honeymoon period

25 Nov

They say with transition to something new there can be a period of time where everything is hunky dory (that’s the weirdest saying) fantastic…the honeymoon period. Then as that transition wears off and the fun newness of your new situation can wear off and the not-so-fun newness of your new situation can hit you. I think I’m there.

I want to interject here and say…I love my new job. I love my new church. I’m loving my new city. I’m so thankful for all of it and don’t at all feel like I made a bad decision or regret moving.

It’s all still new. Just in the past week I’ve felt the weight of my newness. Stepping into a really established community can be hard. Trying to find where you fit is hard. Building new relationships is hard.  Learning a new job and new co-workers is hard.

I told someone not even 3 weeks ago that I was so thankful that I hadn’t really felt homesick or anything. I still don’t think I am feeling homesick…just newness-weary.

I think I want to just jump to the part of life where I feel settled and established. But I think if I did that I’d miss the point of this time. God is stretching me. Causing me to lean on Him for comfort, peace and strength.  I’m not good at that. I’m really good at wallowing in my sadness or newness-weariness. But I’m not good at giving that all to Him and sinking in to His arms for comfort.

Today, the staff at StoneBridge are starting a new tradition where every 4th Tuesday when we normally have staff meeting we are having Sacred Time instead. It’s a time for us to take a break from the work of Ministry to spend time by ourselves with the Lord. I have a feeling I’m going to really like this tradition. ;) Today as I was sitting at my desk (it’s dreary out otherwise I would have been outside) I had my music on and a familiar song came on. And as He usually does…the Lord spoke His love to me through those words and brought them to light in a new way.

In the Hours

(click the title to listen)

1. In the hours of pain and sorrow, When the world brings no relief
When the eye is dim and heavy, And the heart oppressed with grief
While blessings flee, Savior Lord we trust in Thee!
While blessings flee, Savior Lord we trust in Thee!

2. When the snares of death surround us, Pride, ambition, love of ease
Mammon with her false allurements, Words that flatter, smiles that please
Then ere we yield, Savior Lord be Thou our shield
Then ere we yield, Savior Lord be Thou our shield

3. When forsaken in distress, Poor despised and tempest-tossed
With no anchor here to stay us, Drifting, sail and rudder lost
Then save us Thou, who trod this earth with weary brow
Then save us Thou, who trod this earth with weary brow

4. Thou the hated and forsaken, Thou the bearer of the cross
Crowned of thorns and mocked and smitten, Counting earthly gain but loss
When scorned are we, We joy to be the more like Thee
When scorned are we, We joy to be the more like Thee

5. Thou the Father’s best beloved, Thou the throned and sceptered King
Who but Thee should we adoring, All our prayers and praises bring?
So blessed are we, Savior Lord in loving Thee
So blessed are we, Savior Lord in loving Thee

We sang this song frequently at Village Church and it was/is one of my favorites. I’m praying that in the hours of whatever I may be feeling that I will trust in my Savior Lord. Thanking Him for His love and care for me and all he has blessed me with (cause it’s more than I ever deserve) and trusting He’s walking right along side me during whatever season I’m in.

So don’t worry…I’m doing good. (Mom…that’s for you)

moved

7 Oct

It happened…I still can’t believe it in some ways. But in other ways I’m wondering what took so long.

The actual moving day went so smoothly. No hiccups at all. I’m so glad that my sister was able to come with me. I don’t think I could have done it with out her. I also had some friends and co-worker help with unpacking on Sunday afternoon which was so great (Thanks Harris’!) I’m very thankful. I’m getting settled into my little place and trying to make it a home. I still have some boxes to unpack and decorations to put up but I think it will be just fine.

It’s been a little over two months since I first interviewed at StoneBridge and today was my first day. I felt so welcomed! It was really nice. The staff here have all been so encouraging to me and I can’t wait to continue to serve along side each of them and begin to make StoneBridge my church home.

No pictures of my place yet…it’s not ready for that…but my front door is. Isn’t it cute!

front door

saying good-bye

23 Sep

Just a little quick post…

While I don’t officially move for another week and a bit I leave tomorrow to go on a missions trip. Yup…just thought adding an international trip in-between finishing a job and an inter-state move would make this whole transition a little less crazy. ;) I wouldn’t have it any other way.

I wanted to say how thankful I am to have had several days of good good-byes. From co-workers to church friends to mentors The Lord is reminding me how He has provided for me in these good, sweet friends. While I’m excited to see how the Lord will continue to provide and build new friendships in my life in Charlotte, I want y’all (and you know who you are) to know that I am so thankful for your friendships and I will miss you. Thank you for how much you have encouraged me over the past 6 years. You all hold such a special place in my heart.

