Have you ever felt like there is more to life than what you are experiencing? Maybe you attend church every single week, like clockwork, or maybe you’ve never set foot in a house of worship; either way I am writing this to you.
I am writing this to the dreamer who feels the calling of God to make into reality everything they’ve ever envisioned. I am writing this to the person who has never met God, but feels an inner need for something greater. I am writing this to the one who wants to go…deeper.
I am writing this to the one who wants to go deeper.
I clearly remember one of my first experiences in church. It was during my very awkward fourteenth year of life. That night at youth service, they had decided to remove all the chairs from the sanctuary and turn the entire service into a worship service.
I felt so weird just standing there as other young people raised their hands around me as the music started. They would clap their hands together to the beat of the music. When the lights dimmed and the music mellowed out, they would bow their heads. They would extend their hands forward, palms up, as if expecting something to land on them. It was odd!
In the mist of this strange worship, I remember also noticing other young people texting on their cell phones, their expressions smug. Others carried on with their conversations in the back of the room, whispering and giggling as if they were just there to pass the time.
Not knowing what else to do, and feeling so incredibly out of place, I decided to give it a go. I too closed my eyes, and thought to myself, “I don’t know why I am here, but if there is anything more to this I want to experience it.”
“I don’t know why I am here, but if there is anything more to this I want to experience it.”
Honestly, I didn’t hear the booming voice of God, and no angel appeared to me. No one came and told me the words of God, no hairs on my body stood on end. I simply felt like God was listening to me. In that simple moment in a fourteen-year old’s life, I felt heard.
Why do I tell you this simple (yet very personally important) story?
Well, the thing is that it was in that moment, looking at all the young people around me, and not knowing where I fit into all of this, that I made somewhat of a decision. I didn’t understand church, and much less the people that attended said place. Either way, it was during that season of my life, being so new to the church, that God began to reveal to me who He is.
Up to that moment, I had felt so lost, longing for something deeper. My family was a mess, and I was struggling with a depression that I couldn’t shake off. I felt a longing for more to life than struggles, and pain, and brokenness. Quite frankly, I finally decided to try God.
The thing is, beloved reader, that we all must have a moment like that in our lives. A moment when we decide if we just want to attend church, or to be the church. The moment when we decide to pray a prayer that scares us. It’s a prayer asking God to take us deeper, even if others think we are crazy.
God take us deeper, even if others think we are crazy.
We can look at the Prophet Jeremiah. He had a moment where the words that God was telling him to speak were costing him everything. He was constantly beat by his fellow countrymen. He was imprisoned, tortured, and accused. The poor guy was tired. This is the conclusion that Jeremiah came up with:
If I say, “I will not mention him, or speak any more in his name,” there is in my heart as it were a burning fire shut up in my bones, and I am weary with holding it in, and I cannot. (Jeremiah 20:9, ESV)
Jeremiah decided that even it was hard, he was going to follow and obey God wholeheartedly. Even if he was alone in this, he was going to move forward.
I too made that decision because I have felt the presence of God, and I have seen Him answer all the prayers that I have presented before Him. He has given me peace, even in the worst of times. He has always been there.
Even if others think it’s crazy, I will obey God.
Even if it cost me everything, I will follow God.
Even if it doesn’t make sense, I will go after God.
So this is the conclusion that I have come with:
I’m going deeper, follow if you will.
I’m going deeper, follow if you will.
By Carla Lopez, Co-founder of Empowered Beauty