Friday, November 13, 2015

Why This Isn’t Goodbye

Photo: Viktor Hanacek

Last week I had the opportunity to attend Storyline Conference in the Chicagoland area. I went last year and it was life changing; it was again this year.

We heard from so many amazing people who are living incredible stories. Please check out I’ll Push You (inspiring 5-minute video) and Jeremy Cowart (oh man, watch his TED Talk at the bottom the page!) and Bob Goff (and more) - you’ll be inspired too!

One of the breakout sessions I attended was with Joshua Becker. You’ve heard me mention him before. I had the privilege of having lunch with him in Nashville in August, I’ve talked about his blog becoming minimalist, and he has just launched The Hope Effect. (Don’t forget I need your help with that! I’m trying to raise $1200 for orphans.)

While Joshua didn’t really say anything I haven’t already heard him say, or have read on his blog, his story struck me in a deeper way this time. 

Living minimalist isn’t just cleaning the clutter out of our houses, but also out of our lives. I’m cleaning apps off my phone, unnecessary events from my calendar, relationships that don’t build me up or encourage me.

(I’m also cleaning out closets and drawers!)

The conference, paired with discussion with my traveling buddy, Nancy Bouwens from An Intentional Life, makes me believe God is leading me in a new direction.

While driving to church last week I thought about how the trees let go of their leaves in the fall, but it’s only for a season. The leaves will come back better and more beautiful in the spring. But if the trees don’t let go of the leaves, there’s no room for something new - there’s no growth.

For a season I need to let go of some “leaves”. They’re pretty leaves and I love my leaves, but just for a season I need to let them go. In the spring they can bud and be beautiful again. The only thing is, I don’t know what they will look like.

What I’m saying is, I’m going to take some time away from blogging.

One year ago after the Storyline Conference, I set out to write once per week, every week for this blog. I’ve accomplished that goal. I’ve told a story in 2015 that I wanted to tell, and I’m proud of myself for doing it!

Now, after Storyline 2016, I don’t know where God is taking me. I don’t know what story He wants me to tell this year. But I do know that my calendar is too full. My self-imposed schedule is too much for me to maintain. I’m making myself nuts with things I wonder if are really the most important things in my life to focus on right now.

So, for a season, I’m taking time off. I’m going to read the stack of books that I haven’t had time for. I’m going to coffee and lunch with people who love me the most and mean the most to me. I’m going to spend extra time with my princess granddaughter.

I’m going to be less of a slave to social media and spend more time connecting in real life and making memories for myself and my family and friends.

I’m going to take time to really listen to what God has for me and which direction He’s taking me.

I’m just going to slow down and rest.

I love writing and I will be doing lots of that as well. Maybe some of it will end up on this blog or in your email on occasion. Maybe I’ll be back with an entirely different blog in the new season. I don’t know.

So, this isn't goodbye, just a see you in the figurative spring.

Thank you for being faithful friends in this little community. You can still always reach me via Twitter and Facebook - I would LOVE to hear from you. ANYTIME!

Now go live your life and tell a great story!