Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Time to Choose...Again

You know those mornings where you just wake up early for no reason and can't go back to sleep? Yup, that's me this morning. I have no reason to be awake right now. But here I am, I've been awake for almost an hour and would still (almost) rather be asleep. Except that God is reminding me of some things.

He's reminding me that our relationship was not a one time decision. He's telling me, once again, that I have to choose him every day, usually multiple times. TV or prayer? Angry Birds or Bible? Time to choose.

He's reminding me that there are very few people that choose the way of life because it is narrow. His specific example was that of a healthy and active life versus a destructive and sedentary one. Too few people choose life.  Go for a walk or order a pizza? Eating that cookie or eating that apple? Time to choose.

He's reminding me that his mercy is new every morning. That yesterday is done so I cannot let those choices dictate today's. He told me to remember that tomorrow has not yet happened and so I cannot let potential bad and wrong choices weigh on me. Today is a new day and because of his strength I can make better choices.

He's reminding me that he still loves me and that I CAN and I WILL have the life he has shown me I can have, if I remain in him.

I am not unique. That life you imagine, you can have it. He has promised good to his people. So let's choose life, again.

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Thoughts on Singlness

I am 28. I am single wiith no hope of change in sight. And I am good with that. And I am also not good with that. I am writing this because I think there is a stigma in regards to talking openly about my feelings towards being single. Maybe not everywhere and with everyone, but it is there. Or maybe I put it out there... The thing is, I don't know. I don't know if "my guy" is out there. I don't know if I'll lead a single life until death. I don't know if I'll meet him tomorrow.

What I do know is that these questions are almost always on my mind. I mean, I live my life and am pretty stinking busy most of the time. But, those questions are there on the regular. They don't generally get the steering wheel. Most of the time. There are good days (the ones where being single is awesome and I wouldn't have it any other way) and bad days (the ones where I am convinced I am going to die alone and be eaten by my cats (and the fact that I even have cats is just another sign of how lonely I was since I am allergic and not overly fond of cats to begin with...) only to be found by my land lord weeks later because I am over due on my rent) and there also just days.

Those days, the days that are just days, might be my favorite. Those are the days where I am not defining my self or being defined by society as good or bad based on my ever unchanging relationship status. The days when I am just me, Kimi. I definitely like those days. Those days the question of single or taken don't come to mind. On those days I get to be human. One of 6 billion other humans who are alive. I like those because those are the days when I remember how truly blessed and happy I am. How safe. How full and good my life is.

They don't last though. The "just" days. The sun sets and rises and the day changes. But not the taboo-ness of talking about how it feels to be single, that sticks like a wad of gum in hair. So, I am going to say it. There is nothing wrong with wanting to be in a relationship and admitting it (I can say this because I am a (reasonbly) mature and well-rounded adult who more or less has her crap together) and there is nothing wrong with not wanting a relationship either. Let's live life as we have it make the most of it. Because while we can't control our relationship status, we can control how well we live the life we have. So go, do, be.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Fire quenchers, Pride, and Stupidity

I've been trying to figure out how to tell this story for awhile. I even started a draft that was completely different than what you are reading now. Mostly, I believe, it's because I didn't know what wall was brought down through the following story; probably due to the hardest of my own heart. Now, two years after the fact, I believe I've got it.

For those of you who don't know, I have college degree in Human Services. I had drifted through my early 20's and finally decided that I would never be or do anything without a college education. Getting that degree became my lifeline, my identifier, my hope and my salvation. I was one of the very first people in my family, extended and immediate, to graduate with a bachelors.

Looking back, I never knew how much weight I was placing in the relative weightless piece of paper. But it was a mountain in my life. A bolder. Getting that document was the only thing I had going for me. Or so I believed.

As an academic, or maybe it was just my personality, I was never wrong. I could not and would not be made a fool. If someone was smarter than me I simply ignored them (side note, I'm really not that smart, so I ignored a lot of people!) or found myself getting infuriated. I was cynical. Above all else, I had to be right and I would not be proved wrong.

Stupid me! This attitude quenched (stopped me from hearing him and so stopping me from obeying his direction) God's potential fire in my life. True, there were many other things woven into the affective fire-blanket over my spiritual life, but an unwillingness to be shown wrong stopped Him in my life and will do the same in yours.

I am so thankful that, by His grace alone, this attitude collapsed! But because of my utter stupidity, it almost took me out with it.

I had one semester left when I met God. Just one. Sixteen more weeks. January to May. You know the saying "the bigger they are, the harder they fall?" Yup. It's true. I became so eager to be where I am now that I almost dropped out! What a mistake that would have been. Nor do I believe that was what God really wanted me to do. As eager as I became to leave the degree behind, there were a lot of tears leading up to that point. Basically, God was opening my eyes to how much esteem and value I had placed in a worldly system as opposed to His. 

