I Write Because…

Theoretically, I write because I have something worthwhile to say. Or at least I publish for that reason. I can write just for the sheer delight of piecing words together to mean something. But part of the joy in writing, for me, is to share it.

Of course, in order to write something worthwhile, you should probably know what you’re talking about, right?

And of late, I have discovered just exactly how much I don’t know. Part of growing is discovering how much you have yet to grow.

I look at myself and wonder what business I have writing anything to try to help others. Sweet stars, I can’t even help myself half the time. There is so much I have yet to figure out.

And then I hear a pastor in his sixties say, “I hate to break it to you, but I still don’t have it figured out!” So encouraging. 😉

I don’t have the training of a pastor. Just a very busy brain, a deep respect for God’s Word, and a passion for written communication.

All these thoughts bubble up within me, and I want to write them and share them here. But I don’t.

It’s not about the number of people who read. It’s about whether it makes a difference. And more to the point, what kind of difference it makes. What if I write something here that is patently wrong?

I’ve written some pretty strong stuff here in the past. I find myself much less confident of the accuracy of my perceptions these days.

Yet that word “perceptions” is key. When I write my thoughts here, I am sharing my perceptions. My point of view. Yes, I endeavor to align my perceptions with the Bible. I seek to match them with reality.

But the fact is, I’m sharing things as I see them, in the hopes that my perception will be a blessing to someone else. Either because it’s relatable or because it’s something new. But it’s not like I’m writing the Bible. Anyone who reads what I write can take it or leave it, weigh it against the Word and see how it holds up.

I am responsible to do my best, and it’s up to my reader to discern the Truth in what I write—or if Truth is lacking.

And when it comes down to it, I write because that’s what God has given me to do. I’m so afraid it sounds pompous to say that: “God called me to do this.”

But it’s just a job I’ve been given to do. Happens to be a fun job many times. Fun or not, it’s always fulfilling. Nothing like doing what you’re supposed to do for giving you that feeling of purpose.

So I shall endeavor to continue sharing the things that come into my life and grow me, encourage me, and change my perspective.

My goal is to encourage, uplift, and challenge my fellow creatures. To hopefully be an outlet for the Light.

To everyone who reads: thank you for valuing my words, at least enough to give them a try. I appreciate it so much. I hope you find something that blesses you.

And while we’re talking about what we’re supposed to be doing: Do have something you’ve been given to do that you find (or have found) difficult to embrace? Feel free to share in the comments if you feel comfortable, or click on the “Connect” tab and shoot me an email if you want to chat.

-Miss Darcy

No Identity? My Name Is…

Every Christmas (yes, I realize it’s April; calm down), my family watches It’s a Wonderful Life. Last year, a very familiar line struck me anew.

George Bailey and his guardian angel Clarence Oddbody are wandering around in the world that exists because George was never born. Although Clarence warned him of the current state of affairs, George just can’t get it — even when the two of them are thrown out of a bar that’s nothing like the almost homey bar George is used to.

Standing in the snow, utterly confused, George demands, “Well, if I wasn’t born, who am I?”

“You’re nobody,” Clarence replies. “You have no identity.”

And George replies, “What d’ya mean no identity? My name’s George Bailey.”

My name is…

Not, “I run the Building and Loan.” Not, “I’m a husband and father.” Not, “I’m a 4-F guy who couldn’t go fight with my brother in the war.”

Not even, “I’m breathing cold air into my lungs. I can feel my heartbeat. Of course I’m someone.”

No, the instinctive reply at being told he doesn’t exist is to cite his name.

Think about it. If someone came up to you and asked politely, “And who are you?” (or not so politely, “Who in blazes are you?”), how would you answer?

In movies, they come up with something smart. In real life, we give our name first.

“My name is Darcy.” Because my name somehow answers the question, “Who?”

Or simply, “I’m Darcy.”

I am” — speaking of the very essence of my being.

If you ask about me, I’ll tell you I’m an author, a soprano in my church choir, a Narnia enthusiast, oldest of three sisters, resident of such-and-such place. But if you ask who I am, I’ll give you my name.

See, I can describe myself many ways. What I do, how I look, what I love. Some things I have in common with others, some things are unique to me.

But no one thing is me. I’m all of them, and more — a soul created unique by God. There’s only one way to sum all that up.

I’m Darcy.

But why is it instinctive to hold our name as our identity?

A name change can even be referred to as “changing our identity.”

