Love Begins With Loving Yourself

Love Begins With Loving Yourself

For as long as I could remember, it seemed everyone around me had someone special in their life. All the while, I held on to what has kept me strong–my faith. I felt that my heart was ready to love someone, but felt like there was a hedge of protection on me that was saving me for what was coming. (How do I know this?) I could feel rather quickly by being around someone if we were going to hit off or not. Most of the time, I didn’t feel that spark everyone talks about.

When I gave up on searching for my special someone, I asked God to show me His love for me. I knew He was present in my life, but I wanted to SEE and FEEL the love He had for me. I wanted my heart to feel the warmth of affection and flutter of endless joy.

In return, I have seen hearts that have brought me to absolute tears knowing they were divine tokens from above. You can call me crazy, but I know this was an answered prayer. In addition to finding hearts in nature, my heart became soft for others. My empathy increased as I did what I could to turn other people’s sadness or emptiness into a newfound joy I had found. Sometimes I like to think I made someone’s day with a simple smile or few words of encouragement.

Love isn’t something you give to another without having it overflow into your own life. Love begins with loving yourself. Look from within yourself and learn to love yourself completely. Be nice to who you are and watch who you become.

If you are empty on the inside and rush to the world to fill you, you will always be searching for a refill. Trust me, when you can accept your own flaws and habits then you can start to share your love with another.

Do We Stay or Go our Separate Ways?

(Bare with me, I’m having a food crisis–enjoy the food humor.)

Dear Chocolate,

We were only supposed to meet on Sunday, but when I forgot to gorge myself in a Publix yo-yo cookie we decided to make an exception and catch up on Monday. When Monday came, I felt guilty but you led me to believe it would only happen just this one time. Tuesday came and I wanted more of you, but you were not around. I started to worry and think I did something wrong.

On Wednesday, I thought I was going to be ok until I remembered I ran out of chocolate soy milk. I reached for sugar-free jello dark chocolate pudding, but it just didn’t seem appealing anymore. Thursday was my nephew’s birthday and it would have been rude of me to ignore you when everyone was enjoying your company, so I thought I would too. You were great in the ice cream and perfect in the marble cake. I wish I had taken seconds and possibly thirds if no one was around to judge us.

Now, it is Friday and I knew you would find a way to make my heart melt again. As soon as I saw the dessert menu, I let my inhibitions go. I ordered a strawberry chocolate milkshake and three cookies for me and a friend after our dinner. I shared the cookies, but wish I hadn’t because I wanted you all to myself. I didn’t waste any time savoring the delicious flavors that danced on my tongue and slowly relaxed in my stomach.

I promised fruits, vegetables, and sugar-free “chocolaty things” we could spend time together Monday through Saturday. Now that I have neglected them for you, I think they are upset with me. I told them we were not going to see each other anymore during the week, but they don’t believe me. I came home to see a handful of strawberries in the refrigerator, but I ignored them.

See what you are doing to me? I am ignoring the things I once enjoyed because I want to spend time with you. It is not fair for you to keep torturing me like this. I know we have great chemistry and you are hard to resist, but this is where we must go our separate ways

… until Sunday comes around again! (:

Living inside your own little world…

… seems fun at first, but quite depressing shortly after. I have been “living inside my own little world” because the outside world, frankly was starting to suck. (: I’m sure we have all been there a time or two. I thank my small circle of friends who kept me out of total isolation by doing what friends do best:  love, encourage, listen, and communicate it in ways I can see and feel. I have been throwing myself into a calendar and filling the hours of each day to keep myself “busy” to ignore what is really going on the inside. I have been unhappy. I might have aluded to it in previous posts, but it’s more than just unhappy…it’s the PAIN I feel of letting go of a loved one, seeing the death of someone who hurt me blasted on Facebook, and realizing the seasons were changing. Throughout this ENTIRE painful process, I kept to myself. I tried reaching out to the familiar, but when God is telling you to do things that are uncomfortable–do you listen on the first time? I know I didn’t. I was stubborn and kept to myself more than ever, wishing someone would notice and rescue me.

I’m better, but not completely healed from this pain because it is a process to pick up my cross daily and fight to bring God glory. (I love Luke 9:23) My church started a series called Painkiller by the amazing Pastor Russ Austin. Through this “not so” easy series of messages you do not normally hear or experience everyday, it it exactly what I needed to hear. Going to my college campus ministry, Resolution, and hearing Aaron Austin preach was the sprinkles to the cake to reinforce it all. To try a new blog style, I’ll bullet what I’ve learned thus far:

  • “Junk” in our parents, produces “junk” in the children. The “junk” I carry is staying busy, too busy…
  • As a result, children do not have the ability to give and receive love. I was loved and taken for as a child, but I have a hard time recognizing love in others. I have a strong sense of empathy and can usually sense my insecurities more than anything else. Simply put, I’m afraid to love people the way God wants me to.
  • If the Lord satisfies you, then the world (or anything in it) can’t satisfy you anymore.
  • What do I consider my ultimate reason for being here on Earth? (To bring glory to God first.)
  • What would it take for me to walk out on God… what is my limit? This was hard to swallow because after all the PAIN I have been dealing with, in my mind I was giving up on God but yet I found comfort in him daily. I choose to suffer through it with God because it brings him glory:
  1. I choose to suffer by saying goodbye to a relationship that wasn’t in God’s timing.
  2. I choose to suffer by putting my passions under a microscope and make sure I’m aligned with God before I step forward.
  3. I chose to suffer by forgiving the person who hurt me (who has passed on) because Christ forgave me.
  4. I choose to suffer by finding opportunities in my schedule to be “uncomfortable” by reaching out to people or find new adventures in my free time.
  5. I choose to suffer to put my flesh aside and seek God in a more holy way.

If you have been praying or thinking of me, thank you. I’ve been gone a while and have missed you! One day at a time, one day at a time…