One a Promise, Two a Promise.

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Love’s a scary thing when you step back from it. It just doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. You’d give absolutely anything and everything for this one human. This perfectly imperfect, just as flawed as you human. Who could at any given moment-and potentially would in our messed up society-choose to no longer love you and walk away. And yet, we do everything for them day in and day out. Constantly trying to shove down that little blurp of fear that’s constantly whispering in your ear..telling you maybe, just maybe you won’t get your happily ever after. Despite the fear,  I look around my life and  see others constantly making all of these sacrifices for love. I see them giving up things they once dreamt of to pull them closer to the person they could’ve never imagined up on their own. It’s then that I realize I’m just as guilty of the societal ‘YOU’RE CRAZY’ reactions. When in all reality, I’d give anything to be doing what they’re doing.

So tell me-if love in this world is so unsure, why do we lean on it with our whole hearts?

Well, I don’t know about the rest of the world, but I know a little bit about my own heart. My answer is simple, it’s you.

It’s the way I’ve fallen in love with you, like I never have before. It’s consumed in the one big thing, Christ.

It’s followed by the million little things. The way you hold my hand. The way you pull me in and curl me up next to you. The screenshot from every ‘date before she says i do.’ The beautiful conversations about our Father and the blessings given to us. The morning encouragements. The way I miss you every minute of every single day. The way my heart stops when you tell me you love me, no matter how many times you’ve said it before. The feeling of seeing you for the first time in a week. How I know you don’t ever want to let me go, ‘nope, I’m not done holding you yet.’ The support in every split second mind change I come up with in a day. The spontaneity of our forever young hearts. The respect of waiting as patiently as possible. The confused looks from others and tried definitions of courting. Our beautiful devotional times. Every glamorous moment I get to spend being picked on by you, and fighting you back twice as much. The moments you pull me back from shutting down. The prayers we pray, each and every day. The transitional times from perfect to heart wrenching and back again. The struggles of loving from a distance, and realizing repeatedly that we’re so blessed to do so. The Mickey Mouse sandwiches. The ten squats a day. The times we get lost in corn mazes and you secretly resent me for making you think I’ve been stolen. The push you give me to be amazing at anything I attempt. Making me scrambies the morning of my half marathon. The way you sleep endlessly and I never do, even through all of the times I should be the one exhausted. The way you make me fall out of the car in Family Dollar parking lots. The way we get our fat girl on, only increasing our dad bod, helloooooo Culvers. The way you look at me laughing about our green paint issues. The way you try to handle me just the right amount, while standing back to let me shine the rest of the time. The way you miss me and worry about me when I’m away. How you always leave me voicemails because I like to listen to them on repeat when I’m longing to hear your voice. All of the notes you keep, showing me again and again that you want to know everything about me. The way you’re my safe haven, loving me so genuinely. A girl could go on forever…that’s the plan anyway.

You are simply beautiful. One of the most amazing, selfless, stubborn, goofy, Christ loving people I have ever met. You absolutely make my life shine like the diamond that you are. Our love story cracks me up. It’s the kind of story that people think you’re making up when you answer to them ‘So how did you two lovebirds meet?’

Being in your arms in this crazy world through this wild life, it’s like standing outside in the middle of a storm. It’s chaotic-everything near us is swirling in the wind, the rain comes down hard all around. Despite the raindrops, I look up, into your beautiful blues. The world gets blurry, fades away, and all I see is love. The rain freezes forming droplets stilled in midair, the air from the storm freezes me, my eyes freeze to yours. You put your hand on my heart and it bursts for you, melting the leftover ice from the past.

So if I’m going to be ‘stupid’ like society says, let me be stupid for believing in us. For being completely blissed out and madly in love with you. Let me be stupid for having a faith that is stronger than the weight the world puts on a halfway young couple in love. Let me be stupid for loving you.

Someday, forever.

Thank you Jesus.

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Embrace.

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Lately, my heart has been in a consistent season of change. I moved back home and in with my parents, I’ve been healing over a very serious and long relationship, I transferred schools…tons of drastic change. For about a year, various things I thought had been on track in my life have taken a plot twist. When I graduated from high school two years ago, I never would have pictured myself where I am right now in my life. I didn’t expect to transfer to two different colleges. I didn’t expect to EVER move back home. I didn’t expect to go through massive amounts of heartache. But I did it. And all of it, among so much else, is now woven into the story lines that make up my life.

Once in a while I catch myself thinking about how much things have shifted for me. I think about how much things have changed around me. And I especially think about how much things have changed within me. I sometimes wonder what would have happened if I never transferred out of Madison, if I never let myself fall in love, if I never went through the battle of this life. But if I hadn’t, where would my scars come from instead?

Being in such a season of change literally blows my mind. I feel like I haven’t stood still in such a long time. Is it bad that I kind of like it? Becausedo. I have found through all of this change that just about all the time, nobody will understand what seems to be going on in your life. The beauty of it? They don’t have to, and you don’t have to either. It’s not important for me worry about the mindset of others, because then it takes away from the praise in my heart for Jesus Christ.

I’m starting to be witness to some traits within myself that are nothing like the young woman I used to be.

HBC [Hannah Before Christ]

_I was selfish. I wanted whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted it. I wanted things to go perfectly smoothly all the time. I was hardworking, but striving towards things that only mattered to me. I didn’t always consider how my actions impacted those around me.

_I was insecure. I was so insecure that my insecurities held their own insecurities. I was constantly aware of how beautiful everyone around me was, and how much I lacked that. I was constantly in awe of the amazing traits everyone else held. I saw nothing worthy or great within myself.

_I was attention seeking. I didn’t want someone’s attention for long. I sought it out to fill some kind of sick void. Knowing someone else thought I was cute, funny, interesting. It was the high I needed to get me along until the next compliment came along. It was twisted.

_I was damaged goods. I allowed the ways others had shattered my life to effect everything I did. I made sure I remembered all of the hurts I felt. I figured if others could hurt me so deeply and keep on with themselves, I must not be worth too much.

_I was wrong!

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HSC [Hannah Since Christ]

_I am free from all of my baggage. My past will always be my past, and my sins my own. But none of it will ever matter when I know Christ is the holder of my heart. Each new day that passes is a struggle to learn selflessness. No, it’s not easy-but most things aren’t. It’s a learning process just as anything else. A beautiful one at that.

_I am beautiful in God’s image. I will never need to be anyone other than the woman I am. God didn’t make a mistake when He made me. He didn’t make a mistake by making my blue eyes turn green when I cry. He didn’t make a mistake when He made my brown eyebrows unique to my golden blonde hair. He didn’t make a mistake when He made my extra sensitive and tender heart. He made me exactly who I am supposed to be. It’s my beautiful journey to find out just who that is to Him, and what that means to me.

_I seek the love of my Heavenly Father. I don’t have too far to look. Everywhere I turn, I see a new way in which God’s love completely encompasses my heart. Each quiet time I take, I am drawn closer to Him than the hour and a half before. Just thinking about how much love the Lord holds for me gives my whole body goose pimples. Without it, I am not me.

_I am redeemed. Could there possibly be something more breathtaking in this world? I will never have to go back to seeing myself so shattered. I will never have to wonder if I’ll make it through to the end of this wild journey. I am taken over by the grace I have been given. I am forgiven, I am free, I am transformed.

Each new passing day, my life is changing-and I simply cannot apologize for that. I shout praises of thanksgiving to my Lord of Lords! I cry out to Him to keep working within me. Removing the parts of me that hurt Him and dishonor Him, and filling me with the beauty He encompasses.

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