Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Food + Money + All Things You Secretly Feel Bad About

It's 6pm on a Wednesday. This time last spring, we'd be hurriedly eating dinner after working long days and rushing off to our adult small group. I'd feel frazzled and pulled in a million directions - busy and tired from working two jobs and filling my free time with great things: music and people.

But, alas, it's 6pm on a Wednesday in the summer. It's hot inside, but too hot outside and not breezy enough to open the windows, so I'm sitting at the computer sweating in shorts and a tee shirt. Poor Jacob is hiding upstairs in our bedroom - the one room in which we can enjoy the AC, thanks to the window unit we broke down and purchased at the end of last summer. We've worked long days, prepped food for dinner and have nowhere to rush off to next, so we're enjoying the quiet opportunity to rest.

Jacob and I are trying to discipline ourselves with our money in this season. It seems as if we say this every month, but about halfway through the month we realize we've changed nothing about the ways we handle our money.

We're seriously grateful to have two jobs that provide for us comfortably. We are never without what we need - food, shelter, water, clothes - nor without what we think we need, but don't need at all - AC, food that tastes delicious and meets our cravings, entertainment, trinkets that we forget we even bought, more clothes to add to overflowing closets, etc. But somehow we always feel the need for more. I want more decorations for our home. More books. More clothes I feel good about myself wearing. More food. More food that is prepared for us instead of made at home. More video games. More plants (WHAT is with this plant craze?! I've totally fallen right in.) More of anything and everything. More.

So tonight we're eating at home - a meal I actually planned (gasp) and requires actual preparation (I marinated the meat this morning). It's a little fancy (ahem, steak kabobs and veggies), so I think it cost about $12 for us both to eat. I'm going to go watch Jacob cook it all on the grill while the rice cooks itself on the stove and pat myself on the back because we didn't eat out at Not Your Average Joe's tonight instead.

Happy summer,


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 :)