I’m Jealous of Your Faith

Of all the things in the world to be jealous of (cars, relationships, houses, jobs, vacations, etc.), being jealous of another person’s spiritual life is probably one of the odder ones. As I read a book recently though, I kept noticing the different ways she described aspects of her relationship with God. Going throughout her day, God “whispered to her,” or “stirred her spirit,” or “gently prodded her.” There was an active, ongoing, reciprocal nature to it, and her awareness of God seemed so different than my own.

Having been raised in a tradition that tends to be wary of claims of God speaking in audible or flashy ways, I had a measure of hesitation, but the more I read of the book, I began to feel jealous. “Why don’t I experience God that way?” I thought. Which is a perfect example of how completely and utterly I miss the point at times. Reading about other people’s faith experiences shouldn’t make me compare or be jealous, it should help me appreciate the similarities of our journeys while also learning from the differences.

Often when we talk about faith, we talk in very straightforward, cut and dried terms about the practices our spiritual life should include. Reading the Bible and praying are typically first and foremost, then being in community and maybe devotions or “quiet time,” as it’s often called. All of these can be incredibly important, helpful practices for building and growing a life of faith. What we can easily miss though is that within each of these categories are many, many different ways of actually living them.

Reading a print Bible in the morning while drinking coffee may be some people’s way of soaking in those truths, while other people may benefit more from listening to a passage from a Bible app. Praying the Psalms can be a helpful way to structure a prayer, while some people may feel restricted by that form and like it doesn’t allow them to express everything they want to. Singing worship songs may usher one person into the presence of God like nothing else ever does, while the person next to them may get distracted by the environment around them and not be able to focus on what the words actually mean.

With all the different ways we choose to interact with God, maybe it’s to be expected that he uses different ways to interact with us.

While I can still learn from my jealousy of the author’s relationship with God, because it points to a closeness with him I seem to be lacking, I don’t need to be jealous of the exact way the author has closeness with God. There may be pieces of her practices that are a fit for my own life and relationship with God, but there are likely many that are not–and it doesn’t mean either one of us is “doing faith wrong.” In college, where I studied Bible and theology, I often underlined and highlighted passages in my academic textbooks that stuck out to me. Those were God’s way of interacting with me, while other people may struggle to appreciate the richness of those same words.

When we compare our own spiritual life to other people’s, we’re missing the beauty and importance of both of them. The way other people relate to God should be celebrated, not envied. And by learning about and appreciating different ways of relating to God, we may uncover things that can benefit us as well.

Til next time…

~Brianna

P.s. What practices have been helpful to you in your spiritual life?

Singleness and Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego

A while back, my pastor preached a message on the story of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego and the fiery furnace. I didn’t realize I kind of don’t like those guys until that moment. As they told King Nebuchadnezzar they refused to worship an image, they said a phrase I’ve read before but hadn’t fully processed.

If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to deliver us from it, and he will deliver us from Your Majesty’s hand. But even if he does not, we want you to know, Your Majesty, that we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up. (Daniel 3:17-18, NIV. Emphasis mine.)

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Photo by Marko Horvat on Unsplash

But even if he does not.

It would have been bold, and perhaps would have sent a stronger message, if Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego had simply told the king their God would save them. Instead, they proclaimed that God is able, he would deliver them, and they also acknowledged they did not fully know what deliverance would look like. I can only assume they desired to live to tell the story, but they were still willing to trust God even before they knew the outcome.

Those words “But even if he does not” paint a picture of a kind of faith I don’t know how to have. It’s a faith to be admired, to aspire to, but it’s also the kind of faith that has the ability to make me feel like a failure. In the areas of my life, most specifically the area of singleness, where nothing seems to be worked out and I don’t know if or when it will or in what way, I desperately want to be able to have a “But even if he does not” kind of faith.

But it’s also the kind of faith that can drop me to my knees, unable to breathe for the realness and rawness of the ache of the unanswereds and unknowns.

Because one of my frustrations with being single is the expansive uncertainty inherent in it. I may have already met the guy I’ll one day marry, or I might meet him in two days or two years, or I may never meet the right guy at the right time and I will spend the rest of my life single, only ever wanting and hoping for things to be different.

I have no way of knowing.

Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego didn’t know what their outcome would be either, yet they found a way to trust God anyway.

