Today, Lucy speaks to us about dealing with emotions, finding your life scripture, and a book that is encouraging her journey in healing.
(Founder of An Honest Life)
Inspiring biblical passage of the moment: I’m currently reading the Psalms and have been overwhelmed by the amount of scriptures I have read that have inspired me, challenged me, answered my questions, helped me see my situation through different eyes. I also have life verses that continue to strengthen me. One verse someone sent me few weeks ago has really brought me comfort, and it’s Exodus 14:14: “The Lord will fight for you – you need only to be still.”
I will keep going for as a long as I can; I do it at work, I do it at church, I do with friends and relationships; despite how much I am hurting, I will keep going and trying and fighting for something to stay the way it is. And then, one day, it will break, and I break, too. But I keep going. And after years of doing that, God is finally getting through to me (not because He hasn’t tried before, but probably, because I am finally listening!). I’m finally stopping and slowing down. I’m learning to listen to His lead, to follow where He wants me to go. To not just keep going where I think is best, but to look to Him for guidance. And in the midst of learning and letting go of old ways, old hurts and rejection, this scripture brings me peace. It reminds me that I don’t need to be ‘headstrong’ when I’m walking with God– He will fight for me and protect me and I need to learn to be still. To trust him.
“I don’t need to be ‘headstrong’ when I’m walking with God– He will fight for me and protect me and I need to learn to be still.”
Spiritual growth focus at the moment: Right now, I feel like God is challenging me a lot on the hurt I’ve been carrying for a long time. I feel completely broken, and it’s hard, but I’m learning and from what I’ve learnt in the past, I know it’s always going to be for something good.
“I know it’s always going to be for something good.”
Profession: I am currently working as a Primary school teacher. I teach a year 3 class of 7-8 year olds.
A one sentence bio of yourself: A 21-year-old primary school teacher, living in England, UK, a follower of Jesus with dreams bigger than where I am now.
When did you first encounter God? I’ve grown up in a Christian family, going to church my whole life, but I think I’d be kidding myself if I said my first encounter with God was when I was 6 years old. I decided I wanted to follow Jesus when I was 6, but I think the first real encounter I had with God was when I was 15. I was at a youth conference in the summer, and it completely changed me. I went feeling insecure about who I was, what I was doing and living life pretty much to myself. I came home after 3 days away; confident in who God had made me, and ready to share my faith with my friends, after hiding it for so long. And I don’t think I’ve been the same, since then.
What has helped you grow spiritually in this season? Over the last few months I’ve faced a vast array of emotions that I’ve never really dealt with before; bitterness, frustration, anger and unforgiveness. It’s been difficult at times. I’ve committed to reading a Psalm or two, every day, and the honesty revealed within the Psalms and the truth about God and who He is for us, has definitely steadied my heart and soul and helped me remain at peace with God during this season I am in. The Psalms are my go-to scriptures because I know that within those scriptures, I will read about people who have felt the way I have felt, who have felt every kind of emotion, and then I’ll read how they got through it, the truth of God they spoke over their situation and then read about how God overcame it with them; I am honestly overwhelmed and inspired every time I read.
“The honesty revealed within the Psalms and the truth about God and who He is for us, has definitely steadied my heart and soul and helped me remain at peace with God during this season I am in.”
Just read/currently reading (and what has it taught you?): Currently reading Uninvited by Lysa TerKeurst. I’ve only read a couple of chapters, so far, but it has really got me. I’ve been carrying around rejection and disappointment for a long time now, and straight away Lysa writes so honestly about rejection and what it is, and I just cried as I read it.
Top three essentials: This was hard because there are just so many things a person needs! Obviously, I love Jesus and my Bible and all that. Aside from that, I have 3 things that are essential in life:
- Black skinny jeans (what a God send!);
- Sudocream (that stuff works miracles on anything. Literally anything.);
- Mascara (my face looks so weird without it).
If I was going anywhere; I would have these three things with me. No doubt about it.
How did God speak to you recently? For the most part, God speaks to me through my everyday thoughts. It’s like a silent whisper I hear in my own head, and I just know that it is Him. He’s been speaking to me a lot about where I am at and how I am dealing with everything in life; just slowly, full of grace and love; leading me the way He needs me to go.
“He’s been speaking to me a lot about where I am at and how I am dealing with everything in life; just slowly, full of grace and love; leading me the way He needs me to go.”
