Stumbling into the best

Most of my life has been used to chase girls.

Example:
I’m 5 years old and I like two girls in my kindergarden class.
Names? Jennifer and Alexandria.
In the end Jennifer liked me back so that decided my first girlfriend…
And I’ve got the picture in line to prove our love (me rockin’ the red suit jacket and her in some frilly pink and white dress).

Since then I’ve used girls as my primary way of making me feel good about me. My mission was accomplished any way possible; using methods that included being the guy friend, the trusted advisor, the tease, funny guy and even studying really hard to make sure I looked like the good student I never was.

When I hit high school I was new to Florida and it didn’t take me long to go through several Christian “maybe girls” before landing on one who stuck. And almost four years later I got 4 days away from making a HUGE mistake for her and me. By the grace of God we didn’t get married and the next 18 months were a whirlwind of partying, working like crazy, avoiding true Gospel community/family and really anything that made the pain of facing the Truth disappear.

I never saw her coming….

Jesus brought Lee Anne into my life like a wave of grace.

She was everything my other girls weren’t: thoughtful, courageous, open hearted, probing, connected, full of character and most of all a fruitful-faithful-friend (borrowed from my friend Ted Sinn). Lee Anne broke my nice Christian girl mold – she was passionate and broken and wanted to talk about Jesus and His love for people, especially the hurting ones, all the time.

I wasn’t the choice husband material that a girl is looking for when she sets out to get married but at the same time Lee Anne wasn’t/isn’t a just get married because that’s what people do kind of girl anyway.  And after lots of hurting and healing, I stumbled my way into the best life ever – way better than the one I had all planned out at 5 years old.

Just this morning I stood by our marriage bed and watched Lee Anne and our beautiful 3 month old baby Amelie – my heart was racing and it seemed like pure love was bursting out of every pore in my body. And all of this started with my stumbling and His amazing grace.

As I was sitting

This past week, I’ve been really sick.
It’s required me to do a lot of, uhm, sitting.
As often happens when I’m sitting down, I take notice of my posture.
It’s terrible.
I have horrific posture.

This morning, as I was sitting, I noticed it, again.
I sat up straight – as straight as possible for a person who never sits up straight.

I thought about it.
Why is my posture so terrible?
What affects posture? {…That would lead to my posture being so terrible.}

And then it occurred to me: confidence is key.
{As with so many things.}
We subconsciously associate good posture with confidence, and cowering, hunched over posture with fear or shame.

{I have had plenty of reasons to be fearful and shameful over the years.}

As I was sitting, I thought, God made me to be confident.
I thought about Adam & Eve, the first people, and what their posture might’ve looked like.
{And their transition from walking tall with God, in the Garden, to cowering in fear – hiding from Him, in their shame.}
It’s incredible how deeply – and even physically – our sin affects us.

As I was sitting, I thought, God made me to be confident.
God.
made.
me.
I’ve read the many children’s books on this subject.
I’ve known it to be true.
But I don’t know that I’ve thought about how significant
it IS. Have you?

The same One who created the beautiful stars I deeply admire, the endless ocean which always inspires, the flowers so intricate & tiny, and ALL things.
He took the time to create me.
He took the time to think of all the little quirky ways I’d do things, and He wrote them like poetry into my DNA.
He took the time to give me – of all people – the unique perspective on things that I have.
He took the time to give me these oddly colored green eyes.
He thought of me.
It wasn’t a mindless, factory sort of manufacturing of people.
It was an artist, bleeding over, pouring over, pouring into, focusing on, searching for, and creating His masterpiece.

For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do good things which he planned for us long ago.
Ephesians 2:10

I’ve often struggled to see my own worth; I’ve given to letting insecurity be my place of residency.
But what if I let it resonate in my soul that the Creator of ALL things good took the time to create me?
And that He thinks I am good. That He calls me His masterpiece?
Well, that changes everything.