Greetings KerygmaWorld! As I sit in my office writing to you, I am periodically glancing at these two annoying stink bugs who have taken up residence on the inside of the screen of my closed window. I hate those ugly little bugs, but they gross me out so much that I can't bring myself to even look at them much less try to remove them. When the first one appeared, I avoided dealing with it hoping that it would go away. Then the next day when I entered my office, I noticed that the first one invited a friend. Now they just sit there, alive but neither one moving from the spot where they have become comfortable.
Recently while a friend and I updated one another on the highs and lows of where we now find ourselves, she pointed out the fact that she felt like her conversation has not changed at all in the past year. She felt she was still voicing the same concerns and raising the same questions about her life that she did a year ago. I thought about it and somewhat agreed with that observation concerning my own life. I remember saying to my big sister in January that I felt like I was standing still and that I hoped not to be having the same conversation this time next year. Yet there I was, days before the November 1st, having a very similar conversation. By the time I hung up the phone with my friend, I decided that more than "hoping", I would not be having this same conversation come January 2010.
We are now in the last two months of 2009. Very soon we will become enthralled in the madness of the holiday season- deciding who's spending which holiday where, buying gifts, and decorating our homes. As tempting as it to write off the rest of 2009, ride it out until New Year, and commit to a whole new list of resolutions, there is still time this year to make changes that are significant and meaningful. Some of you may feel as I do, that there are just so many things beyond your control. I can't immediately change my finances or available resources. I can't snap my fingers and all of a sudden have years of experience in the thing that I think I might like to do. That might very well be true, but we can all do the things that we know to do. For each of us those things may be different, but I'd like to share with you what those things are for me in these last two months of 2009:
Becoming more intentional- It took the recent dissolution of a professional and ministry relationship for me to realize that I had been waiting for permission to "be." I had been waiting for something outside of myself to create and opportunities for me to operate in my gifts. The absence of this relationship forced me into a place of having to reinvent myself and decide for myself how and when I will operate in and present my gifts. Marcia Wieder says that intention means, among other things, to direct the mind. She goes on to say, "lacking intention, we sometimes stray without meaning or direction. But with it, all the forces of the universe can align to make even the most impossible, possible." In the past I waited for "something" to happen, but in these last two months of the year my plan is to become more intentional with my actions and energy, targeting both in the direction of making things happen for myself. I want to be an active participant in co-creating with God the life I that is intended for me.
Believing my dreams with certainty- Luke 1:45 says Blessed is she that believed: for there will be a performance of those things told her from the Lord. This text is taken from the Advent story where the coming of the long-awaited Messiah is announced. I love Advent season (this year, November 29th through December 24th) because I usually find myself in my own season of expectancy. Two years ago this time, Damon and I were praying our way into our new home which we moved into right before Christmas. I remember that time being filled with fear and doubt, yet I was determined to walk in faith and believe that God would keep his promises concerning this house. God did, and here I sit today pursuing my dreams for
KerygmaWord. It's easy to lose sight of that while facing so many challenges that don't seem to budge. Nevertheless, for the next two months I am determined to walk in faith, believing that every promise God has made will come to pass and operating accordingly. This includes framing my thoughts, my words, and my actions in ways that are in agreement with what God has spoken to me.
Acknowledging what has already been accomplished- Three years ago I told a friend that one of my dreams is to launch a magazine for and about women. This was long before I conceived of KerygmaWord which has now become a platform by which I use my voice and the voices of other amazing individuals to impact lives and effect change in the world. While KerygmaWord is by no means what I envisioned at that particular moment, it is God's manifestation of that seed planted in my heart so long ago. It is in many ways far more than what I could have conceived at the time because it draws on many of the things I am passionate about- creative use of technology, diverse and inspiring voices, writing as a creative art form, and women as change-makers. In my dissatisfaction with other areas of my life, I almost missed this. I almost missed the fact that God has allowed me to become established as a preacher who travels and ministers both the young and grown alike. I almost didn't see that in ending one association, God has given me a wider platform for ministry without limitations. I almost overlooked the fact that God has established my reputation as a solid preacher, a gifted teacher, and a woman of integrity. These are important gifts that give me the tools and the courage to move forward in the direction of my purpose.
This is specifically how I plan to face and move in each and every day of the last two months of 2009. I am also happy to share that after days of hanging out in the same place, those two stink bugs are finally on the move (one has even disappeared). Maybe they too got tired of sitting in the same place and decided to find their way out of whatever had them feeling trapped. Or maybe they heard my words and thoughts, and became inspired to go off in search of their stink bug destiny. With the time you have left in 2009, what will you do to move closer towards making your life what you want it to be? Will you wait passively for life to shift in a more agreeable direction or will you become an active participant in the creation of the life you were intended to live?