a love song. [this one’s for the girls]

This is a love song to my husband.

But Caitlyn, you’re not married, I hear you cry. Yes. Yes, I know. But I know that’s part of God’s plan for my life. I pray for my future husband daily. It’s not like I wake up saying, Ah, yes..pray for my husband. It’s more like..I pray for him when I do something stupid or have “one of those days”..knowing that he’ll have to deal with me someday, poor guy.

This is one of those songs that I’ve taken and morphed to mean what I want it to mean. That’s okay, folks. It’s okay. Brooke could have some wonderful reasoning behind this song, but here’s my interpretation and its application to the World of Caitlyn.

If I were capable of writing songs…I think I would have written this one. This song is a lot like a story. It starts out watching and wishing: [I watch as lovers pass me by/Walking stories, who’s and how’s and why’s] I know I’ve done this. I’m a hardcore people watcher. I love watching how people interact with each other; it’s fascinating to me. I’ve actually played that game with my dad before where we imagine what people are saying and invent conversations (which is also fun to do while watching a Spanish soap opera.) I want to be on the other side of that scenario someday; I want someone watching my husband and I and wondering what our love story is like.

[Musing lazily on love – pondering you] That’s probably my favorite line. Girls, we do this all the time.  We think about how our love story will play out. We plan our weddings. Plum will be the color at mine. (Pinterest isn’t helping this..by the way.) We name our children. I’ll have an Annabeth Rose. We plan and scheme all day, but then we realize how lonely all those plans are: that someone’s missing.  [Love is waiting ’til we’re ready/’til it’s right] I’m not just talking about the ol’ purity type of waiting, here. Although, that’s a huge part of it. Our hearts also need to wait. If we jump into every relationship that presents itself, thinking he’s our Prince Charming…we’ll have a lot of baggage with us at the altar on our wedding day.

[I could write a million songs about the way you same my name/I could live a lifetime with you and then do it all again/But like I can’t force the sun to rise or hasten summer’s start/Neither should I rush my way into your heart] I smile every time I hear that line. Save as much of your heart as you can. Think about guys you’re dating as some girl’s future husband, if he isn’t yours.

The Christ love song equivalent to this one is, “You’ll Come” by Hillsong…which is ironically also sung by Brooke Fraser. It’s currently my favorite worship song for many reasons.

All the single ladies

Pray for your husband every day. Even if you’re going through that, “(humph) I’ll never get married,” phase – pray for your husband. Pray for the fact that he’ll have to sort out your insecurities one day, God bless him. Pray because he’ll be the head of your house. Pray for your husband because hopefully he’s praying for you.

My prayer is that the chains of worldly dating rules will be broken. Eyes will be opened. Christ will be revealed. He’ll come.

Will you join me in praying for a patient heart?

-Caitlyn

Reading: “I Kissed Dating Goodbye” by Joshua Harris

like Adam, another victim of Lucifer’s lies.

I know I haven’t posted in a long time. That’s partly because I haven’t had a spare second to write anything and also because I couldn’t think of what to write. But, I’ve had a eureka moment!

If you grew up going to church like I did, you’ll agree that there are a lot of stories that you’ve heard a million times. Sometimes when a pastor or speaker says, “open your Bibles to Job” or “let’s look at Genesis together”, I tune out. I can admit that. I think here we go again and stop listening. That’s when my bad habit of day dreaming kicks in.

Recently, we’ve been digging in to the first three chapters of Genesis during UTA InterVarsity Bible studies. Genesis 3 is some powerful stuff. If its been a while since you’ve read it, I would recommend you do that.

I’ve written about The Fall before. When I read this passage last week, though, I took away a few things that I’d never noticed before. Don’t you love that? The words stay the same, but God keeps making them relevant in our lives.

When IV does Bible studies, we don’t really go too deeply into the Scripture. What I mean by “deep” is that we aren’t really into interpretations or “well maybe that means” moments. We look at the actual words and the surface facts. However…my brain’s first reaction isn’t to point out the obvious.

