Saturday, October 31, 2015

#write31days - Oct 31 - the WAIT is over

...and then it was the end of October! Time flies!

I have learned through years of waiting and questioning God that instead of always thinking "WAIT" was my "thorn in my side" it really is another chance for me to believe God. That I have to really let go and trust Him. I don't always do that well.  Much like "the one" I'm WAITing for I have to choose every single day to trust God, believe God and WAIT on his best for me. Not as a punishment, but as a hope, that my soul seeks what He has in store instead of my limited finite plans. His are unlimited and infinite for me, but I can't receive them if I'm not following in obedience to seeking Him.

Another thing I have learned about WAITing in my own life and as I have written on so many WAITs this month I have thought over and over again how hard it seems in the WAIT and then all the sudden, I am {you are} walking one foot in front of the other again, "normal" is back and the season has changed.

C.S. Lewis is a wise one. If you haven't read any of his works, I recommend them. These words ring so true, especially when in a season of WAIT.
Though it is so very hard in the season, it is like the calendar season, when you look back everything has changed. Maybe the leaves have shed and new growth awaits, or maybe the sun is shining and all is in bloom. Whichever end I find myself, I know, and I have seen over and over, the healing of time and perseverance of WAITing.

Obviously there are still things I'm WAITing on in my own life, I am certain there always will be. However, as I catch myself saying "WAIT" I'm choosing to replace it with BELIEVE.

It is time to say so long to the 2015 #write31days of WAIT, and you'll will have to WAIT and see if #write31days will return in 2016....until then I'm BELIEVING in great things ahead for the remainder of 2015 and as a new year begins in just a couple of months.

{To see all posts for 2015 #write31days WAIT click here}

#write31days - Oct 30 - WAITing on eternity

{I took a late "nap" after work, that lasted a few hours, and crossed the midnight line, but I couldn't NOT write when it's down to the last 2 days of #write31days!! It's still technically the 30th to me. That was a nap and I've been thinking about this all day.}  

This morning before work I opened my Jesus Today book to my marker and this was the reading...

As the writing everyday on WAIT comes to an end, I have thought about one of life's most significant WAITs and it is to eternity with Jesus.  He knows the days numbered for each of us, so whether young or old, eternity aWAITs for those who believe in Him. 

Today's reading also included one of my favorite verses: "Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart." Psalm 37:4. I've learned as I have grown in my faith and through seasons that seem like I don't get the desires of my heart, they can't be my selfish desires, I have to be seeking God and aligning my heart with his. Easier said than done, but when I am obedient to him and believing in him, I know he desires the best for me, and I believe and WAIT resting in that truth. 

No matter what life throws our way, the various types of WAITing we do, on this earth through the WAIT I believe God - His plan and His purpose. It was a good reminder, especially for one who is a creative type, who often thinks God might need a little "help", that He is Creator of the universe and is plenty, and way more, creative than I can imagine. WAITing on Him and believing in Him is worth it. 

For now. 

And, forever.  

Thursday, October 29, 2015

#write31days - Oct 29 - WAITing on the One

The one.

The elusive one.

Here's the deal, there is only One, and other than that, it's not "the one".

I have found The One, Jesus, who loves me, seeks me, cares for my heart, treasures me, adores me, wants the best for me and delights in me.

The worldly "one" might do those things too, but he will also let me down, hurt my heart, disappoint me and other things, though hopefully not intentionally, he is human, not perfect and I would also do all the same to him.

Somewhere along the way society has developed marriage as an achievement. It doesn't matter if you're "successful" at it, meaning staying married, at least you GOT married, but if you haven't I have often felt people perceive me as failed.

I haven't failed at life because I haven't gotten married.  Neither have you if you are still single.

Here's also how I know "the one" isn't really just one person: the divorce rate in America.  If it was "the one" then we would have marriages that always lasted until death do us part because you are each other's "one" and no one else would do. But, we don't.

When, or if, I find "the one" I walk down an aisle to, say vows to and commit to in covenant relationship I will still have to choose him every day. He will also have to choose me every day. Neither of us will be perfect, but every day we will choose each other. The good days. The best days. The hard days. The unknown days. The days of answers. The days of WAITing. We will choose each other.

"The one" for me is an unknown WAIT. At times I have felt like has been in total silence, other times maybe looked promising. However, I believe I have been protected and kept from a situation that wouldn't have been right. I have prayed every time, if this is meant to be, let it be. If not, take it away. And, that a few times has crushed my heart. But, I believe God and His plan for me, not my limited view of what I think is good.

Easy? No. Some of the hardest days.

I have the dearest of married friends. I watch and listen very intently to them. I have seen so many seasons of life through my married friend's relationships. By watching and listening they have taught me how to persevere, how to bring joy in a relationship, how to go forward when all seems against you, how to give and bless others, how to use talents together, so many things. If I do end up married, I want to do it well. These years with married friends who have been a part of my life are priceless. I want my husband to know men who lead marriages well, who seek The One and use His guidance in their homes with their spouses and families.

Nothing about "the one" is worth settling for, though it may be hard, I may be viewed as failing, right is always worth WAITing for. Getting married isn't a check on a to-do list. The "one" could be any number of people, but it has to be the one I will choose every day, that I can't imagine life without. Not because he completes me, he will never complete me, but together we will be a team taking on life. I want "the one" who's seeking The One and finds me in the midst.
{and the same goes for "he"}

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

#write31days - Oct 28 - WAITing on dreams

"If you could be or do anything, what would it be?"