Sometimes we give ourselves names other than what our parents gave us. We might choose to go by a nickname, or give ourselves a pseudonym that also becomes our identity.

People may name their children (or themselves) based on what the words mean in their root language. My name means “dark” in the Irish. It’s also the name of a fortress in France.

Names may be a nod to other people who bore them. My name is a nod to a very proud, noble person who discovered nobility wasn’t worth much without humility.

Names may be chosen simply for the way they sound, or for other associations. My name is associated with classic literature.

Sometimes we don’t even like our names, but we still use them. Somehow it doesn’t feel right to try to change them, even use a middle name, because how could we be anyone other than what we’ve been called all our lives? I have a close friend who says this.

Names are an important matter to God.

He often named people and, in some cases, renamed them.

The most famous example is probably Abram, whose name meant “father.” That was a hint at his legacy, but not enough. God gave him the name Abraham — father of a multitude — so that his very name would testify to what God would do with his life.

But sometimes it isn’t about the name’s literal meaning.

Take the man Jabez, whose mother sorrowed when she bore him and so named him “grief.” Jabez went straight to the Lord with the problem of his name and begged God to bless him and keep him from evil, that grief and pain would not be the hallmarks of his life.

And God granted his request. He didn’t change Jabez’s name, but he changed the meaning of the name, as it were. The word still meant grief; but the name Jabez referred to a man God had blessed. In a very real sense, Jabez now means “blessed by God.”

You could say my name means “dark fortress.”

Can we picture Maleficent’s Forbidden Mountain?

Yeah, I’d rather not have my name mean that.

But a fortress is a stronghold, a place of safety, something that endures. I can dig into that. Dark can mean “mysterious” or “secret.” That sounds pretty cool.

More than that, if Darcy refers uniquely to me — writer, INTP, Christian, etc. — then, by simply living, I get to make my own meaning for the name.

Suppose I’m the first Darcy someone meets. Will they associate the name with kindness and understanding? With honesty and trustworthiness? With true Christ-following?

Will they smile when they hear the name?

(You know we all have those names we just don’t like because we once knew an incredible jerk by that name.)

So I perceived that nothing is better than that a man should rejoice in his own works, for that is his heritage. For who can bring him to see what will happen after him?

-Ecclesiates 3:22 NKJV (emphasis mine)

We tend to think of heritage as what we receive from those before us. And it is.

But heritage is also what we make of ourselves. For that is what we pass to those who will come after us.

In a very real way, we are our names.

Humans were created to name. God gave Adam the privilege of naming the animals, and of choosing what to call his wife.

We’ve been naming things ever since.

Which brings up the dark flip side to this name-equals-identity phenomenon.

We sometimes stick each other with names meant to devalue. And those names have the power to crush us.

Unless we fight them.

If we are told we’re worthless, or a failure, or like that horrible person no one likes, and we believe it, we will begin to act as if those names are ours. We will treat ourselves as worthless. We will expect to fail and stop trying to succeed. We will believe that no one likes us and be unable to trust anyone.

But if we tell ourselves the truth, call ourselves the names God gives us, we can overcome the false names.

God calls us sinners. But He also calls us beloved.

When we choose Him, He calls us redeemed. He also calls us His heirs.

He calls us warriors, ambassadors, chosen, His.

They’re descriptive names. And they matter.

More than that, the God of the universe knows your given name.

He pronounces it with a native accent, the way you do. He gives it meaning — it means you, who He created you to be.

He even knows the name He will give you if you overcome. (And that’s a whole ‘nother topic.)

But rest assured, He knows your name. His voice does not find it unfamiliar.

Maybe that’s why George Bailey’s using his name for evidence of existence feels so natural.

Because that’s how the Creator wired us.

Maybe there’s so much more to a name than we realize.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on whether or not a name matters! And, while you’re at it, what do you want to make your name mean?

–Miss Darcy

(Clip below of Disney expertly capturing this name-equals-identity phenomenon.)

 

Through Blood and Shame

At my church’s Good Friday service, they handed out twenty-eight penny nails for us to hold as we prayed, sang, and meditated on Jesus’ death on the cross.

As I held the cold metal in my hands until it warmed, I gripped it to feel the unbendable hardness. Poked the point against the inside of my wrist. Twisted it every conceivable way as a tactile connection to the Cross.
 
And I discovered how easily it slipped into the position of a pencil in my fingers.
 
It fascinated me.

For surely the nails wrote a message that day.

Before, at many other executions, they had written messages of despair and defeat, of agony and shame. But underneath all they usually said was a very quiet message that no one could see that day.

