Monday, May 11, 2015

Taking Chances (& Creating a place to grow goodness)

I haven't been blogging much recently. I've been recycling old things I've written but never shared. I've been writing up a storm in personal word documents and in my journal, on the backs of napkins and in long winded text messages that I send to those I love far away.
But I've missed the aspects of blogging that mean community, sharing my words with people and receiving feedback, engaging in conversation with everyone out there who is listening to what I have to say.
It's on my to-do list for the summer, right next to actually keeping a plant alive and take a trip into town just to go to Starbucks.
Recently I had the privilege of writing a guest post for Nancy Rue's teen blog. I was asked to write on failure. I was asked to write wise words of wisdom on how to walk through a season of failure in the middle of what felt like my own season of failure.
And the words I wrote for these young women were the words I desperately wanted someone to speak over me: You are enough, you are loved, you are a blessing.
I wrote these words on the heels of a powerful Sunday where I skipped church and listened to a podcast in my pajamas with a mug of tea. I wrote these words desperately wanting to believe them true.
The response I've gotten from the girls has been amazing. I wrote the post to teach them, and they ended up teaching me. Isn't that how it always works?
This fall I signed up (with great fear and trembling) to be a Sunday school teacher. I am not the kind of person who teaches Sunday school. I never liked Sunday school growing up. I have this idea in my head that Sunday school teachers were nice people who liked kids and baked cookies and didn't want to teach grown ups.
I don't know how I ended up teaching Sunday school. It pushed all my buttons and every single week it demanded more from me than I thought I had to give and I often felt weak, like I couldn't do this, like I should be better, that if only I could be more like her...
Somehow I ended up with a class of sassy, spunky, crazy grade 3 & 4 girls. I swear they've taught me more than I supposedly taught them. They make me want to be brave and crazy and silly and sassy and not care about what people think of me.
Yesterday was my last Sunday teaching these girls. And I cried just a little bit.
I'm not so sure if I'm cut out to be a Sunday school teacher. But I do know that these girls changed me. And they'll change the world, if we let them. It was an honor to be their teacher this year, and to learn from them.
In the name of being brave, I'm doing some crazy things this summer.
I'm already doing crazy things.
I'm currently working at (working being the key word here) a long distance relationship, which is one of the hardest, best, most full of grace things I've ever done. It's teaching me things about myself and love and God that I never would have known otherwise.
I'm writing a book. I've been saying I'm writing a book for years but now I feel like I'm writing a book. I have a little word document with a few thousand words. It's a humble start but its better than nothing.
I renamed my blog tonight because it's been the same since I started this tender place and I'm ready for a fresh start. I'm ready for good things, open space to grow and become and create goodness.
I'm taking big chances on myself this summer. I'm listening to what I want, and need. And sometimes that feels reckless and stupid but sometimes it feels beautiful and brave.
I want to practice being honest
I want to keep learning more than I teach
I want to keep falling in love with people and places and things
I want to keep feeling things deeply
I want to keep taking chances
I want to be brave

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