A Christian In-Progress
Do you ever see those people who are so confident in their relationship with God? The ones who you don’t see upset if they mess up, but they just seem to have it all together. I want that. I want that feeling of absolute certainty in my faith.
It’s not that I don’t believe in or doubt God; it’s that I constantly feel like I’m the one coming up short. Growing up Catholic you are constantly surrounded by mass once a month at school, mass on Sundays and then, of course, preparing for your first communion and confirmation. As a kid most of us just do what we are told and go through the motions.
It wasn’t until college that I really wanted that relationship with God. I had a friend of mine ask during my first semester in Missouri if I wanted to go to bible study at our sorority house. My first response was no, I thought it’d be weird and that the person leading it would judge me for only knowing the basics. I went anyways, and to my surprise, the girl leading was bubbly, funny and not at all what I expected.
The first person who made me admire a relationship with God was this girl, and her name is Jessilyn Ochs. She seemed to have her life perfectly together and knew exactly where she stood in her faith. What I loved most was she wasn’t someone who went to church, work, and home repeat. She still seemed to live a full and fun life. This was the first time I felt like a God filled life doesn’t have to be a boring one.
Moving back to Florida and starting a school of 66 thousand students is a bit daunting. Somehow I stumbled upon some girls in an organization called Delight. Delight is a college women’s community where you share stories and talk about your relationships with God. Remember when you had just started to get to know your best friend and you have all those “me too” moments? That’s exactly how I felt going to Delight. I was able to sit in a room full of strangers and say “me too” to almost everything the girls said, and it felt like I wasn’t alone.
Because I follow Delight on Instagram, I saw a post they made about an author/blogger who also had a podcast. To be honest, I listened at first because the picture was really cute. However, I quickly fell in love with the podcasts and decided to dig into her materials a little bit more. Stephanie May Wilson is the author of The Lipstick Gospel and has devotionals and prayer journals to go along with it.
Have you ever had a girl crush before? I have one on Stephanie May Wilson. Her confidence, blog, humor and faith are so inspiring. Her podcasts are funny, entertaining and relatable. Every time I listen I have a zillion ideas running through my mind about things I want to do, try and experience. Her goal is to make it seem like you’re having a girls night together, and she definitely succeeds.
For Christmas, I was given Stephanie’s books, and they’ve made all the difference. It points out how its okay if you don’t connect with God the way everyone else does. She suggests trying yoga, art, or even music to find your way. I like her perspective because it reminds you that you don’t have to be this monotonous churchgoer to have a strong relationship with God. Through her devotionals she makes talking to God feel like you’re talking to your best girlfriend, and while at first awkward, it is so comforting.
I’m still in progress of building my relationship, but I have three suggestions for anyone else who is admiring these influential and inspiring people. Find yourself a Jessilyn, someone you have an in-person contact with that inspires you. Find an organization you can participate in; it can be as simple as you and a few friends or an actual group like Delight. Finally, if you’re a girl, then please check out Stephanie’s books because they will seriously change your perspective for the better.