Waiting for Bieber

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Oh my goodness, do I have a story for you!!

Living in New York City, I’m telling you what, there is NEVER a dull moment. Ever.

So last night, my special gentleman and I were having our standing, weekly date night. We had dinner — fajitas, which I blogged about yesterday …

— and then we proceeded to take a sunset walk.

Only in NYC can you spend the evening waiting for Justin Bieber to arrive to a secret concert. How this exciting night promoted questions of faith in this young New Yorker. #faith #catholic #bieber #justinbieber #nyc #edrecovery #recovery #god #bible #christianity

After taking in the gorgeous views, we ended up at Hudson Yards, which is this exquisite luxury shopping mall, where we like to walk around and go window shopping. It’s home to the Vessel “AKA: beehive” art installation (as you can see behind us in the photo above), beautiful restaurants, and The Edge — the highest outdoor observation deck in the Western Hemisphere — with a glass deck protruding 100 stories over New York City.

Only in NYC can you spend the evening waiting for Justin Bieber to arrive to a secret concert. How this exciting night promoted questions of faith in this young New Yorker. #faith #catholic #bieber #justinbieber #nyc #edrecovery #recovery #god #bible #christianity

I’ve been up there once, before Covid, during its soft opening, and wow – what a view!

Only in NYC can you spend the evening waiting for Justin Bieber to arrive to a secret concert. How this exciting night promoted questions of faith in this young New Yorker. #faith #catholic #bieber #justinbieber #nyc #edrecovery #recovery #god #bible #christianity

Anywho – Steven and I get to Hudson Yards, and we were immediately herded to a single lane, dedicated by metal barricades. There were all these cops and traffic directors. The entire Hudson Yards – the mall, the shops, the restaurants – were all shut down. And there were really fashionable women and men in expensive suits — important and official looking “Hollywood-type” people — all waiting by the entrance to The Edge. There were a couple paparazzi, a gaggle of giddy teenage girls…

Something big was definitely happening.

There was a small crowd – about 20 or so – of people gathered on the other side of the barricade.

“Do you know what’s going on?” “Maybe something for Fashion Week?” “The MET Gala was yesterday, perhaps an event for that?”

Questions were buzzing around.

Steven and I decided to stick around for a few minutes to see what’s up.

Then, the Escalades started arriving.

Black’d out Caddies started pulling up, one after another, dropping off women in sky-high heels and men in fashion-pushing attire.

That’s when I spotted none other than Justin Bieber’s right hand man, Kenny H.

There is something you may not know about me, but I was a huge Bieber fan back in the day. We’re talking…I had a dedicated Twitter fan-account. And so, naturally, I knew — by name and face — every single one of Biebs’ entourage that travels everywhere with him.

So of course, when I saw Kenny get out of the Escalade, I knew that the celeb we were waiting for was none other than Mr. Bieber, himself.

And it turns out that Bieber did perform an intimate, private concert on The Edge last night, after premiering his upcoming documentary, Our World.

Only in NYC can you spend the evening waiting for Justin Bieber to arrive to a secret concert. How this exciting night promoted questions of faith in this young New Yorker. #faith #catholic #bieber #justinbieber #nyc #edrecovery #recovery #god #bible #christianity

And, though – anticlimactically – Bieber and his wife, Hailey ended up entering through a side door, and we did not get to actually lay eyes on the pop royalty, it was certainly exciting. And God bless Steven for having the patience to put up with my antics.

But all day today, I couldn’t help but think about that scene from last night. There was a palpable anticipation in the air. People were excited, curious and determined to “get a glimpse” of this coming icon.

And thinking about it, I couldn’t help but ask myself, “What if I waited for Jesus with the same gusto as I waited for the Biebs?”

Here there were, all these people staked out, at the ready, camera in hand – chomping at the bit – just to briefly see Justin.

And I’m going to be honest, that thought really convicted me. Because the truth is, no. I sadly am not. I’m not on the edge of my seat, waiting to greet Christ. We’re told to be “at the ready and with lamps lit” for Jesus. (Luke 12:35). In my heart, I tell myself that I am, but the sad truth, is that I’m feeling rather spiritually dry lately.

This pandemic was hard on everyone — particularly spiritually. The virus, the social climate in this nation, the fierce division between neighbors, and then not being able to physically attend church and be around fellow Christians or family — sometimes it feels like there’s no more oil left to burn in my lamp.

