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I’ve been working on a lot of projects and this morning I’m kind of hoping that a little blog love will help get the wheels turning so that I can get on top of some of this work that I need to get done today.

Pardon me in advance if this entry turns into a total mind-dump.

The three-day youth camp that I’m involved in is coming up at the end of this month and we’ve had to do quite a bit of adjusting for the (small) size of the group. Initially we had a lot of (good) big plans, but sometimes you have to take a step back and really think about how good your good plans are for the group you’re with.

For a few of my kids this will be their last year of camp. It’s bittersweet seeing them move forward, but we are proud and we’re hopeful that whatever they do next in life, that the relationships they’ve built while in youth will help them build good relationships in the rest of the world too.

So we pulled back and scaled down and I really feel like God is moving through this new, simplified plan that gives space for them to be loved on and cared for. Less work and more together. Less chaos and more deep breaths and enjoying the sunshine.

For some reason I feel God’s voice pressing in on me that what they need most is not a plan, but people to stand with and for them for a few days while they relax. I feel this way about more than camp. I feel like in life that I have been slowly peeling scales from my eyes that all start with things like “should”, “aught”, “best” and just learning that, at whatever cost, whatever the pain, whatever the inconvenience, that the risk in relationship is something that I need to grab hold of and jump in with people.

My dad read something recently that pointed out that the bible never tells us to trust one another, it tells us to trust God and love each other.

When I think about it– when I really put my head to it and try to break it down and examine each piece carefully– what I realize is that all of my relationship trouble has always been about trust. I’ve always just figured that it’s hard for me to trust people and that makes it hard for me to let them in, but the truth is the person I don’t trust is God. I don’t trust that he knows what he’s doing, I don’t trust that he’s bigger than hurt, I don’t trust that he wont leave me.

All of that gets pilled on top of the people in my life and eventually results in one giant excuse not to love them.

In the rare moments when I can reach beyond myself into the infinite and feel whispers of who God really is and why I am– in a way that makes my soul sure that no words in existence can come close to expressing– in those moments I see clearly that loving people is easy when you TRUST God.

When you can step out of a boat onto water and believe that you wont sink.

When you can stand on the banks of a sea and know that it will part for you.

When you can hold onto a breath of understanding that God is so much more than we give him credit for…

It’s easy to love his people. It’s easy to see them as he does. It’s easy to want to give everything to make sure they know HE sees them.

Everyday there’s doubt, everyday there are questions, everyday there’s the tug of temptation to believe that nothing I have to offer is good enough or matters at all. And every moment I have the chance to press away from those thoughts and feelings and push forward.

For you and for me

and for my students,

for my family,

for those who are near and dear and keep me sane,

my prayer is that none of us will ever trust another human being again.

That we would all know what it is to ruthlessly trust our Savior with every ounce of our beings and that when we can’t or we don’t know how that the whole earth would sing it to our hearts.

I’m about to enter a new season. I’m going to be spending a lot of time writing… well at least more time than I have been. I’m excited and a little nervous about it. But I am absolutely sure that it’s something that needs to happen. I guess the part that makes me nervous is that I know if I am going to do this there are going to be some big changes that have to take place and change is always scary.

With my schedule the way it is now I will never be able to squeeze in the amount of work that I know I need to be doing and even if I could manage to get it in I don’t know how I would be able to focus through the whole thing. This means that I am going to have to take a leap of faith, trust that God is in control and free up some space. I know exactly what space needs to be freed, It’s just really hard getting it done.

This afternoon I just kept thinking I wished that I could have someone tell me when it was the “right” time to take that kind of leap. Is there ever really a wrong time? I don’t know. What I do know is that I don’t want to get 30-40 years down the road and think, “man I wish I had stopped doing a job that was sucking my soul dry and took a risk to write, to travel, to get involved in the things that I care deeply about, to speak up and speak out.” I have to do those things. I can’t not.

Pray for me.
I don’t know what all of this looks like.
I don’t know where this will take me, but I want to be willing to go. I want to be able to drop my nets to follow Jesus.

300This is my 300th blog post.

I was going to look back and see just how long it’s been since I started this blog, but then I decided against it. Doesn’t really matter. Sometime after I lost my Mom I took an almost year-long break from writing just about anything.

300 seems like a lot and not that much at the same time.

There have been a lot of ups and downs in the time I’ve been blogging here. Things have changed, I have changed, this blog and what I had started out writing about has changed. That’s life. I guess a part of why I don’t want to go back to the beginning and do any wallowing is because I’m in a time right now where looking back and looking too far into the future weighing me down, in a sense. I very much need to be focused on my todays.

So let’s talk about today…

Today I’m going to go to work. I’m crossing my fingers that it’s busy because that makes the day go by faster and I have to come home and see how my sister is doing on the moving in process.

I’m more than a little nervous about that– the moving in. I know it will be fine and everything, but it’s been a long time since I’ve had roommates. I figure though, it’s a good transition to make right now… things are changing in my world, lots of things, and I feel good about Kaylan and Jesse (her boyfriend) being here. It’s just going to take getting used to, that’s all.

Today I am being determined to trust.

This is a running theme for me right now… and it’s something I have to determine everyday, and most of those days multiple times. It’s really more of a moment by moment thing on some days. Some days it comes a lot easier than others, some days trusting God with my life and all of the things that are going on around me and with the choices I feel I need to make are like breathing. Effortless. It passes by and through me and I feel safe and confident in it. Other days, however, are so hard. I want to use all of these words like “battle” or “struggle” but they aren’t even enough. They don’t reflect the pain and anguish that can accompany dropping your guard and truly learning to trust God with who you are and what will be. People forget that while worry can be a heavy burden, there are times when it’s comforting like a blanket too, and in the worst of times it can feel like a protective shield. I know it sounds backwards, but it’s true. Worry is a preemptive strike against all the things that would try to sneak in and hurt you, it’s the illusion that nothing can surprise you because you’ve already thought through every possible painful outcome and tried to prepare yourself. Trust, on the other hand, is like standing bare naked in front of  an army ready for battle.

Some days I am brave, some days I can only want to be brave.

Thank you all for reading all of this time, many of you have been reading all of this time, however long that has been. =) I hope your today is blessed with bravery .

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August 2020