I've been asked that question countless times and it's one of the hardest to answer. Depending on who's asking, the answer may vary too. If it is someone who really knows me, then they know my gifts and my heart. If it's a stranger, I'm usually less likely to really share.  Maybe I should be more open with a stranger, what if they know somebody that would open a door to one of my dreams.

But, dreams are sacred. 

And, sometimes I {you?} feel like they need to be protected, they aren't to be shared with just anyone and everyone.

But, why not?

Who would criticize a dream?  Oh, but how people do. That's what we learn from a very young age...

you'll never do that.
you can't do that.
that is too hard.
only a few people ever make it to do that.
Jennie Allen - Restless
So, dreams get tucked away and kept in secret, WAITing for an out of the blue-drop in your lap opportunity.

But, I have gifts and talents that I believe I was given to fulfill my purpose on this earth. It's the things I'm naturally good at and that I also enjoy doing. So, why wouldn't I talk about those things, especially if they align with my dreams.

Enter comparison.

Maybe I'm not as good as someone already doing that. Maybe I don't know the right people. Maybe I don't have enough money. Maybe someone would criticize me if I told them.  Maybe I look like I'm trying to self promote. Maybe _________________________________________.

For some reason, dreams stay tucked away, I will WAIT on them for a later time in life.

The age of online connectivity has given way to access and insight to just about everything which only fuels comparison. When I find myself thinking comparison thoughts of someone who might be doing what seems like "living the dream", I often will unfollow or take a break from the site. Certainly not because they aren't great at it, and not because I don't want to cheer them on.

Simply because I am in my lane (wrote about that before, click here) and they are in theirs. When I constantly compare myself, I try to put myself in their lane and run their race, but I don't belong there. I belong in my lane running my pace and the race marked for me. I also have to remind myself everyone (me and you included) puts their best images up for the world to see, we don't see outside the borders and the every day real life. That's ok, but when the filtered, perfected inside the borders snapshot becomes the goal, that is unrealistic and that I can't do.

Coming alongside is different, to build up and to encourage, we need those people. I want to be the cheerleader for others and I want them to cheer me on. I was never the fastest runner on the track and I'm also ok with that pace in life. I just have to remember I can't make their dreams mine and I can't let their "success" steal my dream.
{and also Key Men}

So, what is your dream? What is mine?

I feel like my dreams are starting to come more into focus. I told a friend I felt like "40" was going to be a big year, though it's still just under a year away. So, chasing those dreams is worth the WAIT, the years have taught me well through all kinds of seasons. I feel more confident and settled in who I am the older I get. I feel like I know what I'm good at, what I enjoy and my heart of what I'm doing.

These are my dreams, some may come true, some may not, but none are impossible and none are not worth WAITing for. Though sometimes it seems like dreams also WAIT through seasons or years of silence to ever becoming reality, I know that the same truth still applies in the WAIT for dreams just like anything else, my soul seeks God and His plan, He is who I hope in.

So one day maybe or maybe not....
A Wife. 
A Mom. 
A creator. 
A speaker. 
A writer. 
A farmhouse.
A business owner.
and, an antique typewriter.

Keep dreaming,

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

#write31days - Oct 27 - WAITing on answered prayers

Another one of the hardest waits is for something mostly, if not almost always, completely out of our control. WAITing for an answer to prayer. 

Maybe for self. 
Maybe for others. 
Maybe for circumstance. 
Maybe for change. 
Maybe for results. 
Maybe for healing. 
Maybe for grief. 
Maybe for help. 
Maybe for community. 
Maybe for rain. 

Most of these things I've written about this month. Whatever that thing is that you've prayed for...often times for years. And years.  Sometimes for only short periods of times. 

Sometimes it feels like the only answer is NO! 

{Insert Garth Brooks...Sometimes I thank God for unanswered prayers....} 

But, the one that feels like it is unanswered may really be an answer, it's just not the one WE want. It's the one we get.  Often, hard to accept, and going back to silence from yesterday (click here), begin to do our own work towards resolution which typically is only temporary. 

Others, its seems like WAIT is short, the answer is very direct and firm. For those I am always thankful. 

Always though, it is out of our control. I {you} think we have some control, maybe just bend God's ear a little with our opinion, strategy, what's best point of view, but  at the end of the day, if the soul seeks Him, believes Him, He doesn't need our insight. 
I've never heard the audible voice of God, wouldn't that be so easy. But, I have learned to seek wise counsel, to take time in decision making, that it is ok to say "no" - which in fact might be best, to look at pros and cons. All of these things considered, I can usually pinpoint what is right. 

This is exactly the thought process I look at for moving, to move or not to move (click here), trivial of sorts, not life altering one way or the other, but important to me and the space I call "home". So, in the big and the small, I go through the same process and seek wisdom from others and also from Lord. 

Don't give up on the long term ones, every once in a while you'll get a glimmer, that those prayers are being heard, an answer might be coming. So far out of any of your own doing aside from consistent petition to feet of Jesus with a request over and over and over again. 

Even still, sometimes in others, the answer is still NO. 

