Tag Archives: heartbreak

The Day I Got Over My Break Up

beyonce-best-thing-i-never-had-4

Although I wrote the piece below entitled ‘just.light’ late last year, every time I read it I remember the profound moment of clarity I felt as the Light finally overshadowed everything that I had been through.

God doesn’t always take away our pain, He often allows us to live through in it in order to reveal part of ourselves – hidden strengths, unspoken weaknesses, unresolved issues. He also uses painful experiences to reveal aspects of His person that we may not have experienced before – His peace, His faithfulness, His heart.

You may be going through a dark season at the moment, praying every day for God to take your pain away. Remember that every day you are being made stronger and a greater plan is at work which will one day make this process make sense; better days are ahead.

For his anger lasts only a moment, but his favour lasts a lifetime! Weeping may last through the night, but joy comes with the morning.

Psalm 30:5

just.light.

Today I drove around a foreign land, I took in the landscapes and the beauty I had the opportunity to behold blew me away. I was in awe and mentally brought to my knees as I once again realised the beauty life had to offer. There is beauty all around us. In every moment of every day, I feel there is something beautiful to be found. Sometimes we have to look a little harder and push ourselves deeper in order to find the beauty, but it is there. In the silence, in the tapping of rain, in the roar of the wind, in the moving clouds, there lies beauty. Despite beauty being ever-present, what lies within us can act sometimes act as a mist and cloud our vision. For me, heartache did just that.

Although the words heartbreak and heartache are used interchangeably, they have come to mean different things to me. While I experienced heartbreak the moment that my relationship finally ended, heartache is what I experienced in the months that followed. The what ifs, the whys, the why nots made my heart burn and yearn for a time where my emotions didn’t suffocate me. The moments I would often replay in my mind had the capacity to make my heart swell until it felt too big for my body; the hurt would go as rapidly as it came but the overwhelming sense of sadness would stay. You see, there is no future in the heartache season, there is only here, now and then. The future ceases to have any real meaning, hope no longer exists and every day tasks such as getting out of bed become insurmountable.

heart. ache.

Then one day, that hollow feeling I had become accustomed to faded. The darkness that overshadowed every moment of light the previous months had offered me finally lifted. I woke up and the heartache had passed. And I finally began to breathe. I wasn’t numb anymore; I could feel. People don’t tell you enough how hard breakups are. They are horrible. You feel like you’re going to die. But then you don’t. You feel as though you are suffocating for most of the day and drowning at night and yet you still wake up the next morning. You wonder if you’re ever going feel to peace and have joy in your heart again.

And then it comes. He stops crossing your mind. You stop replaying the moments you shared. And you breathe.

In. Out. In. Out.

You try to capture every moment by inhaling them because you never thought you would be able to feel again. You want to capture everything because you’ve felt so much pain that even the way you appreciate beautiful moments has been transformed. You breathe them in because there were times you couldn’t breathe at all without crying.

Today I drove around a foreign land. I saw Cyprus. I saw the beauty. No mist, no clouds, no darkness. Just light.

just. light.

Why I Came Out Of The Closet

closet.2-994x350

It’s 10:12pm and I have no idea why I’ve left writing this post to the last minute. I have work in the morning so I can’t even write it at 8am tomorrow (like I’ve been doing of late lol.) I’ve been tossing up potential posts in my head and none of them seem quite right. You see, this writing thing doesn’t come easily to me because I’m not actually a Writer – I am a lot of things but a Writer ….woah, easy there! Although I sometimes write plays, I never saw myself as someone who would write a blog post every week and I definitely didn’t think I would ever be writing about JESUS. It’s one thing to go to church on a Sunday morning but it is something entirely different to flood your social network site newsfeed with your blog, which tells everyone that you believe in someone you’ve never seen and can only feel, have never met but experience every single day.

How do you go about that without seeming crazy?

You don’t.

If you read my post about my atheist/agnostic phase and/or follow the blog, you will know that faith isn’t something that comes easily to me. Despite growing up in a Christian home, I only really found God during my first experience of heartbreak a couple of years ago. I have to thank God for that dark time in my life because without it, there would be no blog. During that time full of bitterness, hurt, rage and all the usual emotions one feels after their heart has been broken to pieces (lol, dramatic) I had to cling to God because I had no one else to cling to. My relationship had become my god; it was where I had invested all my time, my emotions, my energy, my heart – when it evaporated, my world stopped. I have to give God all the glory (that means ‘credit’ in Christian speak) because without Him, I’m not entirely sure what or where I would be. He literally picked me off the floor, picked up the pieces of my broken heart and pulled me back together again. The process was both painful and beautiful because I didn’t think those pieces would ever fit together again but somehow they did.

