Life moves fast. For those of you still keeping up with this blog, I am sorry. I am so bad about doing things consistently and this blog has fallen victim. In fact, I think that has been the biggest struggle for me this semester. Not only am I bad at keeping up with things consistently (i.e. I have trouble remembering to drink water every day, it seems like a hassle like I drank a bunch yesterday, so why to I have to drink more today…. I digress…), but I also distrust consistent relationships. This is a direct quote from me about two weeks ago, ” I just wish Jesus wasn’t always so consistent in His love for me, I don’t get it and it kind of freaks me out” I could blame this on never staying in one place for more than three days growing up, the sudden loss of my little brother, or the close family friends that cut ties because it was time to “circle the wagons” (still not sure what that means, but I haven’t talked to them since to figure it out). In reality, I am just a broken person, and I have been seeing the effects of that through the lens of consistency (or lack thereof) recently.

Whenever I see a new piece of my messed up heart, I am tempted to back away. I don’t want to explore the depths of it because it is venturing into the unknown and I will probably get crushed. I am fearful of exploring the brokenness because I think the brokenness holds enough power to either make or break me. Essentially, I think it has defining power over my life.

That’s just not true.

I am going to try and explain how I came to this conclusion which requires taking you deep into the mind of Taryn….if you want to jump ship now, I’ll understand.

So basically for while now, I have been believing that my brokenness defines me. I know what you’re thinking..What, that can’t be, Taryn, you are so wise and smart and perfect, how could you be believing such a lie. I know, I know, I cover it so well…anyways there are two basic lies…

  1. I believe that I am too broken and I need to wait to get it together before I can do anything productive.
  2. That I am not broken enough. Now that my life is just a little less shamblely then it was last year (i.e. not ignoring all my issues by leaning on a sickness that was slowly killing me), so therefore I am irrelevant and the Lord can no longer use me to show His great power.

I will start by addressing the second lie-No. Just no. Nothing about that makes any sense. Also, I really don’t believe this one that much, just every once in a while the ole E.D. thinking likes to twist God’s truths to tempt me back into old habits. It doesn’t work.  I don’t need to be on death’s doorstep in order to see Jesus’ grace and redemption. It just makes me laugh at how illogical I can be, and I thought you might enjoy a chuckle.

So the first one- the one I do believe more often then not.

Ecclesiastes 11:4 says, “He who observes the wind will not sow,
    and he who regards the clouds will not reap.”

I have been camping out in Ecclesiastes all semester, and when I read this for the first time, I felt like the Lord was gently slapping me with truth. I have spent so much time trying to make sure I am ready for things. Watching the metaphorical wind and clouds, waiting for the perfect time. I think I will somehow have a magical moment and know that I have arrived. My life will now be “together” and I will feel like a real grown-up. In reality, my life has always looks quite the opposite. I decided to both drop out of school and go to treatment, as well as change my life plan and graduate this year based on a week or less of thinking about it. Yet, both times I have been so certain that is what the Lord would have for me. Never once have I felt ready to do something before doing it, usually its halfway over before I realized I have started. Even with all this evidence (my actual life and scripture) I still think I will one day arrive. I will be perfectly fixed.

Here’s the truth:

There is no arriving, so stop waiting.

I wrote this down over the summer on a train in Europe and I never understood it until now. This notion that I will “arrive,” that there will be a time when I have my life together and it all makes sense will never happen. And the more I wait for it, the more I am just watching the weather instead of faithfully planting the seeds. I will never reap because I will never sow because I have decided to be paralyzed by brokenness instead.

When I watch the wind and the clouds, I am relying on myself. All of the sudden there is an overwhelming pressure to know everything. I have to not only fix myself, but understand exactly what I am to be doing at all times. I have to plan each and every step. It always fails because I inevitably see more brokenness in my life and just loop right back around to square one- trying to fix myself.

All of this is still just points back to me and my brokenness. I am missing the whole point. I will always be broken. I am not defined by that brokenness. It has no power over me. I am defined my Jesus and Jesus alone. I don’t have to be the one to fix myself. I do not have to worry if the wind and the clouds are perfect for planting- the God of the Universe has that under control. All I have to do is faithfully plant the seeds.  To trust that the Lord is doing work in me and through me. He knows I am broken and still chooses to use me.

That truth is freeing. Its not me. I can be broken, the Lord will use me. I can stop trying to figure it all out. I can just faithfully take it one step at a time.


It seems a fitting time to let you all know-  I am leaving for Greece on December 9th to volunteer at a refugee camp for two weeks. Honestly, I am not sure why I am going besides I feel that there is something the Lord has for me on this trip. I am broken and run down going into this literally on the heels of an incredibly busy semester. Would you pray for me in this time? That I would trust Jesus will work through my brokenness. That I will not try and just stuff it down out of fear that my broken heart will hinder me. I am not defined by it, and need to lean into that truth. That this wouldn’t just be blog post, but this truth would truly saturate my life. 



2 Replies to “Defined.”

  1. Connie Youngman Zander says: Reply

    Thoughts from God to Nana to you my precious granddaughter.
    (Jeremiah 1:5 Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart.)
    Even though you have spoken of your own weakness, you are following the Holy Spirit within you and not drawing back from the call of God. The genuine love radiating from you will be Jesus’s healing touch to the lives He places in your path. My dearest Taryn your family will be surrounding you with prayers for strength and peace that passes understanding. I love you very much Nana

  2. Really good stuff Taryn! I love the beauty from ashes that God does. Wisdom beyond your years that can only come from said brokenness… maybe wisdom that you’d rather not have… but nonetheless wisdom that will bring beautiful fruit and even joy.

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