Tag Archives: Life


Pursue experiences because no one wants to hear stories
about all the money you made. – Simon Sinek

I kinda love that. Like a lot. I am a fan of experiences. I like to create & design them. And in the end, I think experiences make for a much more fulfilling life than making money. But that’s just my humble opinion.

I treasure experiences…well at least most of them :) My favorite one lately: worshipping with my Journey family during SPACE – a station based worship environment – last Monday. An incredible blend of reflection, peace, and joy.

What is your favorite experience in recent memory?

The Twenty – #1: The Most Difficult Thing about Working at a Church

Gary Molander is someone I have great respect for and someone I think you should know. And when Gary posted a list of 20 things he wanted people to write about I got some inspiration. So, welcome to The Twenty series. One post a week. One topic from the list each week. Some of them I already have countless ideas for. Others, not so much. So, it ought to be a good challenge. :)

#1: The Most Difficult Thing About Working at a Church

Looking back I honestly think that the most difficult thing about working at a church for me was what came after I left.

I have struggled since leaving my position at a church to feel like I am living my purpose. And I’ve just recently begun to understand why. I feel called to serve the Church. And for the last 7 years of my life serving the Church has been my job. Though I was only on staff for 2 years at a church prior to that I served in roles that were volunteer staff for lack of a better description. So for 7 years what I have labeled ministry has been very regular, very scheduled, very constant in my life.

Fast forward to now, and I am not doing anything close to that. I am involved in my local church and volunteer a bit outside of that as well, but not nearly on the scale that I have for so long. Yet, I still long to live for something greater than myself…to feel like I am living my God-given purpose.

I’ve come to the realization that I have defined ministry as a job rather than a lifestyle.  I came to equate serving the Church with vocational ministry and ministry with being on church at a staff. I put serving the Church in the box of church staff and ministry in the box of church staff. In my mind the way to serve the Church was to be on church staff and ministry was being on church staff. And the reality is I think many who work in churches today end up doing that same thing without even knowing it.

But ministry is so much bigger than being on staff at a church and serving the Church is so much bigger than vocational ministry. Ministry is life. Life is ministry. At the end of the day ministry is people, it is serving the Church, it is compassion and caring and supporting and encouraging and admonishing and discipling and mentoring and loving. It is life. And it happens in schools and department stores. On blogs and on airplanes. In medical offices and art studios. It happens wherever it is that God places you. And so does serving the Church.

As I retrain my brain and learn redefine the term “ministry” I see that I really am living my purpose. If I am loving Him and loving others. If I am living out my faith, using the gifts He’s given me, then I am living my purpose. I am serving the Church. I am doing ministry.

How do you define “ministry” and “serving the Church?”

Throwback Sundays…What Makes Your Heart Smile?

I love days and moments that make my heart smile. Those times where I am overflowing with contentment, peace, and gratitude. And I’ve had quite an abundance of days and moments like that since moving to Nashville. I have a new phrase I like to use to describe those moments…”sunrise in my heart” (see video) but I still treasure them.

Check out the rest of the post here and share what makes your heart smile. :)


“Occasionally in life there are those moments of unutterable fulfillment which cannot be completely explained by those symbols called words. Their meanings can only be articulated by the inaudible language of the heart.” — Martin Luther King, Jr.

A great conversation with a friend that gets to the heart.
A stunningly beautiful sunset.
A good cup of coffee.
A kind though unfamiliar face.
Showing love to a stranger.

I’ve had several of those moments in the last two weeks. And I am deeply grateful for every one of them. They are the moments when all seems right with the world and my heart smiles unable to contain the joy.

What are those moments in your life? Do you recognize them? Do you savor them?

One Size Fits All

If you think about the idea of “one size fits all” it’s quite laughable. I’m talking about “one size fits all” in regards to our roles and responsibilities in life and in the Church. In fact, not only is it laughable but it’s contrary to Scripture which tells us over and over again that we are separate parts of one body designed to play unique roles; parts that need one another. So, my question then becomes, why does it seem that so often in the church we communicate the message that one size does and should fit all, that our lives should all follow the same pattern?

I’ve spent the better part of my life believing this myth. Now I’ll admit, it was and is something that I have personal control over. I can chose to listen to the myth or to look at Scripture and listen to it. But, that doesn’t make the myth okay. And that doesn’t mean we should go on communicating, intentionally or not, that myth as the Church.

Let me explain a bit what I mean. When I graduation from college and decided not to become a teacher to work in the church after spending 5 years studying Education and getting my State teaching license, people thought I was crazy. Fast forward two years and I’m again doing something that most people have told me is crazy. I’m leaving my job – one that many would consider a “dream job.” I’m moving. And I haven’t really a clue what I’m going to do and have just recently decided that I think I know where I’m going to move to but even that is still kind of up in the air. Most people I have shared my story with think that I am absolutely insane.