God’s goodness, his trustworthiness, his lovingness do not depend on him doing what I want him to do. He is all of those things and so much more, always and forever, independent of my wishes or the actions he does or doesn’t take in my life. His goodness doesn’t depend on whether or not he brings me a husband.

Those are such easy words to type, and seem laughably simple–of course God’s intrinsic nature doesn’t change based on whether or not I get married. My ability to trust in his goodness sometimes seems to though.

A “But even if he does not” kind of faith fully recognizes God’s ability to grant me what I desire, while simultaneously recognizing and not shying away from the truth that God’s will may not match up with my own.

And if that is the case, I am the one who has to change, not him.

Til next time…

~Brianna!~

p.s. Does your ability to trust in God’s goodness sometimes hinge on whether or not he’s acting as you’d like him to?

I Lie at Church

One Sunday as I sang along to the song on the screen, I realized I might not entirely mean what I was singing.

My wealth is in the cross *
There’s nothing more I want
Than just to know His love
My heart is set on Christ

Or another song, one I haven’t sang quite as recently:

You’re all I want **
You’re all I’ve ever needed
You’re all I want
Help me know You are near

You are my desire
No one else will do
‘Cause nothing else could take Your place
To feel the warmth of Your embrace

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Photo by Bill Hamway on Unsplash

Do I intend to mean those words? Yes. Except most days, to say “There’s nothing more I want than just to know God’s love” would be a big lie. I want that, sure, but it’s one on a list of many wants, and while I know what the order of those desires should be, it rarely actually looks that way. As I go through my regular days, if I thought about, “What do I want most in this moment?” my answers would often be very small, immediate things. A hot piece of pizza, a kind reply to a difficult email I had to send, some hazelnut coffee left in the pot in the kitchen at work. Digging a bit deeper, I might also want a friend to reply to my text, a nice guy to notice me, my dad’s recovery from surgery to be going well.

Should God be all I ever want? Absolutely. Should he be the only thing I think I truly need? Yes. But I also feel like I need friends and a house and food, and while on some level those are needs, they aren’t deep-level needs like I’m supposed to need God.

And then, maybe, after those are out of the way, I’d remember to articulate my desire for God to be enough in my life. But I’d still want all of those other things.

Should I stop singing these kinds of songs until I can mean the words with 100% truth?

I don’t really think so. As godly and noble as the writers of songs might be, not even they could mean the words they write every single moment of every single day, yet they still go ahead and write them anyway. When we sing worship songs or read psalms as our prayers, I think God knows our heart behind them even if we struggle with fully meaning what the words are saying.

It’s helpful for me to think of singing these kinds of songs as both a proclamation and a prayer. There are glimmers of moments where I truly do believe God is all I really want, but also, I sing those words as a desperate plea for God to continue conforming my wayward desires to look like his. The hope is that day by day, month by month, year by year, the times God truly is all I want will only ever increase, until maybe, someday, it’s more true than not true. I’ll never perfect it in this lifetime–I’m far too full of human-ness for that to be possible–but the hope of the Christian life is that we continually become better than we were the day before.

So I’ll keep singing the worship songs with gusto, even if I don’t feel like I fully believe or mean every single word as fully as I should. Because while I may not be at that place today, maybe someday I will be.

Til next time…

~Brianna!~

*Read more: Hillsong – Crowns Lyrics | MetroLyrics
**Read more: Kutless – Draw Me Close Lyrics | MetroLyrics

A Very Good, Very Single Life

It’s a new year, I turn 27 at the end of the month, and I am (still) single. Just as I have been at the beginning of every other year, and heading into every other birthday.

When I was in high school I attended a wedding of people who were 25 or 26, and I remember thinking, “I’ll definitely be married before then.” In the community I grew up in and still live in, marrying young is normal, almost expected even. Younger versions of me were foolish and prideful in many ways, but this–my assumptions about how a relationship would factor into my life–has proven to be the most glaring example.

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Photo Credit: WEB AGENCY

A while back I read a post by the blogger Leigh Kramer that’s made me reconsider how I approach my life. She wrote, “I began dreaming about what my ideal single life would look like. Taking a future husband out of the equation entirely: what would a happy, whole life look like for me? What would need to be in place for me to feel I’m living my best life?”

