Okay, Jesus. Here I am. Here we are. Do what you will, Lord.
You may be wondering...what is this? Another blog? SKIP. EXIT. I mean...to be honest, I may be thinking the same thing as I begin to write this. But I am here...so I will do this thing. He needs me where I am. He has asked me to lay my fear and pride aside to be here.
Where this all started for me was a couple of years ago, I felt like the Lord was asking me to share my tattoo with more people. Not sure of how that might be, especially since it was literally on my arm for all to see. And if anyone wanted to know what it said and why I had it...I was happy to share. I just ignored it and kept on with life until about a year ago. A whisper turned into a shout everywhere I went about this phrase I had on my arm. He was making very obvious there was more to it. If you do not not me...I have a tattoo that I got 6 years ago on my arm that says “Love is Enough”. It was a phrase I vividly remember the Lord speaking over me after a really rough season in my life. “Tara, my Love will always be Enough. IT WILL COVER EVERYTHING.” I had come out of a 6 month season of preparing to move overseas to attend a discipleship ministry training program in photography. During this time, I had been lost too. I was attending parties, seeking more than what it could ever give me. I was seeking attention through new friends, guys, and whatever else I could find. Prior to this, I had words spoken over me that wrecked me and led me to believe to think I couldn’t ever measure up. I was seeking everywhere for acceptance and love…yet getting ready to go do mission work. As I approached closer to the date of leaving, things just kept going wrong. God was closing doors in my face. And closing them hard. My application was never received, health issues arised, funding was not there. I viewed it as He was shaming me. I was ANGRY, I was mad at Him for doing that to me. The plan to move overseas was "what I was supposed to do!". I spent a good month in a very sad and angry state at Him. Laying in bed and sleeping for hours during the day. I did not want anything to do with Him for taking away something I wanted so badly and felt like it was “so right and what He wanted me to do”. But the relentless pursuit of Him for me during that time was so very unwavering. In a way, I had never felt Jesus so close. Even though I was angry, fighting and wanted nothing more to not be near Him. He was there. He was near. He was loving me during the WORST thoughts and feelings. He knew. He knew what goodness was to come. It took me losing everything I was planning to realize how REAL His love was for me. For His people. I finally dragged myself out of bed that January to an interview to be an assistant youth director. I got that job. It led me to one of the absolute sweetest seasons of my life serving in ministry with some of the most amazing people and kids...and a big perk was I also fell in love with the guy that would my husband over a year later.
But I remember vividly Him speaking over me, "MY LOVE IS ENOUGH". And it was. It always will be. I grew up in the church and knew Jesus. But I don’t think I KNEW Him until this season. Did it hurt? Did I want to stay in a dark cave for life? YES. But He pulled me out of the darkness and walked with me through FIRE. THAT is why I have “Love is Enough” on my arm. That is why I want to share this message. For Him. For His kingdom.
I share all this because I want you to know my story. A part of who I am. A part of who Jesus is. He is LOVE. No one else can make you new. He does not fail us and is fighting our hard battles with us. I don’t know what your story or your season looks like. It may not be anything extravagant or large. And it doesn’t have to be! But if it involves the Love of Christ and the way He relentlessly chased after you without abandon. And you realized…His love will ALWAYS be enough! NO matter what I face in life even when I can’t stand anymore or understand or want to believe. I want to hear that story. People want to read your story. I believe that the Lord wants to share hope specifically through social media. And I believe people want to read it. There is too much negativity and darkness in social media. It is time to put light where darkness is. And from this…He has given me vision to make this tiny corner of the internet where these stories and testimonies will be shared. I am not sure where this will go or what He has planned. But this is where I am starting…and I am just “doing” because He has asked me of this. It is time for action! For Him! I have spent the last year waiting for the right time for me. I wanted it to all to be perfect. A well put together website and social media presence. But all that crap doesn't matter. He kept asking "What are you waiting for? Just do it! I will do what I want to do with it with all the extra things you think are necessary. I am enough."
So here I am...only a vessel. Here you are...only a vessel. I empty myself to let His spirit fill and overflow here and in all my life. I am not perfect. I am by far from perfect. But man, ya'll I love Jesus with a damned reckless abandon. He is my heartbeat. He has lifted and lead me through some dark times. I want you - people - to know the goodness of His love. His love is enough. I will use this space to share stories and testimonies and know that He will reach some-one. If it is one, my vision is done. But this space is for hope, light, love and encouragement. I hope to also be able to have the confidence to share what the Lord puts on my heart from time to time. This moment is so scary for me. I am fighting the thought of what people are thinking as they read this. I am fighting thinking that my words are not worth reading...when really they could be His words. All these thoughts are selfish of me to ignore and not let Him move. It is Him in me that is the confidence to be here and share. I know He provides. And I love Jesus so much more and care so much more about His kingdom than to let fear and anxiety win. So - I will share and I will share your story too. Be brave my friends! This quote from Jennie Allen's book "Nothing to Prove" is what Jesus wanted me to read one day a couple weeks ago after praying about this space all morning. I had not read this book in a little over a month and the exact chapter that I was picking up on was this one...
"Is God enough?
Like the disciple Philip, we often stand paralyzed because we look at our lives and we fear there isn't enough.
Are we supposed to be this tired and defeated?
What has God put inside of you to do for Him, and what would hold you back from that? What holds you back from putting this book down and absolutely going crazy obeying God no matter what He says? All in. What holds you back?
What is the voice in your head? What do you hear? Name it.
Is it rejection? Fear of failure? Disappointment? Inadequacy? Are you weary from trying to resolve all that? God isn't waiting for you to resolve it. He wants to move through these very weaknesses.
Because God is enough and has enough, we can rest.
This is counterintuitive. The world tells you the way to be confident is to believe in yourself. So we keep pushing forward in our resources to prove we have what it takes. But those who know and love Jesus know that the road to confidence and peace is believe in Jesus and what He provides."
Ya'll- I had instant tears after reading that. And I said "Okay, let's do this thing!" I am so excited for this! I cannot wait to see what Jesus does. He is GOOD. I cannot wait for you to read some of the stories I have already received. You have a story worth sharing. And even if you have the tiniest feeling in your stomach to share, do it. I would love for you to submit your story to share His goodness. To share His love. This isn't about us. God will accomplish His work to set His people free.
Because His love is enough.