I'd like to say over the years I've gotten better at taking that NO, but I'm human, the things I long for, when it's a NO, it's hard to take. But, I do believe, God knows best, His answer just might not be my wish, but even still, He is still good. 
Believe in the power of prayer, don't WAIT to pray, answers are coming! 

Monday, October 26, 2015

#write31days - Oct 26 - WAITing in the silence

"We'll get back to you in a week or so" 
"I will call you." 

Oh, if I could count the times I've WAITed in the silence, it is so so many times. This WAIT is one that makes the mind come up with the worst of lies.
Not liked. 
Not good enough. 
Not worth it. 

LIES.  All of it is LIES.  There is not even a smidge of truth in any of those words, or any other you have told yourself or I have told myself. No matter what kind of silence you or I WAIT through, our worth DOES NOT change based on the lack of someone else's communication.

You're qualified for the job, but a better one might be out there.
You're worthy of a promotion, but another company might come your way with an even better offer.
You're beautiful{handsome for the couple of guy readers} and worth pursuing.
You deserve truth and not excuses.

And, so do I. 

But, we're human. 

It's funny how that one response can all the sudden change our moods, and bring back our self-worth, value and confidence. Just because someone responded when we've been WAITing in silence. That worth is a lie. It is placed on someone else, not on who I am {you are} and what I was {you are} created for and to do.

Even God makes us WAIT in silence sometimes. This might be the hardest of all. Because I {you} think we can DO something that will speed it all up and work out in quicker timing. Oh, how I've tried to manipulate this.  One thing I've known, but had to re-learn over and over is what is right and meant to be WILL be. It doesn't need me to manipulate it.

I said it a few days ago, this type of WAIT has taught me to instead of seeing it as a stop, to choose to believe. That though I can't see it, details I don't know are being orchestrated. Whether they come to pass soon, or I have to WAIT {which I have done over and over and over}, it is my choice to believe God, for my soul to seek Him (remember "WAIT" defined from the beginning of the month?) instead of my own doing. If I am seeking God and believing Him, obedient to what He's called me to be, there is no room for the lies or work I do on my own.
I have also learned that God is not afraid of my questions. Read any Psalm? It is pretty much an entire book of David wrestling with God and asking questions and working out his faith. Remember Jesus on the cross? "My God my God, why has thou forsaken me?" Mark 15:34.  If God's own Son can ask THAT, he's certainly not afraid of my questions. These were the last words of Jesus. He died on the cross at the silence of God, who could have saved him. BUT, before He even when there He prayed and submitted himself, “Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done.” Luke 22:42.

So, He knew, if there was silence, He trusted the Father's will.
When the minutes, hours, days and weeks of WAIT in silence are agonizing, I have to go back to who's will I'm seeking.  Often it is my own, with my own hope attached. Then I reset, submit and trust no matter how long the silence lasts, I know I can believe Father's will for me, because He is fighting for me, and that just might be for my trust of Him before the rest can be revealed.

Sunday, October 25, 2015

#write31days - Oct 25 - WAIT, what's been going on?

(As I mentioned before, I'm taking a break from writing about "WAIT" 
on Sundays and catching up on what's been going on.)

This last week was one of those something-every-night weeks, except for Monday. That meant Monday night was get everything done necessary for the week because I wouldn't be home much in the evenings. If you've kept up with what time this week's posts went live, a couple were near 11:00pm! (In case you missed it yesterday I mentioned, that yes, I'm really writing every day on the day of post!)

If you're following Texas weather, it's still raining here, 27 or so hours straight and counting. Fortunately, it's been a slow and steady rain, so there has been minimal flooding and the Houston bayous seem to be doing their job. A good soaking rain is worth WAITing for, and hopefully will help out the drought conditions. My church made the call to cancel services last night, so this is the first Sunday in a long time I'm still in my PJs at 1pm. Our church meets in a school, so weekly our staff and set up volunteers unload and set up church, everything from band equipment to a baby nursery, so I do hope they have enjoyed a day of rest today.

The weather cooled off a bit this week and I squeezed in a couple of outside workouts, which is my favorite in the fall.  Honestly towards the end of summer this year I thought I might never jog again. I would feel so wrung out and defeated after the days I did jog and thought maybe at 39 it's time for me to hang it up and become a full time walker. Then the humidity dropped and the temps dropped a few degrees and I jogged and remembered how much I love just 3 or 4 miles and so I am not giving up on it quite yet...

Tuesday one of my sweet besties had a craft night at her house. I'm going to call it that one day this will be a business for her! She is incredibly talented, teaching is her gift and that will combine perfectly for Craft Workshops. I had a late work meeting, hour drive home and was late the party, so didn't end up crafting. But, I had an hour or so that I held a sweet 2 month old baby while his Mama did some crafting.

{Insert baby sleeping in lap and good conversation with friends pic here} 

Wednesday night I had dinner out with one of my besties and her 2 littles since her husband was out of town. I love a good chat over a meal! Quality time is my language and nights like that at a table are always a gift to me!

{Insert queso with flour tortilla chips pic here} 

Thursday was a birthday party for a friend, another night at a table and catching up with friends I don't get to see very often.