Sunday comes and Sunday goes. And suddenly you blink and it’s Sunday again. And it’s like, the only time I gave to Christ that week was that brief hour at church, only to jump headfirst back into the rat race of work and bills and stress and life. And that’s a really terrible thing to admit.

I was thinking this week, as I was falling asleep, how there’s a part of me that misses that uniquely precious season my life during the very first few days of my recovery from anorexia when I was just clinging by my fingernails to Christ. I have never felt closer to God in my life — He was literally sustaining me. And to be honest, I miss that. I miss that closeness, I miss that dependence, that overwhelming, all-consuming need for Christ.

I don’t miss my eating disorder, or the destruction it brought. But I miss how connected I was with Jesus during that time.

Only in NYC can you spend the evening waiting for Justin Bieber to arrive to a secret concert. How this exciting night promoted questions of faith in this young New Yorker. #faith #catholic #bieber #justinbieber #nyc #edrecovery #recovery #god #bible #christianity

And reflecting on it, I think to myself, “Well, yeah Caralyn. He was the center of your world during that time. You were reading the Bible through the entire day. You were praying morning, noon, night. You went to daily Chapel service. You were journaling prayers to Him multiple times a day. You were actively and purposefully surrendering your mind and heart to Him to heal.”

Leave it to my inner monologue to really slap me upside the head with a truth bomb.

I need to get back to that place of desire for Christ. I need to start actively pursuing Him. Because as with all relationships, we get out what we put in.

And as for Bieber? I got a glimpse yesterday of what it felt like to have that anticipatory chase for something again. Granted, it was directed in the wrong place, but I am grateful that God gave me an opportunity to recognize that that was missing in my life in regards to Him.

It was a gentle correction, offered through a delightful experience.

Once again, proving that the Father is always pursuing us, always calling us back to Him. It is up to us to respond and pursue Him in return.

Only in NYC can you spend the evening waiting for Justin Bieber to arrive to a secret concert. How this exciting night promoted questions of faith in this young New Yorker. #faith #catholic #bieber #justinbieber #nyc #edrecovery #recovery #god #bible #christianity

“This is what the Lord says to these bones: I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life.” Ez 37:5

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62 thoughts on “Waiting for Bieber

  1. What helps me most (besides prayer, church services and Bible study) is reading great books by Christian authors. I’ve been reading Charles Spurgeon’s autobiography and his dedication to following and love for Christ really puts me in my place. While it’s very inspiring it does make me wish I had the deep-seated, daily adoration he had for our Savior. So I can relate to what you wrote today.

    1. Hi Rollie! Thank you so much for this awesome advice – i really need to get into reading more. I will definitely look into Spurgeon. thanks for stopping by! Hugs and love xox

  2. Yes ma’am; most of what the US is missing is the “old style” devotion to God: God, Jesus, & Spirit. We must start at the individual level, invite someone, then another, …. All the while making a Devotional for Love, Faith, and Hope. Hugs and Love 🤗 & ♥️!

    1. Hi HJ! You’re right – old style devotion. i love that thought! and yes! “hand to hand” evangilization too! thanks for stopping by! Hugs and love xox

    1. Oh my gosh yeah, Ang, I definitely had the wobbles in my knees!!!! it was pretty surreal! thanks for stopping by! Hugs and love xox

  3. There is no way I would stand on that clear platform, Caralyn! Ohhh no. I had no idea that Bieber is married. Wonderful post, Caralyn! ❤️🙏🏻

    1. hahah i feel you, John! My knees were wobbling and my stomach was in my throat the entire time!! and yep! he married a really sweet girl – Hailey Baldwain, the neice of Alec Baldwain! thanks for stopping by! Hugs and love xox

  4. Caralyn, all believers in Jesus, have times when we really pursue him and times when we drift. The truth is we all need him everyday. I find when when I talk with him and listen for his voice, depend on him and not myself, my day goes much better. Hugs and love!

    1. Thank you for this wonderful encouragement. You’re right – it’s an every single day need. I appreciate this – time to depend on Him! Hugs and love xox

  5. “I need to get back to that place of desire for Christ. I need to start actively pursuing Him. Because as with all relationships, we get out what we put in.”
    Wow, C. How convicting. I could mention all kinds of things to get back there, but we all know them already. So lets be proactive instead.
    If a closer walk with Him is really what you want, truly what you desire, then I’ll add that to my daily prayer for you. I’ll pray each day that God gives you a desire for Him, for His word, to truly hear His voice, and for a deeper relationship with Him. And just to be mean, I’ll ask Him to remind you of it, especially when you forget. LOL. The rest is up to you. And as you grow in Him, you can return the favor to me. 🙂 Have a wonderful evening and a great weekend!

