Friday, June 12, 2015

So. Many. Changes!!!!!!!!!

Man, oh man, it's been a while!! I can't believe it's been five months since my last post - oh friends, so much life has happened! Allow me to fill in the gaps.

In February, our church invited me to come on staff in an interim position as one of our worship pastors. It has been a crazy five months between doing that and my other job, but it has literally been a dream come true. I have been passionate about music for my entire life - and serving the church through music has been a priority for me since middle school. So the opportunity to come on staff and be one of the driving forces behind planning our services has been such a joy!

There have been many, many moments I have felt completely inadequate and overwhelmed by the job ahead of me, but again and again the Lord has affirmed me in this role and led the way. He reminded me that this is FOR him, that worship through the arts comes FROM him and he is WITH US in it! Those reminders lift all of the pressure and distractions that so often dirty the waters when we're asked to step outside our comfort zones. Needless to say, this position has forced me to lean into Christ and also given me the gift of witnessing him meet us week in and week out. Have you ever had a moment where you just think to yourself, "Man! How full life is with God! My heart feels just brimming with thankfulness, hope, joy and LIFE because of him!!"?? That's how I feel when I think about this being my job.

So here's the big news - I am no longer the "interim" worship pastor - they have welcomed me onto the team for the long haul!!! If you had told me I'd be doing this job this time last year, I'm not sure I would have believed you. I wouldn't have seen tangible steps to see how it could come to fruition. But now, seeing the way God orchestrated so many small conversations, families moving around, and bodies willing to trust God's leadership just blows my mind. He is so good and his plans are infinitely better than ours.

The thought that week in and week out I get to consider how to usher people into the presence of God and teach people the truth of the gospel through the arts is incredible. I just think how is this even a job?! And how is it MY job?! I am overwhelmed with joy.

I work my last day at my previous job today. This afternoon I will pack up all of my work equipment and over the next couple weeks I'm going to get some rest. We will see some family, work on projects that have been put off far too long, and then dive into doing vocational ministry together. 

I am so ready for this ride. And, Lord, I am so grateful!! I may be around these parts a little more often during this next season... we will see :)


Wednesday, February 11, 2015

What my blogging break taught me: it's not over

Photo by Abbie Driscoll

I'm not finished with it. The blogging break, anyway.

I realized that when February came around and I dreaded sitting at my computer. I thought, maybe I just need to get back into the habit... But I've dreaded every part of it. Sitting, thinking, writing, editing, promoting, answering emails, etc. All of it.

A lot happened over the past two months. In January, I breathed deeply, read like I was starving for words and spent many nights cooking with my husband. I was less stressed, less distracted and more me than I've felt in a long time.

Beautiful things happened. I wrote my first serious song and played it for my band mates. That was the most frighteningly vulnerable thing I've done in a long time. We put it to more instruments and I can't explain the feeling of hearing other people playing to the melody and lyrics I wrote. It was magical and one of those moments I just felt full, you know?

My church asked me to come on part-time as an interim worship pastor at our newest campus while they search for a long-term replacement. That was thrilling and terrifying all at once. The craziest part of the story is that for the first time ever, I whispered out loud that might be something I was interested in around Thanksgiving. To my husband in private. At that point, there was no opportunity and I didn't expect there to be. Not here, not now... But little did I know God was preparing me for a conversation with our executive pastor a few months down the road. What an opportunity to dip my feet into something I've wanted to do, but feel very unqualified for! He's walked with me through the swinging pendulum of fear and excitement, and I can't wait to watch the growth unfold. It's already been quite the ride. 

I have a lot of extremely creative friends who are willing to be brave with me. Like writing music and poetry, and discovering who we really are and living it, even if it's different than the norm kind of creative friends. God has blessed me with those friendships, with these people who aren't willing to settle for the easy road in our short lives and who are open to being vulnerable and doing hard things. I can't tell you how empowering and freeing that is.

God has been blowing me away by things like this lately. And with all of these changes, with making small steps toward unveiling the things that really get me excited and drawing near to God through it all, I don't want to come back to the screen.

Not yet. Right now, I can't live slowly while also working my job, working for the church, attending small group, investing in the student ministry with Jacob and blogging 20 hours a week. So maybe I'll be back periodically... maybe it will be a while before my next post.

But before I go, I just need to say thank you. This blog has served me so well for the past several years. It has taught me to be disciplined, to take risks, to write even when I don't feel like it, and it's introduced me to a lot of stellar women who I am blessed to know. 

Thank you for your encouragement, for your prayers, and for reading. This blogging thing is pretty cool, but I'm just not in a place where it fits for me now. 

So, I wish you the very best. I hope you live this short life we have well. Be brave, be present, and love. Love. Love. Love.