I’m going to come clean. I don’t read a lot of blogs. Three, to be exact. Yes, three over the course of my life, not three yesterday or last week. I’m not really a bloggy sort of individual, so you’re going to have to bear with me; I honestly don’t know what I’m doing. This is probably going to be embarrassing and possibly terrible and certainly quite a learning process.
Now when I say that I’m not a bloggy sort of individual, I don’t mean that I don’t love to write, because I do. And so like every literary gal who fancies herself a writer, I’ve decided to throw my hat in the already drastically overpopulated blogging ring. Not because I think I have anything of particular importance to say, mind you, or at least nothing in mind as of this moment, but because I’m trusting the Lord to do something good with these posts. By good I don’t mean big or thrilling or revolutionary, but simple and positive—making someone smile, or feel a twinge of hope, or perhaps fostering a desire to write or paint or sing or bake or love Him more or pray or serve or whatever. I have no idea what the Lord will do, but I’m praying this blog will somehow matter the tiniest bit to someone, somewhere.
What I want more than anything, honestly anything, is to live a Spirit-filled life that bears much fruit to the glory of God. That is my heart, as trite as it may sound. If you’re not a believer, then it probably just sounds silly. Of course, in actuality, it is neither trite nor silly. I don’t think there is anything much harder, more serious, or more radical than full surrender to, moment-by-moment dependence upon, and obedience to the Holy Spirit. The Lord has a lot to prune in me, and I have much to surrender, so I suppose you’ll be privy to some of this “working out of my salvation.” Sorry, in advance. It probably won’t be all that pretty.
So, here’s my story. I don’t have a lot of time on my hands these days. I have the privilege of being a stay-at-home-mom to two little girls, henceforth known as Izzy and Joey, who occupy the majority of my waking hours. I’m finishing a novel I’ve been working on for the last decade, but that’s what happens when you’re born-again half way through a novel’s writing and then get married and have children and move a bajillion times. I sell handmade greeting cards on Etsy. I’m really tall. I’m in my mid-thirties, have had gray hair since I was thirteen, was diagnosed with type-1 diabetes when I was twelve, and became a follower of Christ in my late twenties. Since having children, I workout like once a year and dream of the day when I can get back out to my happy place—the trails, the mountains, the woods—where I can camp and backpack and tramp around with a Crocodile Dundee knife on my belt and drink tea on a huge boulder and sleep by a handcrafted fire with coyotes howling all around. I like my air thin, my vistas unobstructed, my skies panoramic and crawling with flat-bottomed clouds. I would love to take my daughters backpacking someday when they’re actually bigger than their packs.
My husband is in the Army, so yes, we are a military family, which turns out is a huge deal. Who knew? Coming from the San Francisco Bay Area where I briefly knew exactly one military family growing up, and where there are no open bases (though some gorgeous closed ones that have been reappropriated), I certainly had no idea what being married to a military man would entail. Having now been submerged in this world for six years, it turns out that--like many things in life--it’s hard, but that there is tremendous blessing in the struggle (more to come on this later, I’m sure). We now reside in a charming North Carolinian town with ubiquitous pine trees, parks, and military families. I can walk downtown to the coffee shop that isn’t Starbucks and watch a movie at the independent movie theater that isn't an AMC. I almost love it here.
My husband and I like to joke that it really makes no sense that we like each other, that we fell in love, or that we even met. It was entirely the Lord’s doing in practically every way. My other half is a man’s man, God-fearing, strong, hilarious and honest to a fault. At the time, I was an unbeliever with strong hippie leanings, a friendly “spiritual” prevaricator rather taken aback by all this talk of the Holy Spirit, Jesus, and moral absolutes. An unfortunate turn of events (read God’s providence) allowed my now-husband to unexpectedly attend his brother’s wedding, which is where we met. I was a bridesmaid to his soon-to-be sister-in-law, a dear friend from my college years. Over the span of a few days, we bonded over not knowing any of the other guests and found that, despite coming from different worlds and being five years apart, we had a remarkable amount to discuss. I knew I would marry him after day two, which is saying something, as I’d never wanted to marry anyone—not any of my boyfriends, not Brad Pitt, not Hugh Jackman. No one. Ever. We danced, we laughed, we exchanged numbers, he missionary-dated me (which I now know is a big no-no—tisk, tisk, babe), but I happily, miraculously surrendered my life to Jesus during this time, and we were married fifteen months after our initial meeting.
I’m praying for this blog to have a positive influence, for it to be a place you enjoy visiting and from which you leave feeling refreshed, inspired, challenged, encouraged, and comforted, or at the very least, with a sense of comradery and fellowship. Or maybe you’ll just see something pretty and like it. That would be okay too.
My black lab has just sweetly, pathetically, and ever so earnestly placed his chin on my thigh, which means I forgot to feed him…again, which also means that I need to wrap this up. It's serious; he’s activated his full-on-begging fluffy face. I’m powerless to resist.