Despite this amazing victory, I didn’t really tell people about my experience, what had happened and how God had helped me overcome that period of my life. Back then I wasn’t confident in my faith and speaking candidly about this God I had only begun to experience felt a bit wild.

You are the light of the world—like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden. No one lights a lamp and then puts it under a basket. Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.

Matthew 5: 14-16

Fast forward two years and I now have this blog, which forces me to shine my light every single week. It has forced me out of the closet – I can’t hide this aspect of my life anymore because you only have to stalk my Facebook to see that I am a devout Christian (still feels weird to place myself in that category lol). I think as a Christian it is easy to pretend as though we are ‘normal’ because our faith is not often demonstrated by something that can be seen, and there isn’t anything that outwardly distinguishes us from the rest of the world. Some of us use that to our advantage and seek to remain hidden. We don’t express our faith unless we are asked direct questions about where we keep going on a Sunday morning and we often conveniently forget that our faith is to pervade all areas of our lives. We do our best to stay on the fence about issues that the Bible speaks out against because we don’t want to seem to judgmental and we try and go to all the places our friends are going to because we don’t want to seem as though we are boring. I guess in some ways, this post is for those that are struggling to admit that they’re different and are still trying to find a way to fit into this world. Your faith isn’t weird, it’s a personal relationship with your Saviour which a beautiful thing – don’t be ashamed to share that aspect of your life, it is probably the most special.

This blog has forced me to come tumbling out the closet and now I can’t go back inside. Everyone knows my secret now, everyone knows I am a die hard Christian (which still makes me chuckle a little coz I definitely don’t ‘look’ like a Christian). That pressure can be tough – it means that when the odd swear word comes tumbling out of my mouth in the presence of others, I wonder if they question my whole life/blog. It means that I can’t be the raver I once was because I don’t want to be seen as a hypocrite. It means that I find myself wondering whether the crop tops I love so much contradict the Jesus I love so much more. It means that there is now a standard that I proclaim which I now need to live by no matter how difficult I find it.

This post is also for the person who is struggling under the pressure that comes with ‘coming out’. Everyone knows you’re a Christian now and the weight of that expectation has become burdensome. Remember, even on your best day, you will still fall short of God’s glory (Romans 3:23) whether people see you fall or not. You won’t always get it right, but God sees your heart and really does love you. God isn’t calling you to look at those around you; He is calling you to look at Him. All we can do is keep striving and try to be more than what we were yesterday.

Lots of love,

J xxxx

Why I Had Daddy Issues

 

daddy issues

What’s the first thing that comes to mind when I say ‘daddy issues’?

We think of a poor girl who is so disillusioned with her father/ [figure] that she seeks love in all the wrong places and works up a name for herself. The phrase is chucked around so frequently that it’s almost funny to attribute people’s behaviour to their lack of father, or unhealthy relationship with him. Haven’t you ever wondered if boys have ‘daddy issues’ Or if woman over the age of 30 still have ‘daddy issues’? What would you say if I said most of you reading the article have symptoms of these issues?

When I was eleven I decided to start taking Jesus seriously. It was a bit of an adventure. I remember opening my bible (of my own accord for the very first time) and waiting excitedly for what  I would learn that day. It was pretty amazing and the first thing I learnt was not to worry. I absolutely loved the new carefree Dani that was staring back at me in the mirror. No longer could the woes of life turn my stomach and have me break a sweat as the knot in my belly got tighter and tighter. The new me had a  ‘don’t worry be happy’ well a ‘don’t worry God’s in control, cast your blessings if you know what’s good for you’ kind of attitude. Then I hit a stumbling block. I was learning more about God and was fascinated by the things I found until I realised that he wanted me to see him differently.. To me God was a God of wrath, or war, a guy you should fear, and not get too comfortable living in sin whilst you served, because one day he would snap and damn you to an eternity in the fiery furnace. But this ‘new God’,  was more than war, he was a loving God, a friend, a parent.

Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God- children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God. John 1:12

God wanted to be my father and I didn’t know how I was supposed to feel.  Fathers in this generation get so much bad press, I’m not about to jump on the band wagon of persecution, however I will point out that many of us either personally experience, or know someone who has experienced what it likes to have an absent father . So many people have ‘complicated’ relationships with their fathers, that, seeing God as a father doesn’t cause warm and fuzzy feelings to wash over them. As I closed my Bible that day the lasting thought in my mind were ‘If God wants to be my father, where does that leave me?’