My point in all of this rambling? I've learned that, firstly, my worth and identity can only be found in him. Secondly, no matter how good and right a thing may seem, it is only ever a tool. Third, I had, and still have some, attitudes and thoughts that quench his ability to work in and through me.

What are some fire quenchers in your life? Seek him, find out what they are, and get them out! I promise you, letting him consume you will be the best thing you ever do. 

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

"Part 2"

This post was supposed to be up last week so I apologize for the delay. But, here it is!

My Thursday night in December of 2012 was exactly how I described it in my last post: ho-hummery sameness. Little did I know that 3 hours away there were people praying for me. Little did I know that my life, by the end of that week, was going to take an aburpt and drastic shift in direction and purpose; I was actually going to get some!

There I was, in my car, heading home from work, driving the same route I always took, going in circles in my mind about the same problems that had no solution. I had zero expectation for anything to change. The image that comes to mind now is a hamster in a wheel. I wasn't going anywhere but didn't know what else to do. So I just kept spinning that wheel. And spinning it. And spinning it. And you know what else? Spinning it. And then BAM!! All of a sudden something came to mind (and while I wish remember what it was, I don't think it's all that important) that I knew I needed to pray about and I did. Remember in the post before this one (http://asilive.blogspot.com/2015/01/3-years-is-way-too-long.html) I said that I hadn't prayed in months because there was a tangible wall up? Just as tangibly, and incredibly unexpectedly, it was gone. I wish I was a more seasoned writer so that I could bring you to this place in my memory... I will try to help you see and feel how it felt. Reader, imagine that you've been in a cage. No, not a cage. A dungeon. All around you there is thick darkness and even though you can't see the walls that surround you, you can feel them. There is little air and what is there is thin and stale. You don't know how you got there or how long you've been captive, you know only that you're not going to get out. Now imagine that the walls suddenly drop. You still don't know where you are or how you got there, but you've got something. You've got hope. Maybe it's only a small flicker, but it's there.  And that little flicker is enough for you to reach out.

I need to introduce someone. There is this woman, this fireball, this passionate, crazy, unbelievably loving woman named Kerre who has impacted me in ways too deep for words. We met in college, she, and her husband Kellen, were my dorm directors my first 2.5ish years years of college. After they moved to Kansas City in February-March of my junior year, we stayed in contact (which is a miracle in and of itself, I'm a terrible communicator!). I don't know how I knew that she had been praying for me but I did and so she was the one I text.

"Were you praying for me tonight?" I asked.

I get a phone call the next day.

"Why? What happened?" Kerre.

I explained.

"We've started going to this new church and tonight was the corporate prayer night. While I wasn't praying for you specifically, we were praying for people in our spheres of influence to be open to God."


"You've got to be here this weekend!" Kerre.

(I was working in an art gallery/coffee shop at the time and it was only me and my manager, whose kids had been sick that week and she thought she might be coming down with it. Also, I am not nearly as cool as working in an art gallery/coffee shop makes me sound.)

I explain all of this to Kerre.

"You're going to be here this weekend, just be packed and ready to go." Kerre.

"Sure, ok.(crazy lady)".

Come Saturday, I'm at work in the morning and just can't quite work up to texting my manager to find out if I was going to be able to leave. Finally, right around 12:00-12:30, I had figured out what I was going to say and I was typing up the message to send her when my cell rings. In my hand. My boss on the other end. It took me longer to answer then it should have because I was slightly in shock.

"Hello?" Me.

"Hey! Were you still wanting to go to Kansas City today?"


"Ok, cool. Well, just go ahead and leave at 2 and if I'm not there just put up the sign telling people to go through to coffee shop."

"Ok, thanks...!?"

Seriously?! Just go ahead and leave?! I was in shock. And not packed. And not really wanting to have to tell Kerre she was right! (Which, she is a lot, btw)

Two o'clock rolls around, put up the sign. Lock the door. Drive to my apartment. Pack in under 5 minutes (I have a witness!). Drive to Kansas City. Get into Kerre and Kellens car (they had it running and were waiting for me!) Drive to the church. Get out. Meet about a bazillion people. Watch these bazillion people worship like I had never seen anyone do before. Sit down at the end of worship, turn to Kerre and say,

"I guess I'm moving to Kansas City when I graduate."

Readers, a lot of you remember your first visit to our church. You remember the songs and the speaker and the first prayer warrior to pray for you at the end of service. I don't remember any of that. I remember feeling like I was home for the first time. I remember that I just knew moving to be a part of this church was right. There was no big bang moment for me. It was just right.