{Insert Vietnamese restaurant with country band and table of friends pic here} 

Friday night was the Inaugural Homecoming for the school where I taught. Met up with a few of my school friends (though a few were missing) for the game and it was fun to see the first Homecoming King and Queen crowned by the school's namesake himself.  I'm so grateful for that community of friends I made while teaching, they are a gift.  I definitely miss seeing them on daily basis, though I am fortunate to work with another great group of people at my new job! 

{Insert Homecoming pic here} 

Saturday I watched the Arkansas football game with a friend. I've never seen a game go into 4 OT's, but this one did and Arkansas came out on top! All in all this week was full, but it was the best kind of full, the kind that makes me remember all the people in my life, the seasons that brought them there. Many have walked through seasons of WAITing with me, I've WAITed with them and life has taught us all lessons along the way.

I didn't really take too many pictures this week. I've read a few things lately to remind me about being in the moment vs. seeing life through the lens of a device. I know pictures make a blog post more interesting for the reader, but this week I did try to really be present, phone away, thankful for the gift of time with each of these friends. 

Saturday, October 24, 2015

#write31days - Oct 24 - WAIT for rest

I was thinking all day I wasn't going to wait until night to write.  In case you've been reading this month and wonder if I actually write every day, yes, I do. I don't think there has been any day that I pre-posted this month.

Today was the first Saturday in a few I had nothing I had to do, I could have stayed home all day if I wanted. I am tired from this week, and was honestly WAITing for this day to rest. As the week went on, the weather forecast continued to predict excessive rain, which we've been WAITing for rain, and further contributed to my planned day of rest.

Rainy day on the couch. Perfection.

So aside from going to a fall market for a bit and meeting a friend to eat lunch and watch football I have rested. Which includes a 2+ hour nap. Amen.

All the while, the rain has continued over Texas, to the point of flooding in many places. Hopefully not to end up as catastrophic as Memorial Day weekend.

I kept thinking through the evening I need to write, what to write, I need to write, what to write...

And, really, today, I have nothing. And, that is ok. I've WAITed for this day, Maybe you've beein WAITing for a day of rest, I hope you get some time to recharge. I have soaked it up and I will keep writing my story as I go. Tomorrow...

Friday, October 23, 2015

#write31days - Oct 23 - WAITing on the sun to rise

One of my favorite things about my classroom when I was teaching was the windows that looked out on the sunrise. There were many days I didn't turn on my lights when I walked in my room because I wanted to snap a quick picture of the sunrise.

Now, I drive to work in the dark, {until the time change}, and this week due to a late meeting I actually got to drive in during the sunrise.  I thought about the start of a new day.... 

Sometimes the night has been long and it seemed like the WAIT for dark to give way to light would never come. 

Sometimes the anticipation and WAIT for the next day is so great (ie: Baptism for my nephew) the night seems like it will never end. 

Tonight as I was driving home I thought about the people who are enduring Hurricane Patricia tonight. The news is on the background as I'm typing with details about the storm...and unknown destruction awaits tomorrow with the sunrise.  I can remember riding out Hurricane Ike in 2008, having no idea what the morning would bring.  

However, I know the morning brings a promise of a new day. No matter if it is a hard day or the best day, the sunrise is the start of new. Every. Day. One of my favorite songs is Robbie Seay Band's "New Day" 

I'm gonna sing this song to let you know that you're not alone
And if you're like me, you need hope, coffee and melody
So sit back down and let the world keep spinning 'round
For yesterday's gone and today is waiting on you to show your face

And it might not be the prettiest thing that you'll ever see
But it's a new day, ah baby, it's a new day
And it might not look like a beautiful sunrise
But it's a new day, ah baby, it's a new day

I am a morning person, though I would love to have slow starts to the morning with coffee, words and melody, I always start my day with hope. A few minutes in the Word, trying to let go of my to-do lists, expectations, worries and all the things that await me in a day. To let go of it, Instead of watching and WAITing for my own agenda, trying to change my focus to watch and WAIT for God to speak to me throughout the day. 

"In the morning, O Lord, You will hear my voice; 
In the morning I will prepare a prayer and a sacrifice for You 
and watch and wait for You to speak to my heart."

Psalm 5:3

No matter how the day goes, how long I WAIT through the night, the sun will rise again tomorrow and it's another new day for me to show my face and WAIT for Lord, the creator of the perfect sunrise. 

Thursday, October 22, 2015

#write31days - Oct 22 - WAITing for download

Today at work I was helping a teacher with a software install...that took what seemed like a sweet forever. I kept thinking as I was watching the progress "A watched pot never boils"...but finally it did complete.

After we WAITed for well over an hour, not so patiently watching this little status update...

I started thinking while I was WAITing and there was not one thing either of us could do to make the process go any faster...

Sometimes WAITing is just that. Nothing you can control or change, just a sit still and WAIT. Since there was nothing I could really "do", I wasn't sure I was really even being helpful. Then I thought about when someone has shown up for me when I was in a season of WAIT, knowing there wasn't really anything they could do, but presence alone mattered. When someone else takes over and watches, or keeps track of details when you might be unable to to, it is a huge weight lifted.

So, like a software download counting towards completion, some seasons require a WAIT, watching the seconds, minutes, hours, days, weeks, months and years count off to an unknown time frame.