Would you like to know what I did?

I gave God the benefit of the doubt.

I was at a loss when it came to adjectives describing fathers, so I let God reveal what he really made fathers to be. If you’re struggling seeing God as a father because of who you know fathers to be, then please read below

Fathers are responsibility dodgers providers:

So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them.  But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Mathew 6:31-33

One thing I learnt this year: you may receive money from your mum, student loan, an inheritance fund, your salary, but God is your ultimate source.

Fathers are forgotten forgiving:

The son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’ “But the father said to his servants, ‘Quick! Bring the best robe and put it on him. Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet.  Bring the fattened calf and kill it. Let’s have a feast and celebrate.  For this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’ So they began to celebrate. Luke 15:21-24

The parable of the Prodigal Son always gets me. We spend so much time dilly-dallying upon our return to the father when we sin, but we should follow the son’s example in the story and hurry back because God is waiting for us with open arms

Fathers are selfish make sacrifices:

He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all—how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things?  Romans 8:32

There’s such power in this scripture. God didn’t spare his own son before we became his children, in the hope that we might accept his love. I don’t know what’s more touching than that.

Fathers are short-sighted visionaries:

The word of the Lord came to me, saying, “Before I formed you in the womb I knew[a] you,  before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations. Jeremiah 1:4-5

We are destined for greatness, and owe that all to our father in Heaven above

Fathers love their children:

We love because he first loved us. 1 John 4:19

This is Christianity in a nutshell.


So often we project the faults and misgivings of humans onto how we think God will behave. God tells us to trust him, but humans have let us down, so we feel that God may do the same. Or, God tells us that he heals the broken-hearted, but we can’t get over the last time we were heartbroken by someone out of our minds, long enough, to believe that God would do the opposite of man. We fall into the trap of seeing God as a king, and being able to revere him, but not feeling comfortable enough to have a chat with him about our day, or ask for forgiveness without fear of being thrown out of the Kingdom of God. God tells us he’s a father, and then shows us through his word, just what kind of father he is. How can you trust that these claims are true when we have so much contradictory evidence of fathers that we can see every day in the flesh?

God is not human, that he should lie, not a human being, that he should change his mind. Does he speak and then not act? Does he promise and not fulfil? Numbers 23:19

Your Earthly father may not live up to half of the truths above but that’s where God comes in. God is your heavenly father and he’s here to continue where your Earthly father left off. I actually have three dads (way to long a story to begin this far into a post) but even if God the Father is your only father, you have something to rejoice about, because fathers are a waste of space, nothing but sperm donors, distant memories, emotional baggage, people to be treasured.

Love you with sugar and spice and everything nice Dani xxxxxx

Sean Paul Showed Me Why Most Marriages End In Divorce

divorce_2147804b

I won’t begin with statistics of how many marriages end in divorce. Partly because we all know it’s pretty dire, but mostly because, for a second, I lose all will to fall in love, and the whole getting married thing is a prerequisite for the football team worth of babies that I really want to have. So I will not  scare you with facts, but I will ask, have you ever stopped to wonder why? Like most changes in social trends there’s a plethora of reasons (plethora is one of my all time fave words) to be explored.

1)      Love is rocky

In the words of Shakespeare ‘The course of true love never did run smooth.’ As much as I don’t want to agree (the idea that being in love is perfectly blissful is a much nicer one to buy into) Shakespeare has a point. The fantasy of love at first sight, which leads to a sublime marriage, and no lovers tiffs is just that: a fantasy. In the real world that we all have to live in, two lucky individuals (or not so lucky depending how you look at it) find each other, fall in love, say things unknowingly (and knowingly) to make the other sad, lie, cheat, and break each others hearts, whilst hoping the other will forgive them.  Sean and Blu Cantrell describe a typical relationship for some in the song ‘Breathe’.

So what’s that supposed to be about baby

Gall free up ya vibe and stop actin crazy

Reminisce ‘pon all the good times daily

Why you try pull that got me actin shady

The mere fact that the good times have to reminisced upon show that relationships aren’t just one long good time. Inevitably there are bad times and it’s usually in the midst of these that people tend to break ties with their loved one.