“Nothing is stronger than the King’s love.”

Love that will carry an undeserved cross. Love that will willingly stretch out upon it. Love that will scream in anguish, hang for hours gasping for breath, and still not back down from doing what must be done.
 
Even though many of the beneficiaries of this sacrifice will reject it.
 
It’s not a proud strength. Not showy, not even obvious. The Man was killed brutally, after all.
 
Yet a love that could walk steadily forward through blood and shame and pain to death, for the sake of the one beloved, cannot be anything but strong.
 
And that is the same love that holds me two millennia later. Me, Darcy Fornier, insignificant though I am by so many of my culture’s standards. That unconquerable love holds me.
 
I’m still meditating on it almost two weeks later. Because I need to know deep in my soul that if Jesus did THAT for me, I can trust Him with anything I face today.
 
May His powerful love enwrap us, my friends, and strengthen us to live this life well.
 

-Miss Darcy

Allowed to Take Comfort

I don’t know if it’s my personality.

I don’t know if it’s the writer in me, determined to experience any pain that comes my way because “all of life is research.”

I don’t know if it’s my desire to fully acknowledge painful things because ignoring them can create an unhealthy mental state.

But for some reason, I sometimes don’t allow myself to accept comfort.

And I’m not really talking about comfort from other people, although sometimes I just nod and smile and refuse to let their words sink into my soul, or even to ruminate in my mind.

Actually, I often find myself unwilling to take comfort from the deepest source I have—God’s Word.

If I take comfort, am I being fair to the honest questions of others—and myself?

If I take comfort, can I still deal with my painful emotions in a healthy way?

Most of all, if I take comfort, will I somehow sell short the Truth I need to learn through this?

But I’m learning that I’m allowed to take comfort.

When my brain is spinning with all these incredible, deep questions about theory meeting reality and I can’t quite seem to grasp the answers, I can take comfort in the One who knows every answer. Some of the answers I will find in time, and some I won’t discover until He tells me—either on this earth or when I see His face.

It’s okay. After all, I serve the God who commands the morning, and causes the dawn to know its place (Job 38:12).

When my heart is broken and floundering in pain, I can take comfort in knowing that my God has walked through every kind of pain there is—even death—and will walk with me through mine (Isaiah 43:2).

In my hardest suffering, I may even envy a stillborn child (Job 3:16), as long as I also remember that my Redeemer lives (Job 19:25).

And surely, when I turn to the Truth of the Word to find comfort, then the only Source of Truth—Jesus Christ—with not allow me to be misled.

He is the one whose wisdom set the courses of the stars (Job 38:31-33).

After all, what is comfort but hope and rest? And I am supposed to find hope and rest in Jesus.

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,

-1 Peter 1:3 NKJV (emphasis mine)

“Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

-Matthew 11:28 NKJV (emphasis mine)

Jesus Christ is my greatest comfort.

And, yes, I am allowed to accept His comfort without doing a disservice to either my emotions or my intellect. He offers a transcending comfort. It doesn’t remove the pain or the questions.

It’s simply stronger than they are.

-Miss Darcy

P.S. Anyone else noticed a similar phenomenon in your life, this inability to accept comfort and rest?

What We Really Want

If you’ve followed this blog for a while, you’ve probably seen me write about the power of God to transform a life—any life. No matter how far we’ve fallen. Or how far we haven’t fallen (or don’t think we’ve fallen).

The grace and mercy of God, His power to redeem, are limitless. (If you’re looking for proof, check out the lives of Peter and Paul.)

The thing is God doesn’t force His redemption on anyone. We have to choose it. Because if there’s no option to choose, there cannot be love, and God is the essence of true, powerful, life-altering love.

But when we choose God’s redemption, it’s not a one-time thing.

We choose first to be redeemed from sin and its eternal consequences.

Then we have to choose over and over (and over) to be delivered from the power of sin in our lives on this earth.

So no, I don’t doubt God’s power to transform a life. But I also have great faith in a human’s ability to wreck His work.

Because sometimes we don’t really want to be delivered.

Oh, sure, we say we want freedom from this sin that’s causing havoc in our lives. We say we want all the blessings God has to offer.

But maybe we don’t really, truly mean that.

Because sin has its attractive side. That’s why we fall into it in the first place.

