Already Included #69 – Old Shirts

By: Sarah Nyhan

I wanted to wear my shirt from yesterday just for a few minutes this morning because I didn’t want to dirty up a new shirt before I showered.

When I went to put the old shirt on from yesterday, I couldn’t even keep it on for more than a few seconds. I took it off immediately.

There was no problem with the shirt yesterday when I put it on. But it’s a new day and I could just feel yesterday hanging onto that shirt like a second skin. Ugh!

Made me think about wineskins again. And manna. How we grow and change as people. And in our relationship with God. Just like babies and children biologically change and grow. What was yesterday’s was meant for yesterday. Today is a whole new thing.

I’m that person who appreciates comfort. I don’t understand the concept of feeling shame for wearing an outfit more than once. On the contrary, I wear my favorite jeans and t-shirts once a week. They have to literally be falling apart for me to get rid of them.

I’m like that with life sometimes also. With people more specifically. I’ll hold on until it’s tearing me apart too much. But sometimes the people for yesterday aren’t today’s people. Sometimes the way we thought yesterday is not where God is leading us today.

Not that He changes. No, this is about healing. And no condemnation; Trinity is well able to reach everyone. What I’m focused on is my business. My healing. One step at a time.

What is the manna for today? Will I embrace the mysteries from the safest place inside my Father’s heart? Is my trust in “certainty” or is my trust in Jesus? Is my trust in an intellectual knowing or is my trust in Trinity’s heart? Is my trust in my understanding or is my trust in my God’s love?

Already Included #68 – In Action

By: Sarah Nyhan

Things were overall going well today. Then I exposed myself to some people from a past life per se. A life that currently appears all but dead.

And at first there were a lot of good things. But slowly, just like before, a word here, a word there… Before I even knew it, even though I was trying to watch out, I rapidly slipped and fell down the slope.

Thankfully not very far and not for very long. Which is a miracle, really. I think it’s endurance. Trial by fire. The more I choose life, the more aware I am when death comes knocking. It’s repulsive to me now when I realize it.

This time it only took a few minutes to get through the mess. I was having such a good day and then my mind did a 180 after the exposure. It was so jarring. I didn’t want the feelings and thoughts at all. They were unfortunately too familiar. I had no desire to do yet another round in the ring with them.

So I followed my own advice from yesterday. I cried out in brutal honesty. And faster than I could get the words out, Comfort swooped in to wrap me up in assurance and perfect love! Unlike the hours, days, and weeks I can spend if I insist on spinning my own wheels.

Some of the helpful thoughts: “Start with what you know.” Well, I sometimes feel like I don’t know much else than Jesus loves me. “That’s a great place to start!” If Jesus loves me then I matter. And what I want matters. Then remembering that I don’t have to be strong enough; I can trust God to be bigger than me. Back on track.

The specifics really aren’t the point so much as sharing it as an example of yesterday’s encouragement worked out in real life. Hope in that respect. Sometimes seeing it in another can help when we’ve yet to experience it for ourselves. Me included.

But back to the beginning, a few things came to mind.

More and more I understand not being able to put this new wine in the old wineskins. It just doesn’t work.

And also even further back to the first garden. Maybe it was a real tropical paradise. But I choose to see it more as a picture for us. (Easier to remember in a culture that passed on information orally. I find more freedom in reading the stories more literarily than literally these days.)

And so I am now leaning to the garden being a picture of our mind. Maybe even our hearts. And the directive? Guard it. Take care of it. Kinda be jealous over this space given to you by God. So we’re not deceived. Only for our good – individually and collectively. (Not at all about an ego.)

Religions take this to the next level. Mostly good intentions gone too far, in my opinion. I don’t think it has to get that crazy or complicated. I think the answer is much more simple. Just like they initially did in the garden story: simply be with God. No formulas.

This is about relationship. Real relationship. The kind you crave but don’t even dare to let yourself think about after so many disappointments.

People say be with Jesus and then they turn that into a list of stuff to do. Like even go to church, pray, or read the Bible. No, I’m talking even more simple than that. I’m talking simple enough for a child.

What do you do when you want to spend time with someone? You just meet them and usually talk with them. That simple.

You don’t even have to believe. Trinity will gladly take even your unbelief. Very welcome as more honest than most, I would bet. Don’t we long for those we feel safe enough to be our real full selves with? God is that big. Even bigger. You were already fully known and loved before you even could disappoint youself. God does not change. We are the ones constantly invited to return Home.

I think this is about healing. I think this is about love. I think we’ve got a lot to learn. But never any condemnation.

Ask and you shall receive. And then hold on for the ride. 😁 The adventure of really living out loud and in color. New and fresh every morning. I haven’t experienced any other option that remotely comes close to satisfying. By design.

And yet there is a lot of hope. Not willing that any perish. Not content to leave even one little stinky smelly sheep behind. Preparing a table for us. Finishing what He starts! That, my friend, will give you wings to soar, to risk taking flight.

How little do we think of God? Where did we fall down along the way? What is He doing even now?

God, thank You! I want us to see as You see, hear as You hear, know Your love for us, experience it so personally that the intellectual is unnecessary, and then be able to share that hope starting with those we love. Healing this amazing gift You have given us. One beautiful person at a time. A real rEVOLution.

