Sunday, July 5, 2009

What is a "Rebelutionary?"

Reb-el-u-tion-ar-y n. An individual committed to rebelling against a culture's low expectations by doing harder, more "difficult" tasks for God's glory. (First introduced in the book Do Hard Things by Alex and Brett Harris.)

When I was a little girl, I said a prayer. I prayed a lot of prayers when I was younger, but for some reason this specific one has always stuck in my mind. I still picture myself standing exactly where I was--in my room, looking into my closet--blurting out these words, "God, I want to be a good teenager."

I'm not sure how old I was, but on that particular day I was thinking about a teen in our church that had recently landed herself in a lot of trouble. I didn't know any details of the story at the time, but I did know that what this girl had done was wrong and that it fit right into the "rebellious teenager" stereotype. I didn't want to follow in her footsteps and hurt my family like she had.

The day I turned 13 wasn't magical by any means. I don't even recall what all I did to celebrate. To me, the years ahead appeared very mysterious and unpredictable. (They still do, but Proverbs 3:5-6 continues to strengthen me.) It took awhile before I got used to the idea of growing up. My primary goal for this section of my life had changed from wanting to be a good teenager to merely surviving it. God used a wonderful book to change that whole mindset.

My parents gave me Do Hard Things by Alex and Brett Harris for my 15th birthday. I read it in a few hours. With each page, my understanding and excitement grew. Christ hadn't called me to merely "survive" the teenage years; He wanted me to use them as a tool that would glorify Him. Instead of simply being a good Christian girl that didn't do all the indecent things associated with most teenagers, He wanted me to be known for what I did do...hard things that went over and above the expected.

With that in mind, I was prompted to think. what kinds of things did He want me to do? I already read my Bible, went to church, participated in Youth Group, and sang on the Worship Team. Wasn't that enough? Very gradually, Christ opened my eyes to the other beautiful things he had in store for me during this chapter of my existence. Through His Word I have continue to grow and mature in my relationship with Him. I've begun to look at the world and Christianity through different eyes, and He's filled me with qualities I know I could never achieve on my own.

I have by no means "arrived" and I am convinced that I won't until He returns (1 Corinthians 13:10,) but this brings me back to my blog title.

I wanted to be sure to include the word "imperfect" because I have this terrible obsession. Other firstborns will know what I am talking about when I call myself a perfectionist. My parents could see it in me early on when I would throw tantrums if things weren't just so. Today is no different, although I've graduated from tantrums to a bad attitute instead. My perfectionism is a blessing in many ways, but in others it is a curse. Oftentimes throughout the years I would fall into the trap of "being righteous" for God instead of relying on his grace. Over and over again I would get frustrated and discouraged because I could never measure up and earn my salvation. Recently I've come to closer grips with the grace of God and his boundless unconditional love. I'm not perfect, but I am saved, and what a joyous relief that is!

I don't want this blog to be about myself. I desire it to be a tool used to convey the depth of God's glory and grace. I hope my stories will serve as both an encouragment to you and a testimony of what Christ is doing in my life.

Stand Firm (Ephesians 6:13)

Ellie V.

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