Category Archives: Love

Be Yourself and Change the World



It’s not about trying to change the world, it’s about trying to not be changed by it.”-LIGHTS


These words by the popular Canadian electropop artist ring true.  First of all, when we think about wanting to change the world, we don’t think about ourselves.  We think we have to cure world hunger and cancer, make every country peaceful, and get everyone on the planet employed.  These ideas are good but lofty.  It leaves us feeling overwhelmed that we can’t accomplish much as one person.  It makes us want to give up before we’ve even started.

As we go about our daily lives, we are bombarded by pressures from our peers, from media, and from society as a whole.  They tell us we should look a certain way, act a certain way, and hide what makes us unique.  What this quote by Lights expresses is that we shouldn’t let other people change us.  We shouldn’t try to fit into a mold created by those around us.  God created us to be different.  We came with a unique body and face, soul and heart, passions and dreams, goals and a purpose.  We shouldn’t do things because we think they will make us cool, appreciated, popular, or successful.  We should choose our words and actions based on what is right and what passions God has implanted within our hearts.

What we don’t understand most of the time is that if we are who we’re meant to be instead of being someone others’ want us to be, we will change the world.  If we become who we are created to be, we encourage others to be their true self.  Others’ opinions seem less important when you view a person shining their own light.  They make the right decisions, care for other people, and don’t live solely for the crowd’s approval.  Your appearance, popularity, and level of success will fade into the background when you see an individual with self-worth not dependent on any of those aspects.  When you see someone loving themselves just the way they are, including their flaws, it gives you the courage to do the same.  It inspires you to change the world by first loving yourself and then accepting others with all their imperfections.  Change the way you view yourself and you will change the way you view other people.  Be yourself and change the world.


(For more on Lights visit her website:

A New Creation














“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come:  The old has gone, the new is here!” 2 Corin. 5:17


If you have accepted Jesus’ death as payment for your wrongdoing, you are a new creation.  No longer are you a slave to evil desires.  You want to please God, because He has transformed you into a brand new person.

Before Christ, you lived according to the flesh as stated in Galatians 5:19-21, “The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.”  You were a vile beast that couldn’t be controlled and only thought of yourself.  You didn’t want to obey God and you didn’t have the power to do so.

Now with Christ, you desire to live in the Spirit:  “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.” Galatians 5:22, 23  You are a new creature.  You want to obey God and you have the freedom to pursue righteousness.

In ‘Beauty and the Beast’, a prince is turned into a beast to help teach him a lesson.  He has a temper and spends most of his days selfishly.  Over time, he is transformed by the love of Belle.  Just as the prince becomes a new person, we too are changed by an unconditional love.

Sometimes I forget how I once was and how much I’ve been changed.  I look closely at the minor mistakes I’ve made and the things I’ve done wrong.  It’s easy for me to ignore what I’m doing right, because I’m a perfectionist.  But perfection doesn’t exist for humans.  That’s precisely why God sent Jesus to die in place of us, because we can’t live according to God’s law in our own strength.  That’s where grace comes in.  Grace looks past the flaws and sees what someone can become.  I have to remember that when I’m thinking about myself.  I have to look through the eyes of grace as God does with me.  He doesn’t see me as an out of control beast anymore.  He sees me as royalty.  He sees me as a new creation.

Judging Makes Us Blind

“Judging others makes us blind, whereas love is illuminating. By judging others we blind ourselves to our own evil and to the grace which others are just as entitled to as we are.”  These words, written by Dietrich Bonhoeffer, helped me better understand what it means to judge.

We pass judgments on people every day.  We notice the color of their skin, the symmetry of their face, their clothing, their personality, and their behavior.  We automatically categorize people based on what we observe within minutes of knowing them.  This person is a goody-two shoes, a rebel, a freak, a geek, shallow or deep, smart or dumb, shy or outgoing, ugly or attractive.  This person is a gossip, a cheat, an adulterer, a liar, a non-church goer, a druggie, or a glutton.

