Wednesday, October 27, 2010

The narrow path

One of my favorite poems EVER is "The Road Not Taken" by Robert Frost. I'm sure most of you have read it before, but I'm going to post it for you anyway:

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a yellow wood, and I -
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

This poem talks about how there are two paths in life: the one most people go down, and the "narrower" path which is overgrown and grassy because not many people take that path. Often times, we like to try out both paths in life, but we know we can't do that. So we come to the conclusion that we need to pick one. It's often easier to take the path everyone else has taken because you probably know more about it.

But most of the time, the right thing isn't easy. So you let out a sigh and head down the one that not many people have traveled. Sure, you have no idea what lies ahead, but you trust that you made the right decision by taking that path. (This was a very short analysis of the poem. If I would've spent more time on it, I would've given you more.)

Matthew 7:13-14 (ESV) says this:
"Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few."

Luke 12:34 (ESV):
"Strive to enter through the narrow door. For many, I tell you, will seek to enter and will not be able."

Psalm 16:11 (ESV):
"You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore."

John 14:6 (ESV):
"Jesus said to him, 'I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.'"

peace, love, and rockets.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Leaving it all

Lately I've been reading through Matthew, but I don't just mean reading over it. I've been really trying to study it more and God reveals something to me each time. That's one thing I love about God's Word. You can read it a million times over and still get something new out of every time (if you're willing, that is).

"Immediately they left the boat and their father, and they followed Jesus." Matthew 4:22 (NCV).
This is something God has laid on my heart recently. I think that when God calls us to do something, we should follow this example. (
Read v. 17-22 for the full story.) If God is telling you to go somewhere, go! If he's laying on your heart to talk to someone, do it! If God is commanding us to something, shouldn't we be obedient? I mean, our whole purpose in being here is to bring glory to our God. So what is God calling you to do?

peace, love, and rhetorical questions.

Monday, October 11, 2010

People, places, and things

Names you should probably remember (for I will be using them a lot):

- Michelle (loves Star Trek)
- Jordan (the tech guy)
- Gretchen (everyone's mom)
- Jesse & Anthony (aka "the twins")
- Jes (dating Aaron, loves Harry Potter)
- Aaron (dating Jes)
- Chris (smells amazing all the time)

After that night at Chipotle, I was invited to join them every Wednesday night at Parkside Panera for some fellowship and praise & worship; every Thursday night for Bible study at church; every Friday night at Jordan's for Bible study; every Saturday morning for flag football at Walter Fuller Park; and every Saturday night at church for the main shindig. Of course I went to everything I could, work permitting. I just wanted to be around these amazing people and their incredible love for the Lord. There was so much I was learning from them and about them, and I just wanted to be around them all the time. Their love is contagious.

I have loved spending time with all of these people, so much so that we've begun our own little traditions and the like. Every Tuesday night is now movie night at my house with Jes, Aaron, and Chris. Lately, we've been going through the Harry Potter movies. On random nights, a bunch of us will go watch the sunset or star gaze. Michelle and I got into going to see the sunrise over by the Skyway.

I've had the privilege of getting to know all of the people from Movement over the last month and a half. But even more so, I've been growing so much in the Lord.

For the last three months, I've been absolutely consistent in spending time with God every day; in fact, it's something I once dreaded, but now look forward to. He has been opening my eyes to amazing things I was too blind to see before.

You see, God is teaching me to trust Him and only Him; to look past my independence and rely solely on Him (Proverbs 3:5-6). He's teaching me how to be love (there's a reference here, but I can't remember it off the top of my head). He's teaching me how to live weak (2 Corinthians 12:9). He's teaching me to wait on Him (Isaiah 40:31). And I wouldn't have begun to learn any of this if I had stayed where I was.

God has been providing for me in my life in so many different ways, and what I love most is that I can't take any of the credit. No one can; it belongs to God. And I could get into so much more about some of the aforementioned things in this post, but I think it's too soon yet to post them.

One more thing: this is no mountaintop experience that I'm explaining. This is my love for God growing more and more each day and me rejoicing over how evident He has been in my life. Not that He wasn't before, I just wasn't looking.

peace, love, and nouns.

It all started when...

On Wednesday, September 8th, I ended my time at Feather Sound Community Church. I'm not gonna lie, it was a difficult decision, leaving behind everything I had known and grown up with. I literally spent my life in that place. But God was calling me elsewhere, so I went.

It wasn't but shortly after I had even pondered the decision to leave that Jason and Kristin approached me and talked to me about what God was calling them to do - plant a church - and what they wanted me to be a part of. We talked about it over Subway (because contrary to popular opinion, I like to eat fresh) and I told them I would be in prayer about it. Over the next few days/weeks I prayed about where it is God wanted me to go and was reading through the Old Testament in my devo time. Every part of Scripture I read, every message I heard was about being obedient to God and what He is commanding you to do in your life. I took that as a "Go!" from God. So I started attending the Movement Church; the church Jason and Kristin were planting.

I remember my first service there which was a week or two after my birthday: I had just gotten off work around 7:30 pm and I was able to sneak in for the last part of the service, still in my work clothes. Jason and Kristin were obviously there, along with Ben West and John & Gina Pask. What blew me away however was that as soon as church ended, people I didn't know just started coming over and introducing themselves to me. I'd never experienced that at church before. They genuinely cared that I was there and wanted to get to know me. There were a few people that stuck out to me, people that I had no idea were going to become amazing friends of mine in the near future.

Afterwards, people from the Movement were going to Chipotle for some food and invited me to join them. Initially, I declined. I was short on cash, and no one I knew was going to be there, so the introvert in me didn't want to have any part of that. I said my goodbyes and nice-to-meet-yous and went on my way back home. However, there was something inside me saying I needed to turn around. I started to make a U-turn, but then hesitated. "Kaeli, you don't have anything better to do. You're going," I convinced myself. So I ended up turning around and going to Chipotle. As soon as I walked in, people seemed to be excited about the fact that I decided to go and hang out with a bunch of strangers. And to be honest, I was too.

We sat outside and talked about anything and everything. Hair, tattoos, clothes, church, backgrounds, and cockroaches. I had a really good time. There was just something about them, something that made me want to come back. Maybe it was their lovingkindness, or their ability to include anyone into their family. Maybe it was their genuine and absolutely real love for Jesus Christ. Little did I know how much God would teach me through them and my leaving Feather Sound.

peace, love, and movement.