Melting Away

It’s about 1:20 pm on a Friday as I write this. I’m currently in Southern Arizona so you can imagine how a June day would feel. You would then feel relieved because you knew that you’d arrive to a cool office so the heat wouldn’t be too much of a hassle. The air in the office went out yesterday.

I froze a powerade and a water bottle and bought a frappuccino. I’m dead. As I sit here on my own in this hot office looking for immediate distraction I think about how much I have wanted pray as of late, and how much I have not followed through. A million and one excuses. I’m physically hot, yet spiritually I feel like the warm grapes on my desk that I didn’t finish this morning. I don’t think I’ve ever gone this long like this. I don’t believe in Limbo yet that’s exactly how I feel. I’m just existing spiritually. I’m hoping that admitting it is the my first step to recovery. I read a post earlier from Rick Warren. It talked about how Eve wasn’t attracted to the tree of Good and Evil because of it’s darknesses, but because she saw that it was good. He went on to say that just because something is good it doesn’t mean that it comes from God’s goodness, even the devil was at some point an anger.

I’ll admit right now things are good, but that’s all they are, and while I appreciate it, I don’t want things to just stay “good.” I want fire and I think I’m coming to a point where “good” isn’t enough anymore.

May 2016- The Month I “Adult-ed”

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image credit : werejustherepretending.com

You can call me silly, but I compartmentalize the responsibilities of adulthood from who I am personally. I am 23 years old and I don’t feel like an adult. On my wedding day I probably won’t feel like an adult. When I’m holding a child in my arms I will definitely not feel like an adult, but none the less I, by definition am an adult.

I had a funny childhood where I had to mature at a young age so to compensate I Benjamin-Button-ed my maturity, at least on a personality level. I know it’s not the smartest thing, but it happened. At one point I just refused to be responsible.

But alas, I finished school and got a job. Well then I needed a car and got a car, started paying rent and officially got health insurance on my own and then graduated. Granted I had my job for a while but I did most of that in a month. And I still can’t get over it.

Most people would say okay? People do all of that everyday why is this so important? Honestly, it’s been miraculous. Yeah, I’m smart and capable and blah blah blah, but I struggle with my own self. I tend to be very hard on myself and often demean my accomplishments most of which I couldn’t have gotten through without hours of scripture and on my knees praying. Let me show you why my life to this point has basically been miraculously.

I technically shouldn’t have been born.

My mom was diagnosed at an early age with poly-cysitic syndrome, which makes it next to impossible to conceive. Yet, voila! Here I am.

Not only am I an ethnic minority, but I am also a gender minority.

I know that sounds like a cop out but it’s not. Statistically speaking I wasn’t very likely to make it this far being that I’m a Hispanic Woman from a upper-lower class income.

I messed up in highschool and still got a scholarship.

I went through I not so great situation in my life that I allowed to compromise my goals and emotional stability and failed two classes. Yet somehow still made it out with a community college scholarship and FAFSA that paid for two years of college.

I didn’t take my SATs and still made it into a well known Arts University.

Yup  I didn’t take them, but because Columbia College Chicago is an open draft school and I did two years of school prior to attending, I didn’t need SAT or ACT scores.

I couldn’t afford it.

$12,000 a semester is a pretty penny and there was still an amount that I had to pay out of pocket at the time, but I was qualified for government aid and loans making it possible for me to attend.

I didn’t have much of a portfolio after I graduated.

While I saved a ton of money by attending community college first I was sincerely lost. I had no clue what exactly I wanted to study and when I figured it out it turned out that there was three different facets to the degree and I had to stick with one if I wanted to create a solid portfolio that demonstrated my professional abilities in at least one area. Barely two year into the game and only one or two side projects left me with a wanting portfolio.

It takes months to find a job.

After another one of my ever so popular meltdowns I moved back home. As most people know it takes a while to get hired. On my first serious day of searching (weeks after I moved back and was applying online) I got a job.

I had a cheap car that couldn’t be driven out of town.

Actually this car itself was a miracle, we got it for $500 with very little miles and a great sound system and figured we could fix whatever was wrong with it with another $500. That is, until our car just died.

I ended up having to purchase a new car, but with nothing to repair and very little miles. My mom had prayed to God if we could the same great deal she got with our Exterra, low and behold we got the exact same Exterra down to the color.

I didn’t have health insurance.

So I didn’t have insurance that travelled outside of the state and I had just moved. I ended up at a job that had just that.

 

You see most of these things are small but make a world of a difference and it happened in a matter of weeks. I’m still surprised at how most of everything panned out. That I was blessed with unbelievable parents (I have three <3) and that everywhere I’ve gone I’ve received nothing but support and love.

I guess really this post was about gratitude and the fact that at the end of the day I don’t have to compromise who I am or what I’ve been through to carry through this adult world.

Thanks for reading Maggie

 

 

 

 

 

It was all a lie…

I am officially in my mid-twenties. From what I have heard it is a time of acceptable mistakes, self-discovery and finding ultimate purpose. What people fail to tell you are the implications that come with “finding yourself.” I recently read an article from relevant magazine (I’ll leave the link below) about “the list.” This list captures the milestones that you should have reached by your mid to late twenties. You know it: Graduate college and or grad school, get married, have kids, good job, white picket fence… and so on. This is the tangible delusion.

I grew up on fiction. We moved often and I was an only child, so naturally I needed someone or something to keep me company. At seven, I learned to speak, read and write English. I didn’t actually have anyone to tell me which books I should read, I only had an interesting back cover and the chance to escape into a new story. I would go to these other worlds that always promised happy endings or true love.

