open road therapy.

tomorrow, i will leave my house early, and my car will be packed with an overnight bag, a cooler, my cornhole boards, and a fully charged camera ready for an awesome time with my best friends from college.

it’s not often that we can all get together, because we live all across the state, but when we are able to, it’s always a good time.

and i need them. i need this open road therapy.

and i can’t wait to hug them all. and laugh with them. and soak it all in.

i’m so ready.

…don’t miss the opportunity that life has given you to spend time with the people you love. there are no rewinds.

love.

be still.

i don’t know how to do that…

…i don’t know how to be still.

i realized that this morning when i sent a text to a friend to see if he wanted to go catch a flying squirrels game tonight. his response was a no… not because he didn’t want to hang out with me, but because he was tired from the movie we saw together last night.

it’s totally understandable, because i am tired from it too.

why is my mind wired that way? why do i think i have to have something to do every waking moment? why can’t i just take a night, and have some “me” time? why does everything i feel like i have to do, or that i want to do, have to involve someone else?

i love making memories. i love adventures, and i love building relationships/friendships with the people that i’m living life with. it’s not a bad thing to want to spend time with people that you care for and love, but if you aren’t doing the same thing for yourself, the results can be catastrophic. you’ll start to feel overwhelmed, and over-scheduled, and lost when you don’t have something to do.

so tonight, even though i won’t be sitting still… (i’ll be painting the guest room at my new place) i’m going to enjoy some “me” time. i’m going to put on some music that i like, and i’ll sing as loud as i want to, and i’ll spend some time hanging out with a person that i’ve been neglecting a lot here lately. i’ll work through some things in my head, and in my heart, and i’ll seek to re-focus my thoughts on many things that i haven’t sorted through yet.

and it will be exactly what i need.

empty me. #mealswithhope

Holy Fire, Burn away,
my desire for anything,
that is not of You,
and is of me,
I want more of you,
and less of me.

Empty me. Empty me.
and fill, won’t you fill me,
with You, with You.

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so i didn’t really know how to go about writing this post until i heard this song. it’s funny how music really has a way of speaking directly to my heart. and i love jeremy camp…

this week, i’ve been eating rice and beans for every meal… and plain oatmeal for breakfast. my church (www.hopecentral.com) is currently in the middle of focusing our hearts on missions, through a sermon series called “The Tipping Point”. we’ve been challenged to eat as the world eats for 5 days. considering the quintessential food that everyone thinks about when they think about africa or other foreign countries, is rice and beans, that’s what we’ve been eating for 5 days. then, after the 5 days is over, we’ve been challenged to “give the gap”. the gap is the difference between what we normally would have spent on our week’s worth of groceries, or going out to lunch/dinner, and what we actually spent on our rice and beans. our gap will be going to an organization called “Feed My Starving Children”, and we will be giving our gap’s this Sunday at church. we’ve had our own twitter hashtag (#mealswithhope) this week, and it’s been pretty awesome to see people’s encouraging words and pictures of their meals. if you want to read more about our challenge, you can do so here:

http://hopecentral.com/serve/world-impact/tippingpoint/meals-with-hope/

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so it’s safe to say that i’ve felt pretty empty this week. it’s been so humbling to eat just rice and beans and oatmeal for 5 days. i didn’t think it would effect me as emotionally as it has. i have so much in life. i have food whenever i want it, running water, clothes on my back and shoes on my feet, yet i still complained about being hungry this week? it breaks my heart to know that there are 983,000,000 people in this world who live their lives hungry, and they don’t know when their next meal is going to come, yet i can drive down the street at any given time and see 20-some eateries at any given strip mall here in america.

i’ve never been to kenya, or burkina faso, or malawi… but i’ve experienced a small glimpse of their hunger this week. and i’m moved. i’m blown away at what we have that so many others dont… and still, we always want more.

but this week, i’ve been emptied. my eyes have been opened and my heart has been refilled. and i’ll be giving my gap on sunday, and that gap that stands between what we have, and what they don’t have will become slightly smaller because of a church who cared enough to take a 5 day challenge.

i’m blown away. i am changed.

i am HOPE.

excitement in the little things.

i just bought this shower curtain for my new place:

granted, it’s not going on a claw foot tub, but i’m excited about it.

it’s something small, but it’s big to me.

it’s a new place to call home. it’s a new start.

and it might happen sooner than i’d thought.

it’s coming together… slowly but surely.

but, i have a shower curtain.

and that makes me excited.

and i’m going to play kickball with some hopers tonight…

or maybe i’ll just watch and take pictures…

either way, it’s excitement in the little things 🙂

this song makes me cry.

forever can never be long enough for me
to feel like I’ve had long enough with you
forget the world now we won’t let them see
but there’s one thing left to do…

now that the weight has lifted
love has surely shifted my way
marry me
today and every day
marry me
if I ever get the nerve to say hello in this cafe
say you will
say you will…

together can never be close enough for me
feel like I am close enough to you
you wear white and Iill wear out the words i love you
and you’re beautiful
now that the wait is over
and love and has finally shown her my way
marry me
today and every day
marry me
if I ever get the nerve to say hello in this cafe
say you will
say you will

promise me
you’ll always be
happy by my side
i promise to
sing to you
when all the music dies

and marry me
today and everyday
marry me
if I ever get the nerve to say hello in this cafe
say you will…

give me your eyes.

i was complaining to a friend earlier today about how expensive my contacts are. it would be so nice to be able to wake up in the morning and be able to see without having to put something that costs that much  in my eyeballs, although, lets be completely honest, i sleep in my contacts more often than not. (carole, if you’re reading this, i apologize!)

i then remembered the lyrics to a song, because again, lets be honest, music runs my life most days.

give me your eyes for just one second
give me your eyes so I can see
everything that I keep missing
give me your love for humanity
give me your arms for the broken hearted
the ones that are far beyond my reach
give me you heart for the ones forgotten
give me your eyes so I can see…

even though my eyes aren’t perfect, and i often have to stick my fingers in my eyes and rub them around to see, i’m praying for a different set of eyes. a new set of eyes.

a pair of eyes that will help me see into people’s hearts.

a pair of eyes that will allow me to change the things that i can.

a pair of eyes that are not my own.

because i really am missing so much, because i’ve been looking at everything through the wrong pair of eyes.

“so maybe this time
i’ll speak the words of life
with Your fire in my eyes
but that old familiar fear
is tearin’ at my words
what am I so afraid of?
’cause here I go again…” – casting crowns