Looking Forward…

I’m feeling sappy and emotional today about moving because we’ve started saying goodbye to friends.  So I decided that rather than write a sappy post, I’d take a few minutes to reflect on why I’m excited to move to Nashville. The following are the top reasons that I’m really excited to move to Nashville:

  1. Family

My sister and I are dear friends but we haven’t lived in the same town since she left for college in 1999.  We’ve become closer friends as the years have passed and I have started to despise the physical distance between us.  I was excited when we moved from California to St. Louis to only be a 5 hour drive away, but now, we’ll be living in the same city!  I’m so excited to spend more time with my sister, her great husband, and her adorable daughter(*s).  (Niece #2 will be making her appearance just a few weeks after we arrive).  In fact, initially, we won’t just be living in the same city, we’ll be living in the same house!  They’ve invited us to stay with them until we get a few life details worked out and can get our own place, which is a huge blessing to us!


2.  Friends

Each time we’ve moved to a new city, we haven’t known a soul and it’s taken some time to build community.  We’re so thrilled that we already have some great friends in Nashville, and can’t wait to continue to build our community with them while building some new community, too.

3.  Global Support Mission

 I am so thrilled that Adam has found a role in a great organization!  I got to spend a few days with some of the Global Support Team in California and St. Louis.  Every time I hear them talk about how they got started, what their mission is, and what their strategic plans are, I get more and more excited!  I love the passion, creativity, and work that this organization is doing.  I’m so excited that my hubby is getting in on this, and that because we’re married, I get to get in on it, too!

 4.  Church

 Each time we’ve visited Nashville over the last few years to spend time with family and friends, we’ve been worshipped with Cross Point Church.  We’ve also been attending their online service for several months.  We love their mission and can’t wait to get plugged in and serve with this community!

So, in the midst of sad goodbyes for this chapter, I have joy and hope about the next chapter.

Some Thoughts on Encouragement

I’ve been going through every closet, every drawer, and every surface as part of my pre-moving preparation. I’ve been purging, cleaning, and making trips to the Goodwill donation center. I’ve also been finding little treasures around the house that I had forgotten about. One of my favorite nooks to go through each time we move is our hope chest. The hope chest contains all sorts of sentimental items, like high school yearbooks, pictures, my wedding bouquet, and love notes that Adam and I have written to each other throughout our eight year romance. Going through the hope chest has little to do with moving because in reality, I’m probably not going to purge many items from there, but it’s like a treat in the midst of chaos to reminisce.

One of my favorite little boxes in that hope chest is a collection of notes, letters, and cards from friends over the years. It’s not a collection of every birthday card I’ve ever received, but it’s a collection of the most special and meaningful notes from dear friends. So this week, in the midst of collecting boxes and throwing away old candles and knick knacks, I treated myself to read that collection of cards.

I laughed and got teary and smiled for the few hours that I spent reading those notes. Most of the notes were from my College Days. At Asbury, perhaps like other small colleges, we had the CPO (College Post Office). It was basically a fancy way to pass notes. And pass notes we did. I’m pretty sure many of my friends spent more time clipping pictures from magazines and mod podging cute cards that we did studying (at least freshman year).

But it struck me how much time and effort my college friends put into encouraging one another. We were busy, but we still found time to notice when a friend was discouraged, or had done something spectacular, or to share a quote or Bible verse that we thought would be particularly meaningful.

And I felt encouraged, even six years later, to read some of the things that my friends shared with me about my gifts and passions and personality. And I started to think about how I often miss opportunities to encourage my friends, family, and coworkers because I fail to take the time to share my thoughts, or I am focused on thinking about me, or I get focused on problem solving rather than sharing in difficult situations.

So, my challenge to me (feel free to join me in this challenge), is to be more intentional about encouraging those around me. That’s it, plain and simple. I have no quotas and will not be measuring my outcomes. Want to join me in this challenge?

On Perspective and the Ocean

If you are friends with me on facebook or follow me on twitter, you know that I am back in California for a little visit.  It’s been almost three years since we moved to St. Louis, and we haven’t yet been back.  I am so excited to see friends and catch up on life.  The students that were in our youth group are all grown up and I’m dying to hear about their lives!  Our friends have gotten married and had babies and enrolled in schools and I can’t wait to hear about their new life chapters.  I’m excited to get to know Adam’s new coworkers better and learn more about Global Support Mission and their programs that Adam will be working with.  I also need to come clean and say that I’m really excited to eat California treats that I’ve been deprived of in St. Louis.

But besides good food, good friends, and new friends, I’m really excited to be back on the ocean.  While we were living in Monterey, the ocean was more than just a beautiful body of water to look at and play in; it was a place for me to meet God.  I think I experienced God’s presence far more during my walks on the beach, than I did anywhere else in Monterey.  There was something about watching the rhythmic waves that reminded me over and over of God’s faithfulness.  There was something about looking out over the horizon and seeing nothing but water to my right and left and ahead that reminded me of God’s sovereignty.  There was something about breathing in the salty air that reminded me of God’s cleansing presence.  There were lonely days and frustrating days and hurt days when I would go talk to God on that ocean path, and each time, I would be reminded of the bigness of my God. 

And right now in the midst of all of our transitions, I am glad to be reminded of that again.