2)      Love isn’t enough

If I had a pound for every time one actor says to another ‘I love you..BUT..’ in a film, I’d be a very rich girl. There’s an agreed consensus in this day and age that love just isn’t enough for a relationship. I’m pretty sure that’s a line from a song but I’m not ‘down with the kids’ enough to know which one. Anyhoos as Whitney would say ‘what’s love got to do with it?!’ People claim to love us but they hurt us. People claim to love us but they disappoint us and make us question if we ever really knew them. We claim to love others but we just can’t live with them. Sound familiar? People fall in love with people that aren’t good for them and then get into a battle of head versus heart where their minds are telling them no but their bodies are singing from a completely different hymn sheet.

All we do is make up

Then break up

Why don’t we wake up

And see

We may be in love with someone but we can’t continue in a yo-yo relationship that’s permanently in flux so what choice do we have but to end things?

3)      Love is temporary

In my opinion, belief in the above statement single-handedly destroys relationships.

When love hurts

It won’t work

Maybe we need some time alone

We need to let it breathe

This verse says a lot about our attitudes towards love. The most clear message is that when you smell trouble, it probably means things are all going kaput. We’ve taken this mindset to all new heights with the invention of pre-nups. Now we’re planning our get-out clause in preparation for the unseen trouble that is to come. It’s completely ludicrous that people enter into marriages, declaring to each other unity  till death do them part, after signing a contract that ensures all their assets are protected in the event that  lies or unfaithfulness or jealousy does them part. Complete and absolute madness. We don’t believe love lasts forever to the extent that we start to anticipate it’s failure

It’s a lot of doom and gloom, I apologise, but where do our perceptions of love leave us regarding our own marriages? How do we expect the marriage we’re currently in to last if all the above statements are true?

I hear you say, what do you mean by currently, I don’t remember having walked down the aisle and having said ‘I do’. Well let me refresh your memory. The minute you accepted Jesus to be your Lord and Saviour, you became a part of the ‘Church’ and Jesus is quite literally married to the church (John 3:29). We are surrounded by divorce and the breaking down of relationships, so how do we expect our relationship with God to fare in light of all this?

It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. 1 Corinthians 13:7-8.

From a worldly perspective, love has a lot of bad reviews, but from God’s perspective, love conquers all of the cons associated with it. This shows that we can’t allow the world’s perspective to speak louder than God’s word on the matter. If we let ourselves believe that love is temporary we can easily begin to justify the pattern of drifting and coming back or, in the words of Blu, ‘making and breaking up’ with God.

“We can’t expect consistency because love just doesn’t work like that.”

Complete lie.

Believing that love isn’t everlasting also allows us to start thinking that bad things are happening to us because God has stopped loving us. Another complete lie. We cannot decide that because the love humans show to each other doesn’t reflect the way God intended love to be that this t the worlds portrayal of love is therefore the right one. Christ is THE truth and so other ‘truths’ must bow when faced with what God has to say. So folks, this means our marriage with Christ doesn’t have to go down the unfortunate path of the growing number of marriages that end in divorce. God’s love for us is steadfast. Can we say the same about our love for him?

Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or sword?… No in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us Romans 8:35&37

God has given us unconditional love so why are we fickle with him? Sometimes we’re going to go through hard times, or wish that God had a different plan for our lives, or wonder why God didn’t intervene in a situation but that doesn’t give us grounds for a divorce.

Grace to all who love our Lord Jesus Christ with an undying love.

Ephesians 6:24

Love you lots and lots,

Dani

 

(You’ve probably figured out a pattern. Love, lyrics , and life. Hope you’re enjoying our first series. There are so many misconceptions about love we thought it only right to find out God’s perception. Feel free to suggest topics for our next series!)

How Lil Wayne Taught Me To Love

253  I didn’t intend to write this post today.

It’s 22:49 on Thursday 17th July and this has to be posted by 10:00 tomorrow morning. I’ve been putting off writing this post because I don’t have the answer to the question I have been asking myself (and God) over the past few weeks: How Should I Love?

 You had a lot of crooks tryna steal your heart

Never really had luck, couldn’t ever figure out

How to love

How to love

-Lil Wayne

I never thought I’d be writing about Lil Wayne’s ‘How To Love‘,  (this is my least favourite song of his). It came to mind a few weeks ago and I realised how much I identified with the song – no, not the broken-hearted stuff, I’m talking about the not really knowing how to love part. You see, the way I love is so intense that I have had to learn how to moderate my love depending on the recipient. Few people can handle the intensity of my love and even fewer people can live up to the standards I set for those I love which inevitably creates a huge gulf between what I expect from people and what they can actually give me. I honestly thank God that He is teaching me the importance of having low expectations of people and high expectations of Him. Slowly but surely, He is becoming the first person I run to when I feel like a storm is brewing; He is my shelter from the rain.