    1. Thank you Kenneth – I really appreciate your kind words. I’m glad this hit home with me. You’re right – PROACTIVITY on the matter! and gosh, thank you for the prayers. How can I pray for you, my friend? Hugs and love xox

    1. a Believer and a Belieber! haha oh my gosh yes!! thank you Susan for sharing your heart! amen! Hugs and love xox

  6. I know what you mean, Caralyn. There have been times in my life when I felt much closer to God than others. I’ve also had a “Bieber” moment or two, when I realized my focus was on someone who was at my church more than the God it was made for. I worship at a chapel on a US Army installation where Retired Four Star General Tommy Franks used to visit occasionally. He and his wife were married at the chapel back in 1966. Anyway, whenever he showed up, it was like everyone’s head was on a swivel! I caught myself one time watching General Frank’s every move—instead of singing the hymns or listening to the sermon.

    Blessing to you and your Steven!

    1. thank you so much for sharing that, David. Oh wow, that sounds like quite an exciting sighting. It’s a good thing that God is patient with us and has an overwhelming love for His children! 🙂 hehe glad you stopped by! Hugs and love xox

  7. Hi Caralyn! Normally I do not endorse stuff because you probably get a lot of that…but I really think you would enjoy ” the ruthless elimination of hurry” by John Mark Comer. It’s a great great book that talks on adopting the life cycle that Jesus lived. It has helped my husband and I shift our focus, and oddly, we get waaayy more done when our priorities are in order and we spend less time rushing. That relationship takes time. ❤️ As it is, I know you’re on the right track! I have been struggling with that feeling this week. Like, you know you should be eager and excited for Jesus, but you are just TIRED. (Another reason I hesitate to endorse anything: still struggling to live it out!!)

    1. Hi Yael! Thank you so much for sharing that! Sounds like a fascinating book, I will definitely add it to my list! i appreciate the recco! Thanks for the encouragement 🙂 Hugs and love xox

    1. hahaha oh my gosh I LOVE Kenny G! Christmas isn’t the same without his crooning sax music! 🙂 thank you Greg – I appreciate that. The H is for Hamilton 😉 hehe I just didn’t want him to get a Google alert hahaha Hugs and love xox

  8. I’ve been going through a similar things. This rough few months has gotten me all out of my routine. I miss my time with God. I’ve also felt convicted to pursue him. Thanks for the great post.

    1. I’m sorry that you’ve been going through a tough patch, friend. Know that I’ll be praying for you! Yes! Let’s pursue Him! Hugs and love xox

  9. The title almost made me skip but I’m glad I read it. Going through something similar in my life. Spiritually dry. That first love I had for Jesus seems to be diluting now a days. A wonderful post. Thank you so much.

    1. Hi Mariam, thank you for sharing your heart. Know that I’ll be keeping you in prayer as we both pursue Him. This is a tough climate to maintain zeal for Christ, but I know He can light the fire for you and I! 🙂 so glad you stopped by! Hugs and love xox

  10. I’ve had this sort of thought too, and it is frustrating that I don’t have the same enthusiasm, the same…immediacy when it comes to God. My last few trips out of town I’ve taken to NOT listening to Pandora the whole way. At least on the outbound, I spend the whole 7 hours (this week) just mentally putting God in the passenger seat. I try to keep some sort of dialogue going. Sometimes I drift and have to remember He’s there, but it’s an overall rewarding experience.

    We are physical beings. Physicality is what we are geared toward, so it’s hard to have the same sense of presence of what we cannot physically see. My long drives are a luxury to do this but are not always available. Never to some people. Hence the need to detach, unplug, and “shrink” our physical world to make room for the spiritual.

    Thank you for getting me thinking again. Great weekend!

    1. Hi Jeff! Thank you so much for sharing your heart. Immediacy – I love that word you chose. that’s hitting the nail on the head. And wow — what an awesome thing to do — putting God in the passenger seat. I should really do that. Today, instead of running to Pandora, I put on a sermon and listened to that, and it really started my day off on the right foot. I should “level up” and go silent next time, and actually ME do the talking TO God, instead of listening to SOMEONE ELSE talk ABOUT God! And yes! Shrinking our physical world – what a profound thought. Thank you for, as always, inspiring me, Jeff. You’re a great friend, and I hope your Monday is off to a great start, and that on your next long drive, you and JC have a lively convo 🙂 Hugs to you and your girls! Hugs and love xox

  11. I think your beautifully written piece (espy the last para) amplifies this passage from scripture: “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened.” Matthew 7:7-8.
    God bless!

