Tag Archives: Journal

(Finding) My Voice

I have a million excuses not to write.  One of my favorites is, “I just can’t find my voice.”  I had a voice when I was younger!  When I started this blog back in 2006, I had lots of voice to go around.  It grew louder and bolder when I lived in West Africa.  It grew softer and less frequent when I returned to the States.  It almost disappeared when I was in “the process” for Holy Orders, feeling especially vulnerable and exposed.

This week I’ve been at a conference with ~100 young clergy women representing many denominations.  I’ve been inspired by the powerful voices of Dr. Karoline Lewis and the Rev. Traci Blackmon–both giants in my world.  I’ve been inspired by the voices of my peers–thoughtful and real.  But I’ve also felt like an imposter–especially in a group where several women my age and younger are published authors with *actual things to say* and voices to say it with.

Today’s schedule intentionally left space for self-care and affinity groups.  A saw one post about writers getting together, but I knew it didn’t apply to me.  So my self-care was to sit alone at a bar with pen and paper.  I’ve done the same every morning this week at breakfast.  It has been a total luxury to have so much alone time this week!  I almost question if I’m becoming an introvert, but it’s more likely I’m just a tired mama.

I came back to my apartment with a mission–to update my blog with a backlog of sermons so I couldn’t use my other favorite excuse of being too far behind to catch up.  While updating, I read things I’ve written over the past several months.  I even watched a few preaching clips.  And what I discovered is that I do have a voice and I have been using it.  I may have lots of excuses for not writing, but “not having a voice” can no longer be one of them.  And I need to start rebutting the other excuses too.  Because I’m a writer.  And someday those words will actually ring true–even to me.

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time capsule

i write a lot. blog postings are probably 1/20 of what i write in any given day, not including writing stuff for work. i have a journal on my computer and two journals that i write to God in… one stays by my bed, the other in whatever bag i’m carrying around with me at any given time.

i’m almost finished with the journal that currently lives by my bed. i started it in july of 2006 on my way to pakistan. this morning i read through all the entries up till this date a year ago. i was kinda afraid of what i might find, knowing some of those days would describe heartache i’d rather not re-live, but i was surprised to find that even the heartache was laced with large doses of hope and expectation. i thought i’d publish a few excerpts here.

july 11, 2006, “When Farhan’s mother prays, I feel as if our hearts are connected and we are speaking to You together. I love all the rituals and ceremonies that make this marriage so sacred. I want my own marriage to be as focused on You; an act of worship.” the women in farhan’s family prayed so much for his marriage, it was touching.

july 13, 2006, “Thank you for giving me such a loving family and supportive friends. I pray for Mike—bless our relationship and shape our hearts to reflect your will only. Lord, I love you.” i still thank God for family and friends, and God definitely worked on Mike’s and my hearts to make room for His will.

july 14, 2006, “Lord, I pray that I would learn what is in Your heart for me while I am here and that I would be ready for the life you have prepared for me.” it’s while i was in pakistan that i started feeling more called to missions abroad.

july 29, 2006, “Lord, I pray that you would bless Paige ad me with a roommate that will bless this house.” anne marie was one of the best blessings all year! i can’t imagine life last year without her living down the hall.

august 9, 2006, “So Lord, here is my dream. I don’t know why You want it back since You gave it to me in the first place, but I trust You to bless me in my obedience. Since this is what You want, I ask You to grant me the strength and courage to do so.” this had to do with a relationship, and i do think the end result is greater than that which i had to let go of.

august 14, 2006, “I feel You calling me to the Church, and I pray you would show me more fully what that means and grant me a job that fulfills my desire to serve You and love Your people. These days I’m almost scared to pray for an amazing life, but it is my desire.” indeed. look at where that got me!

august 21, 2006, “I think sometime we’ll laugh together.” ha!

september 10, 2006, “Lord, I pray to you about Africa. Lord, if this is your will, I pray that you would open doors and confirm my every step so that I am walking with You.” i wrote this before i even interviewed with yfc.

september 26, 2006, “Lord, I pray that you would give me clear indicators regarding YFC and Benin specifically. Sometimes I feel discouraged, but I know that doesn’t negate the possibility of me serving there. I pray that You would make the decision in my heart.” yep, that’s what i was praying exactly a year ago today. wow.

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