Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Walking as a Warrior

My year learning to be a Warrior has been a good one.

A GREAT one.

But the battle is tough.

My last post was about Playing it Hurt. I said it was time to start playing hurt, and by that I meant that I no longer wanted my fears to hold me back from getting in the game. The game of life, of relationships, of passions, or of my goals.

So, although I stopped writing about it for awhile, I DID get back in the game.

I've faced alot of fears this year - especially in the first six months of 2011. One of the biggest was that I worked up the nerve and courage to take an audition prep class, take a voice lesson and prepare for an audition into the Pacific Chorale - a professional Chorale whose concerts I have attended through the years.

I was so nervous - but I went. I followed through.

I tried.

And when I walked out of that audition, I had NO idea if I had a chance or not. But I was elated because I tried and fear had not won.

To me, that was the victory!

A week later, I received a voicemail saying that I had been accepted into the Chorale. Tears from out of the hidden places of heart lept out of my eyes - I kept thinking, "What if I hadn't tried? What if I kept listening to my fear?"
That is one example (and one of the bigger ones) of how I am allowing God to help me fight my fears.

But I am also learning that being a Warrior doesn't just mean facing fears.

It also means having vision.

And THAT is what I have been seeking for these last few months.

I know my purpose is to serve my King.

"But what, oh King, do you desire from me? Put vision into my soul of Your purposes for me, and give me the strength and character of heart to follow after that vision."

This is my prayer as I continue to seek to be His warrior.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Playing Hurt.

The heart of a warrior is what I'm after. And this week, I've learned that the heart of a warrior must be honest and it must choose to be humble, even when it feels humiliating.

In the past few days, I've had to look at myself in the mirror and say, "This is what actually happened, Heidi. This is the real reason; this is what has been going on all along. Plain and simple - you're scared."

While reading a book for my creative writing class entitled, "The War of Art," I ran across a small paragraph. It was as if this small paragraph was a mirror that the book held up in order to show me myself.

The paragraph said this:

"What are we trying to heal, anyway? The athlete knows the day will never come when he wakes up pain-free. He has to play hurt."

He has to play hurt.

It was a wake-up to reality for me.

It was a kick-in-the-rear to stop blaming, stop rationalizing to myself, stop making excuses, and stop waiting for my emotional hurts to be all healed and fixed in order to move forward in something that I still want to do.

Maybe outside factors actually were a part of making one of my biggest joys turn into one of my biggest fears.

But a warrior can't always, if ever, choose the conditions in which he fights his battles. He must simply fight with no excuses. The conditions around him, or perhaps, even the conditions inside his own heart, may make things more difficult, but he still must choose to fight.

It's time for me to step up and start facing one of my biggest fears and not waiting until all the wounds are healed because waiting for complete healing has simply become an excuse for procrastination.

It's time to play hurt.

What about YOU? Do you ever rationalize your fears?

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Finishing Strong

I'm currently sitting at the curved, bamboo counter of the busy Starbucks on Main Street in Huntington Beach.

An empty cup, which ten minutes ago was filled with my tall-soy-chai-latte-with-no-foam, sits to my left.

To my right sits another individual fixated upon his laptop. He was just talking on his cell phone with someone in either Florida or Haiti...I couldn't pick up on the definitive details to determine which location it actually was. (Not that it was any of my business....)

I am writing a blog post right now but I should be writing a first-grade lesson plan. I am in the middle of my LAST college class and this week I am supposed to create a lesson plan to teach to 1st graders for the daily math and daily language. I'm looking forward to teaching the lesson and working with those adorable 1st graders that I've had chance to spend time with the last few Thursdays but I don't want to sit for an hour and type up all the formal explanations of what I will be doing in that half-hour of teaching.

I can hear my mom saying, "Dreading is worse than doing...."

I can hear my dad saying, "Finish Strong, Heidi! Finish strong!"

"You're right, Mom."

"I will, Dad."

Come on, Heidi. Just half a class left! Four more weeks of assignments and textbook readings and tests. Four more weeks of writing and proof-reading paragraphs and hitting the "submit" button to turn in my papers.

Four weeks to being DONE.

And just three months to walking across that field in cap and gown and receiving that slip of paper that documents my six-year pursuit of a college degree.

Three more months until I offically have a Bachelor of Science in Education.

I cannot wait.

Ok, I'm gonna get to writing that lesson plan now.

It's time to Finish Strong!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011


It has been too long since I have posted!

It feels good to once again hit the "New Post" button and start typing in a blank text box.