  • We say we want deliverance from an explosive temper that hurts our family and friends. But the rush of power that anger affords—well, we like that feeling.
  • We say we want contentment in our season of life. But we don’t want to forgo our fantasies about “someday, when something we want will make our lives perfect.”
  • We say we want freedom from lust in our daily lives. But a little bit of pornography is so thrilling. And the sexy stuff in R-rated movies doesn’t even count as real pornography, right?
  • We say we want peace that passes understanding. But worrying and fretting about something offers a feeling of control, and how could we cope without that security?
  • We say we want good physical health (and why doesn’t God give it?). But we don’t want to deny ourselves the pleasure of eating whatever we want whenever we want it.

We say we want complete freedom in Christ. But we don’t really want to sacrifice any pleasures at all.

We’d rather lament our unwinnable battles and shame ourselves for our failures.

Believe me, I’ve been there. Still am there, to an extent. (You know I’m always preaching to myself on my weblog.)

We sin, we regret it, we castigate ourselves for being such wretched followers of Christ, and then when we’ve properly chastised ourselves, we allow ourselves to believe He forgives us.

And then we do the same thing again.

Because self-loathing is cheap.

Oh, sure it’s painful.

But not as painful as changing our behavior.

Changing will cost us.

Changing requires us to see our sin, even the pleasant parts, for what they are.

Changing requires us to deny what our flesh wants in favor of what Christ wants.

Changing requires us to stop justifying ourselves and start believing what God says.

Changing requires us to “put off the old man and put on the new” (Colossians 3:9-10). And that’s hard. Really hard

Of course we’ll never accomplish that without God’s Holy Spirit working in us. But the Holy Spirit won’t accomplish it without our participation, either.

So what do we really want? The abundant life Christ offers? Or the temporary enjoyments of our folly and sin?

Maybe we need to do some soul-searching. (Frankly, I hate self-analysis, but it’s a very necessary thing.) Maybe we need to find out what we really want. And whether what we really want needs to change.

-Miss Darcy

Unprofitable Servants

I read the book of Luke back in December. And I’m still clinging to one verse. I say it to myself almost every day. I think it’s going to be my verse for the year.

Jesus’ disciples have just said to him, “Increase our faith.” And He starts by telling them that faith the size of a mustard seed can uproot a mulberry tree and plant it in the sea.

Then He goes on with a little story about a servant who works all day in the fields, comes in, and still has to prepare and serve supper to his master before he can eat himself. And does the servant receive any thanks? No. He’s just doing his job, and why should he get thanked for doing what was his to do? 

Then Jesus says:

“So likewise you, when you  have done all those things which you are commanded, say, ‘We are unprofitable servants. We have done what was our duty to do.'”

-Luke 17:10 NKJV

I find enormous comfort in those words.

I don’t have to do anything grand and wonderful. I don’t need a spotlight. I don’t have to be the smartest, or best, or most magnificent anything.

Every day, I just get up and do the things that I am commanded.

  • Servanthood takes the pressure off. I don’t have to call the shots or plot great strategies. I just have to listen to what part I play in the plans.
  • I’m not responsible for how things turn out. If I do what I’m told, the outcome’s not my fault. The result of my dutiful performance is His business.
  • If I do the things I’m commanded, I don’t have to worry if I’m doing enough or not doing enough–just follow the instructions. There’s a sweet accomplishment and rest when I can simply do my duty.
  • If my Master commands me to do something, He will also equip me to do it. I don’t have to worry about whether I’m “able” to do something. I have His resources at my disposal.
  • And of course I’m unprofitable. Jesus spent His own blood to redeem me. No amount of service could ever in a million billion years repay what He spent, let alone more. So I don’t have to try.

Yes, I believe God sometimes gives us “large” things as part of our duty. But what’s big for me might not even look big to you. And that’s fine. It’s not about us.

It’s about getting the King’s work done.

When I love my family and friends (or strangers), when I wash the dishes, when I write another scene for a story, when I volunteer as a “gopher” at church, when I take vitamins to keep my body in good order, when I give my best effort at choir practice, when I read my Bible, when I pray for a friend’s prayer request on Facebook, do I get thanked? Of course not. Why should I?

But even so, these little things matter.

The English Standard Version, which I’m reading this year for the first time, calls us “unworthy servants” in Luke 17:10.

Which is another beautifully accurate descriptor. How in the world could we be worthy to serve the King of Kings?

We’re not.

But He is worthy. Of our service, our praise, our adoration. Of our love.

And this Master of ours, who is worthy of all glory, became a servant Himself.

