Taking Care of Busyness

I know…it has been awhile since my last post. Life has been crazy, and I simply haven’t gotten around to the blog. Today I will share a few updates, what’s new, and what some hopes are for the future. To be honest though, it has been a pretty tough time, physically, mentally, emotionally, and especially spiritually. It has been truly difficult to balance everything. I suppose most people are good at it, but I am not. For me, I start taking care of one thing, only to let the other things suffer. Spiritual life going great? Awesome! But while that’s going on, I’m neglecting my health, then that starts to suffer. It’s crazy to think how hard it is to have a nice balance in taking care of everything. With the introduction out-of-the-way, here are some updates.

I’m going to college! Which is both exciting and crazy! I’ve been enjoying it for the most part, but it’s adding to my workload, which means I have to really learn to manage my time. And as mentioned above, I really need to work on. This first semester has flown by. I did end up missing a couple of weeks due to sickness, which put me behind. I’m almost caught up now though. I’ve also been getting some hours in at the grill on campus. So everything is going pretty well all in all. While this all may seem like no big deal to some, we’re talking about someone who used to not like going through drive-thrus, or answer the telephone, because of social anxieties. Those anxieties were only for a season though. Growing up I never had a problem with that. It was only during my later teenage years those issues arose. The Lord has brought me so far!

But alas, it can’t be all good things, can it? For there is some things that seem to be doing worse. While I’m still learning about living life, I find it difficult to remain focused spiritually. It’s easy to spend time with God when you don’t have so many things going on. It really has to become intentional when you are so busy. It may not seem busy compared to others, but for me, I’m the busiest I have ever been. Throw in still trying to maintain proper diet, exercise, and not to mention keeping up with ministry, and that’s a full schedule. They just never tell you how much responsiblity being an adult really is. Everyone says enjoy being a kid while you can, but you never realize why until it’s over. I just hope and pray that I can stay rooted and grounded while being busy, that I don’t get too busy for the One that really matters.

Please do not take me wrong, I know how writing about a subject can make it seem exaggerated and bigger than it really is. I’m enjoying all of this journey. And I cannot wait to see where the Lord takes me. It’s just that in all of this, I’m learning to prioritize. It’s very important how and what we spend our time on. We’re only given so much, and I don’t want to waste any of it. Love y’all!!

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Fix Our Eyes

What we look at, or dwell on, becomes magnified. Not literally, just in our own view, or perception. I have learned, and seem to have the need to keep on learning this truth.

Our perception or viewpoint really determines how we see our world. Whether sitting in an auditorium or stargazing at the night sky, where we’re seated and how feel at the moment can affect what and how we perceive what we’re looking at.

I’ve been learning in my own life lately how keeping my focus on Jesus just changes literally everything in my life. The storms in my life, the fears and insecurities I fought, all seem to just melt away when my focus is on Him, and His goodness.

I feel like everyday, I’m Peter asking Him to call me out on the water.

I feel like everyday, I’m Peter asking Him to call me out on the water. And everyday I have the decision to step out of the boat and walk to Him. But also everyday I want so badly to make it to Him without taking my eyes off of Him. But day after day I still seem to fail. I partially have my eyes on Him, but, just like Peter, the storm rages, I lose my focus on Him, and begin to sink. I then cry for Him to save me from drowning, and He pulls me to safety.

Most recently especially, I feel like I’ve just been in one spiritual battle after another. The more I want Him, and the closer I seem to get, the more the battle rages. Just tonight I realized something was very wrong, and I had to get back to the simplicity of pursuing Him. Without an agenda, without a time clock. Just Him, and I.

He is so Good. And don’t even know how Good He is. He is so mighty. So just. So pure. So holy. So loving. I don’t even know where to begin in understanding Him. I just know I can’t live without Him. There is nothing good in me, and everything good in Him. The only thing good in me is Him, and without Him I can do nothing.

