First thing's first...I'm riding my bike across the country again! I so, so can't wait because I know what can happen on these trips. At the same time, though, in many ways it will be a whole new trip. I will be with a whole new team, in new places, with a new role, and with a new purpose. This time I'll be taking a northern route across the US, going from Seattle to Long Island, going through lots of big cities including Seattle, Minneapolis, Milwaukee, Chicago, Philly, Pittsburg, NYC, and more. I'm really excited about that part! Also, this year I'll be going as a leader. I'm even more excited about that! This time, I get to be there for the rest of the team, to help them discover their story and to encourage them along the way on this journey of a lifetime. I can't wait to serve them and to stand beside them as they see new places and think new thoughts. To greet them as they meet each other for the first time, and to cheer them on as they leave. And lastly, the other big thing that makes this trip different is that it will not be a Ride:Well Tour, but a Just+Hope Tour, benefitting anti-human trafficking efforts. The more I think about it, the more excited I get. It is so amazing and humbling that God has let me be a part of such an incredible and beautiful movement.
Next thing...I am so grateful for the friendships that are beginning with people in my church family. I've said it before, and I'm sure I'll say it lots and lots more times, but I absolutely love my church. Anyway, Wednesday and Thursday I got to go check out some small groups. I loved them both, but I especially loved Thursday night. The group is called "Making Space" and discusses spiritual disciplines. We talked for at least 2 hours, so I definitely could not share all that we talked about in one blog. But I'll at least chare something small. The topic this week was examination and contemplation as spiritual disciplines. Actually taking time to intentionally think about the ways God is involved in our lives. There are so many small things you can do, but one thing is to try asking yourself a certain kind of question at the end of the day. There were lots of examples, but one of the ones I like the best was: "Which part of my day was the most life-giving and which was the most life-thwarting." The others were good, too, and if you want to know them, just let me know, and I'll share more. Anyway, the moral of this story is that I so enjoyed that opportunity I had this week, and am also so grateful for all the amazing women (and guys, too) that I'm meeting. I really do look forward to finding out what friendships God has in store and what other awesome things he has up his sleeve.
Oh, and I'm also thankful for friendships at work. I'm (thankfully!!!) starting to feel more and more comfortable there, and really am thankful for the girls I work with.
Random thought time :o) .......
Thought #1: Did you know that hardihood means boldness? I like that word. Also, logorrhea means talkativeness. Think about it...it's pretty funny. Have you ever been to freerice.com? If not, you should. It's great, and I think you should go to it right now.
Thought #2: I am constantly reminded that I need God all the time. This one might be a repeat, but it doesn't matter, because that's the point. This very important fact is just as true today as yesterday, and will be just as true tomorrow.
Thought #3: Tonight there is a meteor shower! I've only seen one once before, and it didn't even compare to this one. Apparently, they even get much better...I think during the summer, and also later at night if I would stay up. Anyway, I did go out for just a few minutes (it's still very, very frigid outside), and I saw a beautiful shooting star right away! I love nature. I especially love the sky. All kinds. But my most favorite is a starry sky. I love the feeling of being in awe and at the same time humbled at the thought of how tiny I am and how big God is.
Thought #4: A few days ago, my Mom happened to randomly talk to my old High School Headmaster. She shared with him about my Ride:Well Tour, and he could not believe it! Haha...and understandably so. I was a choir and drama kid. Not even in the running for "most athletic." Anyway, he said he wants me to write an article and feature it as the main story of the next Alumni magazine. I'm pretty excited about getting to share the story with past graduating classes.
That's all for tonight. Maybe, if I can get myself to do it (what I'm saying is, no promises!), I should blog more often. That way, the blogs would be a little shorter, which I'm sure you would all like.