Thursday, December 17, 2015

i ran today. running is the only activity i do in life that makes praying come easy to me. it seems so natural to me to praise the lord for my little body and for the ability to run. there are other things in life i should have never been able to do (live, talk, create food to sustain myself) but prayer and thanksgiving doesn't come naturally in those areas. just running. 

i hate the first two miles. they are agonizing and i curse a lot for having the desire to run and even though i am thanking God i really am just mad at my body and wish i was a better runner. then mile three hits. and my stride kicks in and i am finally free to really think and process and pray. i know this is happening because my upper thighs turn bright pink and so do my arms and i can finally unclench my fists. 

i have been really obsessed with Your Glory/Nothing but the Blood by All Sons & Daughters recently. I listened to it on repeat on my run today and almost every hill i ran up coincided with the lyrics "hallelujah jesus you are good." so i would run up the hills singing loudly. today i am not one hundred percent certain that i know this to be true. but saying it over and over and over and doing hard things made it more real to me. 

sunday morning i read this.

For a child has been born—for us! the gift of a son—for us! He’ll take over the running of the world. His names will be: Amazing Counselor, Strong God, Eternal Father, Prince of Wholeness. His ruling authority will grow, and there’ll be no limits to the wholeness he brings.
Isaiah 9:6-7 MSG

and i can't stop thinking about it. most translations say prince of peace. that's alright too. but wholeness. man. i need that. we all need that. we need to feel whole and stop trying to fill ourselves with other things. i've been really bad at that lately. i'm especially bad at it when i feel hurt, which i have felt lately. 

chelsea and i talked about being whole the other day and she said this

the word in hebrew is טםים, (ta-miym) & it means complete or whole. one of my fave words

to that i replied "duh wholeness means being whole"

it's amazing she loves me as much as she does. 

i don't have any thoughts or solutions. i know jesus is the only thing that can make us whole. it is hard though. go run around until you hit your stride and ask him to make you whole. that kinda feels better. 

Monday, November 23, 2015

it is cold out. the first sink in your bones, make you draw sharp crisp breaths as you walk, cold. and i love it. soon i'll hate it but today i love it. i've not slept well the past five days and have listened to Motorcycle Drive By by Third Eye Blind probably over a hundred times. this morning i drove to work while the sky was black and the stars were bright and i screamed along with the lyrics and breathed deep belly breaths because jan tells me i have to.

yesterday i went to church and i did not want to. i had a hard conversation in the car before i walked through the doors and i clenched my fists and made myself walk in. i was supposed to hang with the best little 4 year old buddy Benjamin but he didn't come. they asked if i wanted to hold the babies and i said yes because i needed to hold life and be hopeful about things and babies have that power. then they had too many people so i couldn't hold the babies. then i went to the service with clenched fists and i grabbed the chair in front of me and gripped it till my knuckles turned white. the old lady next to me asked me if i was okay. i said no but it was okay thank you.

cold weather reminds me of colorado. never have i ever felt more alone or more alive. i remember standing on my porch at 7,500 feet when it was zero degrees out at midnight staring at the stars and moon and wondering what the hell i was doing and why i was so alone and where in the world was God. i doubted God in Brazil in the sunshine too, but i think it's easier to doubt God in the cold than in the sun. in colorado i had mountains to climb and a river running through my backyard to throw rocks in on the daily. now i sit in my closet and hold patrick henry (despite his lack of wanting to be held) and use excellent time management skills to write papers the day before they are due. i drive and yell and go to the grocery store in my pjs, because i am tired and burdens are heavy to bear right now.

so i'm mad at God. for other people mostly. and the world. i know he is big and i know i have hope but i am mad. i feel like swinging some fists and getting some answers because we need some.

this semester has kicked my ass. not having a fall break and working typically 70 hour work weeks with no days off makes a girl tired.

