When He Takes Away

When He Takes Away

Learning to live life through the hills and valleys...

I've walked among the shadows
You wiped my tears away
And I've felt the pain of heartbreak
And I've seen the brighter days
And I've prayed prayers to heaven from my lowest place
And I have held the blessings
God, you give and take away
No matter what I have, Your grace is enough
No matter where I am, I'm standing in Your love
On the mountains, I will bow my life
To the one who set me there
In the valley, I will lift my eyes to the one who sees me there
When I'm standing on the mountain, I didn't get there on my own
When I'm walking through the valley end, I I know I’m not alone!
You're God of the hills and valleys
God of the hills and valleys
And I am not alone
I've watched my dreams get broken
In you, I hope again
No matter what I know
I know I'm safe inside Your hand
On the mountains, I will bow my life
To the one who set me there
In the valley, I will lift my eyes to the one who sees me there
When I'm standing on the mountain I didn't get there on my own
When I'm walking through the valley end, I know I’m not alone!
You're God of the hills and valleys!

Hills and Valleys - Tauren Wells

Isn’t that just absolutely beautiful?

This past week my lovely roommate read these words for me when I needed them the most. They truly speak to me.

As this school year comes to a close, I’ve been trying to find time to reflect on what God and man have taught me this year—it has been a series of hills and valleys.

This school year, it feels as though God has stripped so much of my safety nets from me...forcing me to my knees where I can only find comfort in Him.

And it hurts—man does it hurt.

I’ve had to say goodbye to people, accept failure, sit in discomfort, and lack closure.

And now looking back on it, honestly it's one of the first times I have ever doubted whether or not growth is worth it.

I don’t know that I have felt as empty handed as I have this year, and God has so graciously cared for me through the emptiness.

I think we forget sometimes that God takes away. Or at least I know I did.

Full disclosure: One of my faults is that I assume that things will come easily to me and this is 100% pride. My pride has too much power over me. It is like a poison that spreads into every blood cell until my brain fools me into believing that I more than I am.

God has been graciously revealing to me pieces of this brokenness inside of me until I cannot deny that it is there. Because of this, He has taught me to pray that He might humble me.

I’ve heard before that this is the most difficult thing you can pray and every time I hear someone say this, I roll my eyes at how much I’ve heard it.

But it is honestly so painful. So painful that I can’t fathom why He would take certain things from me. It hurts so much that I wonder why it is necessary.

But guys, in order to understand who God truly is, you need to understand your need for Him. And in order to understand your need for Him, you need to be absolutely humiliated. You need to be stripped naked before your savior, who will gently cover you with His love. A kind of love that you would have never understood before you still wore those false safety nets…

Those grades

Those titles

Those gifts

Those relationships

Whatever it is that you use to falsely identify yourself. God wants to take those things from us that we might realize there are much better things waiting.

Yes, He takes away. Of course, He takes away.

And how kind of Him. How absolutely gracious of Him that He would gently care for us as little children who know not what we do.

I am a child. He has opened my eyes, to see that I am nothing without Him. My life means nothing— has no purpose— without Him.

It saddens me that He had to take so much from me in order for me to realize this, yet is it not our human nature to create idols? This is why I need a savior.

And this is why I adore this song.

Yes, He gives and takes away, but He takes away my pain as well as my false joys.

When we say prayers from our lowest place, we have truly been humiliated into a deeper relationship with Him.

And whether I am living in discomfort, or living in complete joy, I am never where His love is not—and I will truly understand Him when His love is all I have.

It is so hard, but we are called to pray this prayer in our lowest place. When it feels as though life is throwing nothing but bad news at you, trust that it is God entrusting you with a chance at growth. He is calling you to higher places and He knows you can make it.

And with a heart that has been humbled anew, He will graciously lift us from our darkest valleys and place us on the mountain tops that we may see where we have been. And from the top, with our humbled hearts, we will know that we could never have gotten there on our own.

He set us there.

And though we still have much to learn, pray for this heart of humility and remember that He is the God of both hills and valleys.

