In Defense of Humility

In Defense of Humility


     "Humility. Thousands of humans have been brought to think that humility means pretty women trying to believe they are ugly and clever men trying to believe they are fools." ~C.S. Lewis, The Screwtape Letters

     If you've ever been caught in the trap of "I shouldn't think I am pretty. I shouldn't be recognized for my talents. It's wrong to love myself," then you know what destructive and false humility looks and feels like.

     "True humility is not thinking less of yourself; it's thinking of yourself less." ~C.S. Lewis

     Even though we all know this in our deepest being, sometimes we forget.

     So, darling, I'm here to remind you of three things:

     I. We all have unique gifts and talents to use for God's glorybe it beauty, intellect, strength and prowess in sports, creativity, or a myriad of other gifts.

     II. However, we are not to boast in anything but Christ.

     III. And lastly, humility means setting aside any pride we might begin to have in ourselves or our own accomplishments and instead pour our energy into loving others as equals.

     As The Screwtape Letters goes on to say, "[God] wants each man, in the long run, to be able to recognize all creatures (even himself) as glorious and excellent things."

     Darling, you are a glorious thing! It's time to recognize both yourself and others as beautiful masterpieces. God wants you to have a gratitude for yourself. He wants you to be able to recognize and celebrate the beautiful people you live alongside.

     When you love others as yourself, you will be able to fully love yourself in good and proper ways. You won't have to worry about having pride in the wrong places because you will have already placed that pride in the right places.

     To see that others are glorious and excellent creatures made by God is a lovely thing.

     It's the essence of humility.

     So don't beat yourself down. Humility isn't about hate. It's about love.

     "Pride goes before destruction," but "humility comes before honor" (Proverbs 16:18, Proverbs 15:33b)

     Humility is the way of gracious and wise people; their spirits sit in awe of an incredible God. Those are the spirits which pour out love for others unreservedly.

~Madeline

Dear Pride

Dear Pride


Dear Pride,
This is going to be a hard letter to write, but I have to do it.
I’ve met someone else.
His name is Humility.
I know, I know, he’s your arch-nemesis. But I’ve had a lot of time to think lately, and I’ve decided that I don’t want to be lied to anymore.
You were always there for me, holding me up and shielding me from the hurts of others. But to what end? You actually separated me from the relationships that would have given me life.
You made my life complex and difficult when it didn’t have to be.
You told me that I didn’t need anyone else, that God was just a support to lean on when things overwhelmed me. Otherwise, I could do life on my own. You made me feel strong, but it was an empty, lonely strength. You made me think I could beat the devil, but instead I drew him to me. No, Pride. No more.
Sometimes you turned the tables on me, abusing me with sharp words and harsh accusations. When I was with you, you told me I was pretty, but underlying your words was your hidden message that my beauty was cheap and utilitarian.
Humility tells me the truth. Sometimes it hurts, but in a way that refines me, as if he were holding my hands as we both pass through a cleansing fire.
He opens me up and allows me to be vulnerable, supporting me in life-giving relationships while encouraging me to be brave and honest.

With him, I am safe. He lives simply, and as long as I stay by his side, I am at rest.
He assures me that life is best done with the source of all Life, that God is more than strong enough to handle the life I can’t handle on my own. He draws me closer to God, and emboldens me to resist the devil. When I am with him, the devil can’t touch me.
Humility loves me. He tells me what he hears God saying: that I am beautiful and sacred and treasured. I am priceless, not inferior. I am a masterpiece, not a tool.
I am leaving you, Pride. And don’t you go looking for a rebound, because she doesn’t need you either.
~Hannah W.
“Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded…Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up.”
James 4:7-8, 10

walk humbly 

walk humbly 


Last month, some amazing posts were written on the reality of forgiveness.

Madeline taught me about learning to forgive
Grace Anne told me to let go
Abbiee warmed my heart while reminding me of God's reckless love

Forgiveness is hard.
Hard things have to happen for forgiveness to be warranted.
And that?
Errr, not supper duper fun

A little over a month ago, a girl said some very malicious things to me.
And it was horrible.
I don't know why.
I don't understand what happened.
I don't know what sort of internal pain would cause someone to do that.

And it plays
and it plays
and it plays  in my mind.

Sometimes it took everything inside of me to keep from screaming my lungs out when she stood next to me.
I would sweat and shake and fear that she would do it again.

And I started praying these six words,
"God, give me grace to forgive" 

Hundreds of times, "God give me grace to forgive."
"God, please give me grace to forgive."
"Father, give me grace to forgive"

But in order to forgive as Jesus forgave, it takes humility.
It takes abandoning every ounce of pride and self-righteousness.
Humility requires me too look back on the person I was before Christ worked in me.
It shows me my sin,
sin that was pardoned undeservingly.

Humility is required in order to forgive.
And honestly, it's required to fully live.


Today, I encourage you to stop.
Look back at the grace you have received,
and walk in humility.
much love
elissa

Purpose

Purpose





I long to be a woman known by her love.

The Apostle Paul said that everything, every law, every principle, every moral can be summed up in one word: love. For so long, confusion about my purpose and future has silently tried to control me, to manipulate and deceive me.

Your purpose is to be good!

Your purpose is to radically change the world, but you’re already failing.

Your purpose doesn’t involve anything you love, anything that inspires you and lights that fire on the inside; no, your purpose will be hard, grueling, and confusing, because that is the mark of a true follower of Jesus.

