It’s 9 am. I pour the boiling water over my tea ball infuser, filled with my favorite loose-leaf blend. I stare into the cup as the water begins to fade from crystal clear to a golden brown- slowly at first. I wait. I remove the tea ball and add in clover honey. I move to the patio, sit down with a blanket still in my pajamas, hair damp from the French braids I just unraveled, and take in the cool calm of the morning. At risk of burning my tongue, I wait just a few minutes longer, and in the waiting I think of you.
I think of all the potential you have, like the clear boiling water. And how, like me, you’re waiting. Slowly becoming you. You’re taking it all in- the flavors and colors and scents of life. One by one, drip by drip, they’re shaping you into a rich cup of tea. And I wonder…what are you soaking in? Is it a bitter or a sweet blend?
Anger over an absent parent?
Frustration from yet another heartbreak?
Loneliness– wondering when you’ll finally be the chosen one?
Pride– believing you can and must do it all?
Jealousy– that somehow she has the life you’ve been hoping for?
Regret– wishing for a fresh start?
Sadness– mourning the realities of this broken world?
Apathy– just going with the ebbs and flows of this ever changing life that you have little control of?
Anxiety, Fear, Doubt, Pain?
What is seeping, bleeding, and staining your cup?
For a long time, my cup looked like a foggy blend of disappointment and desperation. The hurt of rejection from someone who was supposed to love me. Desperate striving to please and impress everyone, and earn love from anyone who’d give me a chance. Exhaustion from trying to do it all, and do it all perfectly. I’d compare my cup to those around me…and the verdict? Still half-full.
It’s easy to allow our disappointments to dictate the flavor of our life. I know because I’ve been there. But that’s a bitterness not even two lumps of sugar and a tablespoon of honey can fix, with an after-taste that lingers a little too long.
I want you to know that we weren’t made for this bitterness. We weren’t designed to feel that stab in our stomach, the swelling of our throat, and the burning of our cheeks as we hold back tears of resentment.
No. We were made for milk and honey. You know that smooth, sweet, warm juice at the bottom of your oatmeal? We were made for that. But that sweetness is only provided by the One who died that we might taste His goodness.
Are you letting His goodness seep into your life- flavoring every thought and word with his glorious Truth? Or are you consumed by the messages of this world, believing you’ll never be enough, at least not with those sized jeans?
Are you stirring in worship- intentionally spending time to praise Him? Or are you basking in your own glory, trying to earn your keep and prove your value, living the lie that you’re only as important as the height of the rung you’re standing on?
Are you soaking in the company of sisters who will uplift you, sharpen and sweeten you? Or are you sharing it with other bitter women, letting gossip and shame fill your cup, while you wonder what they say when you’re not at the table?
Do you start your morning kneeling in awe of our Father saying “holy is your name; Bring your kingdom here; Forgive me; Give me your bread of life, Father; Yours alone is the glory”? Or does your morning routine consist of Snapchat, then Instagram, Facebook, then Twitter, just waiting to compare yourself to the next girl before you’ve even put pants on? Repeated twice before breakfast.
Dear sister, your life is like a cup of boiling hot water. And while you might not get to choose everything that goes in- you do get to choose how long you let it seep there. You can let the disappointments and jealously and comparison grow dark and bitter, or you can let the Lord flavor your life with love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, gentleness, and self control, while you wait for the finishing touches of milk and honey that will never fade, never spoil, and will always satisfy.
An overflowing cup is poured and waiting for you; and the choice of tea is yours.
Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him. Psalm 34:8
With Sweet Love & Freedom,