Just Be.

It was the perfect cold, clear Saturday to meet one of my best friends at a hipster little coffeehouse for some strong brew and rich conversation.

Jill and I have been friends since we were in first grade–we can talk (or not talk, for that matter) about almost anything. And, considering we had only talked a handful of times after spending an entire month straight together in Costa Rica over the previous summer, we had some catching up to do.

We shared the latest news (it’s not gossip if it’s only shared with your best friend, right? That’s basically Biblical, isn’t it?)

Okay, fine. The latest gossip. (I never said we were perfect…)

A n y w a y.

The longer we talked, the more we dreamed/freaked about the future. She’s always wanted to be a teacher. I’ve never known what exactly I wanted to do.

But we made some rough plans to travel the world together before we figure out and start our “real lives.” You know, best friend-type stuff.

And–as much as I don’t tend to admit it to her–leaving conversations with Jill usually has me contemplating much deeper thoughts than I started out with.

The deep thought from that particular conversation?

Just be.

That’s it. Be content. Be in the moment.

Just BE.

Sure, dreams are great. I actually just read an article written “To The Girl Who Feels Like She’s Not Doing Enough,” (that apparently doesn’t exist anymore because I can’t find it…) explaining that “you’re exactly where you need to be right now” and, despite how you may feel, “you’re not settling” because “you know that there’s something bigger.”

Actually, the article is talking about how this type of girl doesn’t feel content where she is because she’s in pursuit of something bigger than herself. The author concludes, though, with this sentence:

So be uncontent, strive for more, but know that you’re going to be more than okay.”

And I like that. Because, if you’ve read any other posts on this blog, you can see that I struggle with being content where I’m at. I don’t know how to just be.

Because it’s hard.

It’s hard to just be the only child out of eight who doesn’t live at or within five minutes of home.

It’s hard to just be a grad school student who has never known what she wants to do.

It’s hard to just be a loving fiancé when I’m actually a really selfish person.

It’s hard to just be a good person when people aren’t always the kindest.

It’s hard to just be a good role model, an encouraging friend, and a positive leader.

It’s hard to just be patient, just be loving, just be joyful, just be disciplined, just be content.

It’s hard to just be…me.

But I’m learning.

And I’m growing where I’m at. It doesn’t always feel like it, but I know just be-ing is good for me. Because finding contentment is difficult, but I’m also reminded of the apostle Paul in his letter to the Philippians:

 I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through Christ who gives me strength.

Paul went through some pretty crazy and dangerous stuff. He suffered so much for the sake of the gospel–persecuted, mocked, tortured, imprisoned, shipwrecked, sickness. The list goes on and on. Yet here he is in the book of Philippians, encouraging the believers in Philippi to find contentment in both good and bad situations because Christ gives us the strength to do so.

Let me repeat that:

CHRIST GIVES US THE STRENGTH TO BE CONTENT. 

And, more than that, thousands of years later, He shows love and concern for a silly little twenty-two-year-old girl, googling her way through this adulthood thing. He gives me the strength to just be.

When the *clean* laundry is still shoved in a hamper in the closet…

When the dishes in the sink are growing their own food…

When I tell myself I need to workout more but then hit snooze for an hour…

When I haven’t showered in who-knows-how-long because life is crazy, and I’m lazy, and, *hello*, ,dry shampoo, amiright?

In all of these moments, no matter how stressful, I can just be.

Whether I know what comes next or not, I can just be.

Whether I feel so far from my family at times it’s almost unbearable, I can just be.

Whether I like people or want to curl up in a blanket and hide from the world, I can just be.

Because as discontented as I may feel with my life at times, I am incredibly blessed. I’ve had experiences in my twenty-some years of life that some people only dream of. I have a loving, crazy family, incredibly patient fiancé, supportive friends, and a lifetime of dream-fulfilling ahead of me.

But what’s more than that?

I have a God who beckons me to “Be still and know” Him–a call to just be.

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