Never Alone

I’m going to tell you a true story from yesterday and I hope that it will benefit you in some way :)

Yesterday I was in one of those moods where I needed human interaction. I needed to talk to people face to face and just spend time with someone. Sure, I texted a lot, but that just wasn’t cutting it. I wanted more of that physical contact.
I Skyped with my friend Emma for about an hour and after that I still found myself needing people. My parents were both busy and my brother was at work so I hung on to hope that afternoon that I would be able to Skype with Emma and our friend and her siblings. I literally did nothing that afternoon. I just felt like I was waiting all day to find out if we could Skype.

By 5:30 I found out that Skype wasn’t possible. I instantly felt depressed because I was lonely all day and wanted to spend time with my friends. After a little while I asked Emma if she could Skype again, but she wasn’t really available either.
So I went to my next resort – my mom. Only to find out that she was taking a nap. Aside from that, my dad was doing something in his room, and my brother was in his room with the door shut.

I went back into my room and sat on my bed and just felt sad for a time. I felt so alone and so sad. And then something came to mind…

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Via Pinterest

A few days prior to this, I had found this pin on my friend’s Pinterest board and in my time of sadness, of having no one, and feeling utterly alone, this pin came to mind.

I instantly got up and grabbed a devotional book of mine that I had already finished and read the first chapter.

After that I prayed. I talked to God as I never had before – as though He were a Father or a Friend sitting right beside me, instead of as an all powerful God in the Heavens.

I said to God – “It’s sad that You are my last resort in my time of loneliness. But I know You are all I have right now and You are the only one who can help me.”

I spent over an hour – possibly going on 2 hours – of time alone with God. Talking to Him, praising Him. I transitioned from songs about “I need you,” “I trust you,” “Help me,” to “You are the only King Forever,” “Almighty God, we lift You higher!”

And by the time I had reached the songs of praise to The Lord I found myself feeling so much better – I found myself smiling now, whereas just a few moments ago I had been crying in His arms.

God helped me through my moment of loneliness because I came to Him and fully acknowledged that He was all I needed.

When we are feeling alone and there seems to be no one there to help you or to talk to – God is always there. You might not feel instantly relieved after first approaching Him – I certainly didn’t. But I made myself stay with God until I felt better and if that would have taken all night, I would have stayed in my room all night spending time with Him until I did. What would I have to lose?

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Via Pinterest

For me, what I thought was a miserable, sad, lonely day – turned out to be the cause of something so beautiful. God brought me to my low point so that I would run to Him. So that I would acknowledge the fact that He is there and He is Who I needed.

So in all honesty – I am glad we weren’t able to Skype last night because instead I got to experience something so amazing with God – the power of His comfort. Even if I had Skyped, the feeling of sadness would have come again after it was over. But being with God kept me in good spirits the rest of the night. <3

I just wanted to share this with you in case you can relate. Maybe you’ve felt that loneliness before and instead of choosing to run to God, you wallowed in your misery – as I have done countless times. Maybe this even sounds crazy to you – how can a God that you can’t even see or hear make you feel better in your loneliness? It is possible if you are truly taking the time and making the effort to come to Him and praise Him. We have the Holy Spirit inside of us – we are connected to God in an amazing way and He really can make you feel not so alone. :)

Do you have something you would like to add to this topic? Any questions? Please leave a comment down below and share your thoughts with me – I’d love to hear from you! :)

“…For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”” 
Hebrews 13:5

~Jaclynn~

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A Better Life

If you’re like the average person in the world, you’re probably addicted to your phone.

If you’re like me, you probably hate how addicted you are to your phone, but you feel powerless and lazy to change it.

Smartphones are an incredible thing. Who would have ever thought that someday we would be able to have a mini computer, a good quality camera, games, and the ability to contact people all within one small device? It’s amazing, isn’t it?

But as amazing as smartphones are, they’re equally evil, if not more so.

They suck you in no matter what age you are. No matter how many times you watched someone else on their phone and said, “I’m never going to be like that!” you eventually find yourself mirroring exactly how they were with their phone.

The phones entrap you. They keep you from conversing with others, from spending quality time with loved ones, from reading a good book that you can hold in your hand and actually turn the pages on, from doing fun activities, and so on.

Phones are also a danger. While driving, people text, take phone calls, check Instagram and Facebook, and who knows what else. This causes serious accidents and people get hurt or die.
Also while walking where cars are driving by, people are looking down at their phones and nearly get hit. I’ve seen it so many times.

I realize, that for me personally, the majority of my time is spent on my phone. Whether I’m texting or mindlessly refreshing an app, I am always on it.

Why do I close an app and reopen it instantly even though I know nothing’s changed?

Why do I check the weather app a hundred times a day for no reason at all?

Why do I mindlessly scroll through my camera roll?

Why do I have to check for new blog posts while I’m watching a movie or doing something?

Why can’t I put my phone down?

The answer is simple, my friends.

1. Contentment – We think that if we are bored out of our minds that our phones will make us content. We’ll have fun with our phones. We’ll be entertained. We’ll read something interesting. But in all reality, it doesn’t make us content. It only makes us thirst for more and more and the more that happens, the further sucked in we become.

2. Identification – I think just about anyone who has a smartphone has social media, am I right? Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat, whatever. Social media isn’t just so you can see what everyone else is up to. It’s not about the other person. It’s all about YOU. It’s about you liking a post, you commenting on a post first, you receiving a reply, you receiving likes and comments on your posts. You want people to react and to like what you have to say. In doing that – you are seeking acceptance and identification. You think that if all these people like what you’re saying, then you’re cool and are finding identification in them. You’re constantly checking to see if someone liked or commented on something you posted. When you get one – it’s not enough. You need more. If it’s just the one like or the one comment you get, you feel depressed. Like no one likes what you have to say. And so you move to another source in your phone to make you feel better.

