I haven't written to you in a while. And I miss you.
My heart is full and tired at the same time.
These past few weeks have been something else.
Experiencing the highs of the highs and the lows of the lows---and let's not forget about the painful in-betweens.
I'm in a season of my life where I'm stepping out more, taking more risks when it comes to ministry, my career, and of course love.
For those that don't know, I recently took a huge leap by appearing on a faith-based dating reality show. I can't share much more than that at present, but let's just say, I faced some personal fears of mine (being seen, being vulnerable, and truly accepting myself as high value and worthy) in a greater way and in exchange gained a new sense of courage in the process of it all.
After my appearance on the show, I personally felt invincible in the realm of love.
I hope to always believe.
I hope to always believe that there is more of love to be discovered, that we have not exhausted the well of love that has been shown to us.
After this great high of feeling invincible and brave, I stepped out in the area of "almost" romance hoping my vulnerability and risk would pay off. He was kind and keen. And I was resting in child-like faith. We were both strangers to one another, but the potential all seemed there. And then it wasn't.
It's funny how something is almost a thing, and then just like that, its not. It's feels like a violent earthquake of sorts, where things are shaken firmly and aggressively back into some other place and position. Like a child being yanked by the hand to walk in a new direction.
And there I was again. In a place of familiar pain and disappointment.
But the pain wasn't crippling this time, it just hurt.
In the past, my identity was so wrapped up in a handsome man finding me attractive or choosing me. Yet time and time again, I was never chosen. And it all felt like a cruel joke to me.
Until God's love began to unveil a lie that I had been believing about myself for years: That I wasn't and never would be enough or worthy for someone I considered out of my league. Nor would such a person want to invest in my life and my love.
But God was truly trying to tell me over and over again, that I am enough.
Even when I'm rejected by people or by men that I think I adore from afar. I am still enough.
I am still worthy.
And with that said, I'm realizing more and more that I'm worth investing in. Just as you are worth investing in.
Often, we as females, are so quick to give our hearts and our nurturing capabilities away to the first guy who says hello. But has he invested in you? Has he invested in the things that are important to your life at all. As much as you know about his friends, his likes, his favorite movies, his favorite websites--has he once invested his interest in yours?
All that to say, I gave my heart away a little too soon in the Land of Potential--in the Land of Hoping when it came to this particular guy. And now I don't know how to feel about the situation, but what I do know, is that I was not invested in, which is a hint and indicator at best of the trajectory of such a friendship and relationship...
And then we have the unexpected revelation that I received last week in the middle of my car ride back from work.
The "Accuser" doesn't fight fair.
I know this sounds like basic Christianity 101 (Satan is referred to as the "Accuser of the brethren" in Revelation--That's a part of his M.O.) but let me break down one key point that hit my spirit with such force.
I, like you, have been fighting the voice of the "Accuser", almost my entire life. Especially regarding this issue of not feeling worthy or being enough.
My desire for approval from men and my habit of always permission (often out of fear and not always out of honor) becomes fuel for the voice of the Accuser to be amplified in my life.
And it hit me in the car last week, that I've been trying to fight accusations with accusations.
Meaning, I was trying to fight like the Accuser fights, using his own ammo: Fighting anger with anger (which only empowered him more). But at the time of such heated internal debates (or visibly outward circumstantial disappointments) , it was always a mystery why I left such cage fights with him exhausted, scared, and defeated.
But God reminded me of His heart--of His heart of love and how He always wins.
This may not hit your spirit in the same way it hit mine, but I was Amazed and a little Thunderstruck that the way to defeat the voice of the Accuser was not in the fighting back, but in the being loved and knowing you are loved.
That in essence IS the fighting. Being loved. And allowing yourself to be loved. You know why? Because you are worthy. Yes. We went back to that theme again. But I know you see the connection.
Furthermore, when love empowers you to fight, there is less striving and much more ground taken in terms of victory for our own heart's sake.
Subsequently, I was also reminded this past week, that Gentleness is actually a Fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22).
But really though. That gift right thurrr is a weapon. (Proverbs 15:1...)
On Tuesday, one of my best friends moved to another country. And I then I spent 40 minutes crying my eyes out like a crazy person as I drove on the 101 Freeway.
One chapter ends, yet the novel still continues.
She and I have chased dreams together, seen dreams realized, seen utter defeat, the valley of the shadow of the death. And we have been in the fight together for over 10 years. I have shared some of the most transformative moments of my life with her: film school, producing documentaries together, traveling the globe, writing scripts together, weeping together, laughing together, praying together, living and being family.
This move marks something profound for both of us.
It is a good thing. Trust me.
But there are still tears.
So as you can see, I've been fighting and paddling and fighting and paddling--making a bit of headway, albeit slow.
But tonight, it became apparent-- Just rest Patrice. Rest.
Not just in the movement of my own day to day life, but in the tender vulnerable moments before bed and when I wake up. And when I'm in a crowd of people and feel the enormity of my own humanity. Rest.
Love calls for us to be in that place.
We are so incredibly loved already. Right where we sit and stand.
We are but dust, but still a little higher than the angels.
Everything is changing.
And you'll be glad it is.
There may be pain in the night, but joy comes in the morning.
For me these past few weeks, I've had butterflies in my stomach, and hot tears streaming down my face.
But in the midst of it all, I still believe.
I believe that God is good, God is faithful, and God is kind. And I know He calls us worthy to receive the everyday beauty of who He is.
His love changes everything.