You had a lot of moments that didn’t last forever

Now you’re in a corner tryna put it together

How to love

How to love

– Lil Wayne

I wonder why we think our todays will last forever when we can barely remember our yesterdays. The world around us is ever-changing and yet we somehow think that the relationship we share with another will transcend time. I blame Disney. I blame fairy tales. I blame the innate desire we all have to belong to someone, to be wanted and to be needed.

The woman in this song doesn’t know how to love properly. Life, unfortunately, has been unkind to her and she is sitting in the corner trying to figure out how to put the pieces of her broken heart back together, wondering how they even fit together in the first place. As I’ve said numerous times, heartache can come from many different people and in many different forms. For too long, we have been sold the narrative that heartbreak only comes when your one, true love walks out on you. Well, that couldn’t be farther from the truth for some of us; we’ve experienced heartbreak through broken friendships, broken families, Dads walking out , people we looked up to failing us – the list really does go on.

 Now you’re sitting here in this damn corner

Looking through all your thoughts and looking over your shoulders

-Lil Wayne

The thing is, our hearts do come back together again after they’ve been broken but we no longer view humanity in the innocent light we once did. We realise that people have the capacity to break us when we entrust them with our hearts, and we therefore shield ourselves from anyone who has the potential to hurt us. Although we try and form new relationships, a significant proportion of our time is spent overthinking and looking at the past to assess the parallels between what has gone before and the new relationship. This affects the how we love people. We love people… but not really. We share with people…but only the insignificant information that we don’t mind them walking away with.

Over the past few weeks, I’ve been challenging myself to love people properly again. It took a friend to really show me that I was letting my fear of being hurt impact the way I interacted with people. As I mentally replayed the conversation we had (as I do with all important conversations) I remembered that we aren’t called to live small lives (I think I say this in every post) and therefore we must confront anything that seeks to weigh us down and make us fearful simply because if we are truly in Christ then we are meant to live freely.

So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.

John 8:36

I know this is the part of the post where I’m supposed to list my tips but I just wanted to remind you that I’ve been putting off writing this post because I don’t have the answers – I am still figuring out how to love. Here’s what I have so far:

1) Stop Being Afraid

Loving people is really important to God because God is love. After commanding us to love Him, he commands us to love others. We can spend the remainder of our lives punishing the new people in our lives for the wrongs committed by the oldies or we can choose to set our fears aside and love without fear.

For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.

2 Timothy 1:7

2) There’s No Wound He Cannot Heal

I was afraid to love because I was afraid to be hurt again. I had to remember that God is the mender of broken hearts and specialises in pulling me back together again. That doesn’t mean I should throw myself into relationships but it doesn’t mean I should fear them either. Every time I tell God that I am afraid to love, he reminds me that I can never be broken in the way I once was because I no longer live my life without him, I live my life for him. Even if I am hurt again, this time, I have someone I can run to.

The LORD is my rock, my fortress, and my saviour; my God is my rock, in whom I find protection. He is my shield, the power that saves me, and my place of safety.

Psalm 18:2

3) Your Heart Is Precious

Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life.

Proverbs 4:23

Set boundaries, be vigilant, be careful. Your heart determines who you become and where you will end up so ask God to help you protect it from those who seek to break it. Be mindful of those you invest your time in and whom you give yourself to.


This is all I have at the moment. I honestly wish I had more for you! Feel free to comment and add any lessons you’ve picked up along the way, I’d love some help on this journey.

Loving you in the only way I know how,

Joy xx

Why I’ll Never Go Back To My Ex

breaks

Relationships. Hard work, aren’t they? The (secret) reason why the majority of RomComs end with the first date or the wedding is because after the initial whirlwind romance, things get tough. Relationships are challenging paths walked together by two completely different people with beliefs, experiences and outlooks on life that they held prior to their meeting. No matter how similar you think you are, on that rocky, challenging road all will be revealed. Oh, of course at the beginning things are amazing – beautiful dates, late night calls and those warm, fuzzy feelings but unfortunately, that doesn’t last forever. Each person stops being the best version of themselves and slowly the cracks in the relationship begin to show and within these cracks lies the truth about how different you both really are.

