There is something about movement of the body that can express what words simply cannot. My entire life, I have gravitated towards dance as a form of emotional expression, often without realizing it. When there were no words, I would turn on a song that belted them for me and move my body until I didn’t have any energy left. I remember wanting to join ballet but never having the opportunity to fulfill that desire. I also used to love watching figure-skating, often adorning socks and “skating” around my kitchen on the tile floor, pretending that it was ice. I also kept a Michelle Kwan poster on my bedroom door, which is one of the few, if not the only poster I’ve ever put up. Similarly, I have always loved wearing heels. So, naturally, I would put them on during some of these dance sessions and I would follow along with my favorite music videos of that era. I “performed” in my room for hours on end and what I now realize was an audience of One. God has been with me along this journey and has helped me to understand my emotions through the songs I gravitated to in each season.
During one season, R&B was my dominant genre of choice. All of the relationship-focused and break-up songs expressed deep, painful emotions that I related to on multiple levels. I remember distinctly, listening to “Too Little Too Late” by JoJo and weeping in my room with only the thought of my mother and how empty I felt without her. While those lyrics never seemed to match up to anything I was going through at the time, that song encapsulated those emotions and still brings that memory back a vividly as if it happened yesterday. In another season, I heavily gravitated to music by Paramore, My Chemical Romance, Green Day, and Evanescence. That season, which ebbed and flowed throughout my adolescence, represented a persistent depressive state where I couldn’t feel anything but emptiness, pain, and anger. I loved the energy of the music because it helped me to express what I was never able to otherwise. Beyoncé was a major influence of mine at that time and I would dance my heart out to songs like “Crazy In Love” and “End of Time.” Performance has always been in me, it was just hidden behind all of the weight of my insecurities and the pain of my childhood.
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You read that correctly. There are so many things that have the potential to overwhelm us: work, relationships, difficult life experiences, social media, etc. The word overwhelm doesn’t have a very good reputation but hopefully this can shed some light on another aspect of the experience. In this post, I’d like to share a recent encounter I had with God and what I learned from it, in hindsight.
When God speaks, things happen. They become. They change. They grow. As they develop, they sometimes outgrow their current environment and need a larger, more accommodating space. Stick with me here… A few days ago, I experienced an immense pouring out of inspiration from God. I rushed to write it down so that I wouldn’t forget it. In my doing so, I became overwhelmed with the thought of needing to expand on the concepts I recorded but felt the urging of the Spirit to make a plan (the urging made it clear that I am unable to produce at the level or with the excellence that God desires if I don’t organize the information He provides. What previously worked for me (writing spontaneously), is no longer sufficient. I need to make room in my schedule for intentionality). I could sense His desire for me to meet Him in obedience. God wanted me to make an effort to do the work as He instructed so that He could partner with me to bring it to fruition.
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In the biblical story of the garden of Eden, we are introduced to the scene of the serpent starting a conversation with the woman we now know as Eve. He begins their discourse with a question:
“Has God indeed said, ‘You shall not eat of every tree of the garden’?” (Genesis 2:1 NKJV)
Let’s pause there for a moment. Whether they were already speaking before this or not is unknown, but, either way, something about the question foreshadows the serpent’s intent. He brings up a topic that involves a third party who is not present.
Lesson #1: Be wary of people who gossip. Godly community does not entertain hearsay.
Sounds simple enough. Let’s continue…
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I find space for what I treasure
And I make time for what I want
I choose my priorities and…
…what have you been prioritizing lately? With all the thoughts bombarding my mind, the content I’ve been digesting and the laziness I’ve been giving into, it is safe to say that my priorities have been all over the place.
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