A Journey West – Grand Canyon

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I had no idea what to expect when we pulled up to the Grand Canyon. I knew my grandmother had visited many times, and LOVED the Grand Canyon, going back many times over the years. I knew that it was supposed to be a phenomenal view. But no picture, no video, no story can prepare you for the sight you actually see.

It. Is. Breathtaking.

We didn’t actually pull into our campground until well into the night, so we had no idea what we were waking up to. Turned out that our camping spot was literally just a concrete extension of the road right in front of the bathrooms. Gross, but convenient.

We all put on way too serious hiking outfits for the concrete trails we would be walking. But hey, we were ready for anything.

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Basically, we just stopped and stared a lot. There was a ledge that peeked out over the edge, and made for some great photo ops. Here’s Danny, snapping some shots of the Jobes. I HAVE NO IDEA WHY WE WERE OKAY WITH THIS.

But we all lived to tell the tale. And of course, the only person to be busted by the ranger, was Andy Jobe. ūüôā

Screen Shot 2014-12-15 at 4.26.23 PMAfter sight-seeing around the South Rim, we took our rickety RV over to the North Rim and up some very rugged not-made-for-an-RV-roads. It was deafening and terrifying and awesome. I’m not sure if we were frightened or entertained or some strange concoction of both, but if you would have told us that wouldn’t be the roughest trail of our trip, I don’t think we would have believed you.

When we finally found a site, it was SO TOTALLY WORTH IT. We happened upon this clearing, surrounded by a half-circle of tall Ponderosa Pines and a smattering of other trees and plants. We were so far out, the stars were incredible. I mean, I have NEVER seen stars like that before. If it wasn’t 25 degrees out, I could have stayed out there all night. And I saw my first shooting star! It was a dream.

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(Thanks Danny for the awesome photo!)

 

We woke up before dawn so we could catch the sunrise over the North Rim. We almost missed it, we couldn’t find our way out of the woods to get to an edge. Eventually, as the sun started to peek, we just pulled over and walked to the nearest overhang.

As the sun rose, more and more of the Grand Canyon became visible. It was like every minute that passed presented a new sight to see. I felt so in awe of the creation that was before me.

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Can I just build a cabin and stay here?

People Pleasers Who Hate Pleasing People

It’s a dilemma. A HUGE dilemma. I love defying expectations and hate doing things just so that so-and-so can be happy / comfortable if those “things” don’t make any sense, but I am in complete shambles if someone doesn’t like me. I mean, it is the WORST if someone doesn’t like me.

So I am very confused.

What does a people pleaser do if they hate doing things just to please people? They freak out. All the time. About everything. And they argue with themselves a lot. I mean, it’s a real mess up in here.

For example: Family coming to visit this weekend was a HUGE meltdown waiting to happen. (Okay, it happened, twice. Or maybe more, but who’s counting.) On one hand, I want to make sure that they have a good time, that all of their expectations and needs are met, they have the food they like, the activities they enjoy, the air temperature they prefer. But on the other hand, why do I have to bend over backwards because they need GREEN apples, not red ones.¬†Butter, soft and unsalted. Hawaiian Punch to drink, because water/lemonade isn’t right. Oh, and that loaf of bread? It looks weird.

I woke up at 4 AM the first night, paranoid over expectations and feelings. The pizza took 55 minutes to get here, did they even WANT pizza anymore? I should have picked different pizza!!! What do we do tomorrow? Will it be too hot? If it is, then what? Oh my gosh, do they hate it here? Do they regret coming? Who cares anyway, I’m doing the best I can and that’s all I can ask. So what if my bread doesn’t look the same as their bread. GET OVER IT. But I want you to be happy, and for what I have to be ENOUGH for you!

I just want to be enough.

BOOM. I just want to be enough, and I hate not being enough. If you aren’t happy with me, or what I have to give you, I feel like I am not enough for you. So I try to make you happy because I NEED YOU TO SAY that who I am, what I am, is enough. That you don’t need a constant smiley face, the perfect response, or the perfect brand of cheese.

And therein lies the dilemma. I hate pleasing people because I just want them to be satisfied, and say, “it’s okay, what you have here is enough.” But I don’t feel like enough, so I want to please them so they’ll say, “wow, what you have here is enough.”

The crazy thing is, this all goes back to something I already know, and I already tell myself over and over. Humans are flawed and damaged. (Hell, I’m flawed and damaged.) I cannot, under any circumstances, seek my sense of approval from other people. THEY will never satisfy my unending need for love and approval.

So why do I keep going back to this? I obviously haven’t learned how to receive my worth from the right place yet.

Jesus said, “My grace is sufficient for you”. And Paul prayed in Ephesians, “that you, being rooted¬†and established in love,¬†may have power, together with all the Lord‚Äôs holy people,¬†to grasp how wide and long and high and deep¬†is the love of Christ,¬†and to know this love that surpasses knowledge‚ÄĒthat you may be filled¬†to the measure of all the fullness of God.”¬†

Filled to the measure. No worry. Sufficient. Yes, I want ALL OF THAT.

I learned an important lesson today, and that is that I haven’t yet learned how to receive my identity and His son/daughter. What a tough lesson to learn, and what a difference it will make when I do! I pray that this sinks in, the God continues to show me how high and deep His love is, that I learn to receive that as the source of who I am, and not the opinions of other people. That I would have the grace and love to extend to those who come against me, and to walk in the freedom of knowing that I am flawed and equally loved.

 

 

 

 

Humans Are Incredible

I spotted this video that went viral on Facebook today, and (I know I’m emotional) it brought tears to my eyes. Three strangers outside of a Kroger started jamming on the spot, and it SOUNDS AMAZING.

I follow this blog called, “Humans of New York”, the first of many replications, and I am constantly reminded of people’s crazy stories, talents and lives. Strangers that you pass by on the street have complex stories weaved with heartache and love and struggle. Seeing their faces tied to excerpts of their stories usually leaves me in awe of the human race and how diverse we are.

Also, that we’re never alone.

I’ve been thinking a lot about this on Sunday’s, when I’m volunteering at church. How everyone that walks through those doors has a different story, and a different reason why they are there. In the sea of people, there are so many questions, so many tears that have been cried or anger that hasn’t been released, or forgiveness that hasn’t been had or freedom that hasn’t been found. The single mom whose ironically been singled out by her community, the confused teenager who has no idea who they are, the overwhelmed Dad who feels like a total failure.

SO MANY STORIES.

And that is why I want to look at people with open arms and to be able to say, “I have no idea what it is like to be you, but I’m sure it can be tough, and I’m sure you fail at it, but I’m also sure that you are freaking amazing.” Because, you are.

The talent of these three totally random guys, is shake-your-head-in-amazement wonderful. And we might never have gotten to see the beauty behind the rags so to speak, had they not let us. There is beauty in all of us, God DELIGHTS in us (it says so in Zephaniah 3:17), because we are all wonderfully made. (David talks about that is Psalm 139:14.)

So I love to see the beauty shine through, and to soak it in. Because that stranger on the street, the nameless person¬†sitting next to you in church, or the dude with a guitar outside of Kroger…sometimes, you just don’t know.

P.S. If you want to check out Humans of New York, you can find it here:

https://www.facebook.com/humansofnewyork?fref=nf