I can’t know – and I can’t worry…

When my best friend’s nephew was a toddler, and was asked a question he didn’t have an answer for, his response would be, “Aunt Pati, I can’t know…” He really meant that he didn’t know, but his answer has been applicable for so many things and situations in my life. And probably in yours too.

I’ve spent the last several hours entering and re-entering numbers into my accounting spreadsheet,  trying to project how much money I’ll be making when,  how much I’ll owe in taxes, how I’ll ever get ahead.  And I get worried  and upset and forget that there are so many things I don’t know, so many things I can’t know.  Tomorrow could be the day that changes everything – for good, or not. And I can’t know which it will be.

But I know the One who knows.

Dreams Deferred

I was rummaging through my bookshelves the other night – don’t even remember what I was looking for – when I ran across this:

As I held the book in my hands, I distinctly remember sitting in my cubicle at my most soul-crushing job in early 2010, staring at the cover of this book on Amazon. I remember the feeling I had as I ordered it – that it was an impossible dream, thinking I might ever get paid to write, that I might ever break free from the life I was living at that moment. I felt almost stupid for ordering it, for spending $30 on a book that I would likely never use, that would gather dust on my bookshelves. But I couldn’t stop myself from ordering it.

Now here I sit, 18 months into my career as a freelancer, slowly but surely building up a career that just three years ago seemed like an impossible dream.

My lesson – never stop dreaming. Always realize that those dreams will change, that they’ll recede and rise again, but never stop.

And the Amazon Prime membership is totally worth it.

Baby’s Bloggin’ on a Saturday Night

Hey, friends. It’s Super-Moon Saturday Night, and I’m chilling (literally, since it’s about 10 degrees cooler now than it was this afternoon when we hit a high of 93) on the deck. Watching the moon, sipping a strawberry cocktail made with berries from our garden, a cool breeze is blowing, cool jazz is in my headphones, and I’m blogging.

And life looks pretty darn good from here.


Your Story – Age 34

In November, I had the privilege of sharing my testimony at church. I thought, as I reflect on everything God has done for me in 2012, that I’d share it with you here over the next few days. Happy New Year, friends – may we see God move this year in ways we never have before.

You’re 34. It now takes more than the fingers on both hands to count the years since you’ve been kissed. You weather the doctor’s appointments where he tells you that, when it comes to having children someday, you’re probably going to need “some help.” You don’t go to weddings by yourself anymore. You send your regrets. And you go to Jesus on those nights, pouring out your hurts and your pain and your loneliness to Him. You learn more and more to go to Him first, to put Him first, and to find peace in Him.

You do things you always dreamed of doing. You start training to run a half-marathon. You quit your job to start your own writing business. You get up in front of your congregation to tell them your story, how you’ve tried to honor God with your relationships, how you’ve given over all your hopes and dreams and striving to Him. You finally find peace in your place in God’s kingdom, and you realize that peace doesn’t come unless you’ve first fought a battle. And you’ve fought, so hard and so long, to make your life fit your plans. And you’ve found the beautiful surrender of letting God’s dreams for you blow your own dreams away. His story is so much bigger, so much more powerful, than you ever thought. You see how His hand of love and faithfulness has been weaving your story into His all along.

He wants all of you. And He’s wanted you all along. And life is so good when you let Him have you. All of you.

Your Story – Age 29

In November, I had the privilege of sharing my testimony at church. I thought, as I reflect on everything God has done for me in 2012, that I’d share it with you here over the next few days. Happy New Year, friends.

You’re 29. Jesus is leading you to do things in His strength you never thought you could. You buy a house at auction, and move it across a county. You travel to Europe by yourself. You build a wonderful network of loved ones across the country, across the world. You lean hard on Jesus during the tough times.

You tell men who’ve had too much to drink at parties that you’re a virgin, and watch their responses. It’s usually something along the lines of, “But you’re good-looking!” You laugh, and tell them it’s a choice – not a lack of opportunity. But you sometimes doubt your own worth, your own desirability. You date men occasionally, and get confident enough in yourself and in your God to let them go when they aren’t right for you. You get lonely sometimes, but you lean hard on Jesus. He holds you up.