Wednesday, August 31, 2016

"I just did accidental team building on myself."

High(s) of the Day(s):
1. Walking and talking with Lily, Emily and baby Jojo on the Monon
2. Stopping at Tiny House Treats for an M & M cookie and birthday cake ice-cream sandwich-- it was heavenly
3. The 8th grade bible study is back! This time we're joined by my WL leader party people and we're all reading The Purpose Driven Life together
4. 8th grade girls' volleyball cheering with Maddie and Hools-- they won!
5. Letters in the mail from Sarah Latona, Maddie Flynn and Brookie Cookie
6. Camp T counselor meetings have begun! Seniors picked their session and next week we get to meet with the whole crew
7. Only one more day till Work Crew Pits at TWL 2016 begins!
8. Wilderness gals met for the first time for our new weekly bible study-- no books, no devotionals, just straight up reading the bible like we did in the mountains. I love these humans

Present Over Perfect by Shauna Niequist is still so good. Her words are always my favorites.

But this is what I've learned the hard way: what people think about you means nothing in comparison to what you believe about yourself.

He has all the time in the world to sit with me and sift through my fears and feelings and failings. That's what prayer is. That's what love is... He is love itself, grace embodied, holding the fullness of who we are--strong, weak, good, bad, wild, fearful, brave, silly-- in his hands. He can be trusted with every part of it, the silly and the enormous.

In the city, you can't see the stars for the city lights. But at the lake, and in the country, the stars are so bright you can practically read by them. And that's what I'm finding: when I get out of the city--the noise and chaos, the screaming intensity-- then I can see the stars. And they're beautiful. 

What's changing for me in a new understanding that we get to decide how we want to live. We get to shape our days and our weeks, and if we don't they'll get shaped by the wide catch-all of "normal" and "typical," and who wants that? You get to make your life. In fact, you have to. And not only can you make it, you can remake it.

I remember that I want to live both feet firmly planted on this gorgeous green earth, that I want to be right here and right now, that I am loved and known and that I don't have to hustle or perform. 

Love, though, doesn't allow hiding. Love invites whole selves and whole stories out into the light. Friendship sees into us, into our secrets, into our elaborate games and excuses. Friendship carries all this mess together, so that you don't have to hide, so that you carry it together.

What would our lives be like if our days were studded by tiny, completely unproductive, silly, nonstrategic, wild and beautiful five-minute breaks, reminders that our days are for loving and learning and laughing, not for pushing and planning, reminders that it's all about the heart, not about the hustle?

I love the simplicity of that, the tremendous weight that takes off my shoulders. God's asking me to be the thing he's already created me to be. And he's asking you to be the thing he's already created for you to be... He says essentially: do your thing. Do the thing that you love to do, that you've been created to do. 

I hope you live a life you're proud of, if you find that you are not, I hope you have the strength to start all over again. -F. Scott Fitzgerald

Here's another way to put it: You're here to bring light, bring out the God-colors in the world. God is not a secret to be kept. You are a city on a hill. If I make you light-bearers, you don't think I"m going to hide you under a blanket do you? I'm putting you on a light stand. Now that I've put you there on a hilltop, on a light stand-- shine! Keep open house, be generous with your lives. By opening up to others, you'll prompt people to open up with God, your generous Father in heaven. Matthew 5:14-16

This is, essentially, the story of my life. Make today one you're proud of people. 

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