Sunday, August 19, 2012

thoughts inspired by Amyjane.

 Life is short. Extra short.

I learned this week that a precious 19 year old friend of mine was murdered.

Her name is Amyjane and I met her last September when she arrived at YWAM LA as a student in the Discipleship Training School. I had just watched "Anne of Green Gables" in New York like a week before meeting her, and I remember calling my friend back in New York saying, "I met a red-headed girl that reminds me of Anne- her name is Amyjane!!"

Amyjane was extraordinary. Truly one-of-a-kind. She was full of life. Outgoing. Free-spirited. Always adorned in lots of colors and eccentric fabrics. Amyjane could talk to anyone. She was trusting and always excited to make friends. She was comfortable with anyone, and bold to start conversation. She was also passionately in love with Jesus, and was always eager to share His love with others.

She was a bright light. Radiant.

And now she is in heaven.

The news of her loss was both shocking and heartbreaking. It has been almost a week since I heard about it and I am still not sure what to do with my emotions. I don't quite know how to feel.

But I do know that in the last 6 days I have spent a lot of time thinking about how short life is.

To be honest, the awareness of that is mostly comforting to me because life can be so hard.

I have thought a lot about James 4:14
"What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes."
A mist. Imagine that. Just one single spray of perfume and then its gone. That is what our life is compared to.

I heard of a guy back home in California that was diagnosed with cancer and given a few weeks to live. In those short weeks he changed everything. He slept less. He prioritized differently. He spent more time with his family. He spent less time doing things that didn't matter. He is gone now. But he certainly made the most of his last days here on earth.

Why do we wait until time is literally running out to live meaningful lives?

In Psalm 90:12 it says, "Teach me to number my days, that I might gain a heart of wisdom."

I prayed for that this week. I need God to help me remember how short my time on this earth is, so that I can continue to trust His wisdom and not get carried away doing meaningless things that I feel to be best... but aren't actually good at all.

We need to know that life on earth is short. Because when we forget we make silly decisions. We start to trust in our emotions rather than trusting God's word. We begin to forfeit things that we wouldn't really want to give up, if we were thinking "soberly". But in moments of loneliness or hopelessness or boredom, we decide that it is more important to pursue our own gain rather than trusting that the Creator of our souls is actually real and actually has good plans for us.

I've seen this play out recently- in my own heart and in the lives of others. We justify doing crazy things... just because they feel good to us.

Marriages dissolve because we decide that we never really loved our spouse in the first place. Or that God never really "spoke" to us to get married and that the real husband that God prepared for us was that gorgeous guy we met recently who "really understands us". Or that we never connected sexually, so rather than deciding together to make our sex life better, we would rather explore sexuality with other people- outside of the family we have built.

Or we are beautiful singles who become promiscuous because we trusted Jesus for years to provide someone for us, and He didn't, so we are going out to get the love we have been missing.

We walk away from gifts He has given us, or passions He has placed in us, or ministries He has called us to... all because our fickle emotions have convinced us that He is somehow holding out on us... and we deserve "better".

I feel like I'm constantly on the verge of some sort of unfaithfulness in my heart.

I feel so refreshed when I remember that compared to eternity... this life is just a vapor. Even if I live another 80 years... I will still look back on the time that has passed and think to myself, "Wow, where did all that time go?"

"What good is it if we gain the whole world and forfeit our souls?"

No good at all.

Lord Jesus,
Help us to be faithful. Help us to stay strong. Help us trust your word, over our own emotions. Bless every single girl that stumbles onto this page... comfort her in any loneliness she might feel and remind her of the truth, that you are near to her. Bless every wife that has visited this blog, strengthen her tonight. Fill her with love for her husband. Help her... and me... to choose to trust you, even in times when everything in us feels tempted to walk away from the lives we have made. Bless every mommy that stops here in the midst of her busy day. Show her please Jesus the great honor that she has in her role as mother, and give her revelation of the powerful ways you are using her life. Bless every man that reads my words. Cover him in your love. Show him how valuable and desirable he is. Strengthen him in his walk with you and give him grace to live in purity. Lord if there are people you bring onto this blog that struggle in their sexuality, please draw them so close to you right now. Shower them with your peace and your acceptance of them as your children. For the hurting, and the broken, the hopeless... those who have recently lost people they loved... please may they feel you right now... more deeply than they have in a long time. Remind them that you will never let them go. No matter how bad it hurts. Or how far they fall. And for those who feel strong and peaceful today. Thank you for that Jesus. Thank you for everything. We desperately need you. Please comfort Amyjane's family and friends. And use her death... just as you have used her sweet life... to bring you glory. In Jesus Name, Amen. 

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