Tonight, as it is 10:30, (and my original goal was to be asleep earlier than my normal 10:00 hour and be in bed by 9:30), will not be yielding an in-depth post.

However, I just had to come back to this little spot on the Internet after nearly a month.

Many lovely, lovely things have occured in my life! So many lessons to glean, stories to tell, and experiences to share. Some difficult and stretching experiences have occured as well and the lessons I continue to learn from those experiences always produce the gold that the furnace of the Refiner's fire promises.

2011 has truly been shaping up to be a year of training for me - the training of a Warrior. This One Word has truly proven to not be a mere idea but a true foundation for the work that God is doing in my heart and mind and life.

I think about how that word relates to my identity on a daily basis.

I have a growing playlist on my iPhone with songs that have themes of being a Christian Warrior (and I could always use new song suggestions!)

When confronted with decisions that make me want to hide, ignore, or pretend ignorance of a situation, I cannot escape the question in my head "What would a Warrior do?"

It's truly been a season of growing in strength. It seems, at least to me, that most of that has all been internal work. I'm not sure how much it shows externally in my attitudes and actions but I'm confident of the work taking place because I can feel my King is guiding me through it.

How has the beginning month-and-a-half of 2011 been going for YOU? Did you pick a OneWord for this year? Or do you see any themes taking shape in your life lately?

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Perfect Love.

You see the tall, leafy tree.

You see the flowers blooming on the bush.

You see the ivy creeping farther and farther up the old building.

What holds these plants in place?

The Roots.

Where do these plants originate from?

The Seed.


You feel the stress of an impending occasion.

You feel the anger at other people's choices.

You carry the burden of other individual's responsibilities.

What keeps the anxiety-producing burdens attached to you?

The Roots of Bondage.

What produced these anxiety-producing burdens that are held to you by the roots of bondage?

The Seed of Fear.

Out of the seed of fear comes destructive habits or patterns of thinking, anxiety, anger, and a host of other burdens that grow and attach themselves to your heart through the entangling roots of bondage.

These roots can feel so strong and powerful that you feel you will never have any freedom from the burdens that they keep you attached to.

In all your efforts of strength, you try to release your burdens, forget your anxieties, and calm your anger. But just as a weed grows back wtih more vengence when only the portion above ground is cut, your burdens quickly grow back and begin to strangle your hope for peace.

You know now that the only way to be released from these burdens is to completely uproot these roots of bondage that grew from the seed of fear.

You go to work at tearing out these roots only to find that you have made no significant progress, you are exhausted and left more vulnerable, and your burdens now seem even heavier to carry.

You are then handed two tools to help you rip out these strong roots. You unfold two scraps of paper and read these two phrases:

"The truth shall set you free..."

"Perfect love casts out all fear..."

You sit and stare at these two phrases. How can these familiar words work together in such a way to free you from these roots of bondage?

As you sit, the Holy Spirit give you this answer, "You must know this truth: That your burdens, anxieties, and the theft of your joy is being grown from the seed of fear. And you must know what specific fear it is. Let me reveal truth to you in order to make you free. I will show you the specific seed of fear that has been planted in your heart."

You allow Him to show you, and you are amazed to find that all the burdens you are carrying are growing from this specific fear - a fear you didn't realize you held!

You say to Him, "Holy Spirit, I had no idea this fear was in my heart. How do I uproot this fear when the roots of bondage are so strong?"

And He says back to you, "You can't do anything. You see, only perfect love casts out fear, and in your humanity you are far from perfect. You must trust Jesus with this fear. His love is perfect and He can provide real healing. But, be warned, although His healing is complete it is not devoid of pain. Are you willing to entrust your healing from this fear to His perfect love and His perfect methods?"

That is where your free will comes in; this is where you must decide to allow Him to heal you.


That is what I must decide.

A specific fear was revealed to my heart today. And I desire to be freed from these roots of bondage that keep me carrying these burdens.

Now it comes down to surrender.

And so this is the earnest prayer of my heart,

"Lord Jesus, help me to trust You. You have called me to walk in victory over fear and live a life victoriously with joy! I give You this fear and I surrender my desire to avoid pain. I trust in Your perfect love and your perfect healing."

Sunday, January 9, 2011

The Belt of Truth.

It happened.

The reason I was afraid to write my OneWord2011 post became reality and the fear I felt over publicly declaring the word "Warrior" over myself for 2011 took shape.

Doubt leading to defeat.

