Week one. Begins.
As some of you may know, three years ago I did the school of ministry development in Los Angeles, shorty after returning home from Europe. A lot has happened between then and now… but funny enough, I’m back! But this time, as a staff member; and this time, in Salem Oregon!
Part of the curriculum of this school for students is to blog weekly.
I remember the late(ish) nights I imprisoned myself in the computer lab to complete my 1000+ word post before the Friday morning due date. Even more, I remember that one week I typed up my longest post yet, to accidentally delete the WHOLE THING minutes before publishing it. And yes, I cried. It was a challenging assignment for me then but one that exited me. I always wanted to write and it was seriously on my heart to share my story.
So my blog began. The openness of what I had been through, what I was learning, who I was evolving into, and what areas I was seeing breakthrough in was available to the world.
Between then and now I’ve kept my website; using it on and off for school, sharing a few travel stories, and displaying parts of my portfolio digitally. Still, I haven’t been faithful in writing like I once intended to. I haven’t been consistent in keeping my content updated nor sharing the thoughts that have provoked me most throughout my journey. So this is my second chance. This is a new beginning, and in a time that I can be held accountable.
So, Fall 2019, the blog continues.
My journey here was a long one as I had a wedding to attend the weekend prior to the school… in North Dakota. So I packed my bag for the wedding, my car for the drive to Salem, and whatever didn’t fit- into storage… as the mystery remained- what would come after this all. But the anxiety of that question fell, as I could yet not even grasp what the next week would look like. Lots of driving, even more uncertainty, and many miles alone lie ahead for this journey.
There was many moments between leaving Kalispell, to arriving in Oregon, and even in the first week that I second guessed my decision. The fears of of getting stuck, being unhappy, unproductive, bored… going broke, all sank in. What if I don’t fit in? What if I’m wasn’t on track to be in a leadership role… and the truth is that I wasn’t, and I’m still now.
But the school leader, my beloved mentor and friend, spoke into exactly that today. The reality that as leaders we can’t wait for our character to match the role we desire. Just as a father doesn’t have the characteristics of a father until he becomes one; we must step into leadership to learn what characteristics are necessary, which ones we don’t have, and what growth must be initiated to continue on.
This concept is huge for me as I am a big believer in experience, in learning by doing, in getting out there and risking everything to gain more. And even though poor leadership has the capability to hurt people, it’s also by bad leadership that great leaders are formed. Its by our mistakes that we learn what not to do and as an outcome- succeed.
Anyway, the school has now began and the first week has past, and I feel good. I am seeing reason after reason why I’m here. I am recognizing the provision and hand of God in the season. I am realizing that there is more for me, but I cannot enter into it without this school.
It’s not just the curriculum of SOMD or even being back in YWAM that is setting me up for all I need, but it’s the people. It’s my co-staff, it’s the students, the people that remain in my life even when I’m away from them and away from home. It’s the intervention of God in my life as previous dreams come back to life. It’s the opportunity to teach, encourage, create a new home away from home, and be challenged in spirit and mind to move on from a life all too familiar.
It’s been a process trying to identify what I want out of this school, as well as what I have to offer. I’m definitely seeking direction in this time as I have a list of decisions to make in the months to come… like where I want to live after this school, what dreams I wish to pursue, and how to approach work and school. There is so many opportunities even within those areas, and I feel immense freedom in having the capability to choose.
When it comes to what seeds I want to sow… something amazing/unexpected has been placed right in my lap. That thing is a weekly meeting we’re calling “dream nights.” I didn’t come up with the idea nor was aware of it prior to my arrival, but it’s part of the curriculum that was on our leader’s heart… that ended up being passed onto me. Now it’s my calling to create, to execute, and to lead our school in these gatherings. And I must say, I’M STOKED.
Earlier this week I got to sit down and lay it all out on paper (and google slides)- the vision, the weekly breakdown, the intention, and overall- the calling God placed on my heart for it. Honestly, I was surprised how much sense it started all making. Not only the layout and opportunity to administrate the weekly “dream meetings,” but also my personal experiences that somehow followed this theme of dream creating, developing vision, and forming projects out of ideas.
Even just having the time and space to sit at the coffee shop and work through ideas felt so relaxing. I also started a new resume, I took time to go through recent travel photos, and sorted through emails. I’ve had time and space to make longer phone calls with family and friends. I’ve began to journal again! I’ve started to reevaluate my goals as a young adult. I worked through my testimony and had time to connect on a deeper level with the new people that surround me.
All to say, this season will be busy and challenging, but hopefully in a way that’s also restful and restorative. I have many prayers I’m ready to courageously pray in terms of my future, my family, and the relationships that have involved in my life since the beginning.
I hope to reach new levels with God and step into my faith more than ever before. I aspire to walk in authenticity, integrity, truth, and wisdom every step of the way.
Week one. Done.