The night before Jesus was crucified, He washed His disciples’ feet. Then He said,

“You call Me Teacher and Lord, and you say well, for so I am.

“If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet.

“For I have given you an example, that you should do as I have done to you.

“Most assuredly, I say to you, a servant is not greater than his master; nor is he who is sent greater than he who sent him.

-John 13:13-16 NKJV

Our Lord both lived and died on behalf of His servants. Why should not we be willing to go as far?

Is there not joy in following the footsteps of our glorious, humble Master?

And what does all this talk about unprofitable servitude have to do with faith anyway?

Well, if you’re a servant with a good master, you can trust him to take care of you, to give good orders, to provide what’s necessary for carrying out your tasks successfully.

In other words, if we’ll quit looking at ourselves and look at our Master, our faith cannot help but grow.

Because He is worthy.

-Miss Darcy

Proud Waves

I had the privilege of spending a week in St. Augustine, Florida, this month. We went to visit friends for the daughter’s high school graduation, and naturally we spent some hours on the beach.

This is the first time I’ve been to a beach in warm weather (well, since I was four years old, and I barely remember that). I loved waking early to watch the sun rise like a ball of glowing lava over the quiet ocean. Walking the shore at night with the water pulling the sand from beneath my feet and the stars pin-pricking the sky. Mixing water with dry sand to reach the perfect consistency for castle-building. Meandering up and down the beach to find shells for my sister to turn into jewelry.

But for me, the seaside, be it sandy or rocky, is really about the ocean.

The waves relentlessly rushing, curling, crashing, retreating.

The sight of endless water, here to the horizon.

The feel of cool water washing over my skin, tugging at my feet.

The constant movement, as if the ocean is alive.

The taste of salt when the water splashes my lips.

The sounds. The scents.

It’s so big. So powerful.

The ocean has majesty. It’s a force to be reckoned with.

Dad told me of a line he remembered from a book he read years ago, Endurance.

You can never win against the ocean. The best you can hope for is a draw.

The waves and water are relentless, untamable. Beautiful, yet a little frightening.

All week, I kept thinking of where the LORD points to the ocean He created as evidence of His power. God asks Job,

“Or who shut in the sea with doors,
When it burst forth and issued from the womb; …

When I fixed My limit for it,
And set bars and doors;

When I said,
‘This far you may come, but no farther,
And here your proud waves must stop!’

-Job 38: 8, 10-11 NKJV

Truly, with all our dikes and jetties and super-sophisticated technology, the best we can do is sort of hold our own against an undaunted foe that fights effortlessly.

We can never control the ocean.

But God can.

He set the limits. He said, “Your waves may come up to here, and not a step farther without My permission.”

Indeed, the ocean’s waves are proud. And not without reason.

It is good to remember that I serve the God who can bid the proud waves to halt. And even walk upon them if He pleases.

-Miss Darcy

The Moabite Curse

It’s funny that as many times as I’ve read the book of Ruth over the years, it was only recently that I realized it held the answer to another question I had about the Scripture.

An Ammonite or Moabite shall not enter the assembly of the LORD; even to the tenth generation none of his descendants shall enter the assembly of the LORD forever,

because they did not meet you with bread and water on the road when you came out of Egypt, and because they hired against you Balaam the son of Beor from Pethor of Mesopotamia, to curse you.

Nevertheless the LORD your God would not listen to Balaam, but the LORD your God turned the curse into a blessing for you, because the LORD your God loves you.

You shall not seek their peace nor their prosperity all your days forever.

-Deuteronomy 23:3-6 NKJV (emphasis mine)

So, at first glance, that seems pretty harsh. Just because the Moabites at one time opposed the people of the Lord, now none of their descendants can come to God?

But then you have the exception of Ruth. She was a Moabitess who married an Israelite refugee named Mahlon. But Mahlon died, and Ruth chose to return with her mother-in-law to Israel. There she met and married an Israelite named Boaz, and became the great-grandmother of King David.

That makes David one-eighth a son of Moab, and David went into the assembly of the Lord (along with his father and grandfather, I daresay). We have an exception to that no-Moabites-allowed rule.

But God doesn’t just make random exceptions, does He? I mean, what made Ruth such a good person that God could overlook the lineage she passed on to her sons?

(I suppose some could say that the curse couldn’t pass through a Moabite woman, only through a man. But, taking the whole Old Testament into consideration, that reasoning didn’t hold up well enough to satisfy me.) 🙂

So I kept pondering over it, trying to reconcile it in my mind. Until the answer hit me between the eyes, as is often the case.