I was reminded that showing up is one of the best things I can do for others in that season. Not trying to solve anything, not trying to fix anything, not trying to hurry anything.  Just show up and WAIT.

And, do it again.

And, again.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

#write31days - Oct 21 - WAITing for baptism

This weekend was a very special day for my nephew, he was baptized in my parent's church. He has talked about this day for well over a year, he's been anxiously WAITing for it. In fact, he got the hands mixed up on the clock and jumped on my Mom's bed at "6:15 am" {really 2:35 am} Sunday ready to get up and get ready for the day and church!  He did manage to go back to sleep, but round two of waking up he will still just as excited!

If ever there was a child who knew in his heart about Jesus in simple faith, it is him. He understands we have sin in our lives, that we make mistakes, that Jesus died for our sins and that he forgives us and helps us follow Him through the Holy Spirit.

He asked Jesus into his heart last year, 2014, during Vacation Bible School. By himself, in the pew and has talked about it since, including WAITing to be baptized. He says on a regular basis "Gigi, let's pray about it" over big and small, simple reminders to me of God WAITing for us to come to him.

I had the honor of being "in the wings" of the baptistry with him and caught a few moments on camera...

He sat like this overlooking the baptistry, listening to the music before church, patiently WAITing with an intentional smile and excitement.
He answered with a very determined "Yes" that Jesus is in his heart and he was ready to be baptized as a reflection of his decision.

"but Jesus said, "Let the little children come to me and do not hinder them, 
for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven"." 
Matthew 19:14 
"We have therefore been buried with Him through baptism into death, 
so that just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory and power of the Father, 
we too might walk habitually in newness of life. 
Romans 6:14 
You can see that smile looking out into the congregation, the same church I grew up in, so many people who have loved my nephew and nieces just the same through their attendance in Vacation Bible School and church while at my Mom and Dad's.
It was definitely worth the WAIT, and he says he would like to get baptized every Sunday. Thankfully, when we accept Jesus, he is with us always, and we only need to continue to grow in our faith and our likeness of Christ. He will love us through all the seasons, all the WAITing in life, and all the times we choose our own path. 

Ultimately WAITing for us to keep choosing Him, his guidance and his ways. 

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

#write31days - Oct 20 - WAITing for rain

A couple of weeks ago I drove to Austin for a work conference and passed through Bastrop, an area that endured a massive wildfire in September and October 2011 due to severe drought. The fire burned for weeks, thousands of acres destroyed, homes consumed by fire and lives lost. Every day it seemed we WAITed, praying and hoping for rain.  I can remember other fires burning across Texas that year that were significant and scary, one was within a couple of miles of where I grew up.

Fast forward 4 years and as I drove I really noticed the re-building going on, where it looks like life is beginning to be restored for people who lived in that area. Green was showing up amidst all of the tree trunks that remain.

Then last week another fire lit up in that SAME area.  Just yesterday a fire lit up in my hometown. Again, WAITing for rescue and help to get it contained and eventually put out.

Isn't that like life. There are fires that burn in our lives for weeks. Then maybe years go by and all the sudden it flames up again. We are dry and weary and feel like it is all consuming. Maybe your fire is so intense you feel like you could burn up in it.

Then the rain comes. 

And, the fire gets put out, the rebuild starts to happen and then we are back to regular life, the fire just a memory.  If you happened to be in the trenches, directly affected, the memories don't fade away so fast.

Texas is in another drought, though not as severe as 2011.

Sometimes I feel like my own life is in a drought. Just like we pray for rain to keep the ponds filled, the grass growing, the fires at bay, I have to do that in my life as well.

"Busy" will run me dry when I don't take time to rest in God. 
 I will become stagnant and not growing in my faith. 
Life's seasons will ignite and exhaust me as I try to fight alone.

Maybe a fire is burning in your life right now. Pray for rain, WAIT {believing God} and keep praying. For life giving water of Jesus to overcome the fire and give you peace and endurance to keep fighting. He is the only one who can settle the fire.

"I stretch out my hands to you; my soul thirsts for you like a parched land." 
Psalm 143:6 
{But read the whole chapter - it's short, promise ;)}

Jesus bring the rain, 

Monday, October 19, 2015

#write31days - Oct 19 - WAITing to move

This post is for me, maybe it will be for you, but mostly it's an "I'm looking in the mirror and want to see where this ends up" for me. You know when it seems like something is so far away, details you can't foresee, not sure how it will work out, WAIT and see, then look back on it in awe...that's what this is about.
For me right now, that scenario is moving. For you, maybe it's something else. 

My new job is 30 miles away. that's not THAT far in the grand scheme, I realize that. I grew up in the country so most everything was 10-15 miles, or more if it was the complete south side of town, away from our house. I am a road warrior, I really don't mind driving. I love back roads and road trips. Honestly, after just 4 weeks, I've got my commute figured out and it's not too bad. Even though I about lost my mind that first week.

I love where I live. It's the perfect space for me. Room for my bike, room for my lettered art, room for writing, the perfect study bar, a garage, room for storage. Room for WAY more stuff than I need.

But, I love change and new space too. 
I can go anywhere. 
It's just me and little B-dog. 
But, which neighborhood in the City? While the miles are less, the drive time is the same to lots of neighborhoods in the city. I've lived in a few of them. I know most of the areas.