I promise to not be a stranger.

Lots can happen between January & August

14 Sep

The last time I posted here was in January. So much was going on then…So much has happened since. I’m just going to forewarn you…parts of this post are going to be super vague…it’s just the nature of the blog-beast.

Since January I have gone through some pretty hard stuff. Some health stuff, some emotional stuff, some spiritual stuff, some personal stuff. It’s been hard. Real hard. There’s been a lot of anger, a lot of tears and a lot of questions. Looking back on it I just can’t believe what all went down.

And while I’m still in the midst of some of the stuff…and probably will be for a while. A lot has changed. I’ve changed and am still changing.

I’ve had this quote hanging in my bathroom…I see it everyday and it’s been a truth that I’ve clung to in the really hard days…and it’s one that I’m reminding myself as I look towards the future.

 

louiegiglioquote

 

I believe with all my heart that God uses every thing in our lives to mold and shape us. The good, the bad and the ugly. I also believe the story He is writing in our lives is one that “we would not believe if told” (a quote from my fav verse Habakkuk 1:6). And I would have never thought I would be walking down the road I’m walking down.

You want to know where my road is heading in the near future…

Close-in photo of Charlotte NC skyline at sunset

CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA!

I’m moving!!! As I sit amongst boxes I still have moments where I think…what in the world am I doing! But I am confident and thrilled about this adventure I am following the Lord on. I’m going to be going to work at an amazing church that is doing some awesome things in their community and all over the world. I also have two good friends on staff there so I’m pumped to get to work with them as well.

Now…I’m under no illusion that this is going to be an easy transition. There’s already been some bumps along the road and moments where I’ve had to really trust Him to provide for what I need. But He has more than I could have imagined. I’m also moving away from my family and friends here in Atlanta…and oof…I get teary-eyed thinking about it. This has been hard already and I know it will continue to be. I’m trying to soak up all the moments I have with them before I leave.

So…here I go! I move in a few weeks but have a missions trip to Thailand in-between now and then so there is lots to do. My last day at work is this Thursday. I’m going to miss those ladies I’ve had the privilege of working with at Apostles. I’ve learned so much in my time there.

I’m also excited to (hopefully) jump back on the blogging train as I continue to unfold the story the Lord has me on. I hope you’ll join me! I’d also appreciate your prayers as I move, start a new job and build a new community in Charlotte.

lessons from songs: rest easy

14 Jan

I’m convinced I don’t know how to rest. whether it be physical, emotional or spiritual I don’t know how to do it. Even when I plan a day of “rest” I over schedule it so much I end up not resting. I also struggle to rest in my relationship with God. I get so caught up in the “what are we supposed to do as a child of God” I forget that he’s already done it. All we are supposed to do is rest in His presence.

This song came on during my drive to work and it was like the Lord was talking to me through my radio.

Rest easy Ruthanne. You don’t have to work so hard Ruthanne. You can rest easy Ruthanne. You don’t have to prove yourself Ruthanne. You’re already mine Ruthanne. You don’t have to hide your heart Ruthanne. I already love you Ruthanne. So you can rest easy.

Insert your name in that paragraph. Do you hear the Lord speaking to you?

Rest is not easy. But we can rest easy in the arms of our Father.

:::::

Rest Easy

by Andrew Peterson

You are not alone I will always be with you
Even to the end

You don’t have to work so hard
You can rest easy
You don’t have to prove yourself
You’re already mine
You don’t have to hide your heart
I already love you
I hold it in mine
So you can rest easy

Do not be afraid
Nothing, nothing in the world
Can come between us now

You don’t have to work so hard
You can rest easy
You don’t have to prove yourself
You’re already mine
You don’t have to hide your heart
I already love you
I hold it in mine
So you can rest easy

You work so hard to wear yourself down
And you’re running like a rodeo clown
You’re smiling like you’re scared to death
You’re out of faith and all out of breath
You’re so afraid you’ve got nowhere left to go

Well, you are not alone
I will always be with you

You don’t have to work so hard
You can rest easy
You don’t have to prove yourself
You’re already mine
You don’t have to hide your heart
I already love you
I hold it in mine
You can rest easy

holiday movie review

8 Jan

my family loves going to the movies. it’s always something we enjoy doing together and this Christmas there were a few movies we were wanting to see…and they all turned out to be good ones.

Frozen-1024x1015Frozen

Frozen is Disney’s latest offering in the princess musical/movie category…and it didn’t disappoint. I think we can all agree that ever since pixar arrived on the scene Disney has struggled to keep up in the animated movie category. But they seemed to get the formula right with Frozen. From the soundtrack to the story, the animation and the hilarious snowman Olaf  this was just a precious movie that keeps you entertained and laughing the whole time. This is a great family movie.