Chasing God is not easy, and I wouldn’t want it to be. But He wants to be found. He wants us to find Him. He wants a relationship with each one of us. That’s the very reason we were created. So if you’re discouraged, or feel like your problems are just too big, two wonderful chapters of God’s word I recommend you read are Isaiah 40, and Job 38. If you need to be reminded how big God is, how small your problems are, or just need some humility(these chapters work great in humbling me for sure) give them a read, and ask the Holy Spirit for help. He so wants to help and empower you.                                                                                                Shalom and Love,                                                                                                                                                                     Joshua

Looks Like We’ve Got A Runner

We’re all runners. We’re either running to God, or away from Him. There’s not really any in-between. Except being luke-warm I suppose, and that’s not a good place to be.

Today I want to talk about running. As I’m trying to get back into running, I know I need to do it, but I have a love hate relationship with running. It’s hard, and breath-taking, quite literally. But the benefits far out way the cons. Plus nothing good ever comes easy.

Sometimes I run half-heartedly, just enough to get the job done. But if I was running in a race that mattered, where there was a great prize, I would run with everything that I had. I would run until I couldn’t run anymore, and hopefully that wouldn’t happen until I crossed the finished line, victorious.

I usually hear about those people who run to God whenever they’re in trouble, but I’ve usually been quite the opposite. I used to run from God, when I needed Him most. I don’t really know why exactly, but I would run from Him when I needed Him, knowing that only He could fix whatever the issue was. I would only stay close when things were going well. When I ‘Had it all together’. But let something come up, and I would try and rely on my own ability.

We humans are very complex creatures. We have a body, soul, mind, and spirit. Not to mention emotions, and everything in between. As life goes on, I’ve learned more and more to trust God, and NOT my emotions. Does that mean they’ve settled down and don’t try to have their way? I thought they had settled down. But no. They’re still showing up crying out from time to time wanting to take the reins.

But what I am learning, is, when I’m sad, I go to God. When I’m overjoyed, I go to God. When I’m upset, or bewildered, or lonely, or afraid, I go to God. I used to just sort of wallow in whatever emotion I was experiencing, and still do sometimes. But I’m learning more and more to hold fast to the Word of God, and His promises. To take my feelings and fears to Him, so He can replace them with His Joy, His Peace, His Love.

Part of the problem can be that I’m looking at myself too much. When I keep my eyes on Him, and embrace His Love for me, and know that He will never leave or forsake me, that’s when everything becomes alright.

On my journey to find Him, the One I Love, the One I need to Love so so much more, I find myself running. Running fast after Him. Even in my imperfections He still loves me. Even when I fall, His Grace is sufficient. And His Grace is enough to empower me to keep running. My salvation, my healing, and my eternity were all purchased with a very great price. The Precious Blood of Jesus.

Will you run after Him today? Will He become your everything? I pray that He does. And that you run after Him with every atom of your being.

Patience

A dilemma. For some patience I have, but patience I also lack. In the day-to-day, I don’t really have a problem with road rage, or dealing with people, waiting on an order, or anything of that nature, but when it comes to life, aka future life, I’m about as impatient as one could be.

I want things done now. I want to be where I want to be now. But is where I want to be where I’m meant to be? I continually pray that doors are opened, that my path is made clear. But it seems like so far it’s just been silence. Maybe God hasn’t spoken yet. Maybe I’m not listening.

I have learned some lessons lately about patience. The old saying, good things come to those who wait, holds true. Psalms 46:10 says, “Be still and know that I Am God”. So sometimes it is best to be still, to wait and see. But sometimes it feels like procrastination. And other times, it feels like life is passing you by. You look at other people’s lives and feel like you’re not accomplishing nearly what they are.

It can be good to have people you want to be like. People that inspire you to do more and to be better, but you have to be careful not to compare yourself to them. Each person’s journey through life is different. I have my own things I have to go through, and you have yours. Jesus is the ultimate example, and we should only try to truly model our lives after Him.

So is there a balance to be found then? Between waiting and stepping into action? I’m sure there is. But personally, I’m still trying to find it. But I’m sure as long as I’m waiting, and watching, and praying, everything will work out.

Trust, Part II

I have come to find a new meaning to trust. Well maybe not a new meaning per say, but more of a new way of looking at it.

I always thought trust was more of a feeling. You trust people based on a feeling. They just seem trustworthy. But have you ever trusted someone and been burnt? Yeah, sometimes that old feeling can be wrong.

