It’s the story that I know (unless you have lived under a rock) you have either followed or at least scrolled past. As for me, the past 5 months I have been following weekly, if not daily.
Each blog post giving me perspective to let the little things go. The daily upsets and even some of the harder realities – I find myself looking at through a new lens of perspective.
If you know me at all, or have been following this blog you are aware that I strive for genuine vulnerability each and everyday. I want others to know the real and honest truth of my life – because though I love Christ with all my heart and choosing Him daily is the greatest delight of my life – it doesn’t mean it’s easy. I think 21st Century church has pushed alter calls to be this exuberant call of ‘if you want the easy life, come forward.’ And my friends, that is so far from the truth.
As we have all seen through the relentless, steadfast, and heart-wrenching at times pursuit of faith in the midst of hardship that is displayed through Joey+Rory – it should give us all a glimpse into the life of Jesus. Though He experienced the joys of pursuing a Christian life – like friendships, encouragement, and being changed by the truth of God’s word – His pursuit to live the life He was called to live was anything but ‘easy.’
Recently Joey+Rory released their latest blog post that entails the long-coming destination that we all knew was in store for Joey. Heaven.
I read with tears in my eyes as my heart literally broke for their family. As they have passionately pursued genuine authenticity, the reality is that they have within themselves simultaneously, been pursuing the faith and hope to trust that God who has blessed them – is with them until the end.
I write this blog in an effort to not only give credit and honor to a family who has – without even knowing it – been a reminder of God’s unending love for His kids. But also – like a good friend who tells you that you have pepper in your teeth – instill to you – my readers – that the lighter woes and upsets of this life are really nothing more than passing moments that you can’t get back. Moments where you could have spoke a little kinder, held your tongue a little better, and more than anything – loved a little harder.
So – in an effort to close a long-winded blog (
okay, alright I know) I want to write a letter to Joey+Rory from +Me. Though I know they might never read it, I know that God sees and hears this thankful blessing from me to them and in the end, I want more than anything when Rory + Indy get to heaven, they have their wife/momma and a grand mansion awaiting this homecoming.
Dear Joey+Rory,You don’t know me, but because of your vulnerable act of “This Life I Live” – I know you. I know more of your story than I know about most of my acquaintances. You see, I stumbled upon your story while in a season of feeling less than, feeling that all the actions I was doing – didn’t really matter. That the meaningless job I have in social media wasn’t really impacting the Kingdom.
And then you both happened. You sing country music. You sing it well and the way I remember listening to George, Reba, and Martina in my younger days. You take pride in your voice, and more so – not just how you sing, but WHAT you sing and WHO you sing it for. It’s a beautiful expression of love, tenderness, and good ‘ol country morals. It reminds the busy to stop and reminds the lazy to get going. You take a portion of the goodness and the simple and you transform it into music. And through this, you showed me to not look at what I do necessarily – but how I do it, who I am doing it for, and what my intentions should be. And that is a lesson of a lifetime.
You each display a genuine simpleness that has been overlooked in our culture, and for that – I am grateful. I look at your story, the things you both have done and accomplished – the ways you have loved, lived, and given over the years. And yeah I know, I got all this from your blog.
Specifically, Rory – I want to speak to you. The way you express your love for your family, well – it is breathtaking. The love, joy, admiration, selflessness, and utter delight you take in your expression and acts towards them is something to be admired and an influence worthy of a following. You are a man among men. And I know the recent blog, you spoke about never thinking you were the ‘cowboy’ she should have had, and though I can’t say it better than the gentleman did in that email – as the famous 8 Seconds quote tells, you sure have “Cowboyed Up” in my opinion.
As I end this letter of endearment and utter thanks, I want to end just by saying thank you. Thank you for not only who you are, but who you praise. The God we serve deserves to have as many ‘shares,likes, comments’ and articles written about Him as possible. I know that your family story was never meant to be a headline – but because of your submission and obedience to write – our God has been made a headline in the telling of your story. But in the same token, please note that though we celebrate the beautiful example of Christ your family has been – we also share in the sorrow and the sacrifice that this is taking on your family. Though we mourn from afar – you mourn from within. The days/weeks/months when the headlines stop and the sharing ceases – your heart will still long for your bride, your mom, your sister, your daughter, and your friend. And for that, I don’t take it lightly – I stand alongside you and pray that in the days to come, you will – as the song states…
“…You’ll think of me some memory
And softly smile to your surprise”
Joining alongside thousands upon thousands and lifting you up in prayer, but also thanking God for the beautiful life and love that you have exhibited. May God’s greatest joys overwhelm you and may His strong and comforting arms envelop you in this time.
“Jesus replied, “You do not realize now what I am doing, but later you will understand.” John 13:7