So, 5 months later, I moved. And I've never looked back or (at least seriously) looked around. It has been a guy wrenching almost 2 years. There has been so much that I've learned and I've grown so much I don't even recognize myself. But do you know who I am starting to recognize in myself? My savior. True, the glimpses are brief and can be pretty far apart, but they are there. I don't say this to put myself up on some pedestal or to draw attention to myself, I say it because it's true. It has nothing to do with me. You just read my story, I made bad choices. I'd turned away from God. But because of who he is, he drew me back to himself. There are so many people whom I know have prayed for me, and it's also because of your faithfulness that I am where I am. If you've prayed for me to find God, to live a good life, to be more, to do more, whatever, thank you. I cannot repay to you the debt that's owed. I can only stay the course; and through your prayers, the faithfulness of God, and my receptivity to his workings in me, I will. And now you'll get to come alongside me as I grow and learn and make mistakes and have triumphs and sorrows. But that is life. And I get to live it.

P.S. I apologize for any typos. My computer is acting up so I typed a lot of this on my phone 😳

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

3 years is way too long...

Wow. 3 years since my last post. Is there any possible way to catch up on EVERYTHING that's happened? I doubt it. So, I'll start with the biggies. I have graduated from college (yay me!), moved to Raytown, MO, and most importantly, I've found God. Mind you this is not the exact order...

Honestly, I don't know if I can even put into words what I have experienced, how I have changed, and what I have learned over the last 2 years into words. But I am going to try. Reader, this is my disclaimer: I am a Christian. I am directing this blog towards Christians. If you are not a Christian and read this, I pray that you will find hope in my words. But if anything I say offends you, remember that I am not directing this towards you. If you're a Christian and it offends, I promise you that was not my intention. My heart is to build you up, challenge you, and to help you grow. I have no other purpose in my life other than my brothers and sisters in the faith. You are my heart and soul and I need you.

Disclaimer written, I suggest you buckle up and take a deep breath because my story has been quite the ride to live. At least I think so.

I've been a Christian my whole life. I remember going to church on Sundays and potlucks and Sunday school and small groups. I remember summer camp with my youth group and all those crazy games. I remember "graduating" (I was homeschooled) high school and drifting away from God and church. I remember convincing myself that I didn't have to go to church or pray or read my bible to have a relationship with God. I remember coming to a point where I questioned his existence. I remember feeling crazy with the chaos in my mind and wondering if anyone else felt like this. And I remember the night it all started to turn around, the night I met God.

Hold on, spoilers ;)

Looking back now, I can see his hand of protection. His utter and complete unfailing faithfulness. There was so much more darkness knocking at my door than what I allowed in. Undoubtedly, he was covering me. I do doubt that that had too much to do with me and more to do with the people who love me who have faith. I never became a partyer or an alcoholic or promiscuous or anything like that, but there was deep darkness and depression beginning to crush me.

Remember that chaos in my mind I mentioned earlier? It was starting to get so bad that I was beginning to wonder if I maybe wasn't schizophrenic or something. I don't think I was. I just think that I had worn down my spiritual protective walls so much that the enemy and his forces were just right there. I mean, they were just right there... God is so good though. I never did anything harmful to myself to try and escape them, but maybe mostly because I didn't recognize them for what they were... I don't know. I just know that God had definitely placed me in some sort of protective bubble.

OK, I think you've got a decent idea of where I was spiritually on a Thursday night in December of 2012.  I had not prayed or opened my bible in months. Attended a church service? Ha! I kid you not, any time I had even thought about praying there was a wall up so tangible I could practically feel it. You can imagine my surprise when, out of nowhere, it was gone. To me, it was just another night of sameness. Another night of whatever, ho-hummery. But God had something else in mind. I do not doubt that he has been calling me for a long time. I was just finally able to hear him.

What happened next? Be looking for my next blog! I can hardly wait to tell you but I'll bet you're pretty tired of reading by now, huh? ;) I hope you'll be looking for it!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Stupid, Silly Me

I've got something building up inside of me

Screaming for release

Held these words inside for so long; time to set them free

I desired more than I could have; it slipped away again

Held too tight, too close

You ask if I'm alone again?

I never was 

I take what I think is mine and that's what makes me ill

That's what makes me ache inside

The pattern of my rebellion is the root of all my grief

What power I think have

Prove myself a fool again; simple, simple me

I hope this time I've finally learned

Twenty-five years in the making, wonder if I even can

You broke the chains, but I like them where they are

Help me set them down, never to reclaim

Wednesday, October 17, 2012


I was doing an assignment for Senior Seminar, going through Rick Warren's "The Purpose Driven Life", and he asked what we think the metaphor our life is. The image that popped into my head was that of valley of wild flowers after a rain storm. Here is what I got out of that.

My life is beautiful, sometimes breathtakingly so. There is no doubt that there have been times, and there will undoubtedly be again, where I have experienced pain that could shatter everything I value about myself (which is sometimes God's way of revealing truth to us, particularly us stubborn types). But does stepping, or even falling face first, into a mud puddle lessen the beauty I am surrounded by? Not in the least. Sure, it can, and does, cause me to focus on that pain for a moment, but the Lord's wonders are still there.

These wonders can be enjoyed while in the midst of them, or from the rim of the valley, it doesn't matter. All that matters is that I see them. Better yet, all that matters is that I can dance in those mud puddles and in midst of the glory of God.