Planning out my days and weeks on my Google Calendar has become essential to me, but even the phrase “life plan” nearly makes me ill. I like small bits of time to be planned ahead, but not big expanses of time. Yet as I considered Leigh’s post, I realized I’ve always been resistant to the idea of envisioning or planning for my long-term future in terms of being single. Months ahead, maybe even a year, sure–but to think much beyond that felt like giving up hope of things ever changing. Except when I look at my life, as good and full as it is, but very much lacking any reasonable prospects of marriage in the near future, I have to wonder if it’s more damaging for me to not think of my future in terms of being single. It’s all I’ve ever known, and it might be all I’ll ever know.

I’d be lying if I said that even typing those words wasn’t painful.

But it could be true. It doesn’t mean I’m a failure, or less than, or unworthy. It just means I’m single, and might always be. I can’t plan on my life becoming something it very well might not.

So how do I accept that, or at least as well as I can? How do I continue building a good, full life, even though it’s not the kind of good or the kind of full I imagined?

There are some obvious ones for me–despite my at-times complicated relationship with it, faith is always my utmost priority, even when I don’t do a great job of actually making it a priority. I know I’ll have no business getting married if being with him doesn’t make us both able to better love, serve, and glorify God because we are together than we would if we were apart. A tall order, but an important one.

Then there’s the people. I may not have a someONE, but I do have a lot of someoneS. The ones I share DNA with, and the ones I don’t but who have no less significance in my life just because we don’t find each other on a family tree.

Those two are easy, and while the order of the someones might have to shift a bit should a someone come along, they’d both still be there. But they don’t comprise a whole life. They might be priorities, but there’s a lot of living to do in all the other time.

I have no concrete answers for this yet. Will I learn to be okay if things don’t ever turn out the way I had hoped and imagined and prayed they would? How will I not just get through life, but fully embrace it for what it is?

What does a very good, very single life look like for me?

Til next time…

~Brianna!~

p.s. What does your vision of the good single life look like?

Why I Take Christmas Card Photos with My Goldfish

Most Christmas cards have pretty winter scenes or photos of adorable children.

Mine look like this.

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This wasn’t exactly the plan, of course. If someone had asked me when I was a teenager what I thought my Christmas card would look like when I was 26, my answer would not have been “A picture of me and my goldfish in front of my artificial hand-me-down Christmas tree, of course.”

Yet, here I am. Year four of Goldfish Christmas Cards, which I think means I’m allowed to call it a tradition now. I don’t even remember where I initially got the idea, but my original goal was mostly for my own amusement. Even still, that’s a large part of the reason I do it–if I didn’t have fun with it, I’d stop.

At the same time, it’s come to mean a bit more to me. I decided I’m over the idea that only couples or families are allowed to have photo Christmas cards. I fully realize I’m not as cute as my young nieces and nephews who grace their families’ cards, but I like thinking of creative ideas for poses and pun-tastic phrases and sharing them with my family and friends. Though I try not to, I sometimes use being single as a reason for why I’m not a “real adult yet,” and I didn’t want to let my singleness be an excuse for not participating in the strange but lovely tradition of exchanging Christmas cards.

Is it a “normal” Christmas card? No. Is it how I thought my Christmas cards would look, or even how I want mine to look for the rest of my life? No. Is it an accurate reflection of where I’m at in life right now? Yup. I live by myself in the house I bought, and the only other creature who resides here permanently is my goldfish. So instead of a “2016 Update” letter included in a card with a typical winter or Christmas setting, this feels particularly fitting this year.

So from our bowl to yours, til next time…

~Brianna!~

p.s. If you’re single, do you send Christmas cards?

That Time I Bought a Condo

At the beginning of this year, I picked one word I was supposed to focus on, one word to to provide a sort of framing and direction for the year. I attended an event at my church where we painted or decorated little canvases showcasing our word, meant to be a reminder we could hang somewhere we’d see it often so we would look for it and be aware of the way that theme was playing out in our lives. For the first few weeks, I did look back at it often and tried to seek it out in my daily life, but I never found a great place to put that little canvas in my room. After a while, I mostly forgot about it. It sat on my desk, more and more layers of papers and receipts and random paraphernalia collecting on top of it.

Until, finally, I unearthed it. I hadn’t forgotten my word, not in a large sense, but I had forgotten to let it soak into my everyday–which is a bit funny, considering my word is dwell. When I chose it, I wrote:All at once a command, a reminder, and a promise. It feels gentle though, and kind. Something I can manage.”

