One Year Challenge

A year off from dating, flirting and premarital relations. This is a time for healing and understanding the woman God wants me to be, while also preparing myself for the man that I will invest my future life and family with.


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Day 242- Prayer

May God bless you with discomfort
At easy answers, half truths, and superficial relationships,
So that you may live deep within your heart.

May God bless you with anger
At injustice, oppression, and exploitation of people,
So that you may work for justice, freedom, and peace.

May God bless you with tears
To shed for those who suffer pain, rejection, hunger, and war,

So that you may reach out your hand to comfort them and to turn their pain to joy.

And may God bless you with enough foolishness
To believe that you can make a difference in the world,
So that you can do what others claim cannot be done,
To bring justice and kindness to all our children and the poor.

Amen

-a fransiscan benediction

Day 235- Wouldn’t ya know it….

Wouldn’t ya know it…

I got courageous and admitted to my actions…

I laid it all out on the table….

and a little over 24 hours later I find myself on the phone with the person I admitted to be dating, to tell him I think it’s best if we stop seeing each other. He agreed. We both knew it wasn’t good for either of us.

I just felt convicted. I received nothing but encouragement and support from everyone who’s been with me on this journey. My action definitely wasn’t guilt driven. Once I was able to to admit to myself what I was doing, it just didn’t feel right. He was a great guy, just not the guy for me.

I’m not saying all of this to charm myself back into the “one year challenge”.  Clearly I wasn’t able to keep up with it but I feel like I definitely learned a lesson here.

Not sure what is on the horizon but I do know that “official” challenge or not,  I’m definitely not done growing

233- It’s been real

I’m going to be very careful on how I say this… and most of you aren’t going to like it.

This challenge has been really good for me. I’m an incredibly stubborn and hardheaded person and sometimes I need to learn the hard way.

But to be honest with myself and with everyone….to say I haven’t been “dating” the last month or so is complete lie.  It’s a lie to myself, to God and to everyone in my life who thinks I haven’t been.  I had the best of intentions but life has a funny way of getting in the way of how you expect certain things to go.

I’m not saying I’m proud, but then again I’m not saying I’m NOT proud either. I can tell you one thing: I’m not perfect.  I have succeeded at almost everything I’ve ever tried to do.  The “One year Challenge” just didn’t seem to make the cut. I’m tired of saying I’m doing one thing and then acting another way. It’s time to be real.  If that pisses you off, I’m sorry.

There are some things I have accomplished through all of this

  • I’ve established a real relationship with God
  • I’ve made friends with an incredible group of Godly women who will probably kick me in the butt once they realize all of this has happened.
  • I’ve been connected through my community group to see how the body of Christ is supposed to live and love one another.
  • I’ve opened my Bible more in the last 7 months than in the last 4 years
  • I’ve grown past the heartache and misery of my last failed romantic relationship
  • I made it 6 months (haha)
  • I moved to Memphis on my own and established a life (a damn good one at that)
  • I’ve seen myself through a lens I’ve never been able to see through- and I’m not entirely happy with what I’ve found. At least now I can fix some things
  • I trust that God will continue to influence and guide my life- He’s got my back

I might regret this, I might not.  I’m not intending to go on a dating rampage. If things don’t work out with what I have going on right now, I may decide to take another month off, or I might not.  I have no answers.

I will carefully go through the next phase with prayer and see where I end up. I’m grateful for all the support I’ve had up to this point. I’m encouraged by the other women who have embraced this challenge around me. I hope their ending looks different from mine.

I don’t accept defeat well. But not recognizing where I am is being dishonest. I don’t want to be dishonest anymore.

I want to live, love and continue to grow.  Who knows, maybe with the “pressure” off myself to complete this challenge I can really focus on what I intended to go after in the first place.

Please don’t hate on me, just love me and who I am. Not who you expected me to be.

Day 219- A very “Intentional” Saturday night solo

I have a lot of demands for my time. In regard to God, family, friends, the hospital, school work, COMPS exam, community group, new rules girls group, Brody, figuring out my life plan past May…….sometimes I forget to take some time for myself. I use my commute to reflect on myself but considering that the drive is 10 minutes max round trip, it’s not exactly a lot of time.

