Perfectly Imperfect

Perfectly Imperfect

 

This is why examining struggles are important

This is why examining struggles are important

Reading through my old blog posts, my heart began to hurt. My pride was hurt. My self identity was embarrassed.

“Here is Jackie Giles!” shouted my blog. ” She struggles with being content in Christ’s love, living in the present and dealing with loneliness.”

At first, I wanted to start over- get a clean break. Blog about my successes. Like when I got an “A” in a class I struggled in or when something good happened and I was genuinely thrilled which is something I don’t get often and show even less often or that one time I had a spark of creativity and put pictures in the shape of a heart on my wall and it looked GOOD.

But then I remembered why I blog. I remembered what I am called to do.

I do not generally write for the masses. I do not write to present myself in the best possible light. I am egotistical and conceited enough in my current state (and isn’t that what Instagram is for anyway?).

I am called to write about my weakness for in that, Christ’s perfect strength is made known.

So yes, I have struggles. And yes, many are the same struggles that I think I have overcome. But if I could get over something that easy, it wouldn’t be a struggle. It wouldn’t be called “dying to self.”

So yes, I have struggles. And I am unashamed.

My name is Jackie Giles. I do not have a 4.0 GPA. I am a little overweight. Sometimes, my inner voice cusses. I am judgmental. I am discontent with my wonderful life. I sin. I neglect my savior. I have asthma, chronic hives, mastocytic colitis, migraines, and probably a connective tissue disorder.

But that’s not all I am.

I am intelligent. I am witty and funny. I am strong. When a problem comes my way, I deal with it. I am, at times, wise. I have a great memory for people’s names and random facts. I have wonderful friends and family. I am truthful about my faults and I am dealing with my issues openly. And in our modern society that encourages perfectly posed snap shots of life, choosing to reveal your weakness is incredibly brave.

Maybe I will start talking about successes more, but one thing is for sure. The minute I start hiding my faults on here is the minute I quit being true to myself and my purpose.

I challenge you to live openly.IMG_3979.JPG

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A Letter to My Graduating Friends

 

Let me preface this by saying that I am a sentimental fool.

Graduations are one of those bittersweet moments in life. On the one hand, finishing a chapter in your life is super exciting! You’ve made it through to the next phase which is, let’s face it, pretty awesome. But then you reflect on all those exciting changes coming in your life and realize that life has handed you a double edged sword.

You aren’t simply starting a new chapter. You are simultaneously saying goodbye to the last chapter and all the places and people that made it special. It’s an experience comparable to staring at the ocean: both beautiful and terrifying in its sheer power.

I am not graduating and moving on for at least another year but some of my very dear friends are and this is dedicated to them.

As you enter the new stage of your life here are some quotes I have for you:

“Let no one ever come to you without leaving better and happier. Be the living expression of God’s kindness: kindness in your face, kindness in your eyes, kindness in your smile.” Mother Teresa.

In the theme of sappiness, thank you for the time I spent with you. I am indeed better and happier.

“Whatever you are, be a good.” Abraham Lincoln

Please, be the best elementary teacher, physician’s assistant, pr person, nurse, doctor, whatever that is out there. Shine and show your passion in the way that made me love you.

“People of accomplishment rarely sat back and let things happen to them. They went out and happened to things.” Leonardo Divinci

This one is self explanatory but don’t limit yourself. Reach for the stars, the moon, or the top of the Empire State Building. Just reach and try.

Last, “Never hold onto anything tighter than you’re holding onto God.”

I hope you learned from me that there is a quote for everything and hats are always a good choice! I love you and will miss you! Congrats on graduating!

 

Disney Princesses, Christ, Paradoxes, and me

I simultaneously feel the need to write and feel writers block coming on. 

Which is a pretty good explanation of me in general. I am a paradox.  Of passionate feelings and great apathy. Of the conviction to speak the truth boldly and the conviction to be loving and non-judgmental. All this and more in the body of a 20 year old woman. 

Like all strong character traits this can be both a good thing or a bad thing. I easily come off offensive to those who do not know me well. I once heard someone say they had tons of compassion for non-believers and none for believers gone astray. At the time I thought this was harsh but somewhere along the way I became someone with merciful love for non-Christians and only tough love for fellow Christians. I am still not sure whether this is the right way to be or not but I make no apologies because Christ is never seen to be a nursemaid coddling us.

The Gospel may be a real life fairy tale but it is still being written so it’s gotta be more than a comforting bedtime story. Cinderella suffered. Snow White worked hard. Rapunzel was isolated. Belle loved an unpleasant person in a foreign environment. Even Westley from The Princess Bride talks about this:

“Life is pain, Highness! Anyone who says otherwise is selling something.” 

But it’s so hard to remember. We get so disheartened when life isn’t a walk in the park. So we binge on Netflix or work out or do something to zone out and get the stress out other than going to our creator. 

This isn’t anything close to what I was intending to write. But that’s one of the reasons I write. It clarifies what I’m confused about and shows me what I’ve blocked myself from seeing.