Journeys

Thoughts on the roads we take

Who I ought to be

I look at her and internally sigh, feeling more than a twinge of envy. She knows how to perfectly navigate between two worlds and languages, and she does it without missing a beat or stuttering or pausing to think about what to say. I, on the other hand, know I can make myself understood, but I feel so flawed. And with the way people constantly state “you’re not from here, are you?” I feel that I will never fit into my new environment, much less fit in seamlessly like she does. If only I could mold myself a little bit more to look like them.

The scale announced over Christmas break that I weighed more than I had the last time I was home. After the initial surprise, I nodded in agreement, because—after all—I probably shouldn’t eat so much cake. I am equally certain that I should be exercising like crazy, and that being tired after work should not be an excuse. 

It’s been several weeks since school started back, and my students are still acting like zoo animals. When a coworker asks me if I had a bad day, I say I don’t want to talk about it, merely shaking my head and quietly admitting “it’s my fault anyway.” It’s my fault for not being super teacher. If I had spent more time planning, or if I had more experience or natural talent, they would not be acting this way. 

I noticed myself wanting to speak negatively about someone today. I paused, asking myself why I was allowing this person to get on my nerves. Why wasn’t I embracing them as part of my life? That’s what Jesus would do. Why was I responding so opposite to the kind of person I claim I want to be? Because I am not a very good Christian. If I were a better one, everyone around me would know. 

These are the internal struggles I’ve been having lately. When something is wrong, I view it with the lens that it’s because I am somehow more or less than what I ought to be. I should work more. I should be more kind. I should be less stressed. I should try harder, be stricter, be better. 

 I am focused on the guilt I feel for the things that I am not, and it doesn’t leave much room for who I am. Though I don’t think aspiring to improve is bad, I haven’t left any space for acceptance of where I am and what I am today.  

For someone who believes in grace, I’ve been pretty stingy in allowing myself access to it. I live in ifs and whens and hads. Yet the more I ask God about tomorrow, the more I clearly hear be with me today. I don’t like that answer. If I am with God today, then I have to be with me today, too. And me today is tired and feeling like a failure. Me today is not enough. 

I know what I am not. Being with today asks another question, though. What am I? Who am I? The truth emerges when I look with deeper eyes than mine. Forgiven. Known. Loved. Is that enough? Yes. God give me courage to believe it. 

Outnumbered

I’m graduating soon. I have less than two months and my life as an undergrad will be over forever. I’ve found that everyone and their mother wants to know what my future plans are, as in, have I found a spectacularly impressive job yet? And when I explain that I shock! have no idea what I’m going to do yet, they look at me as though I have sprouted a second head. Horrified. Because, let’s face it, our culture values plans. Of the 5, 10, and 20 year variety. We value achievement. This is why Jack, Jill, and Susie would like to hear that I’ve already secured a job that will allow me to be self-sufficient immediately after graduation. 

But that’s not the case. It’s not that I have been unable to find a job. Truthfully, I haven’t started looking, and while that may sound irresponsible or just plain stupid, it isn’t arbitrary. The gift education has given me is also a curse. At least in the short run. This double gift/curse is that of opportunity. Now that I (almost) have two degrees, I am among a very small percentage of the world’s population. Every door is open to me. I can go anywhere, be anything. While that is wonderful, it is equally daunting. The pressure of choice is heavy. My parents want me to come home, while my professors beg me to attend grad school. Personally, I would like to travel the world while I can, but that requires money, and I have about $20,000 to $30,000 of debt from student loans. 

It’s a lot to think about. I am someone who tends to be very much afraid of failure. There is a great opportunity for success, but an equal opportunity to mess up. From where I sit, it looks like I’m facing a host of pitfalls and I have no idea what to do. More important to me than just choosing something is knowing that what I’m doing is serving God. I want to know that, at the end of the day, he approves of my choice. Assurance of that feels elusive. 

It’s tempting to make my own plans, to be impressive, to avoid this state of doubt, of uncertainty. I recently read through the book of 2 Chronicles, and one thing was very obvious: God just wants us to trust him. Not to go running to other people (in that case other kings) to help us out when we’re faced with a difficult situation, not to use our own education to make decisions. To completely trust him. 

I don’t know what to do. I don’t know where to go or who to be. But I do know that I want to be like Israel so that when I succeed, everyone will know it wasn’t because of my own abilities. 

