Novel #2!

Hello, friends!

I love to write. Using words to paint pictures of feeling, beauty, living – that is a worthy pursuit.

I have another story I want to write, but I need your help making this world – the characters, their fears, their desires – a tangible reality.

If you have the ability to give a donation to my next book’s publishing fund ($5, $20, $50… whatever you can give!), please visit the link below and check out my campaign! Anything will be greatly appreciated.

http://www.gofundme.com/shaken 

Thank you ❤

What I Mean When I Say “I Love You”

We were given language to use it for beauty.

We congregated at Babel and were struck with this gift, this curse… we were struck with a miracle:

because suddenly, we were given a basis on which to build new cultures. We were given semantics and pragmatics, sounds and cues, meanings and emphases, all of which could provide effective communication, expression…

we could give tangible entities and audible form. We could paint landscapes and stories in the crooks of an ear. We could give some kind of definition to the feelings and thoughts that swirled within our chest.

Beautiful. That curse, that gift, was beautiful.

Yet we’ve failed at its usage,

for at its core, the gift was not for the glorification of self, but for the audible and cultural display of One untouched. We were to become the water on the Earth that reflected His character: namely, when all else is summarized,

Love.

We were to use the diversity and colors to express the meaning of Love.

You could read all of His letters and know that love is not a simple concept. It is messy, uncomfortable, awe-inspiring and all-consuming. It amazes and transforms. It is, for lack of better word, incredible.

Yet we “love” everything now.

“I love pizza.” “I love that chair!” “I love my car.” “I love you.”

When it is convenient.

An unlimited array of words and potential for words, yet the best we could do to define it was:

“An intense feeling of deep affection.”

A stronger form of fondness.

But Love was not meant to be reduced to the description of the hormones and desires that swirl inside of us. It was not meant to describe the temporary things that bring smiles to our faces and warmth to our hearts. It was not meant to describe us, but what we are willing to do. 

“I love you.”

It means:

I present God to you.

It means that you have nothing of your own capability that can express the worth, value, and significance of your sister or brother human being. It means that no matter what you do, you could never do enough or think enough good thoughts to treat them the way they deserve to be treated. It means that there is only One who can be everything…

and when you find a person for whom you would like to give everything….

when you run into a stranger who feels a deep sense of lack, and you wish to supplement and overwhelm their gaps with abundance, goodness, grace, and mercy,

when you realize that this world is not enough for someone, and wish to offer them more, you can say: “I love you.”

I present God to you.

“Here! Have this river of satisfying water, this fountain that will never run dry.” (Isaiah 58:11, John 4:14)

“Here! Take everything I can never give you. Take something that goes beyond the emotions, the feelings, the arguments, the disappointments. Take this constant source, for I can never be constant for you.” 

And this statement means sacrifice. It means that only through God, and only with His will and mindset can you learn how to give of yourself for another’s benefit. It means that the thoughts and ideas He contrives will be bigger than you, harder to enact than you can promise, grander and more satisfying than anything you can give.

I present God to you, friend.

I present God to you, my love.

I want to follow His example and lay down my life for you.

I have nothing greater to offer you than He who is everything to me.

How would that change the way we use the word “Love”?


Could You Love Without Words?

Do you know what it is to love without words?

To speak absolutely nothing and show, act, demonstrate. 

To brush the cheeks of the sick or offer to fetch a glass of water or sit and listen with intent ears.

Do you know how to be sensitive to the beating of a heart? To feel the rhythm and to know when som  ething is jus t  off  bea   t?

Can you understand what a face means? Know a person enough to distinguish between happy and sad, and – what’s more –

can you risk yourself for the sake of intimacy? Can you invest your heart wholly and completely, expecting nothing in return yet expecting to lose everything for the sake of another’s cause? Can you expect to love the little quirks about someone and allow their life to become a part of yours?

Can you appreciate the time you enjoy in the present and be willing to embrace the road’s continuation or detour in the future?

*   *   *

I have no words to describe this thing I’m putting into words. I have no explanation of the beauty, the messiness, the persistence, the prayers, the sacrifice, the discomfort, the fun, the warmth, the joy, the peace, the rawness

that goes into love.

A word is nothing if is not connected to an action.

I know this:

if our actions of love ever become diminished, we are in trouble. If we ever lose sight of the immensity and depth, the non-romantic passion, and the devoted desperation of a blind faith (one where we see everything and choose the good), we will be sorry.

We will deeply regret it.

We will say, “I love you.” And they will respond, in their hearts, “You do not.” But we will both smile, souls dead, and accept that this is reality now, and love has ambiguous meaning.

And we will run through the town despairingly, hands held out in anguish, eyes begging for a truth.

We will ask every living creature the questions that were already answered: “Why am I empty?” “Why do I still feel alone?” “Who am I?” “What is love?”

We will curse love and the notion of its existence; spit on the ground in front of any soul with glistening eyes and peaceful chest who claims to know what it is. We will become the scholars who look at an object and say, “I cannot understand the object’s existence; therefore, it does not.” And forbid anyone disagree with our doublespeak.

But He will remind us of the moment when He bowed his head, relinquished His life-healing hands to the control of chains, and walked a silent road to a hill – one initially created to reflect His face  – so that He could love us without words. He will whisper about how He took everything that threatened to confuse our perception of His character… the loneliness, fear, hatred, anger, doubt, vanity, self-loathing… and bore it on His back, in His hands, in His feet, in His side. He will point us to the  moment when He publicly declared and defined His love for all eternity.

How dare we ask if we could love without words? He has freely given us the ability to do so.

We’ve only been too foolish to accept it.

 

 

Red, Beige, and Cream

The floor was carpeted with murky brown and creaked as you stepped on them – which I loved. The walls were dark beige, adorned with the occasional wrought-iron artistic whim. The doors were thin and white, with barely-functionable antique knobs. There were three main rooms, each cluttered with non-matching wooden desks, cushioned chairs, and tables for studying.

But the gem I found was in the room with the beige-ish loveseat, black leather armchair, and secluded nook…

(From “Day of Rest”)

Even though I decided to settle with my study materials at a desk in another room, I felt drawn by the couple softly chatting on the couch in the next room. I rose, grabbed my laptop, and sheepishly peered inside.

“Do y’all mind if I sit in here?” I didn’t want to invade their privacy if they were sharing a truly intimate moment. The room is too small for any seclusion.

The man, college-aged with straight, jet-black hair, almond-shaped eyes and cream-colored skin answers immediately, his tone easy-going and welcoming.

“You can sit anywhere.”

“Yeah, anywhere,” the girl’s voice overlaps with his.

Continue reading

I’m in Love

And what a capability of a Man

to  captivate my heart so fully,

and arrest my soul so completely,

that each and every day,

I find myself loving him more

and loving what I cannot yet see

and dancing in the beauty of the journey.

.

“And so she waltzes now with her Savior,

and thinks of Him at the dawn of every love song,

looking forward to the three-cord bond that will one day be created, but is not at all needed for the moment.”