Bending God’s Word

Do you know what I mean? Have you ever read a verse that’s convicting and thought, that’s not really what that means? I do that more often than I care to admit. I think Eve was the first to do this. When the serpent questions God (by asking Eve if God really said not to eat of any tree in the garden), Eve then questions God. She says, “We may eat of the fruit of the trees in the garden, but God said, ‘You shall not eat of the fruit of the tree that is in the midst of the garden, neither shall you touch it, lest you die.'” She quotes God! She knew exactly what the rules were. She knew her boundaries. The serpent then tempts her with the idea of being similar to God. Verse 6 says, “So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes…she took of its fruit and ate..” Satan was able to take a thought and plant it in Eve’s mind, making her question what God had told her.

The Invention of Insecurity

When God is doling out the punishment to Eve, he says, “Your desire shall be for your husband, and he shall rule over you.” Adam and Eve had been equal partners up to this point in the naming-the-animals business. Not anymore. Think about it: women are constantly desiring the approval of men, whether it’s her father, sibling, boyfriend or husband. We weren’t created to live like that. We were created to serve God and seek His approval, to obey Him. Everything changed. We blame Eve. I’m guilty of that..based on the title of my last blog post about Adam and Eve. But in reality, we should be blaming at Satan. That darn serpent.

He Makes Beautiful Things

When Adam and Eve realized their sin, their eyes were open and they “knew that they were naked. They sewed fig leaves together and made themselves clothing.” (Note: This was right before they “heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden”. They heard God walking in the garden! I’m so jealous! Can you imagine what that sounded like?!) Later, in verse 21, God made Adam and Eve “garments of skins and clothed them.” Garments of skin. So…this was probably the first leather jacket? Maybe. Doubtful..but  maybe. This was, however, most likely the first death of an animal. Where’d the skin come from? God’s not the shortcut type. I don’t think He snapped His fingers and some fur coats fell like holy mana from the sky. An animal had to die to hide disobedience. An innocent animal had to die to protect and provide.

A Lamb would later have to die to cover all sin.

-Caitlyn

Listening to: Brooke Fraser. I love her. A whole lot.

something beautiful. (insecurity: part 2)

It’s been a while since I talked about Beth Moore’s book “So Long, Insecurity”, so here we go.

It’s high time we got our dignity back. Let’s just be real, here. How long has mankind (or womankind, for that matter) stood by the wall and said, “Oh, it’s cool. I don’t need my security. No one else out there has it. I’m good”? Whoa. I feel like there are secure people out there, even if they’re by backroads in Timbuktu. They’re there somewhere and I plan on joining them someday. Take the journey with me. We’ll only get there through the Father, but He’s ever willing to lend a hand.

Proverbs 31:25 says, “She is clothed with strength and dignity…”. Now that’s good Joe.

Now, read it again. But really READ it this time. Read each word.

Think about it. Ponder away, my friend.

—————————————————————–

Let’s break it down, shall we? I guess I should say “unpack.” I love when speakers say that. It makes me feel like we’re going camping. Which is intense. Get it? Intense…in tents…yeah. Alright.

She is clothed with strength and dignity.

She

Beth talks in her book about how Scripture has a bit of a preference for male gender references, which is no big deal to her…or to me, for that matter. Sure, the body of believers is referred to as the “sons of God”, but we’re also “the bride of Christ.” I feel like we’re equal in that stature. In this passage, however, God uses “she” which is clearly, significantly female. This passage is meant for the female journey.

Is Clothed

“We are not nearly as likely to react with the same level of insecurity when we remember how well covered we are by God” (BM). God’s love covers us like a security blanket. That feeling of being overexposed is almost unbearable sometimes. Do you know that feeling? When it seems like there’s a spotlight on you with a little dry-erase board propped up by your side listing everything you don’t want people to know? I’m pretty visual…so that’s what I’m seeing in my head right now. Walk with me, here. We forget that God’s love is so vast and unmeasurable, it covers us and then some. There’s leftovers! There are scraps for us to use on other people. I don’t like referring to leftovers of God’s love as scraps…but it goes with the visual.

With Strength

Strength is a huge part of the journey towards security. “Nothing makes a woman feel weaker than insecurity” (BM).  Ain’t that the truth, ya’ll! Oh, I went there. Insecurity has a way of making us cower back into the corner and wait for the storm to pass. There is nothing weak about Jesus Christ, though. Isaiah 40:31 says, “Those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength.” Renew! Fresh and new every morning, yet strong and everlasting. “If Christ is your Savior, sister, you are completely covered by a cloak of strength” (BM).

