Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Krispy Kremes

I'm convinced that Christians will clap and cheer for anything if said by the right person. 

For instance, I watched a YouTube video of Louie Giglio the other night that was completely ridiculous.  Now don't get me wrong; I think Louie Giglio is an incredible speaker.  After all, I did look him up on YouTube.  What was so comical about this particular video was the topic:  Krispy Kreme Donuts.  People were hootin' and hollerin' like Krispy Kremes are the absolute meaning for their entire existence.
Why does this happen?  Why have I been counted among the number of people who have cheered for something so silly?  I think it's because we have such a deep need to belong.  We need to be counted among a larger number for a larger purpose.

The portion of Louie Giglio's message that I listened to was approximately 10 minutes long, and about 85% of it was spent talking about all the facts about Krispy Kreme.  He ended this schpeel by eating a donut, and the crowd really roared!  His illustration pointed to our need to experience Jesus, not just be able to spew details about Him.  Like the donut, the point is not to just know a lot about Jesus, but to experience Him.

That's a great point...but it seemed to be lost on the crowd.  For 8.5 minutes, they cheered about donuts, but when the final point was made, when our need for a relationship with Jesus was noted, the crowd was silent!

I know this is an illustration of the majority of my time "following Jesus".  I haven't always known what it really means to experience Him, to make Him LORD of my life, to trust Him completely.  That seems to be the case with a lot of other Christians, too.  It's the reason we can cheer about nothing, but find ourselves silent and questioning when presented with Jesus. 

I'm trying to get to know Him better, and I truly do find myself cheering for Him and caring less and less about the things of this world.  The more I read about Him and talk to Him, the more and more I fall in love with Him.  The more I share in fellowship with other people who are passionate about the LORD, sharing my experiences and sharing in their's, the more I want to jump up and down and shout His name to the world!

Thursday, December 16, 2010


Sometimes my life makes me sick.  Somedays it's so ordinary and self-indulgent.  When it's all about me and I realize it, I feel like screaming.  Why do I get so caught up in what I think, what I believe, what I'm doing?  I start out truly seeking Christ, but before I know it, my faith has turned into something I'm proud of...like I created it or something. 

Today, I'm grateful to all the people who are living out their faith with reckless abandon.  Reading about their journeys is a reminder to stop thinking about myself and look at the world around me.  There are people crying, starving, freezing, killing, dying, abusing and being abused, hurting themselves and their families, and me...I'm safe, warm, and happy, thinking this life is all about me. 

And above and beyond all that, there is a Mighty God on the throne who deserves my constant praise.  It's time to again find the balance.  More of Jesus.  Less of me.

Working from home...

Today I'm working from home.  I feel like such a grown-up (and I really look the part in my bright pink youth retreat t-shirt and winter forest jammie pants).  I never thought I'd have a job where I'd get to work from home.  I guess I never thought I'd have a lot of the jobs I've worked.

I've done a lot of different things, from nannying to managing an office, and every job left me really bored most of the time.  With all these experiences, I've learned two things.  1. I really can do anything I put my mind to (my mom always told me that, and you know moms are always right!).  2. If you don't follow your dreams, they'll nag at you, and you'll be full of frustration and regret. 

I'm really excited to be going back to school.  I need to be in ministry.  My heart won't let me rest until then.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Sometimes I do cool things...

So...it's 1am.  I finished my bout of creativity around midnight, but I've been fighting a ferocious battle with this laptop...erg.

Anyway, tonight I decided to throw my routine to the wind and feed my heart and soul with a new art project.  What a way to distract myself from my "anticipatory anxiety" about the busyness of the next month!

I have to say, the credit for this one goes to etsy.com for my daily inspiration.
The pages of an old Elle magazine will not be thrown out.  Yay for recycled art!
I did my best with the pictures...if my sister were here, I could have provided much better photos!
What can I say?  I'm a sucker for circular patterns.  I love this one.  It was totally worth how tired I'll be at work tomorrow.


I entered one of my blog posts into "Wordle"...I love the design.  Check out their site:  http://www.wordle.net/


Sometimes when I'm in the middle of a book, I'll stop and ask myself, "What's the point?"  For whatever reason, I've lost my focus, and forget how the current section fits into the overall purpose of the chapter, and ultimately, the entire book.

Life's like that at times.  Some days, I find myself in the middle of a situtation asking myself, "What's the point?"  Some situations don't make sense when I lose my perspective.  When I forget that my life is but a page - in the book of this era - in God's volumes of history - it's easy to get frustrated and lose my drive for life.

Just like reading a book, when I lose perspective in life, it helps to stop, remind myself of the overarching purpose of this life, and start anew.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

I have the best dad in the world.

