confession

is freeing.

Bringing things to light.

Shining a light on darkness.

Bringing things to the surface.

I remember being underwater in the pool as a child. My friends and I would have “tea parties” where we would exhale all the way in order to plunge ourselves down to the bottom of the pool and then we would sit indian-style or lounge on the pool floor and pretend to drink tea. With our pinkies up, of course. 🙂

The tea parties didn’t last very long because we didn’t have gills. 🙁

hehe

so after about…. well, I was going to write a minute but I think in reality it was only like 10 seconds hahah…

so after about 10 seconds… we would shoot up to the surface and breathe deeply. Ahhhhh oxygen. Satisfying oxygen.

Go ahead, take a deep breath right now.

It’s wonderful, isn’t it? That God gave us O2. Thank God. Though sometimes we feel like we can’t breathe because we need to surface. We’ve spent time on the floor of a deep pool for too long.

That’s what confessing feels like.

I did that earlier today. So freeing. Like I can breathe again.

.

..

..

.

If my friends and I didn’t resurface we would have drowned. That is a little dramatic, but it’s true. We can’t breathe under water. We can only hold our breath for so long, and then we would pass out and drown.

I think a similar thing happens when we don’t confess. We drown. We’re meant to confess.

James 5:16 says:

“Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.”

 

The reason James gives for confessing your sins is “so that you may be healed”.

Makes perfect sense if we think of being stuck in our sin as drowning at the bottom of a pool. We gotta surface and breath and live.

When we bring our darkness to the surface, others can be our oxygen. They can breathe life into us with prayer and encouragement and help keep us accountable. Not that they have to even necessarily say or do anything further after the confession. Just knowing that other people know is great accountability. We’re all on this journey together and we all are going to find ourselves underneath the surface at one point or another. I promise you, surfacing is the best decision you will ever make. I know it was for me today. And that was literally a few hours ago.

Fact is, I don’t want to drown. I don’t want to struggle with my breathing. I don’t want to struggle. I don’t want to entertain struggling. If I choose to go to the “tea party” I want to make sure I bring my diving gear.

For the christian, that means the spiritual armor. Read Ephesians 6:10-18 in your bible. Or google it.

Each part of the armor is equally as important. We must protect ourselves in whatever environment we’re in so that we don’t struggle.

The word says that those in Christ are free. And that we are new creations. I am healed. I am restored. I was made new.

So now I must walk in that truth. And if ever I find myself drowning at the bottom of the pool, push off the floor and surface immediately. Breathe in life-giving breath. Confess any sin. Pray and ask for prayer. And be more prepared next time.

That’s all for now.

xxx

<3

LOVE Y’ALL
V

 

 

swimming exercise

I went to the pool this morning. I got in the water at 7:06, and out at 8:06. And in that hour I was invigorated.

Yes, exercise is life-giving. It seems strange in a way, if you’re tired before exercising, and then moving your body and exerting energy actually wakes you up and gives you more energy instead of leaving you feeling more tired than when you began.

Though it’s important to note that overdoing it will make you tired. And probably will make you not want to return to the exercise that you did to get tired in the first place. Which has definitely been the story of my life since high school.

Overdo

Underdo

Overdo

Underdo

Overdo

Underdo

Yo

Yo

Yo

Yo

But thankfully, I’m becoming more consistent. Praise God. Though I admit, recently I believed that the Lord didn’t want me to exercise at all. So I stopped. But then I kept getting depressed and antsy so I would exercise. But it’s as if when I finally did exercise, I couldn’t get enough endorphins fast enough so I would go hard and then hurt myself. So uhhhm yeah there’s that all-or-nothing mindset again. It definitely keeps things fun and exciting at times, but it hinders my reliability and dependability in terms of serving others.

Why? You might ask. How? I humbly answer with: if my brain relies on endorphins from exercising to keep my joyfulness at a constant, when I don’t exercise I’ll naturally feel depressed. Therefore, I must maintain a certain level of activity in order to stay on my A-game. 

Another factor is, when I don’t feel my best or my most confident, I won’t be as fun, energetic, willing to serve, willing to listen, hopeful, optimistic or fun to be around. Therefore, I must maintain a certain level of activity in order to stay on my A-game. 