The thing is no matter how much you escape into these fantasy worlds where the main character triumphs and wins you tend to forget the journey. I know I do all of the time. I have definitely been through some milestones. I graduated high school, moved, graduated college, and now here I sit writing. I have no clue where exactly my life is going.

I have no clue where exactly my life is going. I have all these milestones and I felt that I had nothing but a piece of paper to show for it. I felt like an utter failure. Everyone around me was getting jobs, married and buying their first homes. It’s a very tangible really, the sober reality that you are “behind”, virtually unaccomplished, but it is also a delusion.

I recently made a decision I never thought I was going to need to take and it falls outside of “The List.” Turns out it is completely okay that I am not following societies long list of requirements to be fulfilled or happy. I know my blogs are long, but I encourage you to come back tomorrow and accompany me on this road of uncertainty and amazing adventure God is about to send me on!

 

Relevant Magazine

 

 

Whole Heartedly

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About a year and a half ago I found myself in the worst depression I had ever experienced. I had felt sadness before, I had felt longing before, but I had never come to a place where every cell in my body desired to be in a completely different place. I felt so unbelievably alone and yet I sat in a small dark corner in an otherwise loud and lit house. I kept reminding myself that I wasn’t alone. I knew that I believed in Jesus and that He would always be there for me. I had a dad who loved having me around and a step mom that actually loved me. I had to remind myself that I had siblings that loved me and in small moments shared their appreciation for my presence, but it wasn’t enough.

My original place of dwelling was just this one wonderful woman I call mom and myself. Just two people in a home and I never felt the desire to be somewhere else quite like that night. Something was devastatingly wrong with me. I wanted to run away from virtually nothing. There was no one harming me, I hadn’t moved out of some terrible accident. I had made the choice to move to the one city that had always had a tug on my heart.

I feel that I have to add another side story here. I have always been the “Good Christian Girl.” According to my mom even as a baby, I was, for the most part, a great human she was raising. I never did anything blatantly dumb, I didn’t secretly drink or party, I just spent all of my time with friends at church. Now by this point, I could proudly walk around and claim that I was a Christian. I knew the lingo and knew most of the stories so I was set. I knew enough to get by with the title.

I did love Jesus. I knew so little about Him, but I knew even at ten that I loved Him. I had been moved by His spirit and accepted Jesus into my heart. I was water baptized and was a part of the ministry. I prayed for others and held certain convictions that I knew were right. I was a “Good Christian Girl”.

There is something that I don’t believe is discussed enough within the Christian community. I don’t think it is out of direct ignorance, I just think that we get caught up in knowing Christ that we forget to show everyone else how to seek Him beyond the charismatic revivals, miraculous encounters, and every day save me prayers. We forget to inform young believers that beyond accepting God into your life there is a step further they may choose to take. They may choose to be “Sold Out.”

So back to my pity party and occasional miraculous encounters with God.

There I am on the cold ground of the laundry room. A faint light from the neighboring home office computer lit the room enough to identify the objects in the room. It was the only spot in the house I was convinced no one could hear me sob. My face was soaked in tears and the not so complimenting moisture from my nose.

“I can’t do this anymore. I am sad and I should have never moved here. I should just head back to the safety of my mother’s arms and the encouraging words of my best friends. No one gets me. I feel like nobody understands why I’m at church all the time. I have no friends no one to talk to. I can’t stay here anymore. I don’t care if I fail the semester and lose all those credits, I can make them up some other place I just can’t deal with this place anymore. God! If you don’t bring me friends and people that I can talk to about You I’m leaving.”

I was determined at that point since I had made no real progress and everyone I knew that would pray for me were so far away, that I would leave. I was convinced that no one would truly miss me here and that I needed to get back to my friends because they needed me more.

That was the turning point. That was the first time that I had truly challenged God. It was the first time that my prayers were true, raw and honest. I hadn’t realized it at that point, but that was the moment God had chosen buy me out.

The next Monday I sat in the cafe with my one friend Juli. It was a typical day and I masked the need to flee with casual conversation and smiles. Sometime during the conversation I zoned out (sorry Julie). My ears perked up and the very rare lyrics of Hillsong began to resonate in my ears. Is that worship music? Nah. I’m probably projecting what I wish it was. WAIT, NO, THAT IS WORSHIP MUSIC. The music continued as I stopped our conversation halfway through and started whipping my head around trying to figure out where the music was coming from.

“Julie I hear worship music.” I settled down and finished my lunch, but as we rose to go to class I needed to identify the individual playing such precious music. I got up and walked over to some round tables where an iPhone lay blasting declarations of God’s goodness. There sat a smiling, scratch that, grinning man. Next to him was a thin freshman looking boy, a sweet looking female student and across from him a younger male student. Come to find out the only student was the freshman looking kid, and he was not a freshman.

I approached the tables and as the grinning man turned I asked, “Is that worship music?” And it was.

 

I am not advising you to challenge God. If anything He will look at you straight in the face, pull a Barney Stinson and answer, “Challenge Accepted.” He will win, because He is God. What I learned from this experience was that I had to stop sensoring myself with God and just tell Him. I needed to tell Him how I was, what I needed. I needed to seek him WHOLE HEARTEDLY and SOLD OUT. I needed to hand every last bit of dignity, pride, and soul let Him answer me.

I pray that if you read this ridiculously long post that you can find a place or even exactly where you are and let yourself ugly-cry. Yes, I just said ugly-cry. I do mean water all over your face, snot pouring out and the acceptance that you probably don’t look your best at that moment. But it’s at your physically ugliest that God can begin bring out the spiritually beautiful. Tell Him what you feel even if you don’t know what you feel and ask Him to give you what you need.

Thank you for reading

Magdalene