My Person

This is my best friend. We are very much the same and yet very different.

She is an extrovert. I am an introvert.

She likes to ride bikes. I like to read books.

She pushes me out of my comfort zone every day. (at least it was every day when we lived together)

We laugh together, cry together, do life together.

We are crazy sometimes. We are serious other times.

We are there for each other.

I never though we would be as close as we are. That we would share our lives together. That we would grow to together. That we would pick each other up.

It happened anyways. It was meant to be. God had a plan for us.

Without this girl, I would have never moved to Kansas.

Without this girl, I would have never made all the other friends I made in Kansas.

Without this girl, I would be missing a lot.

We live apart now. Thousands of miles apart. We don’t talk as much as we used to. But still she is my best friend.

Just one word from her will bring a smile to my face.

Just a small piece of advice from her will point me in the right direction.

And just one hug from her will make my day.

I love you forever and always.

This post was inspired by the daily prompt

Stand Up

What do you stand up for?

In my head, I stand up for lots of things. I have lots of causes, or social issues, that I get stuck on. But I rarely let them out. There are things that I feel passionate about, but that I don’t always show that passion.

And I definitely don’t know organizations that support my passions.

I am a social worker at heart. Which means that social issues get to me every time. Maybe that’s not just a social worker characteristic, but for me the two go hand in hand.

Child Poverty. Where I live we have horrible child poverty rates, the worst in my country. It hurts to think about it, and I just want to do about it. Whatever choices parents made that landed them in poverty are not the fault of the child. And I think we have a duty to protect and help both adults and children who live in poverty. But it is the kids who really get to me.

Foster kids. So many kids who have been removed from their homes for a variety of reasons, and every time it breaks my heart. There are so many kids who need a little love, whose families need a little bit of help. Some kids get moved around, shuffled between homes. Some kids have nothing for themselves. I think we often like to pretend these kids don’t exist. But I can’t forget it.

Orphans. You’re getting the pattern aren’t you? I think in the Western world we don’t see orphans the same as we do international orphans. We think they need less. They need us less. But they all need us. Here or abroad. First world or third world. They are still parentless. They still need love. They need someone to adopt them.

So really, its just kids. All of them. Whatever they are going through. Wherever they are. I want to help them.

And outside of my chosen profession, I don’t know what to do about it.

Any suggestions?

What about you? Where are your passions? What do you want to support?

 

40acts: Listen

God gave you two ears and one mouth for a reason.

Ever heard that statement? The point is you should listen twice as much as you should talk. It makes sense. But we all like to hear the sound of our own voice.

Ironically, the day of the listen challenge I had no voice. Well I had a little voice, but it hurt to talk.

And, ironically, the day of the challenge I met with a friend who needed to talk.

God plans in mysterious ways doesn’t he?

When setting this meeting I felt I needed to confront her, as a believer in God, as her sister in Christ. I felt I needed to call her out on her choices.

But then I lost my voice, and the timing seemed all wrong.

So I listened to my friend tell me about the choices she’s been making, choices that I strongly disagree with, and I heard her side of the story. Without interfering, without judging, just with 2 ears and no mouth.

And I learned something. Something about her, about what she wants, about why she is willing to do what she wants to do.

And the point is not that I suddenly agree with her, because I don’t. The point is not that now it all makes sense to me, because it doesn’t.

The point is that she needed to talk. And I needed to listen.

Maybe it was God’s divine planning, that I didn’t need to confront her in that moment. Or maybe just that I needed to listen before confronting. I’m not sure.

Time will tell.

But listening. It’s hard. I want to give her my two cents. I wanted to advise her. But maybe, sometimes, that is not my place.

Sometimes my place is to listen and not say a word.

 

 

40acts: Connect

We live in a world in which we can all be connected all the time.

With the touch of a button I can go on Facebook and see what my friends are up to.

Every waking moment I can be on my phone texting people, constantly communicating,

And yet, more often then not, we are not truly connected.

I have lived in the same house for 23 years. And I know only one of my neighbors. I walk my dog frequently, see people out and about constantly, and yet never even give a smile. I live minutes away from my friends and yet rarely see them

Not all that connected are we?

