Friday, January 25, 2013

a little 'thank you' goes a long, long way.

i love doing laundry. well, letting the machines do it, that is. i'm not, however, a fan of folding it. i dread it, in fact. [kind of like how i'm a fan of showering, but not of the whole drying off/getting dressed process]. any ways, we all know that folding clothes is a necessary part of 'doing laundry', unless of course, you want everyone and their mother to buy you an iron for christmas.

i go downstairs to flip my laundry this morning, and to my surprise, there's a load of clean towels in the dryer. not knowing whose they were, and needing to use the dryer, i decided to fold them and leave them in a neat pile on top of the washing machine.

an hour later, i return, not only to find that my clothes had dried, but to notice a sticky note sitting on top of the dryer that read: 'thank you' with a heart on it.

i couldn't help but smile. all i did was take two minutes out of my day to fold a bunch of towels, and here i was being reminded that even the smallest of gestures can make the biggest of impacts.

i certainly wasn't expecting a thank you, but it goes to show you how far a little appreciation can go.

who can YOU thank today?

Thursday, January 24, 2013

about a month ago i picked up a book by the name of 'counterfeit gods' by tim keller. i began reading the book and instantly found myself captivated by the story of jacob. [genesis 25-50]. some of you know the story quite well.

so here he was, desperate to win his dad's approval to the point where he decides to deceive him into giving him his blessing. he then has to flee, losing everything, because his brother esau is after him, among other things.

then he looks to rachel, a beautiful woman, to fill the void that he feels.

and her sister, leah, looks to jacob, knowing he is in love with rachel, and tries to win his approval by bearing more of his children.

i put the book down, being reminded of the fact that only God can fill the void we all, at some time or another, look to fill.

ironically, a few days later, i find myself searching for other things to fill the void that i, too, feel, which led me into one of the darkest weeks of my life spiritually.

during this week, i had a dream. i was in battle - dressed in camlaflauge - the whole works. thinking i'd be less of a target by myself, i decided to leave the team i was with to fight on my own. i could hear them in the distance, and part of me wanted to go back and fight with them, but i couldn't bring myself to. eventually, i started losing the battle - almost lost my life a few times before rejoining my team by jumping into this nasty green, dirty water.

a few days later, a friend i used to go to school with asks me if i have had any dreams lately [randommmmmm], so i fill her in, and she feels like God interpreted it through her:


So with just the information you've given me this is a spiritual warfare dream. He's calling you to not give up on the good fight of faith and especially not to try to lone it through this cause it can cost your life if you do. You are safer with others, you are empowered with others.

The fact that the water was nasty & green symbolizes your spirit. You're in a mucky place spiritually. But in this place you need to meet up with the fellow believers God has assigned to you.

Some of your questions may be 'Who & how?' To me if God is giving you not only understanding but strategy in this dream, it would be to pray and ask God to link you up & give you discernment as to where the team of people are that He has given you to fight along side of you and will journey with you and won't be afraid to meet with you in the dirtier places of your life.


friends, she couldn't have been more bang on. i felt under attack and wanted to give up...again. i felt alone in my battle, and as a result, purposely shut myself out from the world.

from there, my friend tells me that i need to find out what i am wrestling others for, and wrestle God for it, 'just like jacob' did. [coincidence?].

i then get off the phone and decide to pick up the book i had neglected for weeks and BOOM - where does it pick up? the part where jacob wrestles God.

so i start doing some soul searching. what is it that i look for [wrestle for] in/from other people?

my conclusion? intimacy and connection ... which i believe only God can fill in its entirety, yet i continue to live differently at times.

the truth is, we all do. we all look to other things to fill the void in our lives. alcohol. sex. people. work. success. you name it. but like jacob, and leah, we eventually come to that place where we realize that these things that we experiment with/seek after/get into, leave us feeling empty.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

1) life is hard. laugh loud - and often.

2) i wonder if people would take the time to respond to my emails/letters if they knew how much heart and time i put into them. i get frustrated when people tell me to write to them and fill them in and don't even acknowlegde that i did when i do. now, i'm not unrealistic, i know people are busy and can't reply right away - i don't expect that - but when days and weeks go by i start wondering why i took the time out of my day to share my heart with them in the first place.

communication doesn't work when only one person does the communicating.

so do i continue to 'write on request'? or do i stop? this is something i've been wrestling with as of late.

3) bloom where you're planted.

i am happy to report that after five long months of unemployment, i am finally employed.

there are two industries that i am passionate about, if you will. one, working with youth and/or the poor, and bridging the gap between those two worlds, and two, the hospitality industry.

without knowing that they were hiring, i had an inkling to apply to a local boston pizza the other day. an hour later, i received a phone call, and the next morning, i headed in for an interview.

it went so well that she offered me the 1/2 management 1/2 server position on the spot. i start training tomorrow, and though i feel overwhelmed just looking at the gigantic menu and thinking about all that i have to learn, i told myself i would walk in there in confidence, study hard, and remember to breathe throughout the whole process. i'll be a pro in no time =)

i feel like i have been planted here purposely. even after a 20 minute interview, the manager told me that i 'inspire her to do more, and greater things with her life'. having gone over our conversation over and over since then, i honestly have no idea what i said/did to make her feel this way. there's no other explanation other than the fact that God was shining through me and used this comment to assure me that He has a plan and desires to use me where he places me. with that said, i sit here excited to be able to pour into the youth and young adults that i'll be working with, and the guests that will come in for a good meal.

another plus? because my hours are so flexible, i have the opportunity to jump on board with an organization by the name of 'souls of the feet' []and do what i do best: connect people to various community projects and local service opportunities [homeless shelters, food banks etc], and potentially lead more teams overseas. [i think africa is calling my name...].

so here's to a new season, friends. [raises last glass of egg nog].