Which leads to….

*drum roll plz*

img_20180728_085718556

My swim this morning. It was wonderful. Better than yesterday. Yesterday I was exhausted. Couldn’t swim very hard or very long. But today I was fellin‘ it. That’s right. Not feeling. Not feelin’. Fellin’ it.

Pull

Kick

Pull

Kick

Pull

Long

Length

Pull

Breathe

Jesus

Jesus

Jesus

Each word popped into my head as I danced through the water, barely under the surface, and made small waves from one end of the pool to the other. Each word focused me on the task at hand and connected me to my body. Connected me to my purpose. Words connect us to our purpose. Words communicate purpose.

*******

I don’t like to take a gaping breath when I pass by the lifeguard’s chair. It’s so shallow, no pun intended, but I care about looking like a fool. I think the guard had a crush on me. I know it’s his job to watch me, but I don’t think he was watching anyone else. Then, when I went to leave the pool after my swim he said “have a good evening”. And I said “don’t you mean morning?” with a confused look on my face. And then he shrugged, smiled, and walked away.

It was 8 am but he almost convinced me it was 8pm. (I had not had coffee yet btw)

I think he was only about 18. Haha.

Ahh yes. Swimming. Wonderful, marvelous swimming. <3 🙂

xxx

V

 

 

I dance while I swim

Wow. Here I am, inside Aroma’s coffee shoppe. I just went swimming at the Community Center on Jefferson Avenue. As I was swimming the sky opened up and the sun shone through the many windows on the West wall filling the entire pool room with light. And I thought about the scripture “put on the armor of light” which comes from the book of Romans. I felt as though I was wearing an armor of light in that moment and a wide grin spread across my face just like the light spread across the bottom of the pool below me as I swam down the lane, just before touching the wall.

And I started mentally putting on the armor of Christ. First, the belt of truth. Then the breastplate of righteousness. Followed by the shoes of peace. Then the helmet of salvation. And then I picked up the sword of the spirit, which is the Word of God. And I lifted up the shield of faith. And nothing could touch me. And I knew it. I know it. Nothing can touch me as long as the armor of God is on me. And I don’t have to consciously put on the armor every day, as in going through the prayer in my mind. I have the armor on already because I am in Christ. I have been in Christ for almost three years. I confessed that Jesus was my Lord and Savior when I was about 7 or 8 years old but I didn’t understand what that really meant until almost three years ago. Three years in June. A child of God. A child of light. For God is light. And we are called to be like Him. And we are being conformed to His image a little more each day.

I am the light in the room. I am the light in the pool that floods the space and brightens my face and the faces of others. I cannot be ignored. I am set apart. I am not of the world. I am holy, because Christ makes me holy. I am righteous, because Christ has made me righteous.

And so I swam. And I… danced. I danced. I smiled and danced. Each time I took a breath I wonder if the lifeguard off to my left side saw my smiling face as I gulped for air.

I hope he did.

And I hope he wondered why I was filled with joy. I like to think that I would have been filled with that same joy even if the sun hadn’t come through the windows. I know I could never have this joy if the Son hadn’t come through the window of my life and woken me up almost three years ago. I was swimming in an especially dark place then and wasn’t even aware of how dead I was. How much I needed Him. But when the light came in, when the Son shone in, it brightened everything. I saw everything so much more clearly. My life. My position. My priorities. My aspirations. My dedications. My value. My worth. All of these things rooted in the wrong things. Because if God is not first and foremost; if God is not at the center of my life and my thoughts and all that I do, I am swimming aimlessly. I’m swimming all over the pool and never getting anywhere. I’m swimming slowly and with so much effort and never accomplishing any goals. But when that light shone in, when the light shines in, I have order. I can see clearly now the rain is gone. Just kidding, I can see clearly how much tile is preceding the wall before I have to turn. I can see rays glittering through the water casting curvy, artistic shadows on the pool floor. I am reminded of light, the Father of light. Jesus, the light of the world. I am reminded that I am that same light, because He bought me and made me so. I am His. And He is mine.

And I swim. And I dance.

V