Wednesday, August 14

TRE's One Year Anniversary!

Hooray! We can hardly believe it's been a year since we first started blogging! Although we could spend this time sharing accomplished goals made over the past year -- things we're certainly thankful for -- we've
decided to take a much more personal route, with each of us sharing how God has shown up in our lives over the past year. Places he's met us, ways he's comforted, joys we've shared. And we're asking you, dear friend, to join us. Once you've read our account, please consider sharing your own. We'd love to hear your reflections from the past year.

So here goes...



Kendra: When I think about God in my life over the past year, the first word that comes to mind is faithful. No matter what I have faced, I have found him to be faithful. From the joys of adopting another beautiful child and finding we were pregnant, to having to deal with the death of this same adopted son's biological mother and adjusting to the idea of adding a baby into our already busy family life. There is one thing I can rely on: God's faithfulness to me. From fights with my husband to financial stressors, to academic struggles with my kids, God has been faithful. When we finished our book, saw God's love on missions trips and service to single moms, I rejoiced in his faithfulness. The good, the bad, it doesn't really matter. The one constant is that he is faithful. Of that I am sure. And it has been the theme that has resonated through my life and heart over this past year.

Julie: Hang around me for any length of time in the past year, and you'll hear me wistfully joke (and occasionally mutter) about "pink sky writing" and "cliff jumping."

If I could have my way, I'd prefer God direct my life and actions through pink sky writing. Think about it: hot pink sky writing is obvious, clear and is pretty hard to misunderstand -- exactly what this risk-adverse lawyer wants when she is trying to figure out what it means to live a life that honors God and reflects the love of Christ. Unfortunately, that isn't the way God works -- at least not for me. It takes careful study and learning about the character of God from scripture, it's being sensitive to that nudge in my heart, it's praying earnestly and listening closely.  

I've also learned that God often asks me to FIRST step out in faith, before I see the entire picture, the whole road, the purpose behind the first big step.  I've nicknamed this experience "cliff jumping" because many of these new adventures have involved committing to a big action step (a literal giant leap of faith) without fully understanding where I would land, how I would land and who would be waiting to laugh and point at me if I fell flat on my face.

This first year of TRE, for me, has been simultaneously one of the scariest and most exciting of my faith journey. I never expected the wonderful new friendships created this past year when Kendra, Kristin and I teamed up as writers and volunteers for Bridging the Gap and as we interviewed marvelous, crazy-brave women both for the blog and the book. I've been forced to revisit and expand my views on service, on sacrifice, on faith. I've been stretched, I've been challenged, and I've done a lot of "cliff jumping" without the benefit of "pink sky writing." And although it has been stressful and scary at times, I am not the woman I was 12 short months ago...and I never want to go back. 

Kristin: What I've loved most about this past year is the sense of community -- as women sharing our lives with other women, with people in our backyards and across the world. It's so humbling and yet enthralling at the same time, to think about how amazing that is -- the greatness of our God, that he speaks across time and distance and culture. That he can use something spoken from the depths of my vulnerability, my secret heartache and personal struggles, to connect with someone else and give them hope.

If God has taught me one thing this year (believe me, he's done a lot more, but this post has to end sometime, am I right?), it's that we are called to do something with this life. Even things that may seem small on the surface (like our Advent Acts of Kindness, or our Lent Remixed series, or our amazing tales of What People Did This Summer) serve the larger purpose of remembering that we are not alone in this crazy journey called life, that it's important for us to look beyond ourselves and seek justice, help the oppressed, pray for those who need it, and show love and kindness to others. My favorite verse this year has been Micah 6:8, "And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God." And through this journey, I'm continually challenged to live up to the promise of that verse.

In closing we just want to say, thank you reader, for walking through this last year with us. Many of you have shared honestly from your own lives and we feel privileged to have gotten to know some of you better and honored to hear your stories as well.

Now it's your turn: We'd love to hear how God has been with you over the past year, what you're most thankful for, or how you've made it through! Once you've shared, either on our blog or Facebook page, your name will be entered in a drawing for a FREE TRE book! (The winner will be announced on Monday, August 26.)


Celebrating this journey,

Kendra, Julie and Kristin

2 comments :

  1. This past year has been a tough one for me as I've spent a lot of it not feeling all that great. But, I have to agree with Kendra; God is FAITHFUL! And one of the best parts of this past year has been getting to know the three of you and working together with you on the BTG website. :) Love you guys!

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    1. Right back at you Nancy! We are so blessed to call you our friend! We love you too! (And praying you feel better soon!)

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