"This is what the Lord says to you: ‘Do not be afraid or discouraged because of this vast army. For the battle is not yours, but God’s…you will not have to fight this battle. Take up your positions; stand firm and see the deliverance the Lord will give you, O Judah and Jerusalem. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged. Go out to face them tomorrow, and the Lord will be with you.’" 

-2 Chronicles 20:15-17

'Til death do us part…

1 week ago: “Sweetheart, you’re home,” my grandpa whispered in her ear as he bent down to kiss her cheek and push the hair back from her forehead. Otherwise unresponsive, she nodded her head ever so slightly, a motion that his well-trained eyes immediately caught. He had kept his promise, and he had the satisfaction of knowing she knew it.

1950s: Flashing back to more than 60 years ago, my grandma was a saucy 14-year-old tired of her best friend always stealing her boyfriends away. There was a new boy in school, one that the above-mentioned best friend had her eye on. My grandma, deciding two could play at this game, made up her mind to get his attention before her friend did. One fine day, she walked up to the handsome boy, batted her eyelashes and said “Hello, Glenn.” I think he nearly fell off the windowsill he’d been sitting on.

If there’s one thing that can be said about her, it’s that she always gets what she wants. But I’m not sure she knew that day what she was bargaining for. I’m not sure. That boy turned out to be my grandpa. I don’t think she had any idea then that when she said “hello” she was greeting the man who would be with her for the rest of her life.

1960s: She was 30. They had four young kids. Life was going pretty much as could be expected. Suddenly, without warning, there was a twist in the story. She was diagnosed with a severe case of rheumatoid arthritis which left her in a nearly constant state of pain. She lost the ability to run after her small children. The duties of cleaning and cooking were now his as well.She was the love of his life. He wasn’t going to accept this. There had to be a cure, and dagnabbit, he was going to find it. They went to England. Mexico. Tried every doctor, every treatment.

2000s: “He gave them hope,” she told me. “Who, grandma?” I asked. “The other women at the hospitals. A lot of them had been abandoned by their husbands once they found out about the disease. Once they realized that this person wasn’t going to be perfect anymore. But they saw how much he loved me, and he encouraged them.”

1960-2012: She didn’t get better. She was confined to a wheelchair, able to walk painfully with the aid of crutches on occasion. She couldn’t comb her own hair. He became her beautician as well as her nurse. She smiled through the pain, made jokes about how “old arthur” was troubling her and she didn’t think it was very nice of him.

It might seem as though she was the weak one, but actually the opposite was true. While he was her caregiver, he relied on her like an anchor. She was his sounding board, the only one who could keep calm when he blew his top. She was in pain, but I never heard her complain. She saw beauty in everything, something to be grateful for in every day.

1 week ago: “She loves you more than I do,” he confessed, with tears in his eyes. I glanced at my sister, then glanced back at the small form in the hospital bed, connected to too many monitors. “You know how I know?” he continued. I shook my head. “Because she loves unconditionally. have conditions. But I’ve learned watching her, and I’m trying to be more like her—more like Christ, and love everyone. Addict. Prostitute. Homeless…” he trailed off. I knew he was right about the way she loved. It was something I’d been angry about from time to time, thinking she was too accepting. Now I realized my mistake. She’d had it right all along.

1990s: “Do you know how to spell love?” she asked. I was sitting across from her at the dining room table. I could tell this was a trick question, so I shook my head. “S-A-C-R-I-F-I-C-E. In capital letters” she told me. I nodded as she explained “So I give up what I want, my stubbornness, and he gives up what he wants. You know the nifty thing about that?” Again I shook my head. She grinned like a mischievous child and announced”we both get what we want!But not if we fight about it. Not if I insist on having my way.”

August 2012: He loved to fish. She did, too, but she couldn’t anymore. Regardless, nearly every summer our whole family took a trip to Colorado to stay in cabins in the mountains and go fishing. She wanted so much for him to have this vacation, even though the 10+ hour car trip had been more than hard for her. He was out fishing and I decided to take the opportunity to ask her to tell me some stories. “You know,” she started, “we thought about it. About getting divorced.” I was shocked. “You never told me that, grandma! When was this, and why?” She smiled as though the memory was funny. “When we were young, first married. We were fighting.” “So why didn’t you?” I asked. “Well, we sat down and talked about it and decided we loved each other very much and fooey on that!” I laughed. If only everyone would say fooey on that.