I finally wrote my OneWord post on Thursday; I was excited to move forward! Friday came - and it was awful. I felt utterly defeated. Everything in my emotional and spiritual self felt unable to cope with some new life circumstances, sudden sadness, and an increasing awareness of my own insecurities.

I felt like the exact opposite of a Warrior.

And it was through this experience on Friday that I have, once again, become increasingly aware of the fact that I have an enemy.

A few days in retrospect, it is obvious that instantly after I declared my intention to become a more focused and equipped warrior for the Kingdom of Heaven, the kingdom of darkness sent a little more attack my way, saying...

"Scare her off this journey before she builds up strength in Him. Hit her when she's unsuspecting and weak."

It was in this day-long battle that I realized the major importance of the weapon of Truth. Just as Ephesians 6:14 says,

"Stand, therefore, having girded your waist with Truth...."

Though it took me until the very end of that day to obtain any joy, I was able to at least be aware throughout the day that I was experiencing an inundation of lies and emotions. Therefore, I searched for truth and asked for God's strength to not let myself dwell in the lies.

So I am learning this:

A strong warrior must know the tactics of their enemy. And they must know what weapons to use as their defense.

I know that our King has given His warriors many weapons with which to fight, but currently, He is teaching this warrior-in-training the importance of

The Belt of Truth.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

My OneWord2011.


It seems a bit dramatic.

"Health" seems a little more practical, a little more sensible, and a little more normal.

And up until a few hours before we rang in the New Year, "Health" was going to be my One Word motto for the year.

But while celebrating with my family on New Year's Eve, my dad, sister, and I listened to music in a corner of my parent's house. And as I sat and listened, the songs that compared the Christian life to war began to stir my spirit.

It wasn't the first time that themes of war had begun to tug at me in December. During the last two weeks of the year, I saw the movies, "Voyage of the Dawn Treader" and "Legend of the Owls." I loved both movies because they held so much symbolism and I had enjoyed pondering what drew me so strongly to the noble heroes of each movie.

Also, during the last week of December, my husband began to read a book that has been sitting on our shelf for over a year - "Battle Ready" by Steve Farrar. Also in that week, I had read some excerpts from my parents copy of "Wild at Heart" by John Eldredge in which he often compares the Christian journey to battle.

So, as I sat and listened to these inspiring songs, I realized that all the recent media I had been exposed to was beginning to point to a specific direction.

I casually mentioned this to my dad and he said, "Well, maybe God's trying to show you something."

I smiled and tried to laugh it off. Themes of battles and war was the last direction I desired to take for this upcoming year. Especially after completing a year in which my One Word was "Healing."

However, the more I pondered the stirrings in my heart and the more I willingly opened my heart to asking God if He was leading those stirrings, the more I couldn't get away from the word, "Warrior."

Lord?! Me?? A Warrior?

But I'm a princess!

A gentle, golden-haired, dress-wearing, encourage-the-knight-and-send-him-off-to-battle-with-a-kiss princess!

Lord, You know how much fear I still hold in my heart, don't You? Most of the time, I don't act anything like a fearless warrior.

Are You sure??

I wrestled with these thoughts. Then I began to dwell upon the characteristics of a warrior. As I brainstormed a list of some of the trademarks a warrior is known for, my heart began to understand.

The list grew long but it included trademarks such as:







As the list began to grow, I began to realize, "THIS is what He wants to do in me! This is what He wants to develop me into!"

And when I understood, I was overwhelmed.

And Excited.

This is what I want.

But this is what I am afraid of.

However, I am confident of this, that He did not give me a spirit of fear but one of boldness and a sound mind. I believe that He will finish the work that He has started in me and that He will show how His strength is made perfect in my weakness.

Here we go, 2011! Let's get started on this journey!

To find out what other bloggers are choosing as their word for 2011 click here!

Do YOU have any themes or words that you are inspired to follow after this year?

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

The New Year

It's taken me a few days to get settled into this New Year.

I spent the week before New Year's Day getting ready for 2011 with some journaling, reflecting, and planning.

I had chosen my word for OneWord2011 and I was excited about it.

And hours before the clock hit midnight, I felt God start stirring things up and changing things in my heart as I listened to some music at my family's gathering.

And it has taken me 5 days so far to get re-adjusted to my vision for this year. Or should I say, I have been re-adjusting to what I believe God's vision is for me this year.

I've been hesitating writing my post on what the One Word is that I believe God is calling me to for this year because when I write it down, there is no going back.

This word isn't what I expected but I know it's what I need.

Stay tuned.... :-)