And then it begins: the phone calls that end with someone dropping the phone abruptly instead of with an “I love you”, the tears on the phone because there are no words that adequately encapsulate the hurt that you feel and that awful moment where you are deciding whether to stay or leave. Ah, yes, relationships are tough which is why most do not survive. Most of us are too selfish (sorry) to really handle relationships and these days, more emphasis is placed on our individual wants, needs and goals than the necessity of compromise and therefore the likelihood of a relationship becoming and remaining a success decreases.

Ex is a term that is usually used to refer to a former sexual or romantic partner, especially a former spouse but it can also refer to a variety of former relationships i.e. an ex-friend (I stole this definition from Wikipedia, sorry God). Since each relationship is inherently different, the reasons for their dissolution also varies. Even though some reasons may be looked upon by outsiders as minuscule and easily worked through, to the parties involved the reasons usually justify the break-up. Anyone who has been through a break up knows how dark those first days/weeks/months can be, so dark that the need to pick up the phone and run straight back into the arms of the one you once loved can often become overwhelming.

I think during that dark time we so often forget that the said ‘ex’ is an ‘ex’ for a reason. Yes, we miss them and during that period we long for their presence again but does that mean that they should still be in our lives? Well, of course you’re saying ‘no’ at the moment but I’m sure you can easily recount moments where you’ve given into your emotional urges and gone back to the very person you once cried to be saved from. Some relationships are poisonous and yet we continue to consume them in the hope that one day our stomachs will accept them. The truth is, those relationships will never sit well with us because they are not meant for us.

I was reminded of this when I was reading my Bible last week and I was astounded to see that the Israelites wanted to go back to their exes too. The Egyptians had enslaved the Israelites and during this time of pain and agony, the Israelites cried out to God to save them. Eventually God heard their cries and sent a man named Moses to deliver them. Eventually, the Israelites were set free and ran outta there so fast (in the most dramatic exit known to man), happy, rejoicing, praising God and finally able to walk with their heads held high (Leviticus 26:13). Unfortunately it didn’t take long before the grumbling began; suddenly it dawned on them that they had no idea where they were going. Feelings of uncertainty and fear settled within them and they began to question the God that had set them free and the man that was leading them.

What’s the point in the LORD bringing us to this land? To die by the sword so our wives and children would become war victims? Wouldn’t it be better for us to return to Egypt?

Numbers 14:3

During their dark time (post break-up), they began to long for a time that they were in chains and in pain; fear of the unknown made them look back and idolise a time they once cried out to be saved from.

The pain of missing someone does not mean you are meant to be with them, it simply means that they once held a special place in your heart, and that in itself is not a good enough reason to walk back to them. People don’t say this often but the truth is, pain can be good for you. Pain shows you exactly what you can live through. As humans we search and crave for happiness but it is in the moments of profound pain that we grow the most. It is when there is no certainty but God and we are literally clinging to his every word that we begin to find who we are meant to become. That is when we realise that there is a call on our lives, that is when he becomes our light in the tunnel and at the end of it, and that is when he shows us glimpses of the greatness he has placed within us and the glory he intends to reveal in us one day (Romans 8:18).

…You are not to go back that way again

Deuteronomy 17:16

I’m talking about that job you hated but offers security, friends who say they you love but attack your character and ex-spouses that have no idea how special you are and therefore treat you kinda badly. You are not to return to the things that you once asked to be saved from because you do not belong there anymore; you are not to walk that way again. You do not fit there and if you try to make yourself smaller to resume a position that was not actually created for you, you will hurt yourself. The relationship may have worked before but there is a reason it stopped working: you changed. And that’s okay. You grew. And that’s even better.

There are many people that I miss, so many relationships that I wish I could still hold with both hands instead of reminiscing about them during solitary moments but if I was meant to be holding them, I would be. If I was still meant to be walking with them, they would be here and our lives wouldn’t be taking such different paths. Every time I get that desire to run back to those people and paths, I remind myself that what God has for me will always eventually be mine and I continue to walk forward on the path he has destined for me.

Lots of my love,

Joy xxxx

Why My Relationship Failed

images (1)

Do you remember your first crush/relationship? I had so many obsessions and crushes growing up – I was an expert in unrequited love and imaginary boyfriends. I do, however, remember my first intense crush.

Let’s call him Tim.

