Captivating Trust: The Life You're Meant to Live
These last several months have been a whirlwind. I am in Boulder, Colorado training for the Olympic Trials. Who would have thought. It's really pretty amazing to be sitting here typing this blog post. For most of my life I've settled for dreams being just that dreams. Never in my wildest imagine did I picture this coming true. The crazy part is I really have no doubt that this is journey I am meant to be on. It's pretty incredible to be in such a state of contentment.
Don't get me wrong, this season comes with it's sacrifices and challenges. I'm spending about 4 months away from my husband and community in Miami. I miss Rusty greatly, as well as the deep friendships I've made in Miami. But I can tell you this, I know this is where I'm supposed to be. Not just because it's a fantasy I've had, but a calling. One much greater than I ever could have imagined.
Friends I am TRAINING FOR THE OLYMPICS! WHAT?!?!?! I still can't believe I'm saying that. Hear me out, I'm not a shoo in, there's a process and I need to qualify for the trials first, but friends: I BELIEVE IN THIS. This once timid girl who never thought God could actually use her for something big. Yes, I've always wanted it deep down. That inkling in my soul that's telling me "don't settle for this easy comfortable life, do something scary, something only God can accomplish: do something that ONLY GOD CAN DO, use your story!" AH! YES!
Friends we go through trials and tribulations for a reason. Like James says "you will face trials of many kinds, but those trials produce endurance and that endurance produces character." He also states, "faith without action is dead...even the demons believe in him and shudder at his name." If this is true, then why would I sit on my hands and settle for the easy life? Why would I let this deep calling to just slip from my hands? Why would I not share my story and use this passion for running I have to inspire others who struggle with depression, anxiety, or eating disorders? Rusty and I talk often about how crazy my story is and how God has perfectly lined up my struggles and my passions. I've struggled so deeply with mental disorders and have chosen one of the most mentally taxing sports on earth. That's not coincidence friends, that was perfectly planned. Now it's my responsibility to use it and do something about it.
I've been reading this book for the past several months called Victorious Emotions. It has been life changing. If you struggle with depression or even sad feelings, read this book. It's so so good. But it's really convicted, challenged me, and encouraged me all in one. Why? Because it's challenged me to really believe God is who he says he is and who I am in his eyes. It's caused me to really stop and think if I truly believe in God's truth or it's just something I talk about. I'm not talking about the religious God we've concocked in our heads: I'm talking about a good, big, perfect, almighty, a God for us NOT against us, a God that loves us deeply, a God who wants us to experience being part of his kingdom, an inclusive God that cares deeply, One that has chosen to let us into his glory, one who wants to see us thrive, the God above all and in all, the God that said: YOU ARE SO WORTH IT! YOU ARE WORTH ABSOLUTELY EVERYTHING-The one who literally bore the weight of the world's sin on his shoulders, your sins, mine, died a humiliating death so we could actually experience him, be part of his kingdom, one that turns and says "come with me", "walk alongside me".
I'm talking about THE ONE AND ONLY GOD.
Not the god that fits in our box.
Do you really believe he cares for you?
Do you really believe he wants to include you?
Do you really think he's as big as he says he is? Big enough to do all that we can imagine and more?
Friends, there is nothing God cannot do. But you know the part that is so so sweet to me, the reason I picked up my bags and said "honey, this is going to work out. We're going to be fine. In fact, we're going to be great and God is about to throw so much love in our faces," HE WANTS US TO BE A PART OF IT ALL. Yes, it's all about Him. But guess what? When he died, he said, "it's about you too." This is an inclusive relationship-yes RELATIONSHIP. It's not one-sided.
But there is action on our part: there is faith. We must trust.
I had a friend that approached me several months ago and said, "Jo, God is looking at you and thinking, come Jo, trust me. But take your time. I'm in no rush, I'm always here. My arms are wide open just waiting for you to run straight into them and they will stay that way until you are ready." This was one the most convicting statements, but most ENCOURAGING. I had this realization. Just TRUST Him. Wow. What a concept.
It's not an overnight process. It take time friends. It's a journey, full of prayers, tears, challenge, laughs, joy, peace, contentment, struggle, doubt. But when you decide to truly run into his arms, he's not letting go. He's holding you the whole way. He's whispering in your ear when doubt starts creeping in saying, "It's going to be okay, hold on, remember I'm so much bigger than any of the challenges you face and the people who doubt. I've got you and I'm not letting you go. But keep running-don't stop-fight the doubt, reach for me, kick out the lies, remember trust, trust me."
Friends it's a battle. When you are pursuing Jesus and his will it is going to offer struggles, but when they come, run that much harder to Jesus. Don't settle for the lies the world and satan have to offer you. Believe in the fact God believes in YOU! Chase the dreams he has given you. Don't let doubt and fear be the reason you say no. Say YES! Do what scares you! Do what you can't imagine. Do something that requires you to say "I'm screwed if God doesn't show up." Why? Because HE CAN!!
I so deeply believe in the journey. There are days of doubt, but ultimately, I truly believe God is big enough. Trust that, not yourself, but the fact God is BIG ENOUGH and he is FOR YOU!
For now friends, I'll see you in Tokyo in 2020. :)