But what I’ve learned lately is, sometimes you have to trust, whether you feel like it or not. When you drive a car or take a flight, you automatically trust that the vehicle is sound, that the plane is safe, and that you’ll make it to your destination. We’re so quick to trust a machine, and yet we can still have such a hard time trusting people.

I suppose fear of people has something to do with it. We fear what people will say or do, or think about us, and in turn we don’t trust them. We won’t trust them.

Yes it’s true that some people just aren’t trustworthy, but we don’t trust people enough, and yet we can trust them too much. Let me explain.

We trust in government. We trust in money. We trust in weapons. We trust in our own logic and our own abilities. And yet, we have such a hard time trusting God. The God of the universe. The God who literally hangs our planet and solar system in the balance of our galaxy. None of His words fall void or to the ground. If He says something, it is, or it will be.

So while yes we trust in so many things, people, ourselves etc, how much more should we put our trust in the one who created us all anyway? And trust is more than a feeling. My faith doesn’t always feel like it’s all there. My hope fails continually.

But I’ve been leaning lately, it’s not how you feel. It’s also a choice. You won’t always feel like putting your faith and hope and trust in the Lord, but you can choose to do so. You can choose to have faith and not give up. You can choose to trust in Him, no matter your feelings or circumstances or doubts or fears.

Be courageous and simply trust that He’s always there, and He’s always in control.

Breaking Point.


What do you do when everything around you is falling apart? It may not even be all at once. But over time, things accumulate until they reach a breaking point. And when it breaks, what do you do about it?

But what if not everything is falling apart? There are still many things going right, and to be thankful for. And yet, it’s still so easy to see the cracks that are widening, until they cause the structure to become compromised, and inevitably crashing to the earth. 

It’s a vicious cycle. Yesterday could have been a perfectly good day, with good spirits and trust in the Lord. And today, it could be the exact opposite, down and out and little to no trust at all. 

There’s a story in the Bible where Elijah is fleeing for his life, and at one point just asks God to take him. The story actually gives me hope. This great man of God, who eventually was caught in a chariot of fire to heaven, was ready to give up. He was ready to say, ‘Things are too bad, and I just can’t do it anymore’. 

There are moments when I want to give up.  But I’m constantly reminded that no matter how weak my faith may get, my only real option is to put my faith and trust in He who holds me in the palm of His hand. That no matter what my circumstances are, or how bad it may seem, HE IS IN CONTROL. 

I may not like it, I may not understand it, but His ways are not my ways, and His thoughts are not my thoughts. And every day I don’t give up, just shows me how much I can really put up with, and deal with. Every time I think I’m at my breaking point, He always ends up giving me the grace to bear it. 

Sometimes trusting is a lot harder than it seems. You think it’s easy to trust God, until something comes that makes you question everything. Will you give up? Or will you allow it to make you stronger? And temper you as a bladesmith tempers a blade.

He Knows Me


He knows me. He knows my heart. He knows my deepest secrets. The caverns of my soul I don’t even consciously know about. He knows my pain. He knows my guilt. My shame. He knows my joy. He knows my longing. He knows my heart’s desires. 

In the very realm of reality, I know this all to be true. And yet tonight, even as I’m worshiping and praying, reading His word, I can’t help but feel something. I don’t know what this is. This feeling. It is both terrifying, and wonderful. Sorrowful and joyful. 

But I know one thing. I find myself longing. Longing for Him. Longing to be more like Him. Longing to hurt for what hurts Him, and rejoicing over what He rejoices over. Longing to do His will. Wanting to please Him with everything that I am. 

I know from past experiences there are moments like this, and I truly Hope it is not just an emotional experience. I truly hope in moments like these, where my heart is fertile soil, that He will sow in me what He will. And in doing so, it would grow and be nourished to fruition.

In this moment, I feel that there is something I am called to do, whether I’m already doing it, or maybe have yet to do. But for all of us, there is always more. There is always more we can do, more we can accomplish for Him. 

As we draw closer to Him, He draws closer to us. And in doing so, we can please Him in a purer form. 

 After a weekend of little sleep, and feeling under the weather, I find myself staying Home tonight, in this moment. It’s so crazy how it’s the moments when you feel weak, He makes you strong. He certainly moves in mysterious ways.