 

saving mr banksSaving Mr. Banks

I think we can all agree that Mary Poppins is a classic family movie we all loved. I loved watching it growing up and remember singing along with Julie and Dick. But what I’ve never done is actually read the book this movie is based off of. I also knew nothing of P.L. Travers and how Disney came to acquire this beloved story. Enter Saving Mr. Banks. From the moment I saw this preview I knew I wanted to see the movie and would love it. I mean come on…Emma Thompson, Colin Farrell, Paul Giamatti, DJ Novak & Tom Hanks playing Walt Disney, how could it be bad! I’m a sucker for “the story behind the story” movies so this was so fun to watch. I had no idea P.L. Travers background or that she grew up in Queensland, Australia!! My home state! She had a hard childhood with an alcoholic father and a mother who had some bonding issues but this movie showed that she had a deep love for her parents and a strong passion for making sure the story she wrote was translated from the page to the screen well. You could also see that through the process of making the movie P.L. Travers learned to open up her own heart and not be afraid to let go of her past hurts so she could show love and kindness to others. Please go see this delightful movie! You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll want to go home and watch Mary Poppins again and you’ll most definitely want to go fly a kite.

walter mittyThe Secret Life of Walter Mitty

Want a movie that has adventure, romance, humor, amazing scenery and a great story? The Secret Life of Walter Mitty delivers. Ben Stiller does not play his normal, wacky crude humor part in this movie and I really appreciated that. This was a great movie that inspires you to not be afraid to jump out of your comfort zone and embrace the adventures that we can experience in life. This movie has a great sound track…I also now would like to visit Greenland. This was a really great film.

reflecting on 2013

6 Jan
last year I reflected on 2012 here. It was a real good exercise for me so I thought I would do it again…
2013 Reflection
1. What did you do in 2013 that you’d never done before?
Ran a 10K
Travelled to Seattle & Alaska
Went on a zip line!
2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year? 
I honestly can’t remember what my resolution was! I do want to make some this year. 
3. Did anyone close to you give birth? 
Yes – my friends are really good parents. 
4. Did anyone close to you die?
Yes. 
5. What countries did you visit?
Mexico, Canada & Spain
6. What would you like to have in 2014 that you lacked in 2013?
Self-Control
7. What dates from 2012 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
May 15 – Kate surprised me for my birthday party
July 4 – ran the peachtree 
October 28 – started at apostles
8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Probably finishing the peachtree….and making some really good gluten free/vegan cinnamon rolls.
9. What was your biggest failure?
I can’t think of one in particular but I prefer to not think of things as failures but more as opportunities to learn and grow.
10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
Yes, it’s better but I have a feeling I will be dealing with side effects from it for a while. 
11. What was the best thing you bought?
Foam massage roller.  
12. Where did most of your money go?
Food – whole clean gluten free vegan eating can be expensive. ;
13. What did you get really excited about? 
visiting the pacific northwest, alaska and canada. 
14. What song will always remind you of 2012?
Beautiful Things by Gungor
15. Compared to this time last year, are you:
happier or sadder? 
happier!
thinner or fatter?
for better or worse…the same   
richer or poorer? 
richer…in a lot of ways but poorer in some ways too
16. What do you wish you’d done more of? 
Enjoying the moment
17. What do you wish you’d done less of?
Trying to please others
18. How did you spend Christmas?
At my parents house, in my jammies, cooking in the kitchen…it was delightful. 
19. What was your favorite TV program?
Sherlock, Call the Midwives, Downton Abbey
20. What were your favorite books of the year?
Grace for the Good Girl by Emily Freeman
21. What was your favorite music from this year? 
Andrew Peterson – Light for the Lost Boy
Ellie Holcomb 
22. What were your favorite films of the year?
Saving Mr. Banks
Catching Fire 
The Secret Life of Walter Mitty
23. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
30!! Boy was this a birthday to remember. 
On my actual birthday I was in spain and spent it on a winery tour then out to dinner with my GYFM team. 
Then a few weeks later I was surprised by my family who flew my best friend from Australia in for my birthday party. It was wonderful! 
24. What’s one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
Not letting certain things conquer me. sorry to be so vague. 
25. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2013?
Whatever I think is cute/not worrying what other’s think!
26. What kept you sane?
a good friend.
27. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2012.  
That I’m not in control. And God will give me the grace to handle ANY circumstance/challenge when I’m ready. 