I honestly don't know if I have enough words to say.  I can't express how grateful I am to have been born the daughter of Marvin Johnson.
You know, God knows exactly what we're going to need.  He knows what we'll go through, and He equips us.  He provides all the strength, resources, and support necessary for us to find joy and abundant life. 

Despite the hardships I faced as a kid, a teenager, and now, as an adult from the loss of my mother, among all the other trials of this life, my dad demonstrated Christ's love through all of it.  My daddy didn't even know Jesus when I was little.  But he knew how to love with real, unconditional love.  Not because of his own ability, but because he was created in the image of my Holy Father in Heaven.
My dad is an incredible man.  He's one of the smartest, and yet, most humble people I know.  He's compassionate, skilled, and inventive.  His life story is extraordinary.  Ask him.  You'll see. 
My dad taught me so many things.  Integrity.  Justice.  A strong work ethic.  Love.  Honesty.  The fadeaway...okay, so I never quite mastered that, but he definitely took time to show me.
My dad constantly told me I was beautiful when I was growing up.  Despite my crooked teeth, crazy hair and eyebrows, and my awkwardness, he would look me in the eye and tell me how precious I was to him.  I knew he meant it. 
One of the most important things that my dad taught me was what kind of man I should marry.  I don't know that we really talked about it much, but he showed me with his life.  I married an incredible man.  My standards were high, because my daddy treated me like gold.

Thank you, Jesus, for my dad.  He's trying to be just like You.  That makes for one amazing father.

Monday, December 13, 2010


After sorting through a bunch of my birth mom's possessions on Saturday, I came to the conclusion that memories (no matter how delightful or painful) are valuable.  They make our lives rich and remind us how far we've come. They remind us who we are. 

I've come to a place of healing, where I've let Christ into the deepest parts of me.  Memories that were too painful to behold and that darkly overshadowed the pleasantries of my youth, now provide me with a sort of bittersweet thankfulness.  My biological mother and older brother are gone from my life, but not from my heart.  I miss them, but they are part of me.

Thursday, December 9, 2010


I posted a status yesterday that said, "If you need to get in touch with me, my email address is felishajoyce@gmail.com. I probably won't be checking my Facebook anymore."  The instant response was concern (which is kind), but it wasn't my goal to worry anyone.  I've found that my communication skills aren't always stellar.

I decided to stop checking Facebook, and possibly even delete my page, because of a few personal reasons that I don't mind sharing.  Because I'm seeking to find balance in my life, I've reconsidered deleting my page.  I just need to stop checking it so much.

I'm getting ready to pursue my M.A. in Counseling.  It's going to be a lot of work and take a lot of time.  I believe this is God's call for my life, so I need to prioritize.  I have big dreams, but I've been living a pretty mundane existence.  I've come to realize there are things in my life that I could cut out that would give me more time for the things I really care about.  I want to live a radical life for Jesus, and the hours every week that I spend on Facebook are holding me back.  Now, this is not to say that YOU can't live a radical life for Jesus while using Facebook...it's just that I can't do the things I've been doing if I want to live 100% for Him.

Now, let me be even more transparent...Facebook enables me not to be in relationships.  Let me explain.  For the majority of my life, I was a very cautious person who was afraid of relationships.  I lived by fear, rather than by faith.  I know that I was created for relationship, which is one of the reasons Facebook and other forms of social media are so appealing.  I long for social interaction!  What I've found, however, is that Facebook allows me to keep up with the events of people's lives without actually having to invest.  Rather than calling or meeting up with someone to find out how he/she is doing, I can simply Facebook "stalk".  It finally hit me that I don't really deserve to know what's going on with someone if I'm not willing to give of my time.  In a way, for me, it's more like catching up on gossip than actually getting to know the people I care about.  If I spent half the time I use for Facebook with other people, my friendships would deepen.  I want REAL friends.  I want to LOVE people, not just watch them live their lives.

Facebook also enables me to continue living a boring, ordinary life, all the while longing for more.  When I was a kid, I would often watch other kids having fun, but was too afraid or too cautious to join in.  Unfortunately, not much changed over the years.  I find myself reading other people's pages, looking at their pictures, and thinking to myself, "That's awesome!  I wish my life was that interesting.  I wish I was living that adventerously for Christ!"  So the other day, a thought hit me..."Get off Facebook and LIVE!" 

Matthew 5:29 says, "If your right eye causes you to stumble, gouge it out and throw it away..."  In my life today, this translates as, "If your Facebook holds you back from God's plan for your life, stop checking it!"

I know this might seem weird, but I'm very convicted about it.  I don't think Facebook is sinful; I actually think it's a wonderful way to keep in touch with people you care about.  BUT just like anything else in life, too much of a good thing can be bad...