1 week ago: Medical history. The nurse wanted to know what to write down on her chart. It was after midnight. I racked my tired brain, trying to help my sister list everything. Stroke, two femur breaks, knee and hip replacements, gall bladder removal, bronchitis, pneumonia… I realized what a fighter she was. And how strong she was, having been through so much more than anyone else. 

She was the perfect example of “fighting the good fight.” I will never forget her smile and the expression of love on her face her last day with us. She was in more pain than I will ever understand and yet she struggled to say “I love you” as we took turns crowding around her hospital bed. I will miss her more than words can express, but when I miss her I will take the time to stop and thank God for giving me Love in the form of the lovely woman who was my grandma. 

Homesick

It is inevitable. No matter how wonderful the place is where you are, still that moment comes. The “I miss you” messages pile up. The skype dates fill in all the free time on your calendar, but leave you feeling that something is lacking. And finally, you have to admit it to yourself: I’m homesick. 

What I miss today, though, isn’t so much one location on a map. And I think that it makes the missing harder, because I know that no matter which physical location I visit, it won’t satisfy the homesick feeling. I have been lucky enough to call many places home, and even more blessed to find people to love and be loved by in each of those places. 

What I miss is my sisters whispering secrets in my ear and giggling uncontrollably. The way my mother makes my favorite food when I am sad, which always includes a tall glass of southern sweet tea. My father’s listening ears. The Spanglish I speak with my Latin America obsessed friends. The cafecito my professors used to invite me to drink with them, and all the moments spent gleaning wisdom in their presence. I miss the various nicknames I am called, even the ones that aren’t my favorite. You are the only one I let call me that, or didn’t you know? I miss knowing I can text or call you at any time of day and that it will only take five minutes for us to meet up. Most of all, I miss knowing and being known. I think at the core, this is what home means. 

Greenville. I will never be able to say thank you enough for the place that brought me my best and closest friends. The place that was not only a home, but a sanctuary for me for 2 1/2 amazing years. Here I grew from a little girl to an adult, and was stretched and challenged. I learned—so much—not just in the areas I was majoring in, but also about life. What it means to live with others, loving each other through the messy parts of life. 

Denver. I think of this time in my life, and I feel overwhelmed. In the best way, because I could never have imagined how clearly God’s grace and love would be demonstrated to me during that summer. It changed my perspective on what it means to love your neighbor, and gave me a fondness for inner city streets. I still miss passing out all the change in my pockets and stopping to pray with people because that was the most important thing on our agenda. 

Oaxaca. When I get asked the story of why I live in Mexico now, or why I chose to study Spanish, I always come back to this. It was the first place I fell in love with, the place that taught me to open the borders of my heart. While I am coming to love you, too, Guadalajara, Oaxaca will always have first place as the city that drew me here. 

Kansas City. All my childhood memories are here. When I think of the family I am so close to, when I think of our holiday traditions and all the crazy, fun things we’ve done, I think of this place. When I am asked by my students what the U.S. is like, I tell them about Kansas City, because this is where I am from and I think having a clear understanding of that is crucial in understanding where you are now. 

To all the places who have opened their doors for me to call home, thank you. To all the people who make up my family, whether by blood or just through love, I can’t tell you how much I thank God for you in my life. You have shaped and formed me and I am grateful I have the privilege of missing you, even though it’s hard. 

Love, 
Me 

Citizens and Strangers: An identity crisis


“Estás en México, eres mexicana,” he told me.
We’d been having the same fight about the U.S. versus Mexico again. Somehow, I could never make him understand that while I don’t take pride in the way my government behaves, where I was born is part of who I am. Even if I wanted to, I couldn’t change that. “Pero vives aquí,”he insisted. I know the point he’s trying to make: if America was so wonderful, why did you leave?

 I try to counter this by pointing out that lately everyone I’ve met has said to me “No eres de aquí, ¿verdad?” It is not a question. He is not fazed, however. “Diles que sí. Sí, soy de aquí, soy de Oaxaca.” I roll my eyes. “No me van a creer,” I sigh. “¿Por qué? ¿Porque somos negros, chaparritos, feos?” He is indignant. No, it has nothing to do with racism on my part. There are many things that mark me as a foreigner besides my height and blonde hair.