But, I love workouts around the lakes. Feeling like there is a little bit of space around me. I know it's the small town girl in me who loves the feel of being "out" in the suburbs when I'm at home. I am ok with not being "out" on the scene all the time. There are times I wish there wasn't a drive between me and certain activities. However, I'm old enough to know I'm not always missing out on something.

What makes the most sense....moving is expensive...driving puts all the mileage and wear and tear on the car.  Should I buy a place? Do I want to stay in Houston long enough to warrant buying? Should I rent a house? Rent an apartment? Look for a condo? These are the things that are on constant rotation from all the voices in my head. If I could pick the President of those voices to make the choice, that would be simple.

So, I WAIT. 

Every conversation right now about my new job also leads into talking about where I live. There's power in the people. More people who know my situation means more people who might know of options, offer suggestions and help with making a decision.

More than WAITing, I believe.  
I know the right thing will work out if I am seeking God.  
Maybe that seems silly to you, it's a move, a decision I'm perfectly capable of making with really no consequence one way or another. But, I believe while I'm WAITing I need to be seeking God's best for me. I value community and friendships so much, that where I live matters outside of just me.

Every time I'm out for a walk or a jog I have a running conversation with God...all those questions out to Him. He's not afraid of them, and if I ask them and ask also for wisdom while seeking Him, He will guide me. I can seek wise counsel as well, and prayerfully WAIT, and He will direct my path. Even in something that seems mundane like moving.

So, maybe you're WAITing for the next "big" thing in your life, it's a great season, a season of blessing in fact! But, there's still something that's calling for me, and maybe you, to WAIT and believe God for.

And, in a few months I'm going to come back here and read this and smile at how all my questions were answered in perfect timing and be happily settled wherever I am. Because right now, the thought of this makes me a little queasy....

Sunday, October 18, 2015

#write31days - Oct 18 - WAIT, what's been going on?

(As I mentioned before, I'm taking a break from writing about "WAIT" 
on Sundays and catching up on what's been going on.)

A week ago I met one of my besties on my way home from Austin at a local winery by her house...a perfect Friday evening treat! The wine was delicious, the scenery beautiful and seeing one of my besties who lives out of town is always a treat! Also, I am planning for my first show with my lettered art here at this winery in December...stay tuned for details. For more on lettered art, (click here). 
While I was away for a work trip, B has been at Camp 4G with my parents where he's learned to play cards and kept up his decorating skills. Of course, I couldn't pass up a cute toy for him in the Marshall's check out aisle and he was pretty happy with his toy all weekend, and also I think that I showed up.  So appreciate my Mom and Dad keeping him for me, but after a week, he was definitely WAITing for me to arrive!
I was in a school last week and these banners hang from their ceilings in all of the halls. I do love words and these are good words for all of us...
I wrote this week about change (click here), and caterpillars becoming butterflies, symbolic of life change too.  Just so happened the butterfly festival was going on while I was home and we took the littles. I asked my Mom to snap a pic of me as well, a good reminder of WAITing through change. {Sidenote...caterpillars apparently do not attract Instagram likes - hilarious!) 

My Dad has WAITed for 20+ years for the right opportunity to buy the 5 acres next to the 4G.  This year, on his birthday, his wish came true! It's going to be a winter project to get it cleared up/cleaned up, but will be so nice when it is done! So happy for my parents! #trailerhousebonfire
B and I are back home (don't worry this was at a stoplight) and a routine week is ahead, which is welcomed after a couple of weeks out of routine, though there was lots of good in that too (click here)!
Hope your weekend was a good one! 

Saturday, October 17, 2015

#write31day - Oct 17 - WAITing to launch

Yesterday I had the opportunity to attend an award ceremony for students who are in a Rocket Engineering program at their high school. They work throughout the school year to design and build a rocket with input from their  teachers and several scientist sponsors and mentors.  In the summer they take the rocket to New Mexico where they are given the opportunity to test it to launch.

This year, their rocket launched!

However, they have WAITed a long time for this to happen.  5 years in fact.  Students from all 5 years of the program were in attendance for the award presentation. A couple of years they had issues with their rocket and weren't able to launch. One year a school who went before them had a malfunction and the launch pad was destroyed, so they never had a chance to attempt.

This year's team talked about being in the bunker when it launched....

fire started
liftoff happened
12 seconds it was in the air

...then it crashed. 

5 years of work.
12 seconds. 
Those 12 seconds...they are a lifetime of achievement and lessons.

Sometimes I miss the 12 seconds. Maybe you do too. It seems like the WAIT has been so long, that the reward, victory, gift, whatever it is comes and goes without even acknowledging it.  Instead choosing to tear apart how hard it was, how long we WAITed...but missing the 12 seconds.  

Maybe you can't even number the days you've WAITed for something, or maybe you know every second of time. However, I believe every time the launch will happen, no matter how long the WAIT takes. It might not look like we want it to, and might seem like it comes to a quick crash. But, every second should be celebrated! 

Friday, October 16, 2015

#write31days - Oct 16 - WAITing on world to change

Seems like I have more and more conversations about the news lately and how frustrating, depressing, saddening and more that it is. Our world is depraved.

But there is still good news. And there are people doing good things. I might not be able to change the whole world, but I can impact mine. 

