This season

I need the courage to be okay with living in Tallahassee.

It’s hard sometimes in a city that is so transitory with friends always leaving after the finish college. I feel like I missed the memo.

It’s hard not having many friends in the same life circumstances (married, no kids yet). It’s easy to feel disconnected.

I need to be grateful for what I’ve been given: I’m healthy, I have a job, I have a wonderful husband, a home…. really this list is endless when you consider the poverty and helplessness of some many in the world and yet I feel angry that this is my plot in life. I feel disappointed that I’m not the one moving on, leaving Tallahassee or having children. I feel stuck.

But, I’m right where God wants me. He knew these years would be part of my story. He wrote them and I know they are good for me and to me. I just have to keep my mind centered there and not focus on myself.

I need to rejoice in the good parts of Tallahassee especially on the days where they are hardest to see. I need to be thankful that Tallahassee is still so close to family and I can still hop in the car for the weekend to hang out. I need to relish in this childless season where I get so much time and silence all to myself and the time to help others who are already in the season ahead.

Weekend!

I am soooo ready for the weekend.

This week has been a serious struggle in my head and  I am so ready for a break.

But, it gets me thinking – Am I living for the weekend?

I shouldn’t be. I was created to work not to enjoy a life of leisure. But, I often find myself counting the days, hours and minutes until I can escape on Friday.

I want to enjoy my weekends. Time to run errands, do house projects, travel to see family (or for family to come visit *wink*), enjoy the Sabbath, spend extra time with Taylor… But I don’t want to enjoy them at the expense of missing the goodness of the rest of the week too.

That’s all I’ve got for today.

Hope you’ve got excellent plans for an enjoyable weekend!

 

Hungary and Romania

This is the second part of my Story of Me series about my high school years. You can read the first one here.

My religious beliefs for the first part of high school were more or less nonexistent. I didn’t really grasp anything and at the time my family’s church had recently fallen apart at the seems and I really didn’t know what to make of it all.  I had very little guidance and I was kinda just floating along.

I can’t pinpoint the moment that something changed. I know it was sometime toward to end of my Sophomore year, but I can’t really pick anything monumental that happened to cause me to really delve deeper into the bible. I just remember picking it up one day and that was that. My worldview slowly started to shift and I slowly started to see the bigger picture of the gospel and my own sin.

Széchenyi Chain Bridge

Not too long after that, a couple of friends were planning a Spring Break missions trip to Budapest and for some reason, I knew I needed to be on that trip. It really did change my perspective on the urgency of missions and gave me a deeper trust in God that I didn’t have before. I subsequently traveled back to Hungary to spend a little over a month teaching English and talking about Jesus to high school students. It was exhausting and it was trying. In hindsight, as my perspective on missions have changed, I don’t know if I really think all the highly of this method now, but I know the heart of the people working there is in it and I know God is working through those people. These trips gave me a deep love for Hungary, which might be strange, but it is an amazing place that more Americans should know about. It’s absolutely beautiful. Some days, all I want to do is eat a palaczinta (basically a crepe) overlooking that beautiful city. That city became so much a part of my life that when it came time to plan my honeymoon we ended up going to Budapest, but more of that in the story to come.

Szent Istvan Basilica - March 2006

Szent Istvan Basilica – March 2006

Before,  I left for college I also traveled to Romania with the church my family was attending. The most memorable part of that whole trip was spending time in a poor village cleaning a small hut for an elderly women whose brother was dying in the other room. Seeing the need and the trust of that women is something I needed to see at 18 and something I don’t think I could ever forget.

Romania - August 2007

Romania – August 2007

These trips and my high school bible study (which could be a whole post on its own) made my faith stronger. They put me on a path that I could go away to college and struggle with my convictions and theology and not be shaken by the collegiate system. I truly think that in those years God really did work a miracle in my life to put people in my life to teach me and encourage me and to show me how big His plan is and how much He loves me.

The 25 List Update: March

I wrote a list of 25 things I want to accomplish before I’m 25 and now I’m on month two of my monthly update to keep myself honest.

You can read the original list here, here and here.