 He is right about one thing, though. A part of me is Mexican. Tonight, on my walk home from work, I glanced up suddenly to see the Mexican flag rippling in the wind. A strange sensation of relief and comfort came over me, as though to say no matter how hard it has been, you are home. You are here.

 Regardless of the constant comments that brand me as a stranger, foreigner, and illegal emigrant, and regardless of my new international C.V. that proudly claims me as a  “Citizen of the United States of America,” I have realized something. Some nationalities have nothing to do with place of birth. Some are stamped onto the heart, a permanent brand unlike the stamp placed on a visitor’s visa which expires.

 But carrying this nationality of the heart is not easy. Going back cannot be an option when things are hard. And they are hard every day. Yet I am reminded of some other people who left their place of birth, called out by a similar desire to take on a new heart nationality. It wasn’t easy for them, either. It required complete devotion, determination, and faith.

 “All these people were still living by faith when they died. They did not receive the things promised; they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance. And they admitted that they were aliens and strangers on the earth. People who say such things show that they are looking for a country of their own. If they had been thinking of the country they had left, they would have had an opportunity to return. Instead, they were longing for a better country—a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them.” –Hebrews 11:13-16

What I am going through has shown me that I am willing (although still not happy) to be singled out as strange and foreign in order to reside in a place my heart has drawn me to. I should be equally willing to endure similar circumstances in order to gain a heavenly country. I think I am not yet ready to admit my status as a stranger and alien on earth, preferring to continue to protest that I am actually from here. I’m not ready to face the daily realities being a foreigner bring.

 It may be that everything that’s been hard for me here has been put in place to tangibly show and explain to me what it means to live by faith, looking for a better home. Even without knowing the end result. “By faith, Abraham, when called to go to a place…obeyed and went, even though he did not know where he was going. By faith he made his home in the promised land like a stranger in a foreign country; he lived in tents…for he was looking forward to the city with foundations, whose architect and builder is God.” –Hebrews 11:8-10

God never spelled things out for me as I wanted him to before I left to come here. All he said was I make rivers in the desert. And I have come to understand that all this time he has wanted me to follow without knowing each step, without seeing the end result, because that is walking by faith.

 “Therefore we do not lose heart. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.”

–Corinthians 4:16, 18

Another thing: shame and lies

"I am a sinner if it’s not one thing it’s another / Caught up in words, tangled in lies."

These words could not be truer of me than they are today. And as much as I wish I could hide it, wish that if I didn’t acknowledge it, then it wouldn’t exist, it does. The disease in me is real. But I’ve been ignoring it for a while now. I’ve been telling myself that I’m too busy to sit down and really examine things, to really check what is going on in my fickle heart. 

There is no evading the truth, though. And it caught up with me today. All I could ask —as I have a thousand times before—was “Will your grace run out / If I let you down? / ‘Cause all I know / Is how to run.” 

I’ve been disappointed and discouraged by people lately. I’ve been asking a lot of questions about why we as humans choose to behave in ways that are obviously so harmful to ourselves and others. 

It caught up with me. I finally decided to sit down for the dreaded examination. I picked up my bible and read this: 
"You, therefore, have no excuse, you who pass judgment on someone else, for at whatever point you judge the other, you are condemning yourself, because you who pass judgment do the same things. Now we know that God’s judgment against those who do such things is based on truth. So when you, a mere man, pass judgment on them and yet do the same things, do you think you will escape God’s judgment? Or do you show contempt for the riches of his kindness, tolerance, and patience not realizing that God’s kindness leads you toward repentance?” -Romans 2:1-4

Does his grace, then, run out? Because I need it. I am ashamed of my attitude. I should know better. Should know better than to show contempt for what has been shown to me, always. I do know better. But I am a believer of lies. I want to hide my face, because I’ve asked this question before: “Will you call me child / When I tell you lies?” I think I should’ve learned this lesson the last time I sat here. It’s uncomfortable. 