“I will lift up my eyes to the mountains; From where shall my help come? My help comes from the Lord, the maker of Heaven and earth.” (Psalm 121:1).

Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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If You've Ever Been Called Overly-Emotional Or Too Sensitive, This Is For You

Despite what they have told you, it's a gift.

Emotional: a word used often nowadays to insult someone for their sensitivity towards a multitude of things.

If you cry happy tears, you're emotional. If you express (even if it's in a healthy way) that something is bothering you, you're sensitive. If your hormones are in a funk and you just happen to be sad one day, you're emotional AND sensitive.

Let me tell you something that goes against everything people have probably ever told you. Being emotional and being sensitive are very, very good things. It's a gift. Your ability to empathize, sympathize, and sensitize yourself to your own situation and to others' situations is a true gift that many people don't possess, therefore many people do not understand.

Never let someone's negativity toward this gift of yours get you down. We are all guilty of bashing something that is unfamiliar to us: something that is different. But take pride in knowing God granted this special gift to you because He believes you will use it to make a difference someday, somehow.

This gift of yours was meant to be utilized. It would not be a part of you if you were not meant to use it. Because of this gift, you will change someone's life someday. You might be the only person that takes a little extra time to listen to someone's struggle when the rest of the world turns their backs.

In a world where a six-figure income is a significant determinant in the career someone pursues, you might be one of the few who decides to donate your time for no income at all. You might be the first friend someone thinks to call when they get good news, simply because they know you will be happy for them. You might be an incredible mother who takes too much time to nurture and raise beautiful children who will one day change the world.

To feel everything with every single part of your being is a truly wonderful thing. You love harder. You smile bigger. You feel more. What a beautiful thing! Could you imagine being the opposite of these things? Insensitive and emotionless?? Both are unhealthy, both aren't nearly as satisfying, and neither will get you anywhere worth going in life.

Imagine how much richer your life is because you love other's so hard. It might mean more heartache, but the reward is always worth the risk. Imagine how much richer your life is because you are overly appreciative of the beauty a simple sunset brings. Imagine how much richer your life is because you can be moved to tears by the lessons of someone else's story.

Embrace every part of who you are and be just that 100%. There will be people who criticize you for the size of your heart. Feel sorry for them. There are people who are dishonest. There are people who are manipulative. There are people who are downright malicious. And the one thing people say to put you down is "you feel too much." Hmm...

Sounds like more of a compliment to me. Just sayin'.

Cover Image Credit: We Heart It

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How Incorporating Organization In My Daily Routine Single-Handedly Changed My Life

And how it can structure yours.


It would be a complete fabrication of the truth if I pretended that my life in any way has been picture perfect. Things are messy, life is messy, and my life becomes an endless cycle of self provoked destruction.

I've had short bursts of motivation as a last expedient to seize control of the downward spiral I have endured. But mostly they have diminished along with any motivation I have left.

None of these short term solutions have yet to salvage my mental, physical, and academic state. SO, as an attempt to overhaul my life, I decided the best way to strive for control, is to organize every aspect of my life.

Yes, this could become unhealthy if I used this tactic as a way to tear myself down or over analyze my accomplishments, or lack thereof. But I try to view my life as something I have a say in while considering that not everything will be perfect or completely satisfy my goals for myself.

To successfully enact this measure, I try to never go into a day unaware of what I must accomplish, what tasks/work I have to attend to, and stocked with a full calendar and set of alarms that prevent me from missing deadlines. Although mildly time-consuming to detail my life in advance, it is greatly beneficially outweighed through the amount of time this tactic saves me.

Recently, I have noticed how much happier I have been, and feel as if my life is back on track and it's future in my hands. This has allowed me to work an upwards of 50 something hours a week, see and manage friends, read and keep up with hobbies, as well as give me peace of mind and time to relax with loved ones.

I am grateful for the role that organization has played in my life and suggest that everyone incorporate some type of underlying structure in their lives, to realize that anything is achievable with proper organizational preparation.

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