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And while in one sense it felt manageable, in another sense it felt so very, very far off. The spiritual component, of seeking to do more dwelling with God while also more fully internalizing the mysterious beauty of him already dwelling in me, seemed doable. That was a space I had been before, and while it had been a while, I could see there being a path back. In the physical sense though, I had no idea what dwell would mean for me in 2016. As a young, unmarried adult, housing had been complicated for years and there seemed to be no end to that in sight. Since graduating from high school, I hadn’t lived in the same place for longer than 14 months. For someone who often struggles with change and doesn’t do well with uncertainty, it had become incredibly taxing. To dwell in a physical sense seemed nearly impossible.

Yet, when I finally found my little canvas again, I did so with a sigh of deep, deep gratefulness. Because I found it when I was starting to pack to move into a place of my condo, a condo I bought, a home that will be mine for the next while and hopefully won’t cease to be mine until I decide otherwise. A place where I am throwing away the boxes because I likely won’t need them again in a year, a place where I am thinking of affixing shelves to walls instead of decorations hung up with poster putty. For the first time, I changed my permanent address to something other than my parent’s house. I’ve been in my new place for a few weeks now, and it is slowly beginning to feel real, to feel like mine.

It also feels like such an immense gift.

Through the whole process of looking at condos, making an offer, getting finances squared away once my offer had been accepted, having the inspection done, and waiting to hear that everything had gone as it was supposed to, I kept expecting something to go wrong. Being the largest decision of my life, and one I both had and got to make completely on my own, I prayed furiously through the whole process, begging God for something to go wrong if this was not supposed to be my place. People talk about the excitement of buying a house, but they rarely talk about the sheer terror that accompanies it. But everything fell into place. I signed a stack of papers, and suddenly, I owned a condo.

Dwell had come true in the way I least expected it to.

Now, my little dwell canvas lives on my fridge (I have a fridge) in my kitchen (I have a kitchen) in my condo (I have a condo). 2016 is far from over, and that word may take on depths of more meaning in the coming months. But already, it’s a reminder to not only look forward to what is to come, but also to know that God is at work even when we forget he is.  

Til next time…

~Brianna!~

p.s. If you have a one word for 2016, how have you seen it shape your year so far?

One Word 365

The only time a New Year’s resolution has ever “stuck” for me is the year I resolved to write every single day–that one has turned into a habit I’ve continued for over five years. Most of the time, resolutions seem too overwhelming to commit to. There are certainly changes I could stand to make in my life, but trying to figure out this Adulthood and Personhood thing feels like quite enough most of the time.

This year though, my church did a One Word event for women. I was familiar with the concept of one word, as I’ve seen many tweets and blog posts about it over the past few years, and the concept intrigued me. As explained by the #OneWord365 website, the idea is thus:

Choose just one word.

One word you can focus on every day, all year long… One word that sums up who you want to be or how you want to live.

It will take intentionality and commitment, but if you let it, your one word will shape not only your year, but also you. It will become the compass that directs your decisions and guides your steps.

Discover the big impact one word can make.

The complication then becomes, of course, choosing a word.

When I asked People of the Internet for guidance on how to select my word, one of the first responses was, “Just pray about it.” In theory, that sounds great–except my difficulty with prayer is well documented. I did pray about it, and heard…nothing. God doesn’t work like that for me, at least not right now and not in my recent history.

So after a while I just picked two words that felt fitting, and over time, neither felt right anymore–except a new word came to mind, bringing in aspects of each of the original ones.

 

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All at once a command, a reminder, and a promise. It feels gentle though, and kind. Something I can manage. I can’t even think of it with proper capitalization, because there’s something about that capital “D” that feels too harsh for it. So dwell.

That’s my word.

Initially, I took it mostly for myself–a reminder to dwell, to simply sit, be with, and enjoy God–but it’s actually a two-sided reminder. Over and over again in the Bible, God is dwelling with his people. They remain in him, and he remains with them.

Lord, you have been our dwelling place throughout all generations. ~Psalm 90:1

Spending time with God is not something I have excelled of lately, but this year, I hope to relearn what it means to dwell with God. Whether I “succeed” at doing so or not, I can be continually reminded that God is already with me. I have not, and can not, drive him away with how much or little time I spend with him. His affection for me is not conditional on me dwelling with him, for he already dwells in me. And oh, do I need that reminder.

As much as dwell is a spiritual reminder, there’s also a physical component to the word. For several years, housing has been a complicated issue for me, and it continues to be so. While I hope 2016 will hold a longer-term solution to that, the reality is that I don’t know. In the meantime though, I can seek to be content and grateful for wherever I am physically dwelling, even if it’s not what I would term to be ideal. There is action in the word dwell too though, so my contentment doesn’t have to be the idle kind–I can, and will be, actively working towards something new.