But now, I am realizing something holy.

Love is my purpose.

Love is the purpose of each one of us.

How that purpose plays out will differ from you to me because God has created you in all your complexity with a life-path that only you can take, a journey that only you can enjoy to its fullest potential. But one thing we all have in common is that “golden thread,” love.


- Hannah W. 

The Dead Past

The Dead Past























The night was cold and unforgiving
As I walked to the gravesite of the Past.
How I wished I could just keep on living,
But the whispers of shame to the dead chained me fast.

Kneeling before the tombstone in sorrow,
I read the epitaph for the hundredth time:
“Here lie the mistakes, sins, and wishes for tomorrow
Of one human heart; they hold now reason or rhyme

“Only days stained with fear, doubt, and anger,
An occasional laugh and a smile here and there.
The legacy of the Past will be long remembered
As dismal, dark, trying, and unfair.”

Tears came to my eyes before I could think;
Mourning fell over me like a cruel December snow.
Beside the weathered plot, I felt my body sink
To the chilled, stony ground that bedded my dead foe.

Sleep came to me slowly; I welcomed its warm hand
As it slipped over my eyes and drew them closed.
But the darkness turned to dreams; nightmares ran
Before the eyes of my mind, their terrors imposed.

Demons accosted me; voices spoke low
In threat and menace, then screamed in their victory
Over me; I could only lie helpless below
Them, motionless…until a light, a beam of glory

Pierced the darkness, sliced it through,
And filled the atmosphere with songs of joy
Too clean and pure for the darkness and rue
In me to understand. The dreadful noise

Of evil and of the dead ceased in a moment;
The taunting cries, the bitter spite,
The slightest sounds of darkness fell silent
Before the majesty of this holy light.

My eyes snapped open and blinked in the dim
Light of stars and planets distant, yet near just the same.
Suddenly I glimpsed a man; I lay across from him
On the other side of the dead Past’s grave.

He sat, cross-legged, in the frozen dirt,
Silent, though the quiet spoke a volume
Of greatness, of hope, of love; there no hurt
Existed, by the grave of the fallen.


He stood and reached out his hand to me;
I took it, and immediately I knew
The dead Past was dead; it could no longer haunt me—
    Finally, I realized that the Present is the Truth.   
      - Hannah W.

for them//by them {the lost}

for them//by them {the lost}






















hello.
remember me?
the one you passed on the street today without a second glance.

hello.
remember me?
i’m the kid with ripped jeans and scarred face
the one you wouldn't look at.

hello.
remember me?
i’m the girl with a baby, no husband, no home.

hello.
remember me?
i’m the hurt in his eyes when you told him those things.

hello.
remember me?
i’m the pain on her face when you turned away.

hello.
remember me?
i’m the death of that child you ignored today.

hello.
remember me?
i’m the tears on her cheeks
and the scars on his face
and the poison in her body
and the barbs in your words-

HELLO.

remember me?

we've seen eachother so many times.

i know you’ve seen me
heard my voice...
in her anguished sobs
and his voiceless prayers
in her backward glance
in his breaking voice


h e l l o
r e m e m b e r   n o w ?

i’m pain
and fear
and anger
and jealousy
i’m hunger
and thirst
and lust
and greed
i’m forgotten

i’m lost
i’m broken


i   n e e d   y o u r   h e l p

not your pity.
not your tears.
not your wallet.

y o u r   s m i l e

your  l o v e

your  h e a r t

p l e a s e ?



the next time you see me. dirty, poor, ugly, deformed, helpless, sad:
g i v e    m e    h o p e
Today might be my last.



~E

You Are Worth It

You Are Worth It























You are worth it.
You are worth dying for.
You are worth love, honor, and affection.

You may not believe this. You may have been told by others that you were not and would never be enough. That you always came short of the standard. That you were just taking up space, not benefiting anyone.
These words may have come from strangers. They may have come from acquaintances, people who knew you only enough to make conclusions about you without any depth of true knowledge. They may have come from loved ones, nicking the skin of your heart or piercing straight through. They may have come from yourself, which creates the worst pain because you have no one to deny it, to shield you from it. For the last five years, I have been chest-deep in self-torture, not physically, but mentally—thus I know the hopelessness, the emptiness, the loneliness that accompanies that. Only in this last month or so have I realized how dangerous self-hate is.

I almost died.

The will to live in me was simply not there; all I wanted was to be in heaven with Jesus. Because of the distance I perceived there was between me and Him, I felt that the only way that gap could be bridged would be death itself. And so inwardly, I wished to die. However, I had no idea that my body was obeying me. What an awesome body we have. The power God has woven into our bodies is almost beyond comprehension.

About a month or two ago, I had a mineral analysis done that would show me where I was deficient and recommend supplements to get me back on track. The results were staggering. My hormones and minerals were clearly in a death pattern.

I had done that to me because I had felt worthless, hopeless of being deeply loved, stuck in a mental cage I couldn’t get out of. Denying the truth of God’s deep, deep love, I instead held onto a lie that seemed more feasible, more real. But as the character Jack says in the book Crossroads by Wm. Paul Young, “Real is what you believe, even if what you believe does not exist” (47). My reality was not God’s reality. Not even close.

God sees the true you. The One He created. Just because you don’t act like your true self doesn’t change the fact that you are.

You are worth God’s pursuit.

You are worth being caught and cradled in His arms.

You are worth the great Romance.

You are loved to your very core.


- Hannah W.

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