My new blog look

13 Feb

As you can clearly see, I have updated my blog’s look and name. I had my last blog look since I started my blog back in 2007. Not only was it time for an aesthetic update, I felt like my blog name no longer accurately portrayed what my blog was about. (For those of you who don’t know, it was called Learning and Loving It.) While I am still learning, I can’t honestly say that I’m loving it. That is, I love it only insofar as it is a means to an end: knowing Christ more. I don’t loving learning (especially hard things!) for learning’s sake.

So when I contemplated what my blog is about most often, these words came to my head: honesty. truth. God. faith. reality. questioning. trying to figure things out. life. confusion. hard stuff. emotions. body image.

I wanted my blog name to capture that life isn’t a bowl full of cherries but it’s not a bitch either (to borrow a popular phrase). It’s a process. You grow, you shrink, you step forward, you step backward, you succeed, you fail. But through it all, those who have Christ, have “a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul, a hope that enters into the inner place behind the curtain [into the presence of the Father], where Jesus has gone as a forerunner on our behalf…” (Hebrews 6:19-20).

If I’ve learned anything over the last 12 months of questioning, confusion, and uncertainty, it’s that I am a broken human being. It is only through Christ and His gospel that I amount to anything. He is my hope, my inspiration, my calm amidst the storm. He is the reason I get out of bed in the morning and the Person I praise when I go to bed at night. He is my everything.

I have joy in being a broken person because it enables me to see the glory of Christ, displayed most poignantly on the cross, even more.

I have also learned that it is God’s plan to break me…in a good way. Like Kay Warren talks about in her book, Dangerous Surrender: What Happens When You Say Yes to God, God wants me to be “gloriously ruined.” To paraphrase Kay Warren, to no longer be content to live with the focus of my life on my world – myself, my problems, my family, my career. He wants my eyes to be opened to the reality of this world – evil and spiritual warfare – and to engage in battle wearing the full armor of God.

Being broken isn’t easy or fun. It’s hard. It hurts. But it’s worth it. Jesus said that “These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full.” (John 15:11). Jesus also said “So also you have sorrow now, but I will see you again and your hearts will rejoice, and no one will take your joy from you… Until now you have asked nothing in my name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full.” (John 16:22, 24).

Jesus promises us joy. Moreover, He promises us HIS joy. What is His joy? It was His joy that motivated Him to endure the cross (Hebrews 12:2). Just as it was Paul’s and John’s joy to see their “children” in the faith walking in the truth of the gospel, so it is Christ’s joy to see us reconciled to God and co-heirs with Him. In Ephesians 1:18, Paul prays that the Ephesians (and all believers) would have “the eyes of our hearts enlightened, that we may know…the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints.” The only reason Christ died on the cross was to save us. He had perfect intimacy with the Father and the Father with Him. They didn’t need us. But they wanted us. And Christ’s death and resurrection – and the Holy Spirit dwelling in me – enable me to want God too. As the song All I Have is Christ says, “If you had not loved me first, I would refuse you still.”

I have Christ’s joy in me when I keep my eyes focused on heaven and God.

Colossians 1:11 says, “May you be strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy, giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in light.” My qualification in the inheritance of the saints gives me joy.

1 Peter 1:8-9 says “Though you have not seen him, you love him. Though you do not now see him, you believe in him and rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory, obtaining the outcome of your faith, the salvation of your souls.” Jesus is my source of joy.

I have joy in God when I turn from focusing on myself to focusing on God and the gospel. Often times, that shift only happens by God breaking me, making me die to myself and enabling me to live for Him and His purposes.

This blog is not called Happiness in Being Broken for a reason – happiness is based on circumstance. Most of the time, being broken does not make me happy.

This blog is called Joy in Being Broken because joy is a deep-seated emotion borne out of hope, truth, and faith in the gospel. True joy is only possible in Christ.

That’s what this blog is about.

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