Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Starting Over

As the title of this post would suggest, life in our corner of the world has been all about starting over in recent weeks. It's been over a month since I've written and I'm sorry about that. There might be a handful of you that read on a regular basis, so for you and for ease of recording our journey for posterity's sake, I anticipate doing a better job of keeping up as time goes on.

I've told you before that when I'm full of words, I sometimes can't get them to come out and that's been the case this summer. I've had moments here and there of doing well and anticipating what God has next for us in a new city. But I have to be honest and tell you that I've also complained a lot and fretted even more. The truth is that I don't want to be starting over again. But since we're not independently wealthy and have to work to make money, it seems like a good idea to go where the job is and that is now in Nashville.

Yes, Nashville is a cool place to live from what we've been told. But it's also been ridiculously hot this summer and checking out a new place in air you can't breathe is not my idea of fun. Nor is it appealing when everything has to be done alone. So I've read a lot, kept Kit company, nursed a couple of family members, and just been stuck in survival mode. While doing so slowly, time has passed and the back to school madness has arrived.

I love school. I always wanted to be a teacher and while I didn't quite reach that goal, I worked in a school for years in one of the administrative offices. I grew up as the daughter of a football broadcaster so fall meant games on the weekends, marching bands, and blanket wrapped cheering in the stands. Now that I'm not in that setting anymore, fall brings a bit of melancholy to my soul because I still feel like I'm supposed to be starting a new year even though the calendar might indicate otherwise.

Churches do the same thing. Summertime is a break from ministry and a time of refreshment for the staff. Normal opportunities to get plugged in aren't available and on any given week different people are out of town. Guess when we moved to a new city? Yep - right as school ended and summer began, so finding opportunities to meet new people has been complicated by the calendar.

Lest you get depressed with me, let me quickly say that all of the above is background information so I can keep going forward. In spite of the crazy summer schedules, we did visit a few churches and found one that felt like home. Since the school year has begun, so have the Bible studies, etc. and I actually went to the first one yesterday morning. It was still hard because I wasn't meeting a friend there and I knew that I wouldn't know a soul...but I did have this reminder as I headed out the door.

It's a small wall hanging a dear friend gave me right before we moved and it's been such a sweet reminder that no matter how alone I might feel, the truth is that I'm not...and I never will be. One of the good things about being alive for a few decades is that experience really is a good teacher. I know that I will meet some new friends and probably sooner than later I will have someone to go to lunch with again. No, they won't know anything about me until I tell them and they won't know who my kids are and what they were like as they were growing up. But God does and that's enough.

In honor of new beginnings, whether in school or in life, I'll close with a few letters of the alphabet to summarize our days since we last chatted.

H is for Hospital...where I have spent too many days in the last 6 months. My Mom's emergency surgery right before Christmas was enough to last a lifetime, but then Hamp decided to have a heart attack on July 4th weekend. Tiffany had unexpected surgery to remove her thyroid two weeks after that and I went to Florida to be with her during that time. Everyone is doing well but it was such a reminder that life can change in an instant and I'm thankful for those who are called to the medical profession.

M is for Music...and there have been some great new albums released in the past month or so. I suppose it's only fitting since I now live in the Music City to find my palette expanding as you will see.

Matt Redman has an awe-inspiring CD with his lyrical and musical mastery creating songs you'll soon be singing in church. Steven Curtis Chapman invites us into the journey God has him on as he recreates what God has given him down through the years while continuing to move forward in the story he and his family have been given.

Yes, I've tested the country music waters after watching American Idol this past season and found that they're not so bad. :) I love Scotty and Lauren because they're both strong Christian young adults from Small Town, USA. They've been very brave and bold in their testimony for Jesus and both are amazing singers. If you need a smile, you'll enjoy their respective CD's as well as their new albums due out in October.

A is for Atlanta Braves...who are playing their hearts out and making a serious run for the playoffs in October. We went to Turner Field on August 12th when Bobby Cox's number 6 was retired and another baseball was added to the outfield wall to join the other Braves Hall of Famers. I'm still holding out for a World Series birthday celebration in mid-October. :)

B is for Books...and the friends we meet in them. If you're looking for a recommendation of the next Pulitzer winner, you won't find it here. But Robin Jones Gunn has been writing for decades and was instrumental in shaping the dreams of Tiffany as a teenager. While those dreams were shattered by choices beyond her control, the Foundation on which they were built was not. Being reminded that her story is still being written by the one true Author encouraged me yet again as I became reaquainted with Sierra Jensen and her friends.

F is for Family...and the gift they are. Since our moving adventures began three years ago and we've been away from family more than we've been near them, we've learned as most everyone does never to take them for granted. It's sad that we can spend most of our lives wishing for someone else's story only to discover that our own is what has made us who we are. If you still have family to call your own, make sure things are OK between you and spend time together often because someday you might not be able to.

As a sidenote, I'd like to share that our family is going to be growing in the months ahead. My brother recently became engaged to an amazing woman that we all love dearly. Their stories didn't turn out like they thought they would years ago when they set out on separate paths, but God saw fit to bring them together in His timing and we are glad He did. Congratulations, John and Carla!!

L is for Long...which this entry has become! I will close now and try to coax Kit out from under the bed. It's our building's turn to have a new roof put on it and the noise has been annoyingly loud if you're a cat...and even for us humans at times. This is a picture I took of her last night after the workers quit for the day and she finally braved the living room. Poor kitty! She was trying to smash her face as far away from the world as possible while on my lap.

Thanks for reading and I'll be back soon...really!! It's much easier to stay current than have to play catch up. If you're on the east coast, stay safe as Irene races toward you. This crazy week looks like it will be ending with the reminder that God really is the only One in control. Here's to living like it's true!

"This far you shall come, but not farther; and here shall your proud waves stop."
~Job 38:11


Carrie said...

Moving is not usually an easy thing. We've moved quite a bit and I've never thought it was fun. =) My kids are on Day #3 of school and we're still trying to get back into a back to school rountine. I enjoyed reading your post and wish you the best. Have a wonderful week!

E said...

I love this post, and I Love you!

Glenda said...

I love you dear friend ~ miss you so much!

Hugs, Glenda