Back to Blogging (& growing)

So I’m embarrassed to say that my last blog post was on February 20 – almost 5 months ago! I started 2013 strong (in regards to blogging), but it didn’t last. In real life, 2013 started out with a bang. Between the last week in February and sometime in late April, we had 2 free weekends. It was all great things, but it was hard to catch my breath, let alone blog – though it would have been great material for blogging (like the inspiring Justice Conference in Philly). Alas, I had to let it go & just move forward.

Suddenly, it’s July. More than halfway through the year. When did this happen?

My “one word” to focus on for 2013 is Grow. So how am I doing? Decently, I think. Work is constantly challenging & stretching. I don’t think that will ever change. We’re really focusing on taking things to the next level, so I definitely feel like I’m growing there. In regards to church, I said I wanted to grow into a place of service & deeper involvement. Well, in early spring Cason & I became leaders for our Sunday morning class and we started facilitating a midweek couple’s Bible study. We are growing deeper relationships with others, which I always want more of. Personally, I haven’t really made the time to grow in pursuits outside of work (like learning how to use that camera). Maybe someday soon. This is my attempt to get back to blogging more often than every 6 months! A constant struggling point is trying to figure out the balance with my work life (which I feel is both work & service/ministry) and finding a place of service in the community (outside of the church). Similar to our involvement with refugees in Nashville.

OneWord2013_Grow

All of that to say, the remainder of 2013 has plenty of room for continued growth.

What’s next? Well, in less than a month I turn 30. By the time that happens though, I’ll have traveled to Uganda & back. I’ll be visiting an IJM field office and helping with a project at a local courthouse. I’m extremely excited. This is something straight off of my bucket list. But more about that trip another day…

How is your 2013 progressing?

Grow

Last week I wrote my recap post for my “One Word” for 2012: Embrace. Check it out here. Today, I’m revealing my one word to focus on for 2013, in lieu of standard new year’s resolutions (that generally fall through by February anyway).

In 2013, I’m claiming the word “Grow“.

OneWord2013_Grow

2012 was a year of everything new – new state, new job, new industry, new church, new friends. I was thrown in & tried to embrace all of the opportunities & challenges alike. It was a whirlwind. Now, with almost a year of the craziness under my belt, I’m going to focus on growing in 2013. Taking it to the next level. Continue reading

Did I Embrace 2012?

One Word

At the beginning of 2012 I wrote a post called “Embracing 2012“. Embrace was my one word to focus on for the year, instead of all sorts of different new year’s resolutions. 2012 was my year to embrace a new season of life, with all of the challenges, obstacles, and opportunities that would come with it. You can read that original post here.

So how did I do?

It was quite a year, full of all of those things listed above: challenges, obstacles, and opportunities. Moving to a new state, adjusting to a new lifestyle, learning a new job, finishing my MBA, being lonely & trying to slowly make friends, settling into a church, and growing immensely spiritually…

Here’s what I wrote I would try to do at the beginning of the year & some reflections on each:

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Spring is Here

Spring is definitely here, and I’m not talking about the weather or the time of year. I’m talking about this season of life. About 9 months ago I wrote a post called Embracing This Season. (click the title to read it in a new window) God had been speaking to me in themes, about the different seasons of life. We had been feeling really restless, like we were in a state of limbo, not sure of where we were supposed to be, or what we were supposed to be doing. We knew that God was preparing us for something. We just didn’t know what or when.
Continue reading

Embracing 2012

2011 was okay. It certainly had its ups and downs. Nothing catastrophic, but it definitely had its disappointments and hard parts. For various reasons, we both really felt like we’ve been in a season of winter, for a while now. Winter being defined as a time to be still, quiet, a time to focus on being nourished and preparing for whatever lies ahead. We’ve been restless.

I actually started off 2011 with some thoughts that now seem so relevant. In my post Jan 3rd, 2011 post, “Thoughts for the New Year“, I wrote:

…Before God reveals to us our grand life purpose, he has some testing and refining to do in us. I feel like I am in a season of testing and refining, and this is definitely part of that. I want to be ready when called upon… to be trusted with my grand life purpose. Much of that means that I need to be a better disciple.

You could say that in many ways, 2011 was a year for preparation, even though we didn’t know what exactly we were preparing for. Well, we have a little better idea now, but there are still so many unanswered, big questions.

So in the spirit of picking one word to focus on for the new year, I’m claiming the word Embrace for 2012.

Embrace:
1) to take or receive gladly or eagerly; accept willingly: to embrace an idea or challenge.
2) to avail oneself of: to embrace an opportunity.

In 2012 we will move cross country, I will start an amazing new job, Cason will find/start a new job where hopefully he can thrive in his area of passion, we’ll make some drastic lifestyle changes, I’ll finish my MBA that I’ve been working on for almost 4 years, we’ll find our new place of ministry/service… and that’s all mainly now through May. I have no idea what May through December will hold.

I want to focus on embracing this new season of life, with all of the challenges, obstacles, and opportunities that come with it.

I want to:

  • Embrace the obstacles we’re experiencing right now as a way to grow in our faith and put our full trust in God’s plan for us.
  • Embrace the opportunity to live a new adventure, to meet new people, experience new places.
  • Embrace the challenge of a new job (in a new industry) with an organization that does amazing, life-altering work.
  • Embrace the difficult times ahead that will inevitably come with all of these new challenges, again, as a means to grow us personally, professionally, emotionally, & spiritually.
  • Embrace a new season of life and see how God will use us in it.

I am full of emotions about everything that lies before us. Emotions that can generally shift from one day to the next. But overall, I’m excited to see what 2012 has in store.

So here’s to embracing all that is to come!

What’s your One Word for 2012?