Its my birthday!

33 years I have been rotating around the sun. I don’t feel 33 years old. I am not sure what that is supposed to feel like. I don’t feel as old as the people I knew were this age when I was younger.

I am excited for 33. I pray that this year is truly my best year yet. I say that every year and then the end of that year comes and I don’t necessarily feel that way. I told someone the other day that even year birthdays have not be great for me, so I hope this year is better. My 30th birthday was not great. I didn’t do anything to celebrate and tried to through something together last minute that wasn’t representative of my awesome party throwing skills. I don’t have an issue getting older. I still look like I am in college and I know this to be true because I work with high school students and there isn’t a day that doesn’t go by that someone is mistaking me for a student.

My biggest issue with birthdays is that they are a reminder of all the things that I still need to get done. I don’t feel that way so much this year. I finally have been obdienet to all the things God wanted me to do. That right there just takes a weight off my shoulders. I still don’t have a baby but for the most part I am ok with that. I am working on TRUST. That is what God wants me to do.

I have a great trip planned for my birthday this year which I am excited about. A girls trip and trip with my husband. Right now I am currently in Toronto living it up.

32 is was not as bad as I initially thought it was. I made a list in April of all things I wanted before the summer was over I had those things. I would have never imagined that it would happen so quickly and with little intervention from me. God set those things in motion. I grew a lot last year, not necessarily because I wanted to, but because I had too. It has made me better though. My blog has grown. My writing has gotten better and I have taken additional steps to grow in my craft. I am a creative. Who would have thought?!

 

It’s not you, its me

Such a cliche right? I know but cliches are well known for a reason. It definitely fits my situation.

I have been pretty M.I.A most of the winter and spring. I usually hideout during the winter just because it’s cold and get over that post holiday hump but this year was different.

So many people had awesome things going on around me, new babies, new jobs, new houses and we didn’t have anything new happening. Which isn’t necessarily a bad thing or surprising. We have been cruising in a good space for a while, we have found a good rhythm. Its hard to admit you are jealous or envious of your friends or family or coworkers. I don’t want to use the word envious or jealous because those are usually described as negative emotions. It’s more I’m happy for you and sad for me. Nobody wants that kind of energy at their birthday party, housewarming, BBQ, etc. I never want to be a Debbie Downee when I go somewhere so I just decided to stay away. That probably wasnt the best way to do it but hey we do what we know.

I know somebody who has had to watch other people around her have kids for years and she has been nothing but supportive. She is older than me so maybe it takes years to grow to that level of maturity. I admire that because I definitely couldn’t do it. I am not there yet but I’m working on it. God is making it more and more uncomfortable to be in this box. I haven’t been to a baby shower in years but now the people having babies are getting closer and closer to me. No choice but to go. I’m also trying to grow. I know I should be doing better, it is just hard.

The next time you haven’t heard from someone you care about in a while, reach out. I appreciate all the invites I got even though I wasn’t going.

The biggest reason now that’s holding me back from jumping back into the fray of where I used to hang out is because I don’t want to explain what I have been doing or why I wasn’t around.

That’s probably selfish of me. Would you feel like you wanted an explanation? Would you accept its not you, it’s me?

Not in crisis

I felt like at the beginning of the year I was always talking to God about something and he was talking to me. I felt like there were some things he wanted me to work on and I was definitely going through a pruning phase. I do not feel like that now. I don’t know if the devil is messing with me because things are going really well. I have still been doing all the things I normally do for the most part. I was sick all last week, so I didn’t do much reading or writing because it physically hurt to do so. I have caught up on my Bible in a year plan. Thankfully I wasn’t too far behind. Something seems like its missing though. Don’t get me wrong, nothing is wrong just something seems off. Things on paper are great but I feel distant from God.

I know as always that is not him that moved but me. I know that I have to be intentional about keeping the fire in our relationship going. I know also not to trust my feelings because feelings will lead you astray. I don’t want my relationship with God to be me moving from crisis to another. I want to continually feel his presence. If I think hard enough I am sure there are some things I am supposed to be doing that I have not done. Not many though. Thank goodness! I have been down that road before and it can be a miserable one. I also know I have been spending a lot of scrolling through Instagram. It was the only thing I could really do on the internet while I was sick. It was mindless and took no effort. I am going to make some tweaks and see how I feel next. My creative juices don’t seem to be flowing as much either which is why I haven’t been writing. I am going to write a separate post about that.