But there is good news. I am a sinner. The worst. And I am very tempted to dwell on that as my identity and feel more shame. “But you are a savior / And you take brokenness aside / And make it beautiful.” His grace does not run out. Everything I am, all I’ve done wrong and messed up and failed, especially lately, he is the opposite. More than that, he takes bad, the shame, the lies, and makes me someone who he calls child. Again. Whether it’s one thing, or another, or the same thing over again, I know this: he is a savior. His love is forever. It is big enough and strong enough to cover me. 

I may be weak…

I knew this day would come. I knew it wouldn’t be easy. I especially knew it wouldn’t feel good. This is the day adventure stories don’t talk about because it isn’t exciting. It doesn’t read smoothly; it’s not what we want to hear. 

Yet this day is real. This day in which I’m lying in bed, sipping water and eating jello because my stomach is still doing somersaults. This day that I don’t know at all what I’m doing. This day I could use the comfort of something familiar, however, I’m separated from everything I know. 

Almost. 

Today I may be tired. I may be uncomfortable. I may feel weak, with a million unanswered questions. But I know today is an important day. If it weren’t for today, I would never get the chance to see God’s character with the same clarity. 

While I am separated from everything I normally look to for comfort, the one thing I can never be separated from is God himself. 

As David says, “My health may fail, and my spirit may grow weak, but God remains the strength of my heart; he is mine forever.” (Ps. 73:26)

Today, while it may not be fun, I have the opportunity to see God’s goodness in contrast with my circumstances. I am weak (physically, emotionally, spiritually). His spirit is strong. I fail. He never has and never will. 

Therefore: “Bless the Lord, O my soul. Worship His holy name…whatever may pass and whatever lies before me, let me be singing when the evening comes.” 

image

I have a dream

It has occurred to me lately that it is possible to be too educated. To know too much. While that may sound like a preposterous statement, it has nonetheless felt very true for me these past few months. Your professors teach you so many things, but they do not tell you how hard it will be to face coworkers, family members, and strangers who have not had the privilege of being in class with you when professor so-and-so led that one discussion that forever changed your perspective. They do not teach you how to converse with a world that has forgotten how to question and how to allow space for new ideas, or for growth or change. 

In my time as a student, I have learned that it is a dangerous thing to stop studying, to arrive at a point at which you are no longer teachable. Yet this is what I’ve found has happened to most of us as time has gone by. We receive a diploma, we leave the classroom and we forget that this doesn’t certify us to stop thinking critically, to stop asking questions. But we do. We fall into routines that are, if not easy, at least well-known. In the endeavor to survive, it becomes us vs. them. Odd phrases creep into our language, we talk of those people over there. We continue on with our traditions, make statements and arguments that would never hold up in any undergrad research paper, and we don’t stop to wonder why. 

Tonight I sat across the dinner table from my dad, expressing some of my frustration about numerous conversations I’d had recently that had left me feeling disappointed and sad. I thought I wish we would all just be willing to learn from each other. To be students of a person whose experience is completely different from our own. What would that be like if we asked ourselves how it felt to be a man/woman, person of a different ethnicity, speaker of another language? 

I have a dream. I dream that one day we wouldn’t be too proud to be students without expiration (or graduation as some say) dates. I dream that the next man who tells me he’s worried for my safety as a woman traveling to a foreign city would ask himself why violence against women is so high. And in so doing, he might become concerned, not just for me, but for all women, and seek—not merely to warn me of danger—but to become part of the solution to the problem. 

I dream that when I walk into the place I work, what I hear won’t be the gossip of women who have nothing better to do than complain about their husbands, their children, or the girl who just walked out the door on lunch break. Instead, I dream I’d hear quiet. A quiet that comes not just from knowing how to keep your mouth shut, but from knowing a God who is full of peace, who knows how to quiet our hearts. 

I dream of the time that when dinner with my dad is over, he won’t have to drop me off at my mom’s house and say goodbye. I dream that one day they’ll be in the same room together again and I won’t have to feel anxious about a fight breaking out because we will no longer let bitter roots grow up between us (Hebrews 12:15). 

I dream we would stop shifting blame onto others and strive, along with Maya Angelou, to understand that “I am a human being, nothing human can be alien to me,” and therefore know the responsibility is ours to accept the wrong we’ve done and dare to change it. 

I dream the day will come when we know the words redemption, healing, forgiveness, adoption in action. That each of us would not be too lazy, stubborn, or proud to accept the role of a student so that one day we will learn what Jesus meant when he said “the kingdom of heaven is among you.” 

