Alyssa Sellers


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Single in the Summer is the Worst

single in the summer squareBeing single in the summer is the worst.

Sure, the Christmas/New Year combo could vie for the title of Worst Season to be Single. What with the constant barrage of songs telling you that Christmas just ain’t Christmas without the one you love and all the parties you have to attend solo with the faces of other happy families reminding you that you are a family of one.

Stealthy summer wins because of its tricky sneak-attack of sadness.

At first, the physical freedom from outerwear mixed with extended hours of daylight provides a certain kind of euphoria. Soon, however, you discover you have a tad too much time.

In the dead of winter, it’s dark all the time and you have no place you need to go so you feel no guilt staying in on a Saturday night watching an entire season of some show on Netflix. But in the summer, the sunny outside world beckons with promises of road trips, camping adventures, ball games of all sorts, hikes to majestic views, naps in lush meadows, seaside rambles, and so forth, you know what I’m talking about, you feel me. Continue reading

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Knowing I Don’t Have to Know

Joy Ride New OrleansThere I was, ugly crying on the cypress wood floor in my uncle’s home in New Orleans. It was the summer of 2002 and, after watching a seemingly innocuous movie, I was an emotional wreck.

Not just because in “Life as a House” an adorable young Anakin Skywalker stood in the pouring rain and fervently cried out for Alyssa, the witty and wise girl-next-door, who happened to share my name as well as some of my pretty fabulous character traits. (Yes, yes, I know. Hayden Christensen was acting in the role of an entirely different character named Sam, but to me he was still the promising young padawan – you know, before he goes all dark side of the force – only NOW with bonus blue hair. Swoon.) No, I was sobbing because Anakin/Sam and the other characters in the film were ultimately searching for redemption, love, and an understanding one’s self, all the things I had journeyed to New Orleans to find.

And because I was failing miserably in my search.

My movie postmortem didn’t start with me lying in a puddle of tears on the floor. It started with me sitting upright on the step at the top of a staircase, looking out through a giant window at a warm summer sunset, and holding a pen and yellow paper tablet in my hands prepared to write a veritable masterpiece of emotion inspired by the movie I had just experienced.

As you may have surmised, that didn’t happen. Continue reading


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A Letter to the Struggling Creatives

easter 004(In January 2013 I wrote a Facebook message to a dear friend to encourage her in her creative struggle. In March 2014 I stumbled back across it and felt as if my past self had written it for my future me. Very timey-whimey,  Doctor Who-ish. Today I want to share it with you, fellow struggling creative, with the hopes it will encourage you, too.)

I read your Facebook post yesterday and I believe the very fact that you are facing resistance is an indication that you are indeed on the right track. Have you read The War of Art? If not, you TOTALLY should. It’s short essays on the struggle for the creation of art. In it Steven Pressfield talks a great deal about Resistance. Resistance is the name he gave to the force that doesn’t want good and beautiful to exist. Resistance is the force that stops us from creating.

In times of resistance and struggle I cry out for help from the Master Creator; the one who made every good and perfect thing. Admittedly it sometimes takes me awhile to do so. Sometimes, more often than not, I’m afraid.  Continue reading


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A Life Story

Lazarus died.

Really, legitly died. Mary and Martha rightfully mourned his passing. They went through all the pain and grief of him dying so that “God’s son may be glorified through it.” (John 11:4)

Jesus allowed them to experience all that pain and hurt so that others may know him. Eventually Lazarus died again. And presumably Mary and Martha grieved again then, too.

In chapter 9 of John we meet a man who was blind since birth. He and his family suffered scorn, embarrassment and hardship because of this blindness and Jesus says, “this happened so that the work of God might be displayed in his life.” (John 9:3)

That’s who our God is. This world, my life, is not my own. It’s not my movie, it’s not my show, it’s not really my story. I play a part in a minor plot in God’s gigantic story.

Even though it sometimes doesn’t look like it, ultimately God is showing compassion. He wants the whole world to receive his gift: life lived to its fullest through following Jesus. Everything that happens is in revelation to this truth. It’s not about me and my comfort or you and yours. It’s about God’s Glory. People suffer, I have suffered, but we can suffer with the hope that in the end, all may LIVE.

“The thief comes only to steal, kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” ~ Jesus in John chapter 10 verse 10.


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I Sing Because I’m Free

2b8a4-learntosingBecause I know what sorrow is and currently no longer feel it; I sing.

Because I know how brief this moment can be, how quickly it can all change; I sing.

Because there was a time when all I could do was breathe; let alone speak; I sing.

Often loud, sometimes obnoxiously, but always because I’m free; I sing.

I know there will come a time again when I will not want to, a time again when I will struggle to breathe, but that time is not now.

Because now I am happy; I sing.