Later, we look at ourselves in the mirror.  “I’m unique and special,” we think.  “I don’t fit into any of these categories; I’m whole.  Sure, I’ve made a few mistakes, but I think I’m a pretty good person.”  When we take a glimpse at our flaws, we rationalize them or simply ignore them.  It’s as if we take off our glasses and see our own sin with blurry eyes.  As soon as we turn to look at another person, we put on our glasses, and then look through a microscope to notice every fault of his or hers.  We criticize a person’s behavior and become blind to our own.

Judging other people distracts us from working on our own shortcomings.  In Luke 6:41, Jesus said, “Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye?”  We don’t have any authority to point out another person’s wrongdoings when we’re not even working on remedying our own.  We can’t see clearly to determine what is right or wrong when we are blinded by our own rationalization that we are a decent person.  We forget that we’re all in need of God’s grace.

When we focus on how God has been merciful to us in the past; how He’s forgiven us of everything we’ve done wrong, we realize that everyone needs grace.  No one’s perfect and everyone has made mistakes whether they are considered tiny or huge, willful or misguided.  If we look at others with love and grace, being mindful of what God has done for us, we’ll open ourselves to others more quickly.  It will be easier for us to avoid writing someone off.  We’ll take the time to get to know all kinds of people and hopefully learn to love them just as God loves us:  unconditionally.

To Love is to be Vulnerable

“To love at all is to be vulnerable.”  C.S. Lewis said it well.  To love someone and to allow them to love you means displaying your true self to them without any facade. It means putting yourself on the chopping block.  It means giving your heart to someone and hoping they don’t smash it into a million pieces.  But what is life without love?  It is a lonely, hollow existence.

In the beginning, God created not only man, but a helper, woman; thus, the institution of marriage began.  From the early stages of our existence, we were meant to live together in a community.  The family was formed as Adam and Eve had children.  Then the population grew over time and with friendship, beyond the confines of the ‘forced’ love of family, a unique bond was formed.

All of these are versions of love.  Boyfriends and girlfriends, husbands and wives, family, and friends all know us better than mere acquaintances do.  They see us on our good days and bad days when we are happy, loving and kind or when we are grumpy, selfish and cruel.  They see it all whether we like it or not.  When we start hanging out with a new person, we may think, “What if they see too many flaws in me?  Will they reject me if they find out I’m messy?  What will they do if they discover I’m clumsy or have bad hair days?  What will they think of me if I say something stupid or make them angry?  Will they still love me then or will they no longer accept me and move on to someone more worthy?”

Sometimes it seems easier for me to keep to myself (I am an introvert after all), but I know that no one is meant to walk alone in this life. At times, I’d just rather not say anything than end up saying something stupid and appearing foolish to others.  I’d rather be alone than form new friendships, because they might discover something about me that they’re displeased with.  Frequently, I believe it’s easier to be single, because I don’t have to worry about sharing my life with someone and I don’t have to dread a possible heartbreak at the end of a relationship.

For awhile, I didn’t even want to start this blog, because I knew I would be writing on more personal topics than merely composing poetry and articles.  I’m making aspects of my life more accessible to readers that might not like what I have to say.  I’ve since realized that I have words to share that could possibly encourage others.  I have to share my story in the hopes of blessing someone even if it means some people may dislike what they read.

Being vulnerable means you are opening yourself up to possibly getting hurt in the future, but without the risk, there is no reward.  If I hadn’t opened myself up to people in college, I wouldn’t have the life-long friends that I have right now.  If I don’t continue to make friends where I live, I won’t have people nearby to lean on and I won’t hear the encouraging words that I need hear.  If I don’t take a chance on love, I probably won’t find a man who I want to spend the rest of my life with.  If you don’t share your life with others, you won’t get hurt, but you won’t reap any of the benefits either.  Love is hard, but it’s always worth the risk.