Friday, August 30, 2013

(wo)men at work

For someone without a regular 9-5 job, the Friday before a holiday weekend looses a bit of its luster. That extra day off used to be something I eagerly anticipated and celebrated.
"Well-earned" we would say together as we met for a drink on a patio.

I think that may be what I miss the most about 9-5, the feeling of earning my keep.
Research says, intrinsically, we want to earn rewards. Even those people who disagree with reinforcement techniques, will often say they deserve the same perks as their peers simply because they haven't done anything wrong. Which itself is indicative of good behavior(hard work) = perks.

Its rather interesting the change in what earn means through the years. My grandpa was of the generation of WORK. Didn't matter if you liked it, were good at it or felt fulfilled- you did what needed to be done and were thankful to "earn your spot". He was strong and very aware of his strengths and weaknesses. He said there was never a thing that couldn't be healed/fixed/answered after a hard days work.  I never once saw him wonder his place in the world.

Now many of us are pursuing our own passions and dreams and we don't stay at jobs that we loose interest in. We seek more...of everything.  I don't believe that's wrong at all, I'm example number one.  I do think that perhaps the internal value of earning, that knowing that you are contributing in a valuable way seemed stronger in he and his peers. I could list a chapter of people I've met that wonder daily what they are contributing in life. People that perhaps feel they haven't earned a spot.

I will never think life is about work, the job. I know that there are endless opportunities to grow, learn and contribute outside of the job. But perhaps work, the action, is what many of us are missing in life. The act of giving it all you have is very different from being at work 12 hours a day.
I honestly can't say the last day I gave it all.

This weekend I hope we celebrate all our options, encourage ourselves to get through hard jobs and are generous in our moments of freedom and days off with those we love.
(And be thankful we aren't working with my grandpa because he would have worn us out!)

*Labor Day is more than the end of Summer, most importantly its a celebration of the achievements of American workers.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

something small

I said yes.
It was a simple choice really. I decided anytime someone asked me to do something and my gut reaction was no- I would say yes. (This excludes any illegal/inappropriate behavior, naturally)
Since I hadn't be able to find my own open doors perhaps all the avoided opportunities were the right ones?

A lady that is close to me suggested I do this favor; a road trip to Virginia to deposit a visiting missionary's car and then meeting with the organizations staff. My gut said no because I am not the missionary type and driving is my third least favorite thing(1.sweating 2.using public restrooms).
But I readily said yes, and even got myself a little excited; should be a beautiful drive, never been to Virginia. As I was making preparation something seemed off, can't pinpoint it but this lady seemed guarded, indecisive and (gulp) long-winded.
But still I was committed, I thought God will use this opportunity in unknown ways, I will trust that. And I had plenty of  time, what could it hurt.

5 days, 1 meeting, 6 phone calls and 3 texts later and I'm not going.
But it wasn't me-it was her that backed out!
I kept saying yes every time I wanted to say no, gracefully and respectfully. She was kind to me and began being more transparent. Hesitancy is often insecurity. Ultimately it had to do with finances as my flight was quite expensive but I do wonder....
if He is just tenderly watching something small grow.

Saturday, August 17, 2013


I need to follow the recipe.
This is what I think to myself as I make our family dinner. But I add more paprika, garlic, coriander and a little honey. I squeeze lime juice all over the steak. I am using taste I like, assuming they will work. I cook it longer that it says, it doesn't look right yet.

Logically you would think I would learn that recipes work for a reason. But something in me- when faced with seemingly endless options(spices, herbs, marinades/ grill, bake, fry)-wants to try them all.
How can I decide that is indeed the best combination?

Its the narrowing down that overwhelms me. As soon as I really allow myself to dream big an avalanche of possible pursuits roll into every thought. I keep a notebook of possible business ideas. I currently have 3 pages, endless options(blog+online business, overseas work, retail store, nonprofit management, event planning) When I list fears I can't seem to get past the biggest- which way, which one?
My mind sees opportunities in low income neighborhoods, in retail developments, in overseas ministries....and I don't have the means (or skills frankly) to just #start on my own.
I pray God will open a door or put an arrow in my focus but I have been praying that for some time - perhaps there is a recipe already written that I'm just not following?

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

less is more

One must return to the beginning to truly understand the story.

I'll admit I lost interest in blogging. It seems like everyone in the world became a blogger.
 And actually thought people would want to spend 5-10 min reading about them. It just seemed so...selfish. I couldn't imagine I'd have that much to say or the world  needed one more voice giving their opinion. No offense if any blogger ever reads this...I'm sure your perspective is valid. Props.
Its kinda my tattoo theory- what do I need to say that will be forever?

At this point, I'm here working through a program I started to challenge me to do things that make me uncomfortable. To pursue what is in my heart and head. {And some people graciously want to support my wanderings...}
less talking more action card
made by me

For the record some life changes have occurred:
1-quit job, applied to overseas positions
2-sold my stuff
3-drove a uhaul! back home to  rural GA
4-didn't get any overseas positions/fellowships
5-temporary home in GA has now been several months..ANXIOUS
6-unexpectedly started volunteering at women's homeless shelter
7-asked to create logo/branding for shelter and partner ministry
8-have enjoyed much needed quality time with family
9-wanting to have own business? or at very least develop products overseas and have made some very small steps- check