And Dignity

Did you know that the word translated “wife” in most versions of Proverbs 31:10 is a word that also simply means “woman”? This section is commonly titled “The wife of noble character.” In the context of verses 10-31, the woman was married, so the translation of “wife” worked well. However, these verses work for an unmarried woman, as well. Win for the singles! We get to have dignity, too! We can be women of noble character. That tagline doesn’t come after a wedding. The Bible talks about how God crowned us with dignity (Psalm 8:5), which is really cool. “He wrapped it as a crown right around our minds, just where we need it most” (BM). However, dignity isn’t something we always feel like a warm beanie on our heads. It’s something we have to claim because it is, literally, our God given right.

You are clothed with strength and dignity. I am clothed with strength and dignity.

There are a lot of gifts that are given to us from the Father. Many of them, we’ll never stare in the face and accept. Security is definitely one of those. There’s an enemy out there that wants us to flee from strength and dignity, and sometimes that enemy is the one looking back at us in the mirror. Why do we run from security, friends?

2 Corinthians 12:9-10, “But He said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”

-Caitlyn

Listening to: Christy Nockels. She’s the woman.

*(BM) means the quote is from Beth Moore’s book, “So Long, Insecurity.”

curse you, Eve. (insecurity: part 1)

I’ll have some choice words with her when I get to Heaven. We’ll need a mediator.

I’ve been a part of a Bible study that meets on Tuesday mornings. We’re going through Beth Moore’s book “So Long, Insecurity.” It’s been awesome so far. At first, it was difficult for me because I wasn’t exactly sure what my insecurities were. It’s hard to fill a hole when you can’t find where it is, after all. As I read the first chapter, I immediately discovered what I struggle with: validation and acceptance.

Everyone wants to be loved in some way. I like when people like me, pure and simple. I tend to go out of my way to please people and make sure everyone’s happy. I’m sure my parents are nodding as they read this. I’m that way to my core and I always have been. I used to be lacking in confidence, and I still am to a point. Where does confidence come from? Magazine covers and movies? Hollywood and runways? Yeah, for a lot of people. But as Christians, where should our confidence stem from? From God, of course. What’d you think I was going to say?

Our confidence should come from our validation in Christ. His sacrifice alone proves we are worthy of love. He loves us no matter what we do or think. No one on earth can offer that same promise.

How do we do that, though? It’s easy to say: My confidence is in Christ. But how do we reach the point where our heart agrees with our souls? We have to find who God is. When we do that, we’ll start uncovering our identities in Him. My prayer is, “I am who You created me to be. I’m not concerned with anything but glorifying You.” At first, I may not have fully believed that prayer, but I wanted to be able to say it whole heartedly. And in time, that’s exactly what I believe. I don’t care what anyone says about me. I only care what God has said about me and His plan for my life.

Satan uses insecurities as his battle cry. He is the writer of insecurities. They’re simply lies that Satan has fed the world that the world, in turn, feeds to us.

2 Corinthians 4:7 [The Message] says, “If you only look at us, you might well miss the brightness. We carry this precious Message around in the unadorned clay pots of our ordinary lives. That’s to prevent anyone from confusing God’s incomparable power with us.”

Insecurities cause us to question God. We wonder if He knows what He’s doing, if He really knows us. We lose sight of the gift God has given each of us and our view of the world gets all wonky. His voice is the one we need to hear. It all comes full circle back to the Fall of Man in that Garden of Eden. Eve believed the lies of the serpent that God was holding something back from her. She fell to the ways of sin and we pay the price for it every day. As nice as it would be to push all the blame solely on her, that’d be a lie. We’re pretty guilty, ourselves. We choose to believe the lies of the world rather than trust in the truths of God. Why are we like that?

At the end of this post, I’m posting a video of one of my favorite songs. (One thing about me is that I have a lot of “jams”. This is definitely one of them.) My favorite line in this song is “Why are you looking for love?/Why are you still searching as if I’m not enough?/To where will you go, child/Tell me where will you run?” That’s one of my insecurities all tied up with a pretty ribbon. We are constantly searching for our prince charming or true love, but the kicker is…He’s already here! Our culture feeds us the lie, ladies, that only a man can make you happy and fulfilled, but true fulfillment lies with the Father, and the Father alone. Why do we tell ourselves any different? I’m excited to see what this Bible study uncovers about me and I’ll write about my discoveries in insecurity as we go.

-Caitlyn

Listening to: “By Your Side” by Tenth Avenue North