Why do they think I’m crazy? They think I’m crazy because I’m 25 and I have no intention to “settle down” or “lay down roots” anytime soon. (Side note: I think you can “lay down roots” without being tied to one geographical location) They think I’m crazy because I don’t have getting married and starting a family at the very top of my immediate priority list. Nor do I have a laser focused career I’m pursuing or a ladder I’m looking to climb. (Side note #2 – You can tell the path people think you should be following by the questions they ask) And I’ll admit that there are times when I have to stop myself because I’m thinking they’re crazy for wanting all of those things right now that I don’t.

But the truth is God uses all sorts in His Kingdom. If we were all nomadic and laid down roots as we traveled the world engaging in relationships with friends and missions around the globe the local church would struggle. And if we all wanted to settle down and stay put the global church would struggle.

My encouragement to you (and to myself) is this: Live the role God has given you intentionally and with purpose. Embrace it even if others think it is crazy. Seek to use your unique role and gifts not to separate yourself but to bring people together for the Kingdom.

And my encouragement to the Church (and to myself as part of the Church): May we learn to embrace the different roles God has created for His people. Let’s seek to build relationships with those who live different roles that together God can use us to do amazing things for His Kingdom.

These Are the Stories of a Girl (Writing Stories Pt 2)

I have been wrestling with this post all day…really all week. But, I said I would post it, so I’m going to keep my word. If you missed part one, you can check it out here for the background on this post. These stories are in no particular order and in fact I believe they are interwoven and depend on one another.

Bridge the Gap
Although I can’t quite put a finger on it or give it a Webster worthy definition, I’ve had a feeling in my heart for a while now that there is a gap in the Church. A gap between what the Church is and what God intended the Church to be. God has placed a burden on my heart for this gap and the impact it has on how we live as the Church. He’s waking me up to the realization that His people, His Church, needs to be awakened. I’m not sure what that looks like exactly, but I know WHY. I think that in many areas we have strayed far from God’s heart, from what is important to Him. And I think it’s time we find our way back to that. I feel like God is calling me to be a very small part of the solution, one small gap stander. But, before I can be a part of the solution He needs to wake my heart up a little bit more and better prepare me to stand in the gap. I have a feeling this is more of a life story, not one that is going to be anywhere near written in 2010…but I pray I’ll at least see the first chapter.

Experience the Church Outside of America
Fact: I haven’t been on a mission trip since high school. And none of those were international. I would definitely call the volunteer work I did during college local missions, and while that started the opening of my eyes, it isn’t enough. If I am going to help others see what’s possible outside of the box I have to step outside of the box myself first…far outside! This story is in motion…more on it later. I think this story is an important part in how the bridging the gap story is going to be carried out.

Invest in Relationships and Community
I wholeheartedly believe relationships are at the foundation of everything. At the end of the day it’s my relationship with God, with my Savior that matters. His command to us is centered around relationship – Love Him and love our neighbors. That simple…and also that important. But I’ll be honest, relationships don’t come naturally to me. I thoroughly enjoy serving people, hearing their stories, and showing them Christ’s love. But, truly investing in relationship and community means sharing my story and who I am. That is something I have never enjoyed doing because it requires trust, and I suck at trust. But, in this season of surrender, I feel God calling me to surrender all…my fear of trust is included. And so, I’m challenging myself to truly, authentically, and transparently invest in relationships.

Be Okay with Being a Creative Doer
Call me quirky, but I’m a “quote collector.” I’ve always loved them. I often have trouble finding sufficient words to describe what’s in my head, and oftentimes quotes do the trick. One I like is from Sarah Ban Breathnach who said, “The world needs dreamers and the world needs doers. But above all, the worlds needs dreamers who do.” Now, I’m  not so sure about the “above all” part, I think there is a reason God gifted us each differently and created us to work together. Some are created to be dreamers. Some are created to be doers. But I think there are some created to live in between those two worlds. And I feel like one of those. I honestly feel like there are two halves to me – the dreamer side and the practical organized (doer) side. For a long time I thought that creativity was limited to the dreaming, but I’ve come to realize that it can be just as linked to the doer side. I feel that for some reason I’ve held on so tightly to the dreamer side that I haven’t used the doer/implementer side as much as God created me to. And so, I’m on a mission to embrace that and to use it for His glory. This is another instance of “what that looks like I don’t know,” but something like getting behind the dreamers and serving behind the scenes to make their dreams a reality for the Kingdom.

Those are the stories God has placed on my heart in this season of life. Please feel free to hold me accountable to them, to ask me about them in conversation – virtual or otherwise.

What stories has God placed on your heart? I’d love to hear them!