A Tattoo Changed Everything - Walk By Faith

A Tattoo Changed Everything - Walk By Faith

 
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A few months after I turned 18, I decided to get a tattoo. I had given the idea some thought before making the big leap-desiring a symbol of my faith journey. I remember walking into the tattoo parlor with my older sister, sweating like a crazy woman. As soon as the artist began working, my fists clasped tightly together. In that moment I knew I was making a decision that would impact the rest of my life. Although it was a tiny mark, it would be with me for all of my days. The words "Walk by faith. Heb 11:1" were printed in ink on my skin.  

I had no idea just how greatly this spot of ink would influence my journey. I saw "walk by faith" every day as I put on my shoes, as I showered, as I tanned on the beach. It was everywhere. I saw it daily. This phrase was imprinting on my heart and filling my soul. 

Shortly after I got my tattoo, big decisions started to pop up, and I was without any direction. I was struggling, confused and uneasy. After a complete failure of a college soccer tour, I was at a loss for where I should attend school. I remember driving home from a potential college in tears, searching for answers. And then it hit me in the face like a bag of bricks. Walk by faith. The scripture reference, Hebrews 11:1, states "Faith means being sure of the things we hope for and knowing that something is real even if we don't see it (NLV)." This defines faith as more than just a feeling, but a true hope and knowledge in what is unseen. Faith is the essence of our relationship with the Lord. No matter how much we fear, or how our flesh may fail, our hope remains strong, knowing our life is secure. My college career wasn't over. It was only just beginning...and in the school the Lord wanted me to attend. I had to choose to walk by faith in knowing that His plan was far better than any one I could create myself. It was that day that I surrendered to His calling and applied to a Christian college, walking by faith into the unknown.

Since getting my tattoo, I've had many more experiences like this one. I've had to make choices to move forward without knowing where each step might take me. I've had to trust God with his perfect will. I've had to be okay with not knowing details. My faith in God's plan led me to transfer schools, to find my husband, to lead a group of women in their journey with the Lord. My faith has allowed me to go beyond my fears, to live with courage, to live with intention. 

My tattoo, however small and minor it may seem, has influenced my life more than I ever imagined. It became a hope and a goal. It encouraged me and became a source of direction and passion. I have had numerous opportunities to announce that I am Christian when people asked what my ink says. I've been given chances to live out my faith for others. This tattoo has become a daily reminder of my mission in life. I've grown, I've failed, I've succeeded, I've struggled, I've achieved, yet the Lord has been with me every step when I have walked in faith. He is quietly guiding my feet to his throne. It is when I feel my strength failing that I must continue to live out my faith. I must live in a way that is not contradictory to my beliefs, but to live and walk each day in the presence of my Savior. This tattoo has given me courage to actually do what it says–to experience each day knowing my life is in the best hands. Even though troubles will come, I can find comfort in knowing that God is at work. Troubles are challenges, and challenges produce perseverance, and perseverance produces faith. My faith will waver, my faith will struggle, my faith will fall, but I will overcome for I believe without seeing. I will walk by faith. 

This ink originated as a desire to get a meaningful phrase printed on my skin. Little did I know, that phrase would imprint on my heart forever. I challenge you to take a step back and observe your life. Think about where you want to go and how far you've already come. Be patient and consider a phrase that brings passion to your soul. What gives your heart steadiness and light? Let that phrase fill you up. Make it your life mantra. Make it your life goal. Make it your daily inspiration to live with intention. Mine is to "walk by faith." I strive to walk with intention, walk with love, and walk with peace. What is yours?

 
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