1. I have been majorly slacking on my Spanish. I need to develop a better system and plan for this goal.

3. I think I’m gonna try to run a 5k in April! Hope I don’t chicken out! I have been running a good bit more and feeling better, which was the real motivation.

6. Fasting is not something I was committed to this month. I need to work on this one.

7. I added praying to my morning commute and, although I sometimes drift into planning mode instead of prayer, I think for the most part this is helping me and it’s a good start.

8. I tried many new foods this month including: bone marrow, beef tartare and lamb fries. They were all super delicious! Looking forward to new adventures this month!

9. In less than 2 weeks, I’ll be in San Francisco! Can’t wait! Have you been? What is your favorite part of San Francisco?

10. I’m reading The Paris Wife by Paula McClain. So far, I’m really enjoying it and I really want to go to Paris! Any suggestions for my next novel?

13. I am on a serious decorating bender. It’s actually a bit out of control. However, I’m really starting to love the way out apartment is starting to look.

17. I’ve been confronted about my convictions about the Sabbath a few times this month! It was tough, but good for me. You can read some of my thought about the Sabbath too.

18. I went to the optometrist, but still no scheduled physical. Still failing at this basic adult skill.

22. I’m still slowly memorizing Romans 5, but I plan to move to Romans 6 in April.

23. I painted a canvas and I’ve got plans to paint an old piece of furniture this week! Wish me luck!

24. I’ve been apologizing more – which is good for me and my marriage.

Mini-Goals for April

  • Enjoy San Francisco!
  • Memorize the rest of Romans 5 and move on to 6.
  • Plan times to Study Spanish and GRE Vocab.
  • Run in a real 5k!
  • Actually fast lunch, not just tell myself I’m going to.

Distracted

Distracted. That’s how I feel all too often.

My brain is full of the infinite to-do list I have raging inside me: cleaning, laundry, shopping, decorating, exercise, planning and it just keeps going.

I’m exhausted. Aren’t you?

I’ve been realizing that I’m so distracted with the tasks of my life, many of which are truly good things, that I’m missing the things that are truly important.

I’m missing the sweetness of the gospel and rejoicing in it already being enough. I’m focused on myself and my list when I should be on my knees worshiping the God who did everything for me because he loves me.

I need to take time in my life to focus on the goodness and the glory of the gospel and to overwhelm myself with its perfection because only from there can I do anything out of a true love for God instead of with the obligation I so often do them with.

Stopping the planning is such a struggle for me, but I need to take moments to realize that my God made me for so much more than the things I can put on a list.

Isn’t that good news?

The Ultimate Mark of Womanhood

You may be wondering where my little blog went to. Sorry, friends, family and other readers. I hit a bit of a writer’s block and the busyness of the day didn’t help much either. But fear not! I’m back!

Anyways…

A few weeks ago, I read this article on The Gospel Coalition website; I highly recommend it. The title really struck me: “Your Womanhood is Not on Hold.” I thought, “What?! It’s not?” I realized the lies I’ve been fed and have ultimately believed that if I don’t have a kid yet, I’m not a real woman. I never even realized this was my thinking. My mind was blown and shattered by this reality.

Unlike the women this article was more directly intended to speak to (women who struggle with fertility or women who are unmarried), I am just not in the time in my life for this to be a part of the plan yet. I fully realize it could happen, but that doesn’t mean it’s in the plan yet. I will joyously welcome this time of life when it comes, but I realize how much God is teaching me patience in this season.

One line really stuck out to me:

The ultimate mark of womanhood is hoping in God, not giving birth or loving a husband, though these are beautiful and God-glorifying privileges.

Wow. Our society does not view womanhood this way, but I’m so in need of my thinking to reflect this reality. My identity should never be found in my status as a wife or eventually a mother, but in light of my status as a child of God. In my opinion, this is the most freeing news.

I shouldn’t become frustrated when people ask when I’m finally going to be a mother or tell my I’m not really busy or overwhelmed by my life because I don’t have a kid. I should be gracious and loving in all circumstances. It surely is easier said than done.

We are not on hold, dear sisters. It might feel like it some days, but God has put us exactly where he wants us in our particular season.

I need to remember that and cling to that reality even when it doesn’t feel true.