Faith

"Is everything ok?" I asked him, in the moment more out of habit than from real concern. I quickly became more alert as he shook his head, catching the "no" he mouthed, as though creating real sound to go with it was too difficult. "I’ll tell you later," he managed to add. The warning bells in my head were going crazy, and a sense of dread crept up my spine.

To jump out of the story for a minute, faith is something I’ve been praying about lately. Praying, because I realize that I don’t have the kind of faith I want to have. Praying because if I’m honest, I don’t know where to start when it comes to real faith and I’m not sure I even know what it means. But I want to know. 

Five days ago, my dad announced something that sent our family into a panic. “I lost Faith. She wasn’t there when I came home from work yesterday and we can’t find her anywhere.” To clarify, Faith is our golden retriever. We call her our miracle dog because of the amazing way she came into our lives and the people who have known more love because of her. She was named Faith before we got her, which seemed like even more of a confirmation that she was sent to us for a reason. 

The last five days have been filled with worries, many tears, phone calls, and prayers. We’ve done all the usual things to find our missing puppy. I admit, that while I’ve prayed every night, prayers that God would somehow keep her safe and bring her back to us, today I was about ready to believe that she was never coming back. And if that was true, I was ready to believe my faith was useless. If I couldn’t even trust God with my dog, how would I have faith when it came to bigger things? Disappointment and despair are easy friends. 

But the phone rang. “I have Faith, she’s here!” I could hear my dad’s voice, relieved and joy-filled, spilling across the line as my sister sat in near shock, her happiness uncontainable.

As it turns out, Faith hadn’t been dognapped like we’d thought. She had dug underneath the deck and gotten herself stuck, never barking to let us know she was there. She was trapped for five days without food or water, while we prayed for her to be safe wherever she was, not knowing the real danger she was in. 

Today she was found, and those prayers were answered. My cousin happened to hear a faint whimper and scratching noise as he left the house. After a lot of digging and tearing up boards, they were able to get her out. God kept her safe and he brought her back to us. 

When I prayed that God would teach me about faith, I’m not sure what kind of situation I expected him to use. I do know that this was definitely not it. But this week has shown me more about the God I want to have faith in and how much he loves. How much he cares about us. I was praying for more faith. In the end though, there were many, many people praying that our dog Faith would be found. God heard those prayers. And he used them to grow faith in more people than just me. That is a miracle. 

six months old

What people think

I have been struggling. There are a lot of things I always thought my life would be and at this point in time, it is none of those things. That’s ok. But it makes me feel lost. And so the questions pile up. Far beyond the innumerable questions I ask myself are the questions other people ask me. While they are not as varied in content, it is very hard to attempt to answer the same questions multiple times a day when, in all honesty, you don’t have an answer at all. Not even an idea.

It is very hard when, just a short while ago, I was confident I did have the answers to these questions. Answers that were not only acceptable to me, but to everyone else, too. See, while I don’t always make decisions based on other people’s opinions, their voices are very loud in my head. And the darned thing about it is that they seem so logical. Reasonable. I start to withhold my thoughts
because, I say, if people knew, they would think I am crazy. The problem is that start to think this, too. 

I have been praying a lot that God would give me answers. After all, there have been many times that he has. It is much easier to do something “crazy” when you are certain that it’s the right thing despite what people think. But this time I don’t know. I have been praying for clarity and for direction. I make rivers in the desert, God says. I don’t know what that means. I don’t know, and still I feel a pull to jump, and to trust that he will catch me.

…but hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what he already has? But if we hope for what we do not have yet, we wait for it patiently. -Rom. 8:24


My hope is for a good outcome, but I want to see it. I want to know before I climb out of the boat that it will be safe and that everything will be ok. But that isn’t faith. I don’t have that assurance that my plans will turn out well. And I get scared of this lack of knowledge. I want to know the answers so people will think I’m responsible.

I have been praying for a perfect knowledge while God is calling me to faith. I have been frustrated by the lack of yes or no. Trust me, Jesus says. Trust me to take care of you whether you fail or succeed. I make rivers in the desert. 


While I can’t change what people think, I want to trust more the God who makes those rivers. I want to plunge into that water, placing my confidence entirely on him, trusting that if I sink he will be there.