    1. Thank you so much for your kind words! Oh yes!! that is such an appropriate and powerful scripture. God always know what we need to hear, and how blessed are we to have a big ol’ book of it! His love letter to us!! 🙂 Hugs and love xox

    1. Thank you so much, friend. Gosh, I appreciate your kind words, and I’m glad this resonated with you. have a great afternoon! Hugs and love xox

  12. Great analogy with the Bieber comparison to how we look for Christ. Thank you for sharing. I can relate to your thoughts on how close you were to Christ in the most difficult times. Made me think back on when I was coming back to church and to Him. I was never closer to Christ than when I was begging Him daily to forgive me and take me back. Of course He never set me aside, I set Him aside. Now that I’ve been actively back at church and seeking him for a few years, I often find myself in those lulls or valleys of faith. For me, during meditation I try to take myself back to those times when I needed him so desperately. It often brings me to tears and helps reinvigorate my faith. Again, thank you for sharing.

    1. Thank you friend. I’m glad this resonated with you. I feel you – we all have those seasons where we feel so incredibly close. That’s really great advice to mentally go back to that time. Thank you for sharing that. Hugs and love xox

  13. The Edge would definitely be on my “must see” list if I ever get back to Gotham again.
    But Bieber… Billy Joel… Rod Stewart… even Rolling Stones (may Charlie Watts rest in peace), not interested.
    Anticipating a choir of every tribe, tongue and nation, though. Now THAT will have me on the edge of my seat, as I plan to be singing in it!
    thanx for your wonderful blogs!

    1. oh my gosh yes! you’ve got to check it out! the view is outrageously beautiful! especially at sunset! I love that thought! Thank you for stopping by! Hugs and love xox

  14. I get what you are saying about lack of excitement to spend time with Jesus. I too get distracted by life, but as I was reading this, I heard Him whisper, “I’m always excited to see you!”
    Wow, how He loves us!
    Marcy

    1. Hi Marcy, thank you so much for your kind words! yes! He is always whispering to us! so glad you stopped by! Hugs and love xox

  15. I got that this is a reflective piece for you ….indeed we all mature past the “Biebers” and “fake believers” of the world. We evolve and resolve to get better in our faith, our humanity, hopefully Covid gave us the chance to see that our life is a mere instant, we are here to love and be loved, to be grateful to God and to build our health literacy as communities (mind, body and spirit). His/her blessings!

    1. Thank you Barbara, I appreciate you taking the time to read this! You’re right! To love and be loved and to be grateful to God! I love that thought! thank you so much for stopping by! Hugs and love xox

  16. I love this reminder. It’s really cool you were able to use that experience and relate it to your faith. Here’s hoping and praying you can get back to your relationship with Christ. It’s nice knowing He never leaves us or stops pursuing us. -Laura

    1. Thank you Laura 🙂 I don’t know why this sparked that thought about Jesus, but I know that when a thought like that is put on my heart, I’m supposed to share it. Thank you for your prayers and kind words! Amen! He never stops! Hugs and love xox

  17. What an awesome reminder. I keenly know what you mean, about missing times that were so incredibly challenging, yet so sweet because you had to grasp God so tightly to get through. Thanks for sharing your heart once again. I so enjoy reading about the way Jesus helps you filter life. 😊

    1. Thank you so much Adina! I’m so glad this resonated with you! I love how you expressed that: grasping God so tightly to get through. Amen to that! Hugs and love xox

  18. It’s interesting how similar circumstances can influence people’s perspectives differently. The inability to meet together with other Christians and knowing that we were just getting a sample of the oppression that other Christians live with in other countries made me hungry for more fellowship with God and others. Seeing how far our nation is slipping deepens my understanding that we are nothing apart from Him.
    When I first heard the phrase, “practice the presence of God” I thought it was a little strange, but I get it now. Taking time to be aware of God’s presence each day, honoring him, praying, asking Him about every choice… sometimes we have to be so deliberate. Saying a prayer for you today! Your honesty is beautiful.

    1. Thank you so much Linda – you’re so right – we’ve gotten a small glimpse at the hardship that many Christians live with every day. It is an opportunity for empathy. Practice the presence of God – wow I absolutely love that! thank you for sharing that! Hugs and love xox

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