All Tim and I had really had was the five-day pass but that was enough. We were falling asleep on the phone every night because we had unlimited calls to all T-mobile users for five days only, texting throughout the day (because those were unlimited too) and going on dates (okay, I lied, I think we went on one date). It was beautiful; we just couldn’t get enough of each other, it was that obsessive, all-consuming, intoxicating, I-cant-even-see-the-sun-because-all-I-can-see-is-you type of love infatuation.

Although our genesis was bliss, even at my tender age, I could feel when things were becoming rocky and when my fingertips were merely holding onto the cracks in our (infantile) foundation. Now, my 22-year-old self, an infrequent (yet loyal) user of the heartbreak hotel, can look back say that although the first few months were bliss, they were in no way an accurate indication of the relationship we were going to have.

So let me cut to the nitty-gritty; let’s talk about why my relationship failed.

Disclaimer: the below may or may not be entirely true of Tim and I’s relationship.

 

1) Complacency

The best parts of any relationship are the opening months, otherwise known as the honeymoon phase, because each individual is being the best version of himself or herself. As soon as you tell me that ‘you love me for me’ well, I don’t have to pretend I don’t mood swing/chew really loudly/wear a headscarf to bed. I can be ‘me’. Unfortunately the ‘me’ you are left with is always different to the ‘me’ you met. Did someone say disappointment?

2) Lack of communication

When we start out, you will think that my texting etiquette is phenomenal because I’m basically waiting around for your response. This is, once again, symptomatic of the honeymoon phase. In reality, I am a recluse who somehow manages to have friends. Once the honeymoon phase is over, we will go from instantaneous responses to pauses in conversation that may last quite a few days. It’s not that I’m not thinking about you – I am, in fact, I probably love you… I just can’t be bothered.

Sidenote: will you, potential husband, still want me after reading this?

3) Lack of time management

Yeah, we used to meet up three times a week but now life keeps getting in the way. Yep, you guessed it, the honeymoon phase is over and you are no longer the centre of my universe; I suddenly remember my passions, my hopes, my dreams and…my other friends whom I deserted all for you! Now they must also be attended to. I will see you……around.

4) Wrong expectations  

Your love cannot heal me and it does not have the power to make me whole. That (subconscious) expectation has killed many of my relationships. I’ve walked into relationships insecure and left feeling even worse simply because my worth and validation were dependent on the words and actions of another human. You know what happened when that person walked away from me? They took my confidence with them and I entered the heartbreak hotel.

Now that I’ve shamelessly divulged why my relationship failed, I’d like to tell you that my relationship with Jesus used to fail all the time for the same reasons.

All love stories begin the same and this one was no different. Jesus Christ called out to me and said:

 YO, you need me! You will find all that you are and all that you’ve been looking for, in me. That pain you have in your heart? I can take it away. Those voids you’ve been trying to fill with food and people? I fit perfectly in them.

The call was strong, my heart started thumping, so loudly that I was certain the people in the seats next to me could hear it. I was unable to move but I was unable to stay in the same place any longer – something had to change before the dark hole I had come to accept as my life consumed me. I walked to the front of my church, embarrassed, scared but hopeful that He would do all that He said He could.

The weeks/months after that encounter were blissful. All I wanted to do was become closer to Him. Reading the bible became second nature because I longed to know more about the being that formed me, that loved me unconditionally and laid His life down for me.

A relationship was born; I had fallen in love with Jesus.

Unfortunately, as time went on my prayers became shorter, my bible became untouched and the things I did before I had that encounter with Christ slowly began to creep back into my life. What happened to the passion? What happened to the zeal? What happened to our love?

1) Complacency

This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun

2 Corinthians 5:17

At first I looked pretty new but in reality, I didn’t shed my old skin properly. I kept holding onto things (and people) that weren’t supposed to be part of my new life with Him. I got lazy and stopped fighting my desires and eventually those things pulled me away from Him, making each connection harder. I didn’t feel good enough for Him, in fact, I knew I wasn’t good enough, so I began to shy away until there was no contact being made at all.

2) Lack of communication

There is a difference between talking and communicating. Thanking God for a new day is necessary but that is just the beginning of the conversation, it cannot be the crux of your communication for that day. Sometimes we’ve got to lie on the floor and show God where it hurts, the wounds that refuse to stop bleeding and the burdens we can’t carry anymore. When we stop being real with Jesus, we stop having a real relationship with Him.

Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you

1 Peter 5:7

3) Lack of time management

Jesus was explicit in his requirements of us: love me then love everyone else too (Luke 10:27). That’s it. Everything after that (our desires, our jobs, our dreams) is secondary. If we let those things overshadow our relationship with God and stop intentionally setting time apart for him, our relationship will become stale.

