So today was just another day, but I feel the Lord's nearness, and I am so comforted by it. I don't have much of a clue on some things, but God knows it all! It's so amazing to know that He literally holds my life in the palm of his hand...while still managing the world's affairs and controlling things like the tide, the sun rising and sinking, and drawing men to himself. What a perfect King!
Speaking of kings, I heard a program on NPR today about how women in Saudi Arabia have been fighting for their rights for a while now. Of course, they have a monarch who is slow in listening to their concerns; they desire more job options for women, for the right to drive, to be more involved in politics, the right to work at lingerie stores (ya, really!), etc. And Saudi women are not shy nor are they uneducated! They are smart and bold, and want their voices to be heard.
I can't imagine a life with such limitations and inequality. While it is true that even in the U.S., men can still on average earn more income than women at their same position, (which is definitely unfair and frustrating), when I think about not being able to DRIVE...?? Ya that would not be even remotely cool.
I am so grateful for the ability to obtain education, pursue my own interests and be respected by most as an intelligent woman who has a mind, a heart, and a purpose in life other than to produce babies.
I've had opportunities to move up at my job with the VA, and I am now at the point where I am wondering what is next for me?
I am now at a place where I have said goodbye to some things and freed myself up for newness in my career, relationships, etc. It feels like a fresh adventure that is right around the corner. I am super excited about my upcoming trip to San Diego in September. I have obtained some ideas of amazing sites to see from my friend, Anthony, who has shared his experiences and passion for the city. I can't wait to jump into the Pacific and bask in the wonderful weather and just relax to the max...Maybe I will fall in love with SD and move there! Not only do they have an Antioch church plant there, but a VA regional office! Hmmm....;)
I miss traveling!! Seeing new sights and new people. Being stretched. Talking about memories I made in Madrid recently has reminded me of my love for "getting out there." Today, I parked in a public lot near the Waco Convention Center (and have parked there previously with no problems). But today, when I got off at about 5:15, the fence around the lot was locked with my car on the inside! I was wondering how in the world I was going to get in to get my car, but quickly my fellow classmate and I found a service person and got him to make a call for the combo to open the locked gate.
It made me think of various "hiccups" I encountered abroad...although this scenario was super easy comparatively, only because there was no language barrier! I remember lots of times when situations of crises arose in Spain or other countries, and I didn't know how to even communicate my panic/frustration/issues. What trying experiences those were. But I grew so much in learning to just deal with things as they come, use whatever resources are available, and do the best you can without wigging out!
I was talking to my favorite aunt, Aunt Judy (shout out!) the other day about life, and she mentioned that I was the most adventurous person she knows. I was kinda shocked and tickled to hear that comment.
When I asked for clarification, she brought up how I took lots of risks when she was with us in Italy...like just give me the map and I will figure it out! Or...let's just check this out and see! I navigated us all around those twisted cobblestone streets of Venice. Ahhh, I loved that place. It was so beautiful, romantic and unique...and OLD!
I think traveling abroad that semester of 2007 definitely RUINED me for the ordinary. I am hoping whoever I marry carries that same desire for adventure/spontaneity/travels. It's such a bug that infects you...and once it bites you once, you are done for!
I would like to proclaim that I am a lucky gal. I am so blessed to be loved by God and friends and family daily. I think it's important to thank God every day for each little thing he's given me, as insignificant as some things seem. So I'm trying to stay in a state of gratefulness and praise God for each experience that has shaped me thus far and those that are to come.
Ya know, following God is super exciting! Because guess what? He has more dreams for me than I have for myself. He has a bigger plan and a bigger future for me that is prosperous and wonderful!
In lieu of that, I wanna share this:
"The Lord is my light and my salvation--whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life--of whom shall I be afraid?" (Ps. 27:1)
BRING IT ON!