(i get that all my blogs are the same. get over it)

i still believe gratitude changes everything. all the time not just when turkeys are slaughtered.

friends who greet you at the door with apple cider spiked with whiskey are good.
oversized sweaters are good.
motorcycle drive by by third eye blind is good.
laughing around a dining room table with homemade food is good.
finding things to laugh at about at 6 am at old navy is good.
falling flat on your face in front of a new employer is good.
one eyed turtles named blinky are good.
getting A's on statistics exams is good.
laying on the floor with my favorite roommates on a Saturday night is good.
being known and loved is good.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

i think i forgot how to blog. it's been seven months. seven hard months. this summer i sat in my closet, car, carillon, caroline's bedroom, porches, and coffee shops and cried probably once a week. then school started and i thought life would instantly get better and i'd feel like i had a purpose again. turns out my purpose still doesn't rely in the things i do or how i fill my time. shocking.

then 18 hours of classes, 21 hours of internship, and 20-30 hours of work at old navy hit me like a freight train. and i had a little crisis and laid in bed face down while brian rubbed my back and reminded me until my tears dried (and every day since then) that this too is a season. a season of building a future and investing in the rest of my life and that it is going to be really really hard.

britt always reminds me to trust the process because the process is the hardest part but always yields results. i hate the process. not because it involves work, or in my case studying and writing papers and doing statistics and folding 200000 t-shirts at old navy every day. i hate the process because it often brings out the worst in me. i get self centered and do terrible things like hang up on the man i love because i have to pay $13 to park because he didn't want me walking downtown at night time. i complain a lot. i act selfishly and i hate it. then i get mad that i did those things and its just an ugly cycle. when i was transitioning to real food off ensure britt told me every day to trust the process. even when i was going through withdraw from sugar and was REALLY really mean to everyone. (hey, it turns out i was accidentally starving myself too so let's blame some of the mean-ness on lack of food in my little body).

i am grateful for people who walk through the processes of life with me. i am grateful for past experiences with people who have held my hands well in the past and remind me again this time that they are here to do the same. i am grateful that i can text chelsea any time any day and amazingly enough she is always there to meet me with grace. i am grateful for patient family members who let me do me and who are always there to meet me on the couch to watch tv when i have a second.

today in class i took a lot of notes. rarely do i do this. i actually was just doing it because i was trying not to fall asleep. in my 2 pages of note taking i wrote the word hope in the margins and drew three little mountains. and i think that's all i got right now. tiny margins of hope. i know this isn't forever. there are things in life that are forever and i probably won't ever stop wrestling with them. i've been thinking a lot about grief and walking through grief with people i love and it will never make sense to me. i've got to have a tiny margin of hope there too. that the people we love the most who we lose senselessly made an impact. changed our worlds and others worlds. i've got to grab onto any tiny margins of hope i can get these days to carry on.

so find your margins. 5 minutes to sit outside before your 14 hour work day continues, 5 minute dance parties over FaceTime with your best friend, staying up a little later to see the people you love and lay in front of the fireplace together, taking tours of your favorite museums because you can breathe easily in those spaces, whatever. we've all got room for tiny margins of hope if we look. i have hope in that.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

life is rich friends. it is hard and messy as crap but it is so rich. for lent i decided to sit for four minutes every day in silence. just sit. (lent started almost a month ago and i've done this like 10 times...i suck) but when i do it its so good. and rich. and maybe half the times i've done it i've fallen asleep face down on my hardwood floors. because life is also exhausting. feeling all the feelings, working, schooling, laughing, crying, dreaming, being together with people. its so good. and so tiring. and i am so grateful.

i have lived a lot of life in the past few months. i've done some of the hardest things i've ever done in my life and been scared and been anxious and have done a lot of fist shaking. i've also been met with more grace than maybe ever before. i've been loved, pursued, chased after by people that love me and by the Lord. I've been met with open arms more times than i can count from people i called strangers 8 months ago. i've facetimed my best friends and have had hard conversations and have cried together from thousands of miles away. i've been able to pack up patrick henry at 11 at night to spend the night at friends houses when i couldn't handle being in my own. i've laughed till i've cried with noah and megan. i've done stupid shit. i've wrestled with the lord. i've loved and lost and missed people and parts of my life i thought i'd never miss. i've thrown my head back and sang at concerts, i've danced really badly with my best friends on sticky dance floors, i've gone to movies on school nights, i've had conversations about jesus and sin and how we are all going to be okay. for a week straight i wrote "you're okay, boo" on my hand just to remind myself and because diana taught me to call myself boo sometimes. i've broken bread and drank drinks with strangers and have grown so much and have loved myself more because of it all.