One of my favorite ways to impact others is shopping and gift giving of items that are created through organizations who are giving opportunities for sustained income and living around the world. 

I had not seen this group via Proverbs 31 Ministries before, but when I received  these this year from a bestie for my birthday I paused. 

Fiona's signature. We all have a signature, around the world, each of us unique. While Fiona WAITs for her world to change, buyers of products like this help impact change to her and hopefully shorten the WAIT.
So, next time you think you wish you could change the world, focus on the little things you can do. Every little thing adds up and one day this world might show some good news as #BreakingNews. Even if they don't, someone around the world is WAITing on change, and you could make a difference to them!! 

Thursday, October 15, 2015

#write31days - Oct 15 - WAITing for change

This week when I was out for workouts I kept noticing caterpillars....
...and it made me think about WAITing on change...

You never know what's ahead.  It's halfway though October, I know there are things I'm waiting on and I'm sure you are too! I'm going to believe, through the wait something beautiful will come, even if it takes longer than I would like....

It's just a little shift...from WAITing to believing! In the butterfly to come....

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

#write31days - Oct 14 - WAITing on routine

Since my job change (details here) I feel like my routine has been non-existent. I love spontaneous, but there are some parts of a routine I crave.  I used to have a 2.8 mile drive to work which has turned into 30 miles. The commute has become manageable and it's not long as I'm up and out early. However, it is a major change, that I've been WAITing to figure out new routine through various routes and timing. I've had a little bit of travel with my new job and more coming up, which I really enjoy. Still though, just when I feel like I'm getting a bit of routine, something changes (which change is still the only thing that stays the same) and the routine is out the window.

But, when I take a breath and realize what the lack of routine has given me I realize....

Finishing up some work on a patio before an evening meeting at Starbucks (thank you gift card, really only time I have Sbux) is a treat. And, not my routine.
My dog has been away to "Camp 4G" (my Mom and Dad's house) for 2 weeks due to my work schedule and while he's been away I've had the chance to see and stay with friends "in town" which means waking up a little later and driving A LOT less. That's certainly a routine that takes no WAITing to get used to.

I've done a few of my favorite things while taking advantage of those days including jogging at Memorial Park. The Park is one of the constants in my life for almost 18 years I've lived in Houston, I've always had seasons of jogging there. So, really, it is routine.
After my jog I went "home" to the house I was staying in, had dinner with their family around a full table with laughs and reflections on the day. I could have had tears in my eyes, because even though I'm WAITing on my own routine, like cooking in my kitchen, my table isn't full of end of day chatter.  Family dinner is part of the routine I grew up with and love it every time I'm sitting at a full kitchen table. Another gift. 

I've spent a couple of nights with a bestie who was a former roommate, we've stayed up talking shoes, clothes, family and life....those days feel like we've never not been roommates because it is so familiar and a gift of 15 years of friendship. 

I ran into one of my favorite Bible Study teachers because I was out of my routine and in the neighborhood where I used to live at one of my favorite places. Ten minutes of catching up was another gift. 

So, just because I feel like I'm WAITing...really, I am in a season of unexpected gifts. It's all in perspective, which is a lesson I've learned over and over again in seasons of WAITing. It doesn't matter if it is a great season, which this one is for me and I'm loving my new job or a hard season, the gifts are there, I just have to break out of routine sometimes to see them. 

Don't keep WAITing to get back to routine, you'll miss what's right in front of you!

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

#write31days - Oct 13 - WAITing in line

Last year during the Christmas season I realized how often I engaged in conversation with strangers while WAITing in lines.  I don't typically do that, but taking time to say Merry Christmas would lead to a few extra sentences with a clerk or because lines were longer with others while WAITing.

Then the new year rolled around and I went back to my usual line stance....looking at something on my phone. And, I started noticing how often we are head down and not engaging with anyone around us while WAITing in lines. {Side note, I think the physical epidemic of our generation will be neck-related due to lifetimes of screen time}

If I'm honest, I don't really like stranger small talk, not in a grocery, Target, restaurant, gate entry or any other type of line. However, anytime I do engage in quick small talk, it is 95% of the time not miserable. 

Then I wonder, why don't I do this more often.  

Last week at a work conference one of our Speakers talked about being dependent on network of people, and how every conversation for him was critical for work, where he was living and information he needed on a quest. 

I thought about how many missed opportunities I have let go by because, for my own convenience, I didn't want to engage in a conversation. Often if I feel hurried I sometimes walk away and think "I never even looked that person in the eye" though I spoke Hello, Thank you, etc to them through a transaction. Sometimes, a stranger has given me a very kind complement standing in line and they don't know it but their words typically come just when I need a pick me up. 

So, why don't I pick others up with simple words in quick conversation. 

Next time I find myself in line, whether in dread of the crowd or excitement of gates opening to an event, I want to be more intentional in my WAIT. 

Somebody might need my words.Or your words. 
This isn't a current pic/bag...several years old, just the only shopping cart pic I had! :) 

Let's look up for opportunity in the WAIT.