Do you ever feel just a little off? If you do, how did you get over it?

What are you feeding your soul?

What you feed your soul is just as important as what you put in your body.

  • Poison- Things that will kill you such as self defeating thoughts.
  • Junk food-stuff on tv, no nutritional value, making your spiritually fat
  • super food-bible

Most people genuinely try to eat healthy, whether its organic, vegan, more water, shopping at Whole Foods and Trader Joes, etc. You probably are fairly diligent in your exercise program. Making sure you hit the gym a few times a week or do some type of physical activity. However,are you that diligent about what you are putting in your soul? I would hope so, but I don’t always think that is the case. If you only talk to God on Sunday at church then your spiritual diet is probably a little junk food heavy.

If the only time you pray is over your food or when you are in deep trouble then you may want to make some modifications. You don’t want your spiritual diet to make your soul sluggish. You may not be able to hear God because you have a bunch of things in the way.

Do you ever listen to inspirational or gospel music? Or is it secular music all the time? Nothing wrong with secular music. I enjoy a trap beat as much as the next person but with any diet, it needs to be balanced. You can’t just eat Flaming Hot Cheetos and never have carrots. You should try to balance your secular music with some inspirational music. What are you watching on tv? Is it a steady diet of “reality tv?” Fistfights, drink tossing and love triangles? If so, maybe limit how much of that you are taking in. I enjoy escaping into fantasy, especially after a long work week but I caution that from being the only thing you watch.

priority

Just like a diet is a lifestyle change, your spiritual diet should be one too. Just like you always keep a few staples in your diet, there should be some staples in your spiritual diet. Those staples include a quiet time with God, bible reading/studying, and prayer. I would say those are three main things you need to grow your relationship with God. I try to do those things before I go to work in the morning and before I go to bed at night so I am covered in my comings and my going. It doesn’t have to be anything formal or intense. There are a lot plans you can find that will give you structure to your quiet time. I try to do 15 minutes before work and 30 minutes when I get home. I have my quiet time before I turn my tv on when I get off. I want God to know that he is a priority in my life. There is always time to make changes and adjustments. God sees your heart. No matter how big or small, just get started.

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Confession: I don’t know

Not knowing things is not something I’m comfortable with. I like to have a clear plan outlined with action steps. Things don’t always happen that way in a growing season. You only can do some much planting and then you have to sit back and let it grow.

I’m in a growing season right now and growing hurts. The term growing pains is definitely real. It hurts to be stretched more than you thought you could handle. It hurts to let things go that you thought would always be there.

Growing requires more faith than planting. I believe that because you don’t know how the seeds you planted are going to develop. You can’t see on the the outside how the seed is doing or if any growth is happening. You have to trust the process.

I don’t feel like I have been in a real season of growth in my life in a long time. I have had seasons of change but nothing to this extreme. I feel like I’m going through a metamorphosis. I feel like God is working on me about a lot of things. Sometimes I feel like it’s too much. Why do I have to go through all of is?

I feel like everything in my life is in transition and I am questioning a lot of things that I thought I knew for certain. I thought I was on a solid career path but where I see myself headed is different that what I originally envisioned. I am afraid. Am I ready for where God is leading me? I don’t know. I do take comfort in knowing that he won’t leave me on this journey and will give me what I need to be successful.

God is working on me to take me someplace but I don’t know where that is. I have to just walk beside him one step at a time. I am not going to run out in front of him or move to fast. I have done that before and the results were not great. I know I sound sad or down but I’m not. I’m restless. I sense something coming but I don’t know what is. I’m going to continue to keep the junk out so I can hear Gods voice and know it’s him. I’m going to pray and I’m going to wait. I’m going to continue to do meet God half way and I know he will make up the rest. I will have to just continue to be patient and trust the process.

Uncompromising

Uncompromising-showing an unwillingness to make concessions to others, especially by changing one’s ways or opinions

I haven’t been blogging long I definitely don’t consider myself an expert. I just want to be a moral compass that is being drowned out in the Instagram society that we live in today. I had a blog post all ready to go but I hesitated about posting it. It was controversial and I had concerns about how it would be perceived. I asked my husband and he agreed. I may not get the response that I was looking for. So I decided not to post it right now.