 

Having never picked One Word before, I have no idea what to expect. It’s a little exciting and a little scary. Maybe this One Word won’t seem to come into play much at all, or maybe it will suddenly pop up everywhere and color everything.

 

dwell

 

Til next time…

~Brianna!~

p.s. Did you pick a word for 2016? Will you tell me about it?

3 Things from 2015 I’m Taking Into 2016

For several years now, I’ve written in a notebook almost every single day. Many times it’s an account of what I did that day along with thoughts and feelings about those events. Other times they’re deep spiritual thoughts, or frustration over a relationship that feels difficult, or angst over a life situation. Bits and pieces of my life, recounted on some sheets of paper bound together.2016

Looking back at this past year, it’s tempting for me to get stuck in the past few months, which haven’t been the easiest time of my life. Except to let those be the ones to color my perception of the entire year would be inaccurate, and, in a way, unfair. As I looked back through my daily writings from 2015, I saw difficulty, certainly—sadness over changing relationships, frustration over uncertainty, dismay over things gone awry—but I also saw so many moments of delight, good memories made, and perhaps most importantly, how even the unexpected pieces of life can have positive aspects to them. As I head into 2016, while there are things from 2015 I am glad to leave behind me, there are at least three I’d like to take with me as well.

  • The people we surround ourselves with have incredible power to shape our lives, in ways good, bad, ugly, and otherwise. This past year has brought new people into my life and added new depth, and sometimes complexity, to many of my existing relationships. For the most part, I’ve managed to find truly wonderful people that add so much to my life. As much as I’d love to cling to all these good people and keep them in my lives for as long as possible, I also recognize there’s a measure of impossibility to that, so I have to simply be grateful for the time we do have in each other’s lives. I don’t think I will ever be good at this part, but I am trying to be better at the thankfulness part.
  • Asking for help is hard, but okay. Just as people are in our lives to add joy, richness, and knowledge, they are also available to lend support. I like to think of myself a somewhat self-sufficient person, and I never want my family or friends to feel like I’m using them or don’t appreciate them, so asking for help does not come naturally to me. No one is capable of going through life completely on their own, all the time though, so sometimes the wisest thing we can do is know when it’s time to ask for help. This is something I’m only just beginning to see, and it will take me into 2016 and likely far beyond to fully grasp its importance.
  • “Never” and “Always” statements are quite often dangerous. To say we’ll always do this or never do that is often a refusal to acknowledge change. Life happens, often in very unpredictable ways. Sometimes rules have to be rewritten based on new information. We usually can’t see the future when we make a decision, so we make the best decision we can in that moment, with the information we have, and sometimes that decision lands us in a spot that we couldn’t have known about before. There are moral “always” and “nevers” I think are good to cling to, but many others that need to be tossed.

If it wasn’t for my habit of writing every day, I’m not sure I’d be able to sort through the haze of these past few months to identify these tangible takeaways that have threaded themselves through the entire year. While 2015 Brianna may not have enjoyed every moment of it, 2016 Brianna can learn from these insights and take them into the new year and beyond.

Til next time…

~Brianna!~

p.s. What have you learned in 2015 that you’ll take into 2016?

Watch for the Light

As much as I love Christmas, I feel like I often miss it.

I put up the tree, go to the parties, give (and receive) the gifts, sing the carols, read the Bible story. None of these activities are bad, but they don’t fully encapsulate why I’m supposed to be celebrating Christmas.

This year I’m not putting up my regular full-size tree due to Complicated Reasons, and though the first time I put up my tree by myself I nearly had an existential crisis, I’ve now grown to enjoy my solo little ritual.  Putting up a couple of small trees didn’t pack quite the same punch, and I’m mourning my big tree a bit. It feels like I’m already starting at a deficit of Christmas Spirit.

On top of that, life has simply felt more messy than usual lately. I keep thinking I’ll get this Adulthood thing figured out one of these days, which keeps on very much not happening.

