Wednesday, January 20, 2010

January 2010... Abby 13 months old!

I can't believe how quickly 2010 is going... here's a few fun snapshots of Abby this month.

Silly girl

Abby trying to jump out of her spot and surprise me!

Cookie Monster Abby

The front side of the dress I made Abby with my mom- my first adulthood sewing project!

The back side of the dress I made Abby.

Pajama Abby

Chef Abby Bean

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

The Fruits of 2009

This past year has been one of much emotional and spiritual growth for me as a person. I think I learned more about myself in 2009 than I have my entire existence. What caused this "epiphany" might you ask? I think it was drastically affected by how much time I spent in the Word. The more I read the more I changed. It was inevitably beautiful and satisfying.

The other night I was lying in bed talking to Bryan before we went to sleep and our conversation went like this.

"You know I've been struggling for the last few years about my calling and finding happiness in what I do."- Me

"Yeah."- Bryan in typical male short-answer form

"Well, since I have been praying about it this past year, it's like everything has just been lining up and falling into place. When I was most discouraged recently, I started reading a book (48 Days to the Work You Love) that has helped affirm where I am going and has provided closure for where I have been. It's kind of crazy. It's like God actually wants me to know what He wants me to do with my life."

Bryan upon hearing that claimed this as a future sermon illustration then laughed at me for such a simple "revelation"

It's true. For most of my life, finding God's calling has seemed elusive and mysterious. I had never truly considered that it would align with your greatest joys and gifting. How wonderful our God is! He has not called us to be a martyr of misery but to find great satisfaction in His plan for us. Am I suggesting that we will never face difficulties or that we will never suffer? Absolutely not. I'm just promoting the idea that sometimes we place upon ourselves a "calling" for which we were never called to do in the first place.

For me, I believe I forced myself into nursing as a means of trying to help hurting people while still ensuring that Bryan and I would always have a sizeable income guaranteed at our disposal. While somewhat noble and well-intentioned, my efforts were misguided and fell short of being ultimately satisfying to me. Nursing is a great career with many opportunities, but it was not my perfect fit. In the nursing jobs I have had, I could always find something I enjoyed, but I never felt fulfilled or satisfied. I always had this longing for so much more but passed it off as a personality flaw or as emotional instability due to stress or some other excuse. You get the idea.

Coming to this point has been very humbling and anything but easy. I am a nurse now and am thankful for having a respectable degree from a university. I also want to pursue what makes me alive- not what inwardly wastes my spirit day by day. I know only in God's will can I find true peace and grace.

As Beth Moore likes to say, "My calling is to follow God." Yes, that's true. It is. It is also so much more. It's taking what is unique about me, the way our Creator designed and fashioned me, and using it to impact the world for Jesus. Understanding and following my calling is celebrating God's genius in His design and workmanship of me. As Pastor John Piper famously states, "God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in Him."

Thus, Peripety Designs has been birthed. Please pray for me as I endeavor to pursue God and walk in faith into this new area of my journey.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

48 Days to the Work You Love

"The master in the art of living makes little distinction between his work and his play, his labor and his leisure, his mind and his body, his information and his recreation, his love and his religion. He hardly knows which is which. He simply pursues his vision of excellence at whatever he does, leaving others to decide whether he is working or playing. To him he is always doing both."
- James Michener

I'm almost finished with a phenomenal book that I was given for Christmas. It's "48 Days to the Work You Love" by Dan Miller. It does more than help you narrow down a career that matches your personality and gifting- it helps you understand God's calling in your life more clearly. It is incredible! I highly recommend reading it, even if you are satisfied in your current job. It's now added to my "Must Reads" list.


Introducing Cambridge's new website....

What do you think?

Monday, January 4, 2010

My How Things Change

As I was trying to decide what 2010's resolutions will be, I had to review this past year's. It was neat to see how far God has brought our family in the last twelve months.

Personal resolutions for this coming year- 2009
  • Understand God and His Word more fully through Scripture study, memorization, and listening to solid biblical teaching on a weekly basis (outside of usual church services)
  • Be a consistent, loving, and settled Titus 2 woman of Biblical virtue with a God-centered world view
  • Care less about what others think and more about what God praises
  • Love Bryan as Scripture teaches a wife should- to keep him 2nd in the order of priorities after my relationship with God- to make him feel respected and loved so that he may feel secure and cherished in our marriage- to build him up and support him at home so that his ministry to the outside world may thrive in a way that draws others to Christ
  • Train Abby in the disciplines and teachings of Jesus so that she may begin to understand from infancy the love, wonder, and glory of our great God and the beauty of this life He has given us
  • Make our home a place of joy, love, and security- a refuge from the outside world to all who may enter in
  • Find ways to serve our church and its ministries joyfully and fully that fit in with my spiritual gifts
  • Be more intentional with relationships with others, especially family and close friends
  • Guard my mouth and the thoughts of my heart more closely
  • Try something new every month, whether it is an activity, recipe, craft, or etc.
Last year, even with Abby as a newborn, I still had the mental energy to detail out an extensive resolution list. This year- I'm thinking I will be sticking to the same list and continuing to work on it. Is that lazy or smart?

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