Ruth rejected her lineage.

When her Israelite mother-in-law tried to convince her to stay in Moab, Ruth would have none of it.

But Ruth said:

“Entreat me not to leave you,
Or to turn back from following after you;
For wherever you go, I will go;
And wherever you lodge, I will lodge;
Your people shall be my people,
And your God, my God.

-Ruth 1:16 NKJV

Ruth rejected the gods of her homeland and chose to follow the Hebrews’ God. She refused to identify with the people she’d been born to and instead chose to identify with the people who worshiped God.

Ruth never lost her Moabite DNA. But she chose in her heart to follow God, she gave voice to that resolution, and she changed her life to live as a Hebrew.

Her choice gave her a whole new heritage.

Doesn’t this sound exactly like Jesus’ offer in the New Testament?

We humans are born into Adam’s sin, bent toward corruption from the moment we have the mental power to choose.

Jesus offers us life free from sin and its wages. All we have to do is reject the world and choose Him, with our hearts, with our words, and with our lifestyles.

Ultimately, God is not concerned with what we call bloodlines. He’s concerned with our hearts. Anyone from any heritage on this planet can accept Jesus’ gift and join the family He calls the Church—a vast family that stretches around the globe and across the ages.

It starts with a simple choice.

The more I look, the more I am persuaded that the God of the Old Testament is no different from the God of New Testament. The interface may look different, but His operating system has always been the same.

-Miss Darcy

P.S. In Jeremiah, God spends all of Chapter 48 describing how He will judge and destroy Moab because of their idolatry. But in the final verse, He says, “Yet I will bring back the captives of Moab in the latter days.” Something He also promises to Elam and Ammon. Interesting, is it not?

There Remains Much Land

Sometimes I crave a really good story, but I can’t find a book I want to settle down with. It’s dreadfully provoking.

When that happened a few weeks ago, I picked up the Bible and started reading Joshua, just for the story. I wanted adventure. Spies, battles, miracles, noble hero—adventure doesn’t get much better than that, yes?

And I ran across a verse I’m sure you’ve heard preached on or written about sometime or other:

Now Joshua was old, advanced in years. And the LORD said to him: “You are old, advanced in years, and there remains very much land yet to be possessed.

-Joshua 13:1 NKJV

The Lord goes on to name the places the children of Israel still need to take possession of. Having just read about all the cities and kings Joshua had conquered, I thought, “Wow. So much done. Yet so much left to do.”

If you go on to read Judges, you discover just how much land Israel left unconquered after Joshua died—and all the trouble that caused them.

I think we still do that kind of thing.

Joshua gave the Israelites a great start during his lifetime. He hit the big cities, the important fortresses. He took out the most powerful kings. But still much land remained.

When we give our lives to Jesus (“get saved” in Christianese), we almost instantly surrender the important fortresses. We depart from some of our most glaring sins. We attend church faithfully. We pause to pray three times a day. We get a Bible, start reading it, learn the order of the books. We wear Christian T-shirts, listen to Christian music.

You know. We hit the highlights. Big things change, little things change. And that’s wonderful! That’s the power of God to transform a person immediately.

But then it’s easy to stagnate.

I mean, we’re saved. We’re different. We’re getting on top of this livin’-for-Jesus thing.

Yet there remains much land yet to be possessed.

Does Jesus have all our love? Is there nothing competing with Him for our affections and energy?

Do we yet comprehend the width and length and depth and height—do we know the love of Christ?

Do we walk in step with God’s Spirit every day?

Does God’s peace rule in our hearts?

Has Jesus so thoroughly overtaken us that He is not merely our faith of choice, but also our source of identity?

Do we rely on the Lord instead of on ourselves during tribulation?

Do we gladly obey God’s commandments because we know only our Creator and Redeemer has the wisdom and the right to control us?

Does thankfulness to God permeate our lives?

Do we love others like He loves them?

Does His Word shape everything about the way we view life?

Is He really, truly, wholly the One we worship?

That’s what I want. But I am so far from being there yet. I know there remains very much land in my heart to be fully surrendered to Christ. To be fully possessed by Him.

The war to win full surrender of our hearts is the fight of a lifetime. I don’t want to be satisfied with being a good Christian. I want Jesus to truly be my everything.

So let us fight on, warriors. Let us set ourselves against the Lord’s enemy and our own selfish desires. Let us be faithful.

Not that our own strength is sufficient. But God’s grace will make good what we lack.

-Miss Darcy