rebelling against low expectations


Don’t Let Your Struggles Define You


My mother was adamant. “You’ve started to wrap your whole identity up in, ‘I’m sick. I can’t do that.’ That’s not healthy!” Her words shocked me: because they were true. I was sick. There were many things I couldn’t do. But it had become my identity. It’s not as if I wasn’t actually ill. This week I had spent more time in bed than out, unable to convince my exhausted body to simply shower. It had...

Would You Die For Jesus? Martyrdom and Day-To-Day Sacrifice


I shivered as I read. I knew that many of Christ’s apostles and early disciples were heavily persecuted; but I wasn’t prepared for the gruesome deaths detailed on the pages before me. I closed my eyes, but couldn’t remove the gory pictures from my mind. Stoned. Fed to lions. Burned as torches. And worse. Would you do it for me, Anna? I hesitated. Tears filled my eyes. Lord, I don’t know if I...

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Three Truths For The Chronically Ill Teen


My heart broke as yet another chronically ill teen unwittingly voiced questions and struggles I’d heard over and over again. Most of us don’t know it, but we all seem to have the same questions. Perhaps there are some variations in wording and scenarios, but those questions you are ashamed to verbalize? So many others have wondered the same things. You know what? It’s okay to ask those questions...

How Jesus Responds to Your Chronic Anxiety


I’ve felt the suffocating grasp of anxiety.I understand the unexplainable panic that pounces unannounced, the heart that refuses to stop racing, the sensation of stabbing pain in my stomach that doesn’t make any sense. From the time I was an elementary schooler in orchestra practice, I would run to the bathroom to soak my flushed face in cold water; each week I’d dread going and come back...

When Pain Precedes the New Creation


Today, I looked out the window and saw a stray peacock whom my family has affectionately named “Elmer” walking through my front lawn. The sun was shining down on his feathers in breathtaking brilliance, showcasing the deep turquoises, blues, and greens his Creator gifted him with. I thought back to a few months ago when his tail feathers began to break, and eventually fell out. Elmer didn’t...

What To Do When You’re Weary: Truth For the Worn Out Teen


I remember a certain evening vividly. I was eight-years-old, curled up against a castle of pillows, watching TV with my daddy. We were watching a show where people were doing hard things that required a lot of strength. Suddenly, a tall man (who looked like he should’ve been part of a biker gang) took the stage. He grabbed a Teflon coated frying pan and rolled it up with his bare hands. To...

Is It Christian to Take the Blame?


If you were accused of doing something you didn’t, how would you react? Once upon a time, I’d have fought the accusation. But something happened several months ago that changed my opinion. In October, my class put on a skit. We needed a mop bucket, so we got permission to use the janitor’s. After we performed the skit, we returned the bucket to the janitor and didn’t give it another...

Because of Good Friday, Our God Won’t Forsake Us


Are you ever afraid God has abandoned you? It’s easy to fear that sometimes. When you see the depths of your own depravity and sin—when you give in to temptation again and search desperately for freedom—you wonder how God could still love you. How he could still be with you. Or maybe, for whatever reason, he just feels far away; doubts and despair come knocking on the door of your heart and...

Truth in the Face of National Tragedy


Valentine’s Day was stained with blood. The first thing I saw when I logged into Twitter was the words “school shooting” and “Florida” used in the same sentence. My first, selfish thought was, Where? Near here? And then, Oh no. Not again. Our collective hearts are heavy, not only with the news of this tragedy, but with the weight of similar horrors that seem to come on each other’s heels...

Don’t Waste the Suffering


Sometimes brokenness, tragedy, and suffering are just words. Empty and meaningless. Other times, they have a face and name—a heart and life behind them. On February 15th, as I drove to work, each word took on form as I heard on the radio about the horrific school shooting in Florida. Yet again, devastation and heartbreak personified. Tragedy upon tragedy heaped themselves in my mind. The...

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rebelling against low expectations

The Rebelution is a teenage rebellion against low expectations—a worldwide campaign to reject apathy, embrace responsibility, and do hard things. Learn More →