Thursday, October 11, 2018

Trying To Learn: Gossip

Disclaimer: I am human.

I have struggled with gossip for what seems like forever. I used to be pretty bad at it. I was called out on it by my employers, called out on it by my husband. It was humiliating.

I sucked. And it seemed like I was never going to get better.

Little by little, I stopped myself. I started confiding in a good friend and the Riz. I stopped shelling out information like an ATM. I started catching myself with the words on my lips.

I still failed a lot and it was still humiliating. I hated being told I was doing something wrong because I knew it was wrong. Thankfully...this was only happening every once in a while.

I'm better at catching myself and better at not passing it along too. I want to be a person my friends can trust. I want to be a good confidante.

I failed at it earlier this week. I thought, honestly, it wasn't...but my husband pointed out why it was and I felt sad that it still happens.

But guess what?! I'm human! I'm going to make mistakes! I'm never going to be perfect and I'm not meant to be. I need to admit that I did something wrong and I need to try to be better. That's all Christ wants from us. He wants us to learn and to continue to grow.

I want to continue to do this and friends, I want us to work together on it. Help me out by not gossiping with me and I will do the same. WE CAN DO IT!

Tuesday, October 09, 2018

Trying To Learn: Closed Doors Can Be A Good Thing

I once was someone who was known.

I had status. I felt loved. I felt like I belonged. I had so many friends.

Sound familiar? Maybe you're in that past tense spot right now. Something happened and life changed. Maybe it only changed a little bit. Maybe it changed A LOT.

If you've been following my blog, you know about my life changes. If not, you've got some reading to catch up on.

I follow TobyMac on FB because I love his #speaklife images. Some days, it's a pick me up. Some days, it's a conviction. Some days, it's just something for me to nod my head at.

I want to share some of the more prolific ones and why they spoke to me. See, because I'm trying to learn how to be normal. I went from a fast-paced life to a snail's crawl and that is a hard thing to adjust to.

I once was someone who was known. I mean, I'm STILL known. But I'm not KNOWN. Does that make sense?

Returning to that status was my goal. I wanted my marriage to work out, but I wanted my status back. I wanted my joy back. I wanted my old life back.

Oh, I tried! I tried and I tried and I tried. I'm sure both my husband and some of my friends grew very weary of me trying. I hoped and I schemed and I prayed and I cried and I became delirious with the desire to be known again.

Ah....the good old "When one door closes" epitaph. No one likes to hear it. Seriously, so stop saying it.

But....sometimes God closes doors because it's time to move forward. He knows you won't move unless circumstances force you.

God closed my door on returning to the worship team at my church. It took me A YEAR to figure that out, but I figured it out. At first, I refused to believe it. Then, I tried to believe it. Finally, after I was hit on the head a thousand times, I found peace with it.

He's not closing that door to music, at least, I don't think so. But that particular facet of music, yes. I believe that God knew I wouldn't move unless I was forced to. Now, I'm not saying SOMEONE forced me. I'm saying that there have been circumstances over the last year, both of my own making and not, that have communicated this closed door to me.

And I have found peace. I know that moving forward in a different direction is okay. It's scary, but it's okay. AND....I may not be known the way that I wanted to be, but I am known by one who loves me so much. I am known to God. He knows me. He knows my heart's desires. He knows my troubles. He knows.

I can look back at that closed door and I can remember all of the good times, the bad times and even the ugly times with fondness. Those 8 years on stage at our church made me the musician that I am today, made me the leader that I hoped to be and made me learn to rely on Christ in a whole different way.

I can move forward now and look to the future that God has for me. Maybe music is involved in it, maybe it isn't. Maybe it's at this church and maybe it is somewhere else. Maybe it is in this town and maybe it's not. I don't know and while I'm nervous, I'm kind of excited.

Maybe God has closed a door in your life and it doesn't feel good. But it's time! It's time to move forward, baby step by baby step. Believe me....I'm right there with you. Life might suck for a little bit, but these are the moments that define us. You are still loved, you are still known, YOU BELONG.

I once was someone who was known.


Wednesday, August 22, 2018

A New Year



We have officially made it ONE YEAR.

One year of growth.
One year of learning to love each other again.
One year of setbacks.
One year of steps forward.

One year of confusion.
One year of doubt, joy, anger, sadness, empathy.

But we did it. We defied the high percentage of divorce and made it through the crappiest time of our marriage. We didn't do it alone.

I thank God every day for His presence, His mercy, His grace and unending love. He loved us at our darkest, weakest moments.

We had our parents, all of them, supporting us. Phone calls, texts, tears, smiles, all of it.

We had our siblings. They were there for us to vent and vent some more.

Some of the nearest and dearest friends we have were there with us, standing beside us, holding our hands, holding us accountable, through trial and triumph.

We had our girls, who cheered us on and thankfully, made it through the worst unscathed.

We had YOU, reaching out to us, telling us your stories and sharing in our pain & joy.

And yes, there were some who left us alone because they didn't know what to say. FRIENDS.....say something, please. Don't let your silence be the words you speak because it hurts. It hurts to be left alone. Say anything. One word, two words, a text, a hug. Anything.

I have learned a lot about myself. I learned the ugly and I learned about the beauty that can rise from the ashes. It is a hard journey and honestly, it's not over yet. But I can say that we are over the peak, over the hill, the fork in the road has passed. We are on the journey of restoration and I can say now that I believe we will make it.

One year ago, we were both crying and trying to figure out what tomorrow looked like. I was crying because I was sad for myself. He was crying because he was hurt.

And now...forgiveness has been given, trust is earned and is here.