Looked down on

“Don’t let them look down on you are because you are young.” I heard this over and over from church youth group leaders and various other people who shared in the idea that you could change the perception of others – that others didn’t have to look at you like you were young. You could act mature, work hard and people would not perceive you as just another stupid, immature kid.

I have always acted with maturity vastly beyond my years.  Adults around me said I was an old soul at 15. I’m not sure that was true but I never took the time to find out. Now, almost 10 years later I know that the world doesn’t work how they said it would. Ageism is real and it is profound. I’ve worked for several companies in the short time I’ve legally be able to be employed and I have experienced this first hand. People like to use youth because it is a socially acceptable scapegoat in many places and because there are silly, immature young adults that have allowed this stereotype to perpetuate. It’s easy to blame the new person and if you’re young you’re used to being the new person a lot even when you aren’t new young is such an easy target for some people who often feel threatened by the skills us new fangled youths possess like our ease with social media, lightening fast typing skills and proficiency with various software.

I know now that I won’t be able to change everyones mind. I will be discriminated against for reasons I cannot control. It’s wrong and it’s illegal but it is not going away. How do you stand up to those that want to put you down because of something you can’t control?

I’ll admit I don’t have the answers yet and somedays it’s bad enough that it makes me want to throw in the towel, but then I remember that I’m a responsible, mature adult and that isn’t the way to handle problems or my bank account so I persevere. I work harder. I don’t give in to their pettiness and I hope and pray for change to come because I believe that prayers can change what I cannot.

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Where Have I Been?

I guess I took an unintended break from blogging. Work has been crazy and I’ve been too exhausted to have new words to formulate or really time to process or think about anything new.  But here’s some highlights (and lowlights) from the last two weeks.

  • I think I’ve been in it right now. I don’t know what I’m trying to process or work out, but I know that I’ve felt very melancholy. I think it might be everything with my parents/siblings, it’s been a rough month on that front for sure.
  • The best thing happened yesterday when we found out one of our bestest friend’s is moving a mere 95 miles away. (Okay, he’s really Taylor’s best friend but I like to pretend we’re buddies too) 😉 This is going to make California so much greater. Can’t wait for time hanging out in San Diego and for him to come visit us here. Gonna feel so much more like home.
  • I’m running/ working out more. It’s been great. I’m feeling stronger and better and healthier. All good things.
  • Work has been incredibly stressful and there have been some days and some situations that were incredibly hurtful, but I’m persevering in spite of the difficulty and I’m thankful for this job and for all it means for my family.

All in all, it’s been busy, stressful and yet there has been so much beauty and enjoyment that has come from working and from relationships and I can see more and more each day why this move to California was the best thing for us.

Taylor and I exclaiming our excitement for Fernando's arrival to California

Taylor and I exclaiming our excitement for Fernando’s arrival to California

Celebrating Faithfulness

God is infinitely greater than I can imagine. His plans are greater than I could ever imagine.

After, applying for 60 jobs in California, I have landed an amazing full-time opportunity. Words can not express my excitement, general overwhelm for what God has done for Taylor and I and amaze at God’s faithfulness to provide for us.

Everything about our move to California has magnified God’s work in our lives and his plan that is way bigger than I could have ever imagined on my own. Left to my own scared devices, I would never have imagined something so big for Taylor and I but I am so glad that we took this huge leap to the West Coast, even if we did have to make some hard choices and some sad goodbyes.

Looking forward to a weekend of celebrating and praising God for his goodness and looking forward to starting my job next week!

The day when it’s not going your way

Yesterday was a day that I’d rather not live over again. It wasn’t even one of the worst days of my life, but it was bad enough that all I wanted to do was go to sleep and awake to see a new morning.

Yesterday was one of those days when work felt longer and more arduous and more pointless than it has in a long while. I couldn’t wait to rush out of there into the balmy sun to sit in my inferno of a car. I needed escape.

Yesterday I felt the pains of living in community, of feel hurt and forgotten by people who don’t mean to hurt or forget. Feeling overwhelmed by mere thought of packing up my apartment. Feeling saddened by so much that’s going on.   It was another layer and all of it ended me up on my couch in my pajamas much earlier than normal. Broken out in hives from the stress of the day, I needed to stop and breath. I needed to refresh and renew.

These are the types of days when I become happy that each morning truly is new.

Work, work, work

I loved reading this article recently. I’d highly recommend it.  It really met me in the state of my life right now – struggling with work.

I often forget to see how God is at work in my work. I need to be reminded of it constantly or else I start to get weighed down by the futility of it all.

I often forget that I am a missionary at my job. The conversations I have with my co-workers shouldn’t be taken lightly, but I don’t really think I’m there for the sole purpose of ministering to these people because God created me for work.

Tim Keller talks about how God created us for work and I fail to see how God created me for this job in this season fairly regularly.

One of the most pressing thing this article reminded me of was this:

“Remember this is only for a season”

I forget this all the time. It feels like this in-between season will never end, but I know it will and like the guy in this article, I might even look back on this time fondly.

Happy Friday!

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.

Working it Out

I’m reading Timothy Keller’s newish book on work, Every Good Endeavor: Connecting Your Work to God’s Work. I’d highly recommend you read it ASAP.

It’s probably the hardest book to read when you’re struggling with work like I am. I am so thankful I have a job at all. I know that this is something to praise God for. So many people my age are without and living at home. I’m absolutely blessed to have a job at all – even if it is extremely discouraging, often pointless and thankless. Even when my soul cries out for justice in an unjust environment, I need to remember that justice is not the answer. Timothy Keller talks about these things as the product of the fall in work. This is not how work was meant to be, but it is how work is because of sin. I need to remember this and fight against it. (Side note: I’m still reading the redemption part of this book so I’m hoping to learn much more.)

This is where God has placed me. I think so I’ll start to learn that I am not my job. In a culture, that values work above all else it’s hard to see that. It’s easy to succumb to the idea that you are your job, that if you don’t really know what kind of job you’re perfect for you have somehow missed out on something huge. It’s so easy to get bogged down at parties or while meeting new people really anywhere with that one question, “Oh, and what do you do?” And by that we all mean “what’s your occupation?” If we actually answered that question at face value, we might actually get into more interesting conversations, but I digress.

I was created to work by a Creator who loves work and creation. Maybe one day I’ll know what kind of work that I was created for. I’ve always thought I needed a job that really helped individuals and the more I’ve been thinking about graduate school vs. not vs. the world of endless possibilities I’ve come to realize that my unsatisfied feeling at many of my jobs stems from the lack of help I’ve been able to provide to individuals. Sure, I’ve helped companies and different organizations and sometimes people within those organizations, but never really tangibly helped or encouraged or motivated individuals. I think I need to start moving in that direction.  Any ideas? I’m wide open for suggestions.

I think in all of it: good days and bad, I’m really just constantly learning to trust God more. To really believe He’s at work in my life and to trust that His word is true.