Thursday, November 14, 2013

Joy is...

Sitting on a porch enjoying breakfast with a good friend.
Kids asking where I have been and why I have't been in their class lately.
Worshiping with high school students each Wednesday night.
Eating pizza with old friends and new.
Sitting and talking in my car till midnight knowing I have to teach in the morning.
Spontaneous trips to visit friends at school to talk about life.
Talking to my brother for an hour to hear about life in Georgia.
Going to 21 Choices/Dairy Queen because it is Wednesday/Sunday night.
Seeing pictures of my nephew and knowing I'll get to play with him in a week.
Watching my cousin get married which means our family is growing.
Seeing kids bust a move on the dance floor because they don't care who is watching.
Getting a letter in the mail from a friend.
Reading a blog that speaks the words I need to hear.

Knowing I am loved. 

It has been one of those weeks. I realized how broken my heart is that I will not be going to Peru in January. I have had the same conversation in different depths multiple times with people in passing or over coffee. Each time I have to tell someone I am not going. Plans changed. I am still here. It is hard to articulate in words about the frustration of not going with the excitement of seeing what God has for me in this next season. As for now, I look for the blessings and joy of doing life here with people I love. We are only guaranteed today so why not make the most of it.

“Joy does not simply happen to us. We have to choose joy and keep choosing it every day."
Henri Nouwen

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Sometimes it gets Messy

Life is messy. This is something we can all agree on. We are bombarded with images of pretty happy families that seem like they have come out of a Norman Rockwell painting. We see girls with perfect, blemish-free skin or guys with perfect physique. We see women with no wrinkles or men enjoying a round of golf with no bladder issues. It's almost as if these people have pretty plastic shells which keep any unpleasantness hidden from the world. It creates an unhealthy idea that we have to have our lives put together in a pretty package in order for others to accept us. The truth is I would much rather sit and talk with a friend about my messy life than try to keep all my mess concealed. I love talking over coffee for hours listening to friends talk about real life. Talking about things that really matter to them because they become things that matter to me.

In order to truly do life together, we have to be willing to get messy. We also have to be willing to share our mess with others.

It has taken me many years to to learn how to live life with other without being afraid of keeping my mess hidden. I learned there is freedom in transparency. I learned that people love me regardless of my mess. I learned to be honest.

God knows our hearts. God knows our messiness. God provides people who love us in our messiness.