31 Days of Being

This is a season of newness for me. New friends. New environment. New classes. New challenges. And in all of that, I’m about to try yet another new adventure!

In October, I will be taking on the 31 Day Writing Challenge. Turns out that Ellie and I both had the same idea: check out her blog too! (You can find out more and/or join the movement here.) My focus will be on the word “being.” What does it mean to simply be?

So what can you expect? First, you can expect a post every day for the next month. Second, my posts will probably take on a different form. They will most likely be shorter, have more personal anecdotes, and be more topical. (To be honest, I don’t even know what to expect from myself. So we’ll explore together!)

You can expect some of the following topics… Thanksgiving. Contentment. Peace. Grace. Fullness. Rest. Balance.

Also!! Featuring something new: Worship Wednesdays. Every Wednesday, I will share a new worship song that addresses the idea of “being.”

For new readers, as you wait for the first installment of the 31 Day Challenge, here are a few of my favorite blog posts.

A Light in the Darkness: God’s faithfulness in my first weeks of college

AP Lit and Moby Dick: Hope in a fallen world

To Wait or Not to Wait: Being active in the waiting

Good Girl Gone: Finding grace and identity in Jesus

Here’s to the next 31 days! Thanks for joining me on this adventure!

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– Phebe –

day one: be without technology

day two: being in the grey

day three: define “be”

day four: be in nature

day five: be in community

day six: be with people

day seven: of mousetraps & milkshakes

day eight: it is well

day nine: be here

day ten: be dependent 

day eleven: be like Jesus

day twelve: be at rest

day thirteen: be at rest (two)

day fourteen: be still

day fifteen: worship in the stillness

day sixteen: be home

day seventeen: be a light

day eighteen: be raw

day nineteen: the corner kettle

day twenty: be unglamorous

day twenty-one: be intentional

day twenty-two: my only hope

day twenty-three: be hopeful

day twenty-four: be you

day twenty-five: be a listener

day twenty-six: have some tea

day twenty-seven: be in pictures

day twenty-eight: be patient

day twenty-nine: right now

day thirty: be childlike

day thirty-one: simply be

Laughing at the Future

I wrote this during the summer, but thought about the article again tonight as my excitement for Heaven was reignited at InterVarsity…

My mother and grandfather sit at the kitchen table, passionately discussing current events. I find myself feeling depressed and discouraged as I hear them talking about corruption within the government, the selfish state of America’s youth, and the media’s filth. My heart is saddened as I remember once again how desperate and broken our world is.

We live in a time where evil pervades society. The headlines from the news could cause any toughened heart to shudder. “U.S. Evacuates Embassy in Tripoli.” “Deadly Start to Chicago Weekend.” “U.S. ‘Lies’ Flame Ukrainian Turmoil.” “World Leaders Try to Quell Gaza Violence.”

All around us the world is falling apart.

Where is our hope? As my mother remarked this morning, “Jesus has to be coming back.” Whether He is coming back tomorrow, or in 10 years, or in 1000 years, the truth remains: Jesus IS coming back. That is the hope I cling to.

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In the days leading up to His death, Jesus warned His disciples about the difficulties ahead for them. He drew the metaphor of a woman in labor, who instantly forgets the pain as soon as her child is born. And Jesus encourages them saying, “So you also have sorrow now. But I will see you again. Your hearts will rejoice, and no one will rob you of your joy,” (John 16:22).

The imagery is true for us believers today, as we await Jesus’ second coming. Our hearts are filled with sorrow now. We live in anticipation of a world crisis. Christians are being persecuted all over the world. Churches are being burned. Believers are being murdered. Within the United States, Christians are being called intolerant for standing upon Biblical beliefs. BUT our sorrow will turn to joy someday. When Jesus returns, the pain we felt in this life will be only a memory. The heartbrokenness we feel right now will be only a shadow in Heaven.

Christian artist, Phil Wickham, shares the hope we have in Jesus’ resurrection in his worship song, “You’re Beautiful.” He sings…

When we arrive on Eternity’s shore / Where death is just a memory / And tears are no more / We’ll enter in as the wedding bells ring / You’re bride will come together / And we’ll sing, You’re beautiful…”

As believers in Jesus Christ, our hope is firmly planted in Jesus’ Resurrection. His Resurrection from the grave and His ascent into Heaven gives us the hope that He is coming back again. Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 15:19, “If we have placed our hope in Christ for this life only, we should be pitied more than anyone.” But as Phil Wickham sings, we have placed our hope in Christ for Eternity.

Further on in that same chapter, Paul shares why he has hope for the future…

Death has been swallowed up in victory. Oh Death, where is your victory? Oh Death, where is your sting? Now the sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ!” (1 Corinthians 15:54b-57).