For 2013…
tumblr_mmrrgtbODC1sp30b1o1_500 cf005f28370558b9b2fd51d2092f39351c3ef02a44aefc3dfee42a3fadffa875b5ecbbd537c99618b56adba9a7eeb895

Happy Thanksgiving!

28 Nov

My dad wrote this thanksgiving day devotional for a team of missionaries serving in Bangkok, Thailand. I thought is was really good and expressed what I am truly thankful for this year. His grace.

I hope you have a great day with friends, family and loved ones…wherever you may find yourself.

:::::::

As we look forward on this side of the ocean to this holiday that originated in gratitude but has morphed into food, football and family time here are some thoughts on thankfulness. It is hard for me to be thankful if I think that it all depends on me. The feeling that I must do this or it won’t get done often flows out of a desire to be responsible and a hard worker. The downside is that we often lose sight of how dependent we are on Christ. These verses in Colossians 3 have challenged me to see how thankfulness relates to who Christ is to me.

15And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful. 16Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. 17And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. Colossians 3:15-17.

In these closing verses of this section of Paul’s letter to the Colossians Paul speaks of three characteristics of Christian character. 1) The peace of Christ should rule, 2) the Word of Christ should dwell richly in us as we teach and sing, and 3) whatever we say or whatever we do should be done in the name of the Lord Jesus. That is quite a challenge. Totally absorbed in Christ, His peace, his Word, and His name. But there is one other common element in these three verses, the word – THANKS. Be thankful, have thankfulness in our hearts and give thanks to the Father. Thanks comes from “charis” the same root as the Greek word for Grace. Being filled with Christ, knowing his grace toward us creates in us thankfulness. Not only outward thanks but thankfulness in our hearts. A heart of thankfulness flows out of a heart that knows how dependent they are on Christ. Thankfulness flows out of dependency. When my heart acknowledges how dependent I am in all Christ is for me, and what he has done for me, thankfulness will flow. May God give each of us a realization of how much Christ is for us, and what he has done for us. May that flow into thankful hearts that openly give thanks to God the Father.

#wholenovember update

20 Nov

I said I would update you on how whole november is going…

I’ve hummed and hawed over even writing this. because I’m embarrassed to say I have utterly failed at whole november. I have no idea what is going on with me at the moment but I’m in a funk that I would love to shake out of. I’m praying it happens quickly. That said I’m just taking it day by day.

In the mean time I’m clinging to these truths.

2timothy

louiegiglioquote

just want to be real with y’all…sometimes you’ve just got to abandon a plan…no matter how good…and focus on other things.

 

 

 

 

 

 

starting fresh #wholenovember

1 Nov

what just happened?

Life’s been a little nutso lately and I’m struggling to figure out where the last 6 months have gone.

I resigned from my job
I turned 30
I spent more time out of town then I did in town this summer
I hit my ‘goal’ weight.
I had surgery
I started working part time while finishing working full time
I got a new full time job at a new church
I’m leaving my beloved church (this Sunday is my last Sunday there) to go work at said new church

the list could go on and on.

With all this craziness let’s just say my eating habits have gotten all out of whack. Learning how to live and be after losing a significant amount of weight is soooo much harder than actually losing the weight. People told me this but I don’t think I believed them. Well I do now!

I’ve also noticed some less than desirable side effects (one is being played out right now…insomnia…yuck) and habits pop up because of all this that I’d like to see go away.

Basically…I need to

20131101-021353.jpg

So it’s November 1. I’m starting fresh. Getting clean. Going whole. I’m calling this #wholenovember .

I’m basing it off of the whole 30 diet but altering it some to make it non dairy vegetarian.

All I will eat is vegetables, fruits, lentils, chickpeas, some eggs and oats. nuts, seeds and other gluten free grains will be very limited. All of these things need to be in their whole forms. nothing processed and as plant based as I can get.

I am not going to weigh my self or track anything but my food for the entire month. This isn’t about losing weight. It’s about getting back on track.

I am under no illusion that this is going to be easy. Especially with the holidays around the corner…but I have to do something. I need to get back in the mind set of why I started this whole journey in the first place…to be healthy.

I’m sure I’ll be posting pics along the way of the journey on Instagram etc. so you can find those there. I’ll also try and give small status updates here on the blog too.

Do you need a fresh start? Feel free to join me in this journey too! Things like this are always more fun with friends. ;) Just use the hashtag #wholenovember on your fav social media outlet so we can track with each other.

Y’all have been so encouraging to me on this journey thus far. Thanks in advance for continuing that.

Here’s to #wholenovember !

BTDubs. I’m going to start an Instagram series called #30daysofthankfulness where I attempt to post a pic a day of something I am thankful for. Join me, won’t you?

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