In keeping with the #TBT tradition, I introduced a throwback series on the blog, last week. It turns out starting a public diary a decade ago based on total naivety and curiosity has provided more than just embarrassment of my youth and ignorance. It has reminded me that I did in fact make video blogs many years ago from my very first bachelorette bungalow (a very small studio apartment off Ventura Boulevard in Los Angeles, California.)
I discussed such urgent matters like the opening of a place called Pinkberry where I first experienced cereal on tart frozen yogurt. Such video is never to resurface. My blog #TBT posts will be much like myFacebook or Instagram "Remember when" funny photos with friends, but also a little something more.
As I continue to share more of my newest ventures with you on this blog, it is important for me to share that my writing journey and more importantly my faith journey began long before my father's suicide. I want you to know that as you get to know me more, and I get to know you. As embarrassing as some of my old posts can be—like a contrast and comparison piece on finding the perfect fall handbag, they are also a map that chronicles a treasure hunt of sorts. My hunt for something more--often hitting dead ends or taking a scenic route. And a treasure that was (WHO) and is with me all along. A God who has guided me, carried me, and let me wander into the desert to lead me home to Him.
The HOME in Him--the settleness He provides in an unsettling world IS the treasure. The ETERNAL PEACE He graces us with at conversion is just the beginning of a lifetime of experiencing the joy and peace we can have secure in Him for this life. But, sweet friends, it is not something I have figured out(I know, shocking, right? bhahaha), and it's not something ANY of us just "figure out" on this Earth. It's a continual journey here! But take heart! We are moving. You can grow and move onward!
I challenged you last week to begin journaling yourself and taking account of the PRESENT.
It can feel silly or meaningless to chronicle our often mundane daily life, but it is in the present that God is shaping us for our future good. There were periods during my twenties when I felt like the future was so out of focus and that I was living a life that was leading to an unknown and probably very disappointing 'Emerald City'. But in the most radical and life changing 10 months of my life, God has come straight down to my broken heart and keeps wiping my ugly girl cry tears. He dries them long enough for my focus to shift from blurry to clear. The clarity He provides in moments and hours and even days is beyond anything in the merry old Land of Oz. And the answers He has given me have often been through looking back at what I wrote years before. Our journals reveal the beat of our hearts, the patterns of our thoughts, and the pace of our race. I am so thankful and encouraged that all along those days that often felt wasted or experiences that I viewed as failures or dissapointments were actually essential parts of the story He is telling in my heart.
And, He is doing the same for you!!!!
So yes, be encouraged, He truly is a God who is working ALL THINGS TOGETHER FOR GOOD, for those who love Him and are called according to His purpose (from Romans 8:28)
So today, I am sharing again from my first blog.
It was called "Goodbye Yellow Brick Road"
I guess it was part Judy and part Elton.
This post was dated 2006.
Today's "Throwback post" from the old blogspot days was a share of a poem by Maya Angelou, that my dear friend Erin sent to me via email back in 2006. She encouraged me in my faith then and she encourages me now. I was 3,000 miles from home, and I was just as far from my college community too. I was dipping my toes into the world of adulting. I was super naive. Young. In many ways I thought I had everything figured out, but I actually was just realizing I was mess. And everyone else was too. For the first time I wrestled with understanding if I believed what I believed because it was truly in my gut, core, and heart. Was I motivated and convicted by my own worldview or was I just playing a part I had always known? It was exciting and terrifying. I had posted just prior to receiving her email one of my stream of consciousness /mess of a millennial/wrestling with belief, doubt, grace, and God...(oh yeah, I did those back then too.) The next day, Erin, sent this poem my way. She was on her own post college journey navigating the world of being a newly wed and new English teacher. But she came alongside me and with just the typing of a few words and encouraged my soul. She was no longer across the college apartment hallway, but she was still with me side by side. Gosh, how thankful I am for it. My conversion and subsequent "immersion story"(as I like to call it) has been one that is marked by the nourishment and encouragement of friends.
Conversations that connect us not because it is always rainbows and butterflies but because I am challenged, convicted, and always grace and hope filled.
Our words are powerful.
May we identify and write down our own.
And may we use the truest ones we know, as my dear friend Erin did, to spur one another on.
More to come from these Thursday thoughts and ramblings...I'm hitting the road, but enjoy your TBT post from Maya!!