Hobby: Hmm. I used to dance and loved it. I love going to a dance fitness class with my sister. I also love shopping… does that count?
Top three practical tips for staying spiritually strong: We all go back and forth from feeling like we have it all together with God to then feeling like everything is falling apart. I know for me, I always find myself attaching my spiritual strength to my bodily/emotional strength, and I have to remind myself over and over again that my body does not dictate my spirit but my spirit dictates my body. My tips would be:
- Find a scripture: Read it, learn it, hold on to it for better or worse. Speak it over your life, again and again and again. Write it down, stick it on the wall. Make it your life’s verse. So that even when you are at your weakest, it is so deep in your mind and soul that it’s in the whisper of your prayers.
- Keep gathering with people whose faith can inspire you and encourage you, whether that’s going to church every week or going to a small group or gathering with friends. Make sure you don’t stop putting yourself in a position where you can worship and learn and grow, even when it hurts.
- Worship. There is nothing like entering the presence of God whilst you worship that will make you feel stronger. In the car, on the bus, in your room, at church, at youth group, anywhere.
Favorite person in scripture? My favorite person in scripture is Esther. I love her bravery– not just in doing something brave by going to the king when she hadn’t been called to, but the bravery she showed throughout it all, to stay where she was because she knew deep down she had been called to be there by God (even though she struggled to believe it). I love the scripture “perhaps this is the moment for which you have been created” that comes from the words spoken by her uncle. What a powerful statement.
What do you want people to learn about God when they look at you? That God will save you from your brokenness, and even when you think you deserve nothing; He will give you everything you have ever dreamt of.
Favorite season? Summer. Summer. Summer. Summer. Summer.
Favorite holiday? I’ve not been to many places to be honest. Last year, my family went to Disneyland Paris to celebrate mine and my sister’s birthdays (we were 16, 18 and 21, so it was a big year!) That’s probably the best holiday I’ve had so far.
A dream you have? I’ve not told many people this dream– but I would love to write a book. A beautiful coffee table book, full of inspiration, real life stories, photography, quotes and scripture.
A special tradition you and your family engage in or keep: Every year on the Friday before Christmas. my family and I head to Newcastle. There’s a department store called Fenwicks, where they have Christmas display windows that everyone lines up to see. We go to the windows and then we always go to a restaurant called Nando’s. We did it one year and then did it the next, and here we are 7 years later.
Question you will ask when you get to heaven? There’s so many questions I would want to ask!! I’ve sat for ages thinking about this and still can’t think of one good enough to be my one question. I’d probably ask God if I did everything He needed me to do.
Thing you want to raise awareness about: As a youth leader, kids leader, teacher, girlfriend, sister, pastor’s kid, female… there are so many things that I get passionate about. I see injustice, and I get so desperate for it to be made right; and that can be anywhere, from church to school to home to people I just see on the street. Right now, something that I feel needs talking about is young people and children and their well-being. With the way the world is right now; technology, school, friends, health, families, money– they carry so much pressure at such a young age, and they need people to not see them as inconvenient/useless/unaware, but as people who can (and will!) change the world. They need to be cared for and loved and shown how to deal with and respond to the challenges of life, in a world that is dismissing them. Society is giving them labels instead of giving them help, and we need to do something about that.
What do you usually do before 9 a.m.? My life before 9 a.m. depends a lot on the day it is! Weekdays I’m up and ready and out the house by half 7 off to work. By 9 a.m. at school, I’ve sorted all of resources for teaching and the kids are now on their way into school.
On a Saturday, 9 a.m. is probably the time I’m waking up (if I don’t have any plans). And on a Sunday, 9 a.m. is usually when I’m on my way to church, if I’m serving on the kids church team, if I’m not serving, then I’m either in bed or getting ready!
What is on your nightstand? I have a small bookshelf next to my bed, so I have all my Bibles and notebooks there. I have a basket of things that I just put there because I have nowhere else to put them! I have a bottle of water, a lamp, a candle with an L on, a lovely plant (which I think might be dying) and a photo of me and my sisters.
Define Christianity in a sentence: Imperfect people living imperfect lives who are perfectly loved by a perfect God.
For more Lucy:
Website is www.anhonestlifeblog.com
Until next time, keep witnessing!