middle of a hurricane, what you do is: you stay. You pray. You care. You ask. You listen. You love them no matter what.

In the end, it is not about being a hero or receiving praise because you are *the world’s greatest friend.* It’s about being there, 100% committed to exemplifying that quiet love. The knock, your friend answers the door confused because you didn’t call before coming. You offer a hug and step in the door with a box of chocolate in one hand and a movie in the other. The answering of the phone at quarter past 12:00, just because they need a listening ear and someone who cares. The prayers you whisper before bed, begging God to bring healing and grant comfort to your friend. The hours spent searching the bible, attempting to learn how best to love a friend who is wading through grief.

It’s all about the small things. The gentle, patient actions of intentional care and love. It’s doing the things that manifest the love of Christ, even if other’s don’t see it, you still do them because God has given us a call to love. To stick with our brothers and sisters through thick and thin, because joy and friendship is worth fighting for.

love, mikayla

I really hope you read this because I wrote it for you. It is what I have learned, and foremost, it is an apology in how I know how to do it best, in words pieced together on a screen.