Hence my “NO PLANS” Saturday night. I have no commitments, no obligations, no money to be spent and NO worries. Just me, myself and I- and God.  (and COMPS studying- but that’s not important)

Humans by nature are social creatures and I know how much I enjoy having a very busy and planned schedule. Having “plans” takes the pressure off of the loneliness aspect of this challenge.  But being busy can be overrated sometimes.

Like most things in life, it is all about balance.

Day 212- You never marry the “right” person

My thoughts haven’t been so fluid lately hence all the posts with links versus the inner workings of my mind.  This is a great article for all my single AND not so single folk.

http://www.relevantmagazine.com/life/relationship/features/27749-you-never-marry-the-right-person

This just reassures that becoming the right person is more important than finding the “right” person. Essentially, they don’t exist.

Day 204- Bald and Beautiful

Childhood Cancer Awareness has long been a platform of mine. Here is a link to the online petition to Mattel for them to make a “Bald and Beautiful” Barbie, for little girls to identify with when chemo treatments cause hair loss. 

http://www.facebook.com/BeautifulandBaldBarbie

If you identify with this, join the movement!!

Day 199-One foot in the kingdom, One foot in the world

Like most girls my age I spend at least 30 minutes getting ready in the morning. It usually breaks up into about 15 for hair, 15 for make-up.  I’ve learned how to put just the right shade of foundation on my face, right color blush, bronze eye shadow, perfect pink tinted lipstick/gloss, black eyeliner, mascara.  My mask. When equipped with this face, I can smile with the best of them and walk with my head held high.

When I walked through the doors at fellowship this morning I was prepared with this face.  I had no idea that 10 minutes into worship every bit of it would be cried off.  I haven’t really been “feeling” the last few weeks.  I was hit with my tornado at work the first week of December and it’s kind of been downhill since then.  I figured it was easier to ignore the bad things if I just didn’t feel them, so I went numb.  Work was hard to get through those last few weeks, my friendships were losing it’s depth, Hawaii was wonderful except for the awful fight my brother and I had (which numbed me further because we still haven’t spoken), I spent Christmas eve and Christmas day alone (sick and sad). I went numb from the conversation I had with freckles, once I realized that he still holds the depth of my desires and he still hasn’t changed.  I came home from Florida a day early with the promise of something I thought would make me feel better-and it just didn’t. I just felt numb.  I didn’t pray, I didn’t read the Word, I didn’t listen to worship music.  I just wanted to feel nothing and I was doing a good job at it.

The opening worship song wasn’t even particularly convicting, but I felt like the floodgates opened and all the pent up emotions that I’ve been trying to hold back came bursting through.  I cried all the way through the beginning of Bryan’s sermon.  As I listened I was very touched with the words he had to say this morning.  He explained that we cannot disciple others if we have one foot in the kingdom and one foot in the world.  I know that is my struggle.  It’s always been my struggle. I want the best of both worlds and as followers of Him we cannot have both.   It scares the heck outta me to completely devote my life one way or another, but I’m getting so exhausted from riding the borderline. It’s time to pick.

I just don’t feel ready to yet.

Day 192- One Word: “Intentional”

New year, fresh start..yadda yadda- all that good stuff. Personally I’d like to give 2011 a great big kick out the door with a hope that it never returns. Amanda on Klove says it the best, “Peace out 2011!” 

Though it’s the beginning of a new year I feel like I got a head start on keeping resolutions and bettering myself with my OYC start in June.  But for the sake of tradition I’m once again adopting the One Word Resolution rather than a list of things I’ll inevitably fail at by February.   Last year I chose, Forgiveness (and I definitely think I made serious strides in keeping) and this year after thinking about several words that could fit I’ve decided on Intentional.

In other words I do not want to be passive. I want to be intentional with my relationship with God, intentional with my relationships with people (friends, family, coworkers), and intentional with my acts and how they affect others.  Every word of encouragement I speak I want it to come from God, every prayer I say I want it to be direct, every person I meet I want to take a real interest in my relationship with them and love them through God’s heart.   When I am in conversation I want to be be fully engaged, at work I want to give them my very best, when I’m playing with Brody I want my heart to be fully devoted to our play time.

I’m excited to see where I’ll end up this year.  A lot of changes could come with my May graduation and I’m curious to see where I’ll be placed. Memphis has been a great home and I’d like to stay here longer to engage further in the relationships I’ve made here. I know though, that is completely and totally not my call.

Welcome 2012: Show me whatcha got!!