Come alive

I just did an English class with Grecia (English class sounds so... formal. Really we just read and listen to fun things that I can sneak in good Biblical conversation easily. haha) and we listened to a couple of Foo Fighters songs. The first one is called Let It Die, and we talked about how she feels about death, why a lot of people blame God for their loved ones' deaths and so on, especially appropriate right before Mexico's infamous holiday Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead). Then I asked her if there was any hope for a person like this, angry about death.

Next song, Come Alive. Here's the lyrics (more or less):

Seems like only yesterday, life belonged to runaways -
Nothing here to see, no looking back.
Every sound, monotone. Every color, monochrome.
Light began to fade into the black.
Such a simple animal, sterylized with alcohol;
I could hardly feel me anymore.
Desperate and meaningless, all filled up with emptiness,
Felt like everything was said and done.

I laid there in the dark and I closed my eyes.
You saved me the day you came alive.

Still I tried to find my way, spinning hours into days,
Burning like a flame behind my eyes.
Drown it out, drink it in, crown the king of suffering.
Prisoner, a slave to the disguise.
Disappear, the only thing bittersweet surrendering -
Knew that it was time to say goodbye.

I laid there in the dark and I closed my eyes.
You saved me the day you came alive.
No reason left for me to survive.
You saved me the day you came alive.

Come alive...

Nothing more to give - I can finally live. Come alive.
Your life in me - I can finally breathe. Come alive.

I laid there in the dark, opened my eyes.
You saved me the day you came alive. Come alive.


So then we talked a lot about hopelessness vs. hope. Here are the verses I had her read:

Isaiah 53:1-6 > Who has believed what he has heard from us? And to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed? For he grew up before him like a young plant,and like a root out of dry ground; he had no form or majesty that we should look at him,and no beauty that we should desire him. He was despised and rejected by men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief; and as one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not. Surely he has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows; yet we esteemed him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted. But he was wounded for our transgressions; he was crushed for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with his stripes we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all.

Matthew 27:27-31 > Then the soldiers of the governor took Jesus into the governor's headquarters, and they gathered the whole battalion before him. And they stripped him and put a scarlet robe on him, and twisting together a crown of thorns, they put it on his head and put a reed in his right hand. And kneeling before him, they mocked him, saying, Hail, King of the Jews! And they spit on him and took the reed and struck him on the head. And when they had mocked him, they stripped him of the robe and put his own clothes on him and led him away to crucify him.

Matthew 28:1-10 > Now after the Sabbath, toward the dawn of the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to see the tomb. And behold, there was a great earthquake, for an angel of the Lord descended from heaven and came and rolled back the stone and sat on it. His appearance was like lightning, and his clothing white as snow. And for fear of him the guards trembled and became like dead men. But the angel said to the women, Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. He is not here, for he has risen, as he said. Come, see the place where he lay. Then go quickly and tell his disciples that he has risen from the dead, and behold, he is going before you to Galilee; there you will see him. See, I have told you. So they departed quickly from the tomb with fear and great joy, and ran to tell his disciples. And behold, Jesus met them and said, Greetings! And they came up and took hold of his feet and worshiped him. Then Jesus said to them, Do not be afraid; go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee, and there they will see me

John 11:25-26 > Jesus said to her, I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?

And so, I said that this song makes me think of all of these things. "I understand if you don't believe this, but the Bible is reliable history, and this is where my hope comes from." Like the man in the song went from hopeless to full of life, that's what these things mean to me. "It's a good thing to think about," I told her.

And she agreed. We'll see someday what she concludes.


A few things I've learned over the last couple of years:

Just because something is evil, doesn't mean God can't bring good out of it. Just because God can bring good out of it, doesn't make it any less evil.

There is never any reason to be defensive. If I'm right, then light will manifest the truth, so I should continue to walk in that light. If I'm wrong, then light will manifest the truth, and instead of defending myself, I need to change and continue to walk in that light.

Just because something isn't perfect, doesn't mean it's broken. The only person I can completely trust always is God - not myself, not my family, not my best friends, not my boyfriend, not my leaders. Everyone fails - love never fails. Failing isn't something to be paranoid about or something to be crushed over. Let love drive out all fear; let sorrow be godly and bring forth repentance; let myself be purified and grow; let God deny the proud and give grace to the humble; let Satan be the liar and the Holy Spirit be the counselor.

Never, ever, ever be manipulated. God gave me choices in my life, and it's my privilege to make them.

Friends come and go, and that's ok. Be a good one to everyone, and have a few that I never leave behind. Be grateful for past ones and enjoy them when the opportunity arises. Don't try to be best friends with every single person I'd like to be, because that is simply not possible.

Listen to God's word, and stop worrying so much about my own opinions and everyone elses'. It's impossible to please everyone, impossible to know myself completely, so spend time learning about God and his (the only) truth, and I'll find what I was meant to be in the first place.

Hope in Christ is the very best thing in the world. Don't be ashamed.

Never stop learning more and more about God's glory, i.e., love. Never stop learning, period.


...and things got really crazy.

So I guess it's been almost a month since I updated this thing - since then, I've finished Spanish classes, gone to the beach, gone to Cuernavaca, said goodbye to Jacob and Amanda, gone to Lubbock, and had a meeting with Sean and Jeni about my ministry focus. Of course I'm not going to talk about all of those things, but here's a bit to share.

Lubbock was wonderful. I really wasn't expecting much since I knew it wouldn't be the same without my classmates, but meeting the new AIMers was so fun, and seeing some of the assistants was sooo good. I got to stay with Ginger (she's like one of my favorite people ever) and I spent a lot of time with Lily, Thomas, and Beth too. The presentation went well - they liked our video, asked good questions, and some are already saying they want to come. I really hope we get a new team next year, and I think we probably will.

Talking with Sean and Jeni was really good. My main focus here, at least over the next several months, will be one-on-one Bible studies. I already have several of these, whether it's LST or just straight-up Bible in Spanish. I also want to integrate more service projects into my work here. I'm going to start focusing on the area where Sean and Jeni and a couple of other families here want to plant a church, so I'll start/keep going to the two small groups in that area and try to find some work to do in the community center there.

I've kind of taken a break from reading 1 & 2 Thessalonians to read 1 John, 1 Peter, and James. But I did look at Thessalonians again last night and wrote down all the things Paul prayed for - there are a lot, and they're all very inspiring. I think the one that stood out the very most is 2 Thessalonians 2:16-17 > "Now may our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who loved us and gave us eternal comfort and good hope through grace, comfort your hearts and establish them in every good work and word." I need comfort here sometimes, and I definitely need to be established in the work I do and the words I say.

Pray for me, and for our team. Things are hard sometimes, but God's weakness is greater than our strength.