So 40acts challenges us to strike up a conversation with someone around our home. Neighbors, grocery clerk, strangers.

It’s a scary thing for me. I have never been good at starting a conversation with someone I don’t know. But I think it will be good to challenge myself.

So my goal over the weekend (and beyond):

  • smile at people. When I lived in small town Kansas, everyone smiled and waved at each other. Big city Surrey does not do that, so the habit died for me. But now I will do it again.
  • talk to someone around town. As I’ve been thinking about this I see an opportunity. See, I have a puppy. And everyone things she is adorable and wants to stop to meet her. Perfect chance to talk back to them! So that is my goal.
  • talk to someone around church. I am still working on getting connected into my church. I love my community group, but there are so many other people there too. So tomorrow at church I want to talk to someone, get to know them even if just a little bit.

40acts: Write it Down

journal

I’ve always enjoyed writing, but have never been good at journaling with any consistency. Now this blog is my version of a journal. Just one for everyone to read.

But the act of journaling is important I think. It’s a time to reflect on things. To get your thoughts out. To see where you were and where you are going.

It makes sense then that the first challenge of 40acts is to start a journal. How else are we to see what this challenge accomplishes? How else are we supposed to record the things that happen?

There are two questions asked in this first act:

What things are you thankful for today?

Since starting Thankful Thursday I have been focused on finding things that I am grateful for each week. But for this, I thought I would think of things on a larger scale:

  • I am thankful for my family. I love them and I hate them, but they are mine forever, and I am thankful for that.
  • I am thankful for my job. It might not be my ideal job, but I have one, and I get paid, and I can’t complain.
  • I am thankful for my church. Moving back home has been made easier by my church and the community I have found myself in. It makes a world of difference.
  • I am thankful for grace. God knows I need a lot of it. And somehow it just keeps coming.
  • I am thankful that I have more than enough. I do not want for things (except for things that I don’t even really need)

Who do you want to bless through 40acts?

This one was harder. It takes thought to think of people you want to impact. But I did come up with some.

  • My coworker. We don’t always see eye to eye. And she often comes across as bitter and resentful. Maybe I could bless her in some small way and make a difference.
  • A close friend. We have drifted apart through my move to Kansas and I so want to change that, but the effort on her part is not always there. Maybe it is time for that not to matter anymore. Maybe I can bless her and change our relationship.
  • My family. Sometimes they are just people I live with. People who do a lot for me. It is time to pay it forward.
  • My kids. They are so much fun and sometimes I am so frustrated with the situation or with them. I would like to be happier for them. To do more for them. To touch their lives in some ways.
  • A stranger. I have always wanted to be the person who could do something for a stranger or talk to a stranger, but have never been brave enough. I think there is something so amazing about people who can make an impact on a person they’ve never met before and will never meet again.
  • Myself. It might be selfish, but I want to make an impact on myself. And I think giving to others is a good way to inspire myself to change.

 

I hope you enjoy this journey as much as I think I will. Or join me if you wish.

It could be life changing.

 

40acts

I’ve never been a person who does lent.

Everyone around me gives up Facebook for 40 days. or chocolate. or some other unhealthy habit. I never did. It was never a big thing in my church (still isn’t). It was never something that tugged on my heart.

And now that’s all about to change.

But not to give something up. I think that is great. And I’m sure it helps a lot of people get back in touch with their spirituality. So if that’s what you are doing, I think that is awesome.

But I’m going to add something to my life.

One of the girls in the community group found 40acts. It challenges people to live generously. And don’t we all need that? To be more generous?

I have so much, but think I have so little. There is a lot that I could do to be more generous, to be more giving, to be more Christ-like.

So, along with my community group, I am going to participate in these 40 acts and see where God takes me through this time.

And I am also going to challenge myself to blog more (I know I haven’t been blogging much lately) by blogging about the challenges and my response to them. So stay tuned, the next 40 days are going to be exciting!

Want to join? There is a link above or click the 40acts image on the sidebar!