but you know what is the best. knowing that it is all how it's supposed to be. that in all these things and all these adventures and drives and tears jesus' hand is still guiding me. and that he's still delighting in me. and that has never changed a single MINUSCULE of an ounce despite all these things i've done. and whew. that is rich. damn. so good.

its possible that my favorite song of all time is table for two by caedmon's call. i think they are a christian band? i don't know i didn't grow up listening to jesus music. but this song. IT WILL CHANGE YOUR LIFE. listen to it. on repeat. 29000 times a day until you fall in love. everytime i hear it there is a new line that sinks in my bones and it is just the best. lately i love this part...

This day's been crazy
But everything's happened on schedule
From the rain and the cold
To the drink that I spilled on my shirt

it's all on schedule friends. i don't think jesus plans our every second of every day but he still knows them all. and he is kind and nice and probably has a little chuckle when i spill things on my shirt and when i cuss because i wore my toms and its pouring down rain. 

life is messy and early 20's are probably always going to be referred to as the shitty years but man, lately i'm embracing them. because i KNOW that later in life i will look back on these and laugh. maybe cringe at some decisions but know that i told myself i was okay and i'll know i was. and you are too. we're all okay. even when we aren't okay. which is like all the time really. 

Thursday, January 29, 2015

i am online dating. and spending a lot of time feeling insecure about it, hating it, enjoying it, reading about how to do it better, and wondering if i spent $100 for no reason. in december i downloaded okcupid and talked to some peeps, wasn't selective, felt weird about it, stayed up too late looking at profiles, and eventually going on some fun dates. then i dated. a boy. for two weeks. and i learned all these really bad things about myself that i am still processing and wrestling with and therefore feel the need to post about on the internet.

i told myself in august that after 6 months of living in richmond i could online date if: i felt like the Lord was cool with it, my grades were good, i had good community, i was serving in some way at my church, i was working, life was good. then the semester ended and i got bored. sometimes i think some of the heartache i've had over the past month and some change is because i didn't wait. because i cheated on my promise with God. and then i came to the realization that God was probably laughing at me about this thought and was still cool with me. i've been reading james and holding tightly to the fact that God desires good things for us. he may or may not be the provider of these things, maybe we choose them, but he delights in our joy. and that is good. he is a good good father.

i dated. and i found out i was jealous. a jealous person. i did not know that. i also found out that i can be a little crazy and serious and intense. again, i did not know this. i still don't know how to reconcile these things in my little heart. i pray about them a lot. i have sought wise counsel. i have tried to see the value in these thoughts and feelings and triple checked myself to see if the frantic feelings i am experiencing are actually rooted in truth, and i just don't want to accept them. i'm still not sure.

my friend jan recently told me that its okay that i am desiring a partner and desiring monogamy and desiring the traits i desire in this person. she said she couldn't back it up with our textbooks but that she was pretty sure this was a normal life cycle thing that happens because we get to a point where we are confident with ourselves and our path in life and feel ready to bring someone along for the adventure. this made me feel less crazy. i am grateful for that.

dating is so weird and so hard and results in a lot of funny stories. being out of college and in your mid twenties is so weird. i don't have guys who are friends. 1) because i just moved to a new city 2) because that is not something i want to cultivate in my life. i have literally one guy i would say i was friends with. so like, how do i meet people to date? life is funny.

all i can do is seek the lord. and sit on my couch every morning and in my car every day and say AM I DOING OKAY? because if i am not please strike me down. because i am going to do this until i shouldn't. and then i cry and then i hope that i am okay and that i'm not accidentally not listening to him. because i am trying. and setting boundaries. and having standards. and trying to not be an idiot. its a little hard though.

Why would I ever want to write a book? Who would ever want to read a book I wrote? the market right now is definitely oversaturated with chr...