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Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Thanksgiving, as an Action vs. a Holiday

Here I am, again, in this place where I have SO MUCH to say but can't find the right words. More accurately, I'm scared to speak the truth of the words that I'm feeling. I'm afraid of judgment, afraid that saying things out loud makes them real, and anxiously awaiting something amazing to happen so that I can fill my posts with that instead.
 
I feel myself sliding into a valley. Not a spiritual valley necessarily (thank the Lord), more like a life valley. One of those times when things are just "ehhhh" and that's honestly about the best way to describe them. Life feels a little bit messy right now. Work, family, relationships - all of it, presents me with more complicated days than easy ones.
 
My go-to girl Hannah Brencher apparently feels my vibe and wrote this post JUST FOR ME. I mean, come on! You know how much I love her, and her words always seem to speak truth into my given situation. Spot on. Thank you Jesus for HB and her connection to my soul!
 
If I'm being honest, my current valley probably has so much to do with my breakup. The boyfriend and I broke up two weeks ago. I'm not sure I can adequately describe to you the journey our relationship traveled since last March when we went on our first date. Roller coaster would be pretty close to a perfect term to use. I want so badly to believe that it was just a timing issue. I feel like we are such a great pairing on paper, but something was holding me back from riding it out to see how the story ended. I prayed...and prayed...and prayed some more but I never received that crystal clear answer that I wanted from God. Just that consistent feeling of hesitancy. I know that not all relationships are made to last, but I wanted this one to. I just don't know how much more back and forth either one of us could have handled. I have no choice but to put all my hope in the fact that if God wants to bring us back together, then He will control the path that leads us there. So there's that.
 
The holidays, in the past couple of years especially, have been a time of struggle for me. I can't tell you how incredibly overwhelmed I was at the thought of having to spend the holidays with my boyfriend's family. I could cry just thinking about it even still. Can we say ISSUES?? Something about all the family time and celebrations makes me feel like an outsider. I can't survive a family get together of my own without crying, resorting to drinking or daydreaming of stabbing someone (usually my mother). Loneliness is constantly lurking in the back of my mind telling me to compare my situation to everyone else's. I'm sure that's at least part of why I want my own family so urgently - to have that comfort of being an actual part of something. God has rescued me from these feelings of self pity so many times, and yet here I am entertaining the idea of them again. It's ridiculous.
 
I want to live a lifestyle of thanksgiving and praise God greatly for all that He has given me. I'm doing this awesome She Reads Truth bible study right now that's all about thanksgiving (the action of it, not the holiday). The other day Give Thanks in Suffering hit the nail on the head for me. I beg you to read this if you are going through any kind of suffering right now. Because I promise you, there's no way you can read these biblical truths and not feel beyond thankful to a Savior that offers HOPE. It offered me a much needed reminder that: This isn't all that there is. Our story goes on. Life gets better. God has BIGGER & BETTER things planned for you and I!

"Sisters, it’s okay to be sad. But we know Jesus who died for us in love and rose again in love, so that all that is broken can be redeemed, so that in the midst of terrible pain we can know this isn’t all there is.
 
Our hope is never in vain when it’s in Jesus. Our thanksgiving in times of suffering is a testament to how temporary the pain is in light of our great eternal joy and our everlasting hope."
 
“And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.”- Romans 5:5
 
 
This Thanksgiving (as in the actual holiday this time), I will be surrounded by amazing friends who love me unconditionally. I might be single again, but I am not alone. I will have a full belly, a warm house, and money to go Black Friday shopping. I am thankful for this valley, and all that it will bring. I cannot imagine a better place to be than here, where God draws me close to Him and covers me with his love. What more do I need?? My heart will overflow with praise for the Lord for all the blessings I do not deserve. I will wait expectantly and hope for a season of life that comes with a view from a mountaintop instead of a valley.

(PS - this is a great one too, Giving Thanks In Sorrow). "When you think you’ll never again be able to sing a song of thanksgiving, try it anyway. Our hearts may not be comfortable praising tragedy, loss, or bad days, but our hearts were created to praise the Hope of Glory."
 
Happy Thanksgiving friends! I'm thankful for the friendships I still have from blogging, and for all the support you give me when I whine :) XOXO
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Friday, November 7, 2014

5 on a Friday!

Hola senoritas! I'm just here today to give you a recap of what's been going on with me in the past couple of weeks. I have some really great posts (in my humble opinion haha) saved in my drafts folder, just haven't really had time to finish them out. So an update it is, in the form of my very favorite link up 5 on Friday of course.
 
 
{ONE}
I just got home from a week in Florida for a work conference. I'm human so of course I love the beach, but as a Southerner I get real sick of the humidity that comes with an East TN summer. I don't think I've ever visited the beach during November, and I couldn't have been more pleased with the weather we had in Sandestin. Absolutely gorgeous! I could easily be a snowbird in my future retirement life. It's never too early to dream about retirement, girls! I'll see you again in March, Sandestin, and I am counting down the days!


 
 
{TWO}

My new iPhone FINALLY came! It was the most perfect little welcome home gift last night on my front porch. She's a slender gold beauty too! A much needed upgrade from my 4s. I couldn't be happier with it!
 
{THREE}
Election day has come and gone and while I try not to get too political on here, I can say I am happy with the way one referendum played out. In my city & county, we will be getting wine in our grocery stores soon! I CAN'T WAIT! Does that mean I'm an alcoholic? No! That means I'm lazy and I like my convenience. I know we are probably behind the times down here, but you gotta remember this is the heart of the Bible belt.
 
{FOUR}
Everybody needs a good Friday Funny and this is one of my favs this week!
 
{FIVE}
Ordered these pretty thangs this week and I'm so excited to show them off!
Cross Training Couture
My girl Kim's boutique - Small Town Style
 
 Happy weekend loves!