Tuesday, December 31, 2013

A Year of Inviting

A year ago I joined a group of dreamers...a word that still sounds so foreign to me. But we spent the year getting to know each other, sharing the wins and the setbacks, encouraging each other, and yes, dreaming.

In 2013 my dream focused on inviting others into our home and into our lives. Community is often messy and hard and inconvenient, but it's also refreshing, vital, and life-giving. And so we invite each other in.

2013 was a year of learning what this looked like for us. We did little things like sharing meals and throwing a few parties. A summer intern working at our church lived in our basement. Another friend stayed for a week while his family moved. We had friends stay in our home even though we were out of town. Our backyard filled up with people we love and people we hadn't yet met.

A year ago I didn't know who I would be inviting into our home, but I knew what I wanted our guests, our friends to find when they arrived. A place of comfort, of grace. A place of equal parts deep conversation and light-hearted merriment. A place of peaceful welcome.

A place that reflected our hearts.

My home is far from perfect, and my heart has so much room to grow. This year saw quite a few failures and forgotten goals, but the yeses we said in 2013 are producing growth that extends into 2014. And that's how I'll measure my success.

Happy New Year, dear friends. Looking forward to seeing all God has in store!

Sunday, December 8, 2013

6 years.

6 years ago I walked across campus to meet my guy while the snow fell.

Today I decorated for Christmas with that same guy while the snow fell.

6 years can change a lot of things, but he is still my favorite.

Our relationship, our marriage is still just a baby, but reflecting on our few years shows me that we're changing and growing and writing a great story. And since it's the season for favorite things, here's 6 reasons why I just can't stop loving him.

1. Those honest eyes.
I may tease him for his inability to hide a thing. But it's his transparency is what drew me to him 6 years ago and I still love he shows me everything with a look.

2. He makes me laugh.
He just does. It's the best.

3. He holds me.
The last three years have thrown a lot at us, but he's carried me through the hardest parts.

4. He makes me better.
Nate's a planner. I am not. Nate's organized. I am not. He loves me despite my rough edges, but he also smooths them out.

5. The way he works.
Nate is faithful in the little things. He works hard and remains humble.

6. He loves Jesus.
And he spurs me toward loving Jesus more, too.

*          *          *

Happy six years, sweet man. I love that I get to keep dating you, 
and I can't wait to see what the next six years will bring.