Already Included #67 – Too Small

By: Sarah Nyhan

I think we’re probably all guilty of trying to dumb down God; trying to make God smaller than He is. Forcing Him in a box that is the size of our choosing.

I don’t think we can imagine a box that is big enough for God. I think that’s the point.

When I don’t understand, what do I do? Do I rush to defend God? When I’m disappointed? When something tragic happens? When it seems like too much time has passed?

Do I sit quietly and wait for Spirit to give me what I need? (Do I even really know what I need?) Or do I go to my mind and my heart to construct an explanation?

I spend so much time trying to carry these burdens on my own. When I actually bring them to God in the moment, it feels like almost instantly I’m given what I need to move to the next step.

The Israelites come to mind. How they wandered in the desert of their own strength for so long. Many other stories. The same theme.

It’s not natural for me to give up; I’m so used to using my mind to work things out. Now learning more and more to be ok with saying “I don’t know” and turning to God for help. Like a child. Welcomed!

And tonight I was thinking about how God could heal the whole planet with a Word. Maybe He already has outside of our experience of time and space. But even if not, He could make it all clear and fix everything right away. We see this in the stories of Jesus. Healings. Even with the time of His surrender in the garden; all the soldiers fell down with a Word.

So this God of ours does not need us to defend Him. He is more than capable. He does not need us to explain Him. We can point the people with questions to The Source. Maybe we don’t because we don’t practice what we preach in that respect. Maybe deep down some or even most of us don’t really, really trust this God we sing about… because we don’t go to Him enough to remember. We have a mountain-top experience and then we try to live on yesterday’s manna today; it’s not for us. His mercies are new and fresh every morning. Even every moment. What happened to the manna that was hoarded in fear?

What happens to us when we turn back to our own strength?

Do we not think our Creator is powerful enough to write in the sky so all could see? Or speak so that all could hear? Even those that say they don’t want to or they don’t believe?

Do we really believe God is so impotent?!

I’d be remiss to give you my peace right now. Because it was for me. And you need your heart spoken to. God is that personal. That invested in you. So I encourage you. Whatever it is today. Whatever it is in this moment. Even in unbelief, ask.

Already Included #50 – Divided

(This content is also available on my personal YouTube channel: https://youtu.be/h1tAK7dboDU)

I’m tired of giving power to fear. I’m tired of not including Trinity.

Maybe we were Created to receive Love. Maybe it’s that simple.

Maybe there is much more available to us than we realize, than we experience, because we are pathologically obsessed with our weaknesses versus resting in the absolute strength of who and Whose we really are.

What if we felt so secure in our origin and true identity that we stepped out of the boat and onto the water? What if we actually didn’t sink? What if we focused on what Jesus thinks of us versus making gods of the opinions of others and even ourselves?

What if we are the only ones that are ever coming to save us and all of Creation is groaning for us to WAKE UP!? All of Creation waits expectantly like a parent of a toddler; saying, “You can do it! You can do it! Almost there, c’mon, don’t be scared. You got this! Trinity is right here.”

What if all of heaven and Creation combined are pregnant with the expectation of being able to celebrate as we step fully into our divinity? As sons and daughters of The Divine. Kids who know their King, their Abba, and the truth of Who they belong to?

What if healing is ours for the taking? Jesus asked, “Do you want to be healed?”

What if there is no battle outside? What if the war is already won and we just need to realize it in our hearts and minds?

What if this is nothing more than a mirror (exposure therapy)? Reflecting the result of focusing on our fears versus who we always could have been and still can be?

What if we were totally secure, loved, and cared for? Would we make different decisions? Would we choose to give our power away?

We are divided in our minds, in our hearts. The outside echoes the inside. We are too long scared little children intimidated by other scared little children.

Who is your Father? Who is your Mother? Who showed us that there is nothing to be afraid of?

Is this really all there is? Is this really all we can ever be? I wager we aren’t even close. I wager we have only just begun, only just started.

The fight is only on the inside. Who will stand up? Who will run to Papa? Who will risk taking Trinity at Their Word?

Did God die or will we come aLIVE?

Already Included #49 – Judgement

This content is also available on my YouTube channel:
https://youtu.be/uNMAeLDMRcU

Interesting that God says to not even judge ourselves. If we judge others then it might not be God, but our own judgement that will come back and haunt us so to speak. What if I stopped judging myself? What would that even look like? Maybe it would involve giving Jesus every bit of shame, disappointment, and even anger towards myself. Asking Him what He thinks of it all.

Sometimes when I ask God for forgiveness, I feel like He says, “Stop”; that it never was, never is, and never will be about appeasing Him. He is the kind of parent who knew what He was getting into before we even showed up. He is not disappointed. He does not operate out of ego. He has nothing to prove. He knows who we are. His love for us is never in question. He never has a doubt. It has only ever been our perception of Him and ourselves that Trinity is ever healing. Collectively and individually.

Our hearts know when we see true love. We feel it in the part of us that sings apart from knowledge and arguments. The part of us that rejoices when a baby is born, a dog is rescued, or a long-awaited loved one returns home.

Will we forgive ourselves? I wager we don’t even know how. Again, Jesus says we are welcome to bring Him everything. He will sort it out. He will open our eyes and hearts. He will wash us clean of all the mess we and others have put upon us. He will show us how to receive His love. As we allow ourselves to rest, others will feel the difference without our having to force them to submit to any postured authority.