4) Wrong expectations

For a long time, I thought that God was my personal fairy godmother and I believed that our relationship meant that I would get everything I prayed for. I also felt it meant that I wouldn’t have problems or experience crippling fear ever again. How wrong I was. Sometimes we pray for things and get upset when God doesn’t give them to us but we never know what God is protecting us from. Regardless of our faith in Jesus, we will always have to walk through challenging seasons but we have to remember that because of him, we will never, ever have to walk alone again (Deuteronomy 31:6).

A relationship works because we put the work in; wanting it to work is not enough. If we fail to put the work in, its failure is inevitable. For a long time my relationship was stunted because I waited for a feeling, an emotion or a situation to motivate me to work on my relationship with Jesus. We shouldn’t let our problems alone drive us back to Christ, rather we should be moving towards Him every single day; this is how our relationship with Him will be successful.

Yours on this beautiful Friday,

Joy xxxxxxxx

What I Learnt After I Got My Heartbroken

Heartbreak-300x224

I think it’s strange that we only associate heartbreak with ex-boyfriends and girlfriends. I’m sure you clicked this link to read all the gory details about a relationship you probably didn’t even know I was in. The truth is heartbreak doesn’t just happen after the dissolution of a relationship. The first time I experienced heartbreak, I was 17 and I’m pretty sure I was still invisible to the male species. It was during that period of my life, which was shrouded in darkness, that I realised that heartbreak doesn’t just occur after the love of your life leaves you. It happens when your Mum dies unexpectedly. When you find out your best friend has been sleeping with your husband. When the friend you relied on for everything stops talking to you without explaining why. When your Dad leaves you and your mum and starts a new family. When Shonda Rhimes kills your favourite Grey’s Anatomy characters.

Heartbreak reminds us that we are only human. Our hearts stop being that organ keeping us alive and morphs into that pain in our chest that has the capacity to overwhelm us every time we mentally relive the moment everything changed. Our hearts suddenly have the power to cause our eyes to sting, water to fall and to make us feel as though we can’t breathe.

 

And then it passes.

 

 

Well, sometimes.

 

The pain can be momentary but during the heartbreak season, the line between psychological pain and physiological pain can become blurred as both your body and your mind fight to tell their side of the story and let you know how awful things really are. I’m talking about the depression, the anxiety attacks, the trouble sleeping, the disinterest in everything that once made you feel alive and the tears, oh the tears…the real ish we keep to ourselves because it’s not as easy to talk about our pain as it is to discuss clothes, shoes, bags and the weather.

I think it is only as I began rise out of the heartbreak season that I began to grasp the transient nature of seasons and storms; although I had fallen (hard), there would come a time when I would rise again. With every passing day I became harder, better, faster, stronger (omg, a Kanye reference on the blog, FINALLY) and my perspective on life changed forever. I realised that there would always be good in every bad situation and bad in every good situation because no season can ever be completely bad or good – just as I was able to see light on my darkest days, on the best days, the darkness could sometimes still be felt. Once I understood this truth I began to see the season differently which gave me the strength to crawl on the days where I did not feel as though I could walk. On those days I would say to myself ‘this too, shall pass’.

Since then, I have come to know that all I see around me shall pass. The places that feel like home, the people I find home in and all the things that give me that sense of belonging I can’t help but crave, shall eventually pass. New things will replace them. This has caused me to have a deeper appreciation of moments; whenever I feel happiness, joy, peace or contentment, I inhale the moment. I breathe them in. I make them last for as long as I can, knowing that as that breath passes, so will the moment. It doesn’t diminish the feelings or the moment; rather it reminds me to hold every beautiful moment as best I can because it will pass and within hours become a memory.

If you are in the storm, this post is probably as source of comfort. However, if you are enjoying your life, living well and breathing easily, reading this may be a bit depressing as you realise that this season will inevitably end because no season can ever last forever.

 2 Corinthians 4:17

For our present troubles are small and won’t last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever. So we don’t look at the troubles we can see now; rather, we fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen. For the things we see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last forever.

When things are amazing I look to God. When things are bad and I feel like I can’t breathe because my problems and fears are suffocating me, I look to God. The author and finisher of my faith, the one who knew every moment I would ever hold and the one who knows which moments I will cling to until I learn how to let go. I look to the One who does not pass.

Lots of love,

Joyboy xxx