I questioned myself though. Sometimes when you have an opinion that’s not with the majority people may not like it. I’m not taking my thoughts and imposing them on anyone. I didn’t make the standard, God did. If I want to continue to be a person that helps people grow, I have to be uncompromising in my beliefs. Easier said than done though. I don’t want to alienate my readers. I don’t want to make anyone feel bad or condemn them. I also have to draw the line in caring what people think. It is a delicate balance. I heard no matter what you do, you will always get 10%  of people who don’t agree.

stand alone

 

It’s bigger than the post though. It’s hard to have an opinion that in conflict with the world. People start calling you a prude and all kinds of stuff. You start to be left out of things. I know I walk the line between advice giving and being judgmental, at least it is perceived that way. In real life I don’t really care what people do. You have to live with choices you made not me. I’m probably not doing a good job of conveying that though. Which is why when my friend asked me advice I told her what the word says, flee from temptation. However when our other friend told her to do the opposite I walked back a little of what I said. Why? I guess I still wanted to be a part of the group. I didn’t want to be seen as this uber conservative person because I’m not. I just want people to use better judgement when they make decisions and think of the consequences before they do things not after.

It’s scary to be the minority opinion all the time. If your thought process has been in constant difference to the people around you do you need to hang out with different people? Some people would say probably. I think diversity is good though. We all shouldn’t look at the world the same way. We also should be open to different points of view. I am not always right. I don’t always take my own advice or receptive to others people’s advice. I’m trying though.

I’m trying to be 100% Authentic on this blog though and in life. Which is difficult, because its risky.  I will continue to do my best and take other opinions into consideration but not too much.

 

 

100% Authentic

100% of the time. Are you doing that? I’m not saying you dont cuss out your coworker for asking you some dumb question. More along the lines of are you uncompromising in your beliefs all the time in action and in truth. That question hit me like a ton of bricks in Sunday School.

No. I am not. I’m close. I am myself at home, work, and church. I spend the majority of my time at the first two so that makes good sense. I’m trying to spend more time at church by going to Sunday school, serving etc. I haven’t been 100% honest in my dealings with my friends and it weighs on me. Outside people don’t know the person you used to be, so any changes you make, it makes no difference to them. With your friends its different to let your guard down because they have seen you at your worst, they were probably with you when you were doing it. lol. Seriously though, rejection is a hard thing to deal with. Your friends probably won’t reject you but will they start excluding you from things? Maybe. Will they care enough about you and less about the things you don’t want to do or hear anymore to not exclude you? Its a risk I haven’t always been willing to take.

I haven’t been completely authentic here. Not that the words I’ve said haven’t been true. It’s more that I’ve held myself back to not offend anyone or make people feel bad about their choices. This blog isn’t for that person though. I don’t want anyone to feel condemned but I do want you to feel convicted so you can make better choices. I had a reader send me a question about spiritual growth. Side bar: yay! People are reading and thinking about things. It was a great question but I havent posted the response because I didn’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings. I may not hurt their feelings  but the thought makes me sad that what I say could cause anyone even a moment of grief.

I think to much about what other people think and how they feel. In doing so, I slowly compromise on the things I believe. Every time I hold back my true feelings in fear of what someone is going to say or what they think I’m not being authentic. I don’t need to express every thought I’m thinking, especially if it is not helpful or building someone up. However, I know there were times when I kept silent when my opinion might make a difference. When I walked a statement back because it didn’t jibe with the majority.

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God called us to be set apart, not stand with the crowd. Standing alone is hard though. In some ways I envy these young kids, high schoolers and college kids. They are taught to be individuals, for better or worse they are themselves all the time. People don’t fault them for it either. When I was in high school all I wanted to do was fit in, I didn’t want to stand out from anyone. As I have gotten older, I have learned to be more of an individual but sometimes I waver. Its hard to stand alone but when I lie in bed at night and think about my day, I want God to say well done. Eventually if you are standing alone, God will send the right people to stand with you, if you continue not compromise, if you don’t grow weary of doing good.