3. Obsession – Ultimately, your phone grows into an unhealthy obsession that you can’t shake. All your contentment and pleasure is embedded in your phone. All your identification is in the social media. And so you have to be on your phone all day to be entertained or to feel accepted.

Now, I’m not saying that everyone is like this, but I think that this is true for a lot of people. It’s true for me. Is it true for you?

Let’s go through those three words again with a Godly perspective:

1. Contentment – We can only be perfectly content and satisfied through God. He is everything we need and yet we don’t run to Him, even knowing that. He can bring us ultimate joy, ultimate satisfaction, and make us feel loved and cherished.
“Now godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out.” 1 Timothy 6:6-7
Instead of running after our phones and the millions distractions in it, we should be running after God and righteousness. We should learn how to be content in Christ alone rather than in our phones.

2. Identification – We are identified in Christ alone. We are children of God. He calls us friend, sons, and daughters. We are loved, made pure, redeemed, forgiven, accepted – isn’t this what we want? We have it already! We don’t need to run to our phones for that!
“Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God! Therefore the world does not know us, because it did not know Him.” 1 John 3:1

3. Obsession – We are not to be obsessed by anything in this world. We should only obsess over our Heavenly Father who has done wondrous things for us and whom we are called to serve.
“No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon.” Matthew 6:24

Friends, we can overcome our obsession and addiction to our phones.

My friends, Hershey, Cookie, and I all agreed that this summer we were going to use our phones less. We put all our distracting apps into a folder way on the last page so that they would be hidden from us. So far I am realizing that I’m happier without it. I’m only using my phone to text my friends and for music. I can not believe the change I see already! Without me mindlessly doing things on my phone, I am happier because I am doing more that is worth while!

When I first agreed to do this, I felt scared. Like I wouldn’t be able to do it. But Hershey said, “You’ve done it before.”
So I started to list things that I could do to keep myself busy this summer. And I realized just how much I can do NOW that I haven’t been doing ALL this time! When I’m bored – there ARE things I can do, but instead I choose to be on my phone! I’ve been wasting my life away wrapped up in a screen instead of reading a good book, doing a craft, cleaning, working out, and so on. I felt so disgusted with myself and my phone that I wanted to throw my phone. I feel like I haven’t been living my life. And that’s pretty sad.

Have you heard the song Chain Breaker by Zach Williams? There’s a line in it that says:
“We all run to things we know just ain’t right, when there’s a better life.”

For me, that’s mostly my phone. I’m running to my phone when there are so many better and worthwhile things I could be doing.

This summer, I am choosing a better life, or rather, I’m choosing LIFE! And I hope so very much that by the time summer comes to a close, I will be in a new habit and be able to resist my phone more and to choose to do other things instead. Because being on a phone all day isn’t living.

What about you? Are you addicted to your phone? Do you want freedom from this prison? All you have to do is make the first move and with the power of God in you, the rest will be done.

“If you need freedom or saving, He’s a prison shaking Savior. If you’ve got chains, He’s a chain breaker.”

~Jaclynn~

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Thoughts About the Future…

I’ve been thinking a lot about my future lately. As a 17 year-old, that’s only natural. I’ll be turning 18, graduating, and then what? Will I get a permit? Will I get a job? Will nothing change right away? Or will changes suddenly be thrust upon me?

To be honest, I’m scared. It’s scary to turn 18. After all, that’s when you’re considered an adult! You’ll start to take on more responsibilities and more will be expected of you.
Graduating? Oh, I’m super excited for that! No more school!!! *toots horn*

But…. Then what? With my brother’s wedding quickly approaching, I realize how fast time flies. He started dating his bride-to-be 2 years ago? What?! And didn’t he just get a job and his licence? Nope. That was years ago, but the memories are still so fresh in my mind, that it seems like just yesterday. And now he’s going to be a husband in just a month!

I think that’s partly what’s making me so scared. Seeing how quickly his life changed and wondering if it’s going to be that way for me. What if I do get married in a few years? That’s impossible for me to even comprehend. I don’t even know who my future husband is yet!

Where will I meet him; and how? Will it be love at first sight, or will it gradually grow?

And getting a job?! I admit, there is a part of me that’s anxious to get a job, but another part of me that’s completely terrified. I don’t do well under pressure and I’m a slow learner. I’m worried I’ll be a complete failure. But still, there’s this part of it that seems so fun! And who wouldn’t love to make some money on a regular basis, right?

The future is a scary thing. You don’t know what it holds for you. To us, the future is a blank page.

But here’s something I’m trying to focus on – God already knows what the future holds for me. He sees my whole life laid out before Him. And though my flesh is terrified, I need to work on changing that fear into trust. I need to trust that God has the perfect life planned out for me and know that He will never give me more than I can handle.

“For I know the thoughts that I think toward you,” says The Lord, “Thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.” Jeremiah 29:11

Are you afraid of the future? Does it seem to be coming too quickly for you, too?

I encourage you, do not be afraid. God’s got this all in His hands. In the meantime, you can pray about it. Pray for guidance on where you should work. Pray for your future husband daily. And, above all, pray for peace, strength, and wisdom to help you overcome your fear and to make wise choices when your future suddenly becomes your present. :)

~Jaclynn~

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