Plus there’s the sorting and the waiting and the I don’t know-ness of faith in general, and suddenly Christmas is carrying a lot of weight.

~~~

Last week, Addie Zierman wrote about the idea of an Advent Junk Journal. It’s a ragtag collection of whatever paper-like materials that happen to be around, all bound together. And there, in those messy, imperfect pages, is the space to notice. It’s not the pressure of reading chapters and chapters of the Bible each day, or praying a certain number of minutes, or any other obligations besides to see where God already is. Which is, right now, something I need reminders to do.

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He’s there, I believe that, but I’m not always paying attention for it.

As Addie explains it:

There are a thousand ways to encounter God, to experience the hard beauty of Advent, and what I’ve discovered is that more than spending hours reading and praying and journaling — it’s just catching one minute. Capturing one small incandescent bit of beauty falling like a snowflake. To jot it down before it disappears.

~~~

In college, one of my professors gifted me the book Watch for the Light: Readings for Advent and Christmas. It has become one of my most beloved parts of this season–I eagerly await November 24, when the readings begin. Not all of the readings strike me, but some leave me nearly in tears, underlining and starring and scribbling in the margins year after year. The other day, I wrote “My life in 2015” next to a line from a Henri Nouwen essay.

For many people, waiting is an awful desert between where they are and where they want to go.

He gets me.

~~~

And that book title.

Watch for the Light.

It’s what I’m trying so very hard to do this year. I wrote it on the front of my Advent junk journal, stealing the book’s title as the subtitle for my own scribbled words. It is both a gentle reminder as well as a command. Do this I’m telling myself.

The same professor who gifted me the book is the one who introduced me to the idea of a commonplace book, assigning the seemingly simple act of paying attention to our own lives.

No one is giving me a grade these days, but I’m giving myself the same assignment this Advent: Pay attention. 

Each day, I’ll write at least one thing I noticed. Today it was lyrics to a pop song I heard on the radio on my drive home from work, because I’m in love with the idea of common grace and that glimmers of God hide in all things that are true and lovely and beautiful. Yesterday it was lines from a reflection in a Bible app. They’re written on receipts, cupcake wrappers, scraps of paper loosely held together with a length of plastic cord. Everything about my journal is mismatched and motley, which feels like a pretty good metaphor for life.

But I’m committing to this seemingly small act these next few weeks: Watch for the light.

Til next time…

~Brianna!~

p.s. How are you watching for the light this Advent?

Waiting on the New Thing

At the beginning of the year, I wrote about Looking for the New Things. Isaiah 43:18-19 seemed to be everywhere I looked, which wasn’t too surprising, as it’s often a favorite at the dawn of a new year. It stuck around for a couple of months, and then I stopped noticing it, but didn’t forget about it. When life went awry, which it has, is, and will continue to at various points, I went back there. I asked a talented friend to make me a nicer piece of wall art to hang in my room, and even bought a frame to make it look official.

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I will make a way in the wilderness
    and rivers in the desert.

I clung to that verse like it was a life raft. In ways, I suppose it was. Is.

And I waited, and prayed, and waited. And more of the same, likely with some impatient feet-stomping to show God I meant business this time.

So much waiting. Many stories of faith could be summarized with that one word.

Waiting.

In the past month or so, Isaiah 43:18-19 again seems to be everywhere I look–so much so that when I read a book or blog and the writer said, “There’s a verse that means so much to me…” I’ve started expecting it to be Isaiah 43:18-19. And lately, it usually has been.

It’s made me roll my eyes and mutter under my breath “You’ve got to be kidding me.”

But it’s also forced me to notice it.

For all the waiting I have done and am doing, I don’t feel like I’ve noticed any “new things” in the way I thought I would. There’s been nothing big enough that demands me to see it and exclaim, “Yes! That’s it! The new way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert!”

A way (or a path, I imagine) or a river seems like it should be pretty noticeable. But I haven’t gotten those.

Maybe, though, the reappearance of this is A thing. Not the thing, or a major thing, but A thing.

Over and over, being I’m reminded to have hope, and to see.

As I wrote earlier this year:

I love the boldness of BeholdIt is booming, rich, inviting–see here, look, pay attention. You don’t want to miss this.

I don’t know what that “new thing” might look like, though I certainly have my list of suggestions for God–but my biggest hope is that I have the eyes to recognize the newness even if it doesn’t look like I thought it would.

This particular year is much closer to its end than its start, but this promise, this hope of new things doesn’t end simply because the year does. Sometimes the waiting time is much longer than we’d like to be, but we still have reason to hope.

Til next time…

~Brianna!~

p.s. Have you seen God doing new things? Or are you still waiting?