Note that exclamation point in the last sentence. Exclamation points aren’t used a lot in the Bible, but as I read that passage, I can just hear the excitement in Paul’s voice. I can see him getting tense with anticipation as he writes those words to the Corinthians, praying that they would understand the joy and peace they can have through Jesus’ victory. That exclamation point marks Paul’s hope. The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines hope as “to expect with confidence.” Paul has confidence in the words that he is writing. Jesus has overcome.

I eagerly wait for the day when Jesus’ comes back to Earth. I believe that there is a Heaven and I am so excited. Yet as for this moment, I am still here on Earth, sitting in front of my computer screen, faced with the troubles of the world. How do we live in the waiting? I believe that the word “wait” is an action verb. And so, I don’t believe that hoping for Jesus’ return means resigning to the evil and waiting for Judgment Day. Awaiting Heaven does not call for being passive.

I have a lot of favorite verses, but 2 Corinthians 4:16-18 has consistently been a passage that encourages me, and its words contain the secret to living in light of Eternity.

Therefore we do not give up; even though our outer person is being destroyed, our inner person is being renewed day by day. For our momentary light affliction is producing for us an absolutely incomparable eternal weight of glory. So we do not focus on what is seen, but on what is unseen; for what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.”

Set your eyes on Jesus, dear friends. Focus on the eternal. Even though you may not be able to see the good, keep searching. Do not give up. While we are waiting, Jesus has not left us. In the raised hands of a child wanting to follow Jesus, I see Him still working in hearts. In the hands of a Ugandan mother holding her child that an American sponsor’s money helped to save, I see His goodness is still changing lives. In the hands stretched out across an online community to grasp the hands of other sisters in Christ, I see a glimpse of Eternity.

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This is why I have learned to laugh at the future. This is why you too can laugh at the future. We have hope.

When I see the headlines now, I remember that evil’s reign is temporary. I pray that Jesus would come quickly and bring an end to the suffering. But I have peace knowing that He is in control, and in His good timing, the world will be put to right.

Laugh, because in the end, good will prevail.

Laugh, because Jesus has already overcome the world.

Laugh.

– – Phebe

Photos featuring my beautiful friend, Brianna; taken by Ellie

My Prayer for William & Mary

“And I pray this: that your love will keep on growing in knowledge and every kind of discernment, so that you can determine what really matters and can be pure and blameless in the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.”

Philippians 1:9-11


In the past three weeks, I have fallen in love with the College of William & Mary. The people here are motivated, talented, and creative. The professors are knowledgeable, helpful, and inspiring. I love the sense of tradition. I love walking to my classes, surrounded by beautiful history. I love late night group collaborations in an empty theater. I love walking past tour groups and feeling like I am part of the campus. In just the past few days, I have started to feel as if I am truly home.

And as I have fallen in love with the campus, a fire has ignited in my heart for the souls of the students and professors. In the midst of the motivation, there is apathy. In the midst of the talent, there is loneliness. In the midst of the creativity, there is hopelessness. This week I was challenged by my small group to write a prayer for the people in my circle of influence.

Here is my Prayer for the College of William & Mary.

My prayer is that you would know peace that only comes through Jesus. That you would let go of the fear of failure and the need to be perfect. That you would not feel the need to be the best, but simply strive to do your best. In the rush of new opportunities, school assignments, and club responsibilities, may you trust that God is in control and experience His peace in the chaos.

I pray that you would find your worth in Jesus. In a culture that is constantly trying to mold you, may you stand firm in your identity. May you never question who you were created to be, knowing that you are fearfully and wonderfully made. May you never feel the need to compare yourselves with others. Know that you do not need to prove yourself, because Jesus was worthy enough for you.

I pray that you would direct your time and energy into things that matter. In a culture that is trying to push you in a million directions, may you have wisdom to discern priorities. Instead of filling your cravings with worldly and temporary satisfaction, I pray that you would be fully satisfied by the God who can fill all your needs. May you know His truth and then live a life that is set apart. In the darkness, may you be a light. In the loneliness, may you be a friend. In the hopelessness, may you hold on expectantly.

My prayer is that William & Mary would be a place that stands out in the world. That we would not only stand out for our commitment to excellence, but that we would also stand out for commitment to truth and grace. I pray revival over this campus. May we become a dynamic, engaging community that loves God and loves people.

New Guest Blog!

I am so excited to announce a new collaboration between God Gazing and Little Hobbit! I had the pleasure to write for its first ever guest blog post, which was published today. Little Hobbit is a lifestyle blog that focuses on looking good and feeling great. Most importantly, its author, Kiersten, also desires to share Christ through her writing.

I had the opportunity to write about an issue that is near and dear to my heart: the environment. I have recently become interested in environmental issues as I took delight in the world around me and wanted to find ways to preserve raw beauty. In this article, I explore what God thinks about environmental issues and how you can take some simple steps to become more environmentally-friendly.

You can read the article HERE!