well, it's been awhile, and a lot has changed. and, i'd say for the most part all of it is good. while change has never been something that has come easily for me, i have learned to adjust and i have tried my hardest to find joy in even the seemingly most frustrating times.
but in the midst of all of the frustrating things or hard changes, God's faithfulness has been revealed to me on so many different occassions. and for that i am grateful.
anyway. it's crazy to think about the fact that i have been at my job for a year. and...let me just tell you i have learned so much about God's grace and loving those who are often over looked. as i've built relationships with these kids and their parents with whom i work, i have come to a deeper understand of the importance of relationships and love. on some days, it comes very naturally for me to invest in my clients and for me to provide them with the support they need. but on other days, i truly have to depend on God's strength to allow me to get through the day so that i don't yell, "WHAT ARE YOU THINKING?!" at someone. regardless, the opportunities i have had to get to know people and hear their stories truly is humbling. sometimes it's frustrating that i am unable to share my faith with the people i work with like i would want to, but when i think about the reality that the people i am building relationships with are people who are often over looked by the church, i just have to pray and trust that God is using me to be His hands and feet to somehow, someway plant a seed in their hearts...
it's also crazy for me to think about the fact that i am married. yes, married. it's still very weird for me to introduce Daniel to someone as "my husband". or to hear him introduce me by saying, "this is my wife." weird. but, it's been so good to journey together through these last six weeks. sure, there are little things that drive both of us nuts. for example, the fact that i squeeze my toothpaste from the middle while he squeezes his from the end (we have separate tubes now), or that sometimes we forget to ask the other questions and end up telling the other what to do or what should be done (that never goes over well), or how about that i would rather watch TLC and he would rather watch the world news (guess we should have taken my grandma's advice and gotten more than one tv...), and the list could continue. but, in the midst of all of those things, it's been such a joy to laugh together and to seek the Lord's will for our lives together.
it was interesting, one night before we went to bed, we did one of our devotions together, and it talked about love. (fitting for marriage, i know, right?) but in the midst of it, the devotion asked us how we could love more like love is described in 1 Corinthians 13. i don't know about anyone else, but i'm not always patient, nor am i always kind. i sometime gets jealous, and sometimes i'm proud. a lot of the time i am rude (sarcasm gets the best of me...) and i can be pretty selfish. and i may not appear to be angry very often, but, i tend to keep that masked on the inside, so it probably happens more frequently than people realize. it can be hard for me to keep no record of wrongs, because i have such a vivid memory...and i guarantee the list could continue. but, all of that is to say, that i, without Christ, cannot love as we, as the Body of Christ, are called to love. now, this can be looked at one of two ways; disheartening or encouraging. and in this particular case i tend to lean to looking at the glass half full...i am encouraged knowing that through Christ i am able to love as He wants me to love. and it is key for me in my marriage to not depend on Daniel to teach me what the meaning of love is, but to know, understand, and grasp the fact that if i want to love Daniel, the people i work with, or Christ in the way i am called to, i must continue growing in my individual relationship with my Redeember. and what a privilege it has been to do that.
piggy backing off of that, i have realized over the course of the last few weeks how much i truly love building relationships with people. i feel like relationships are so fundamental to leading people to the Lord and fundamental in helping people grow closer to Him. while i spend the majority of my days building relationships with people, i felt like/feel like God is calling me to more outside of my workplace. i haven't quite figured out what all it entails yet, but i will say that i am excited for whatever it means.
and i guess that brings me to another change that has taken place in my life. a good change that has truly brought me so much joy. right after i got back from my honeymoon, i started helping with volleyball at my old high school. (yes, i swore when i graduated that i would never set foot back in that school, but since i coached 8th grade last year, i figured i had already broken that statement, so there was no harm in going back again.) unfortunately with my work schedule i was unable to commit to coaching my own team, and even more than that, unfortunately i am only able to go about 2-3 times a week, but on the days when i do get to go, it has been so much fun to start building relationships with these girls and to continue the relationships i had with my girls from last year. when i look at the girls on the team, it excites me to see their potential; not just on the volleyball court, but in regards to life in general. they have no idea what awaits them in the years ahead, and it truly is so fun to see them learn and grow. there's so much i could write about each one of the girls and even the coaches; about what they have taught me so far and how much i want to hear their stories about what makes into the beautiful women they are, but maybe i'll save that for another day, and in the mean time, i'll continue praying for each of them to recognize their abilities, talents, and gifts that they have been given.
in other news, which isn't new news, but still worth noting is how much my heart longs to be with my children in India. there truly isn't a day that goes by that i don't think about what they are doing, or how they are doing, or when i am going to get to hold them in my arms again. of course, i continue dreaming big about what the future may hold, regarding my role in the mission field, but i truly have no idea what it will look like. i know, though, that i must be obedient in the here and the now...and as difficult as that may be at times, i will continue trusting blindly that the Lord knows far better than i do about what my future holds or what He is calling me to next.
and as i wrap this jumbled mess up, i guess i want to simply remind anyone reading this that God is weaving your story perfectly to impact the lives of the people around you. i never imagined being where i am today, but i am so thankful for the story God has given me to share with everyone i come in contact with. i am overwhelmed with the blessing of being His chosen and His beloved...and may that be what i continue finding joy in for the rest of my life.