Monday, May 18, 2015

Guest Post: Adventures with Luka

Good morning!

As I mentioned, while on vacation, I have some great posts lined up for you to read. Today is no different! Meet Ashleigh, who blogs over at Adventures with Luka. Enjoy this post, and be sure to go say hello!


Hey everyone! This is my first time writing a guest blog post, so please bear with me :)

My name is Ashleigh and I run Adventures with Luka when I’m not teaching or volunteering at my church. My days are filled with work, volunteerism, reading, or taking care of my dog, Luka. He’s quite the pup and never allows for a dull moment.

It is my pleasure to share some of what God has been placing on my heart lately, and something I deal with often. You are not who the world thinks you should be. You are who God made you to be and you are on a trajectory of becoming who He wants you to be.

Working at a Christian middle school, I get a lot of my students commenting on my singleness. In this day and age, having “someone” is everything. Assuming (correctly, I might add) that I am living by God’s standards when it comes to relationships, my students are often baffled at how I embrace my single life. Not a month ever goes by without at least one student asking a question along the lines of, “Why don’t you have a boyfriend?” “Do you want to get married?” “Why aren't you married?” “Aren't you oh, so lonely?” When I first began teaching three years ago, I would cringe at these questions. How insensitive can these kids be? Of course I want a boyfriend and to be married. No, I don’t know why I’m single. If I did, I would fix it! Now, I never answered that way, but the three years of practice have helped me refine my attitude toward the questions themselves. I no longer cringe. I actually smile. Though my students (and many other people) think that there must be something wrong with me because I’m single at (almost) 26, there isn't. I’m right where God has placed me. I smile because when they ask I get to share with them an often unspoken and unheard truth about God. That truth is that there is no peace, no completion, no joy when you step outside of God’s will

After a long internal struggle, I decided in March to give an entire year to God and God alone. No more going on dates, no more saying yes when people ask if they can set me up, no more looking at that cute new guy in church or the store or the gym and wondering if he is single and loves Jesus. No more wondering where my future husband could be, if he even exists. None of that. An entire year focused on growing in God. An entire year focused on getting to know my Creator more intimately. An entire year learning what vulnerability and falling in love are really like with the most perfect Being there ever was, is, and will be. An entire year of seeking Christ before anything else. An entire year of spending time in the Word daily. An entire year of only looking to Him for my peace, joy, happiness, fulfillment, contentedness, and comfort. It’s only been almost two months, but they have been the best two months I've had in a very, very long time. I’m falling SO in love with Christ! I thought I already was in love with Him. Oh, how wrong I was!

We all live in a society which expects—sometimes it demands—of us what we cannot give and do not have. It expects us to have our lives completely together. Especially the Christians. We need to be tolerant, but not without backbone. We need to stand firm, but not too firm. We need to hold convictions, but we better not be offensive. We should stand out, but not too much. No matter where you are in life-- single, married, widowed, with children, without children (and trying), grieving the loss of a child, not even wanting children, in the process of adopting, divorced, broken, addicted, struggling, barely hanging on, graduating high school and afraid, graduating college and lost, changing careers and confused-- God loves you. God wants you to look to Him for your fulfillment. You worth comes from Him alone. Don’t look to the world for your worth. Look to God. How? The Word of God. A trusted pastor or mentor to give you guidance about a confusing concept in the Word of God. You don’t need to be perfect. You don’t need to have it all figured out. You don’t need to have your future decided when you’re 18. You don’t need to have $50,000 saved up by the time you’re 30. You don’t even need to have $1,000 saved up by that time. 

All you need, all you need, is to know where to fix your eyes. Fix your eyes upon the unchanging, everlasting, unconditionally loving God. The One who was before time. The one who created all things. The one who knit you together in your mother’s womb. The one who holds the whole world in His hands. The one who loves you so much that He decided to come to Earth in the form of a man, retaining His full deity, and bearing ALL of your sins upon the cross. Though He was sinless, He chose to carry your sins. Nothing, I repeat, nothing, can define you apart from Him. He is all that matters. In that, seek to please Him alone. You will not regret it!

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