Monday, October 12, 2015

#write31days - Oct 12 - WAITing in anticipation

Let's be honest, oftentimes WAIT brings about a negative connotation, but not all WAITing is hard, unless you're WAITing for the long awaited return of Bluebell....Honestly August 31 should have been a Texas holiday! Hallelujah for the return of Homemade Vanilla.
Maybe there's something you're counting down to...vacation, wedding, baby arrival, new house, graduation, a goal you've set or something else you're anticipating.  There's been a few fun "WAITs" for me this year...

Rodeo "season" 
Spring Break 
Ending a school year 
Summer vacation weeks spent with my Mom and Dad and the littles 
Traveling to see a bestie I don't often get to see
Starting a new job 
And tons of "little things" in between, which really are big things for me!

I feel like WAITing for something we're excited about is like children wondering "are we there yet?" because they don't quite get the concept of days or time or miles.  Even as grown ups the anticipation can seem long, but it makes the arrival that much sweeter and hopefully a lasting memory is created that you can keep forever!

Currently, I've been anticipating the arrival of this new bag (my prize to me for my new job), and actually having to WAIT until I'm back home to pick it up because it has been delivered!  Yay!

So whatever you're anticipating, I hope the WAIT is short and a memory that lasts a lifetime follows! 

Sunday, October 11, 2015

#write31days - Oct 11 - WAIT, what's been going on?

(As I mentioned last week, (click here) I'm taking a break from "WAIT" 
on Sundays and catching up on what's been going on.)

October....we've had a couple of peeks into cooler weather and promise of fall like temps coming to Texas, but not quite yet as there were still people in the swimming pool yesterday! You've seen this board before, updated for October and borrowed quote from Anne of Green Gables, just changing the "I" to "We" for a family feel.
This week at work, I got a little delivery of Office Supplies for my desk and I do love office supplies. (Click here) if you missed my Grown Up School Supplies post. Whole box of black and blue Pilot G2 .05 pens and take a look at that vintage blue stapler. Amen.
Antiques week wrapped up last weekend and I picked up this plaid flannel from Stash Style in between working the lunch and dinner shifts at Zapp Hall. It is so fun to see vendors businesses grow year after year, I still remember the first time I saw Stash tucked away in a super cool booth and now they are in the cutest building space and have such a great collection! And, a lot of patience as I tried on LOTS of flannels! :) This was for an evening out to dinner while in Austin for a work conference. Rest of the outfit is all a year or 2 old...Gap jeans, Noonday Collection feather bracelet, Banana Republic bag and booties TJ Maxx.
I also picked up this fun dishtowel from Stash. You can visit their website (click here) to shop online with Stash. Thinking back to this week's post on perfect, believe me, the perfectionist in me wants to iron that towel, but it's a reminder that imperfect is perfect. 
While in Austin I made a run by Marshall's and Target. I like to look at my favorite stores in different cities because often times they carry different things! I found a couple of deals, but also had forgotten about the ban on plastic bags in Austin....and the charge on paper bags...10cents at Target. However, it's a reusable bag to me.
Then I did one of my favorite things while traveling for work...sushi dinner at the sushi bar with a {book} friend and this time was Jen Hatmaker. I've been reading Interrupted for way too long...but I just pick it up now and then between other books and studies and am about to finally finish it up. This particular night part I read was about modernism vs. post-modernism in the church. VERY insightful and definitely could relate! 
I showed a preview of this piece on my most recent Lettering Lately post, (click here) and now I can reveal the finished product as these two tied the knot last weekend!  What a beautiful day for a wedding!  The bride and groom worked to make most all of their decorations; he constructed this piece I lettered, then put together with these doors for their aisle! So honored to letter for occasions like this!
Tomorrow the #write31days WAIT series catch up on last week click any of these posts... 
Enjoy your Sunday, 

Saturday, October 10, 2015

#write31days - Oct 10 - WAITing through grief

Today marks 9 years since my sweet friend Amy met Jesus.  I wrote last year about losing 2 of my best friends, a significant part of my story (click here to read).

Grief is tough to navigate, no matter what you're grieving. It might not be death, but it is loss of something.  No timeline is set forth, no map to tell you how, no idea how long, but often times it is just WAITing day in and day out to feel "like you" again and pick up to keep going forward.

I can very vividly remember sitting in a funeral service 03.03.03 for my friend Wendy's cousin, called to heaven just 7 years after her. The preacher spoke truth from Ecclesiastes 3...
...and I believed him and those words to be true. We never know what the seasons hold, but grief is real.
I've grieved loss through death of besties and grandparents, loss of relationships, good friendships and even my car getting stolen.

But, each of those seasons of grief have taught me so much through the WAIT. What great memories I have, times of growth and lessons I've learned from each loss. Some things are for a lifetime, some things are for a season, there is a time for everything. 

At the end of that same funeral service, the Preacher wrapped up with Isaiah 40:30-31: 
Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall,; 
but those who hope (WAIT) in the Lord will renew their strength. 
They will soar on wings like eagles; 
they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. 

In grief, there are days you can't seem to put one foot in front of the other, but somehow you're carried (soar on wings like eagles), then you begin to find your rhythm again (run and not grow weary) and eventually "normal" or "new normal" returns and the days go forward (walk and not grow faint).  Thankfully people have carried me while WAITing through days in grief, and hopefully I have carried others. 

It takes a village to heal a broken heart and deep wounds, but God is faithful in all seasons and WAITing in Him will bring you back to the days you put one foot in front of the other and walk with strength.