10 August 2014

chapter four, in which megan explains why she is not moving back to kansas city yet


This is real.

I have a new job. And it's my dream job - I think? I think I'm too young to have my dream job.

Maybe, probably, I will have new dreams in two or five or ten years, and that's fine, but for now, it is, in fact, my dream job.

I'm so thankful. And at the same time, my thankfulness over the last few months has been laced with discontentment. I keep asking God if I can move back to Kansas City. I want to pick up my little sister for lunch dates and be a respite caregiver for the Peery House and play on the playground with UCA's inaugural kindergarten class and go to my dad's shows and plan a Camp CUMCITO Teen Girls retreat and let my friend Kyla chauffeur me around with her shiny new driver's license and become friends with the man who's dating my best friend. There are so many good things going on there that I would love to be a part of, and so many people who I want to live daily life with.

And I feel like God doesn't get it, because I keep hearing "Not yet." I forget my dream job and the dearly loved family I nanny for and the healthiest church that I've ever been a part of and the community that has truly become my West Seattle family and the sunset over the mountains over the ocean and I start daydreaming and wishing and whining to God, and then I get angry, because he's not letting me live every good story that I want to live all at the same time.

He's been so patient with me. He has not yet raised his voice with me. But he has said in loving firmness, "Do you really think that your story is better than mine? Do you really think that it is all about you getting everything you want (which is too much for you to cram into your mouth anyway)? Infinitely greater and more beautiful things are at stake."

This morning I was reading an excerpt from the writings of Saint John of the Cross, and the editor of the book advised an assignment: "Be patient with God this week. John of the Cross consistently counsels us not to fuss or fret and take our spiritual lives into our own hands, but simply to receive what God would have us receive, no more, no less. Learn the discipline of gratitude for the small things." The Holy Spirit whispered to me, "Even though you think you're missing out on so many things in Kansas City, stop fussing and fretting. Trust your God's guidance. Trust that he knows what he's doing. He has opened doors for you here and now that you should not walk away from because you are greedy or discontent, but should keep walking through because they are good and because you are his. You are not your own. You have been bought with a price. It is not about your desires, but about his glory. He is writing a better story. And in the end, you will not regret following him instead of following your own wisdom."

I don't know how to communicate that to all of the people who I feel like I'm disappointing by my decision to stay here, but maybe they'll read this post.

There are deeply wounded and out-of-place men and women here who I get to intentionally and practically love full-time through smiles and individually tailored English worksheets and caring about them as human beings and being excited that they're here and crying out in prayer over the waves of difficulty that threaten to crash down over them. There is a thirteen year old boy who is asking big questions about who Jesus is and listening to my answers. There is a church who is pouring itself out to make God look as good as he is in the avenues and alleyways of Seattle. These are the doors that I'm going to follow God through. God, help me not just walk, but run.

21 May 2014

the stranger

This film is coming out next month - check out the trailer: http://www.thestrangerfilm.org/

I haven't seen it yet and can't recommend it or not, but the issues it raises are huge and close to my heart - immigration reform is needed terribly, and the church needs to lead in welcoming the stranger as we have been so radically welcomed by God.

You can read what God says about how we should treat the stranger here: http://evangelicalimmigrationtable.com/iwasastranger/

And check out this book for strong, wise, perceptive, and Biblical insights about immigration reform: http://www.amazon.com/Welcoming-Stranger-Justice-Compassion-Immigration/dp/0830833595

And then let's talk! Tell me what you think!

13 February 2014

11 December 2013

come visit

World Relief Seattle has a blog, and it's amazing. All of the staff contribute stories, and sometimes our refugee clients contribute stories too. If you're interested in meeting some of my amazing students and their families, and getting to know the work that I have the privilege of being a part of better, but you don't have the money for a plane ticket up here, come visit by taking a minute to scroll through our blog and check out some of our stories (although if you DO have the money for a plane ticket, COME!).
Click here: http://worldreliefseattle.wordpress.com/

20 November 2013

the sisters do searcy

Climbed to the top of Sugar Loaf for sunrise on my birthday

16 November 2013

depression

My pal Karen wrote an excellent post on depression: http://tedenrice.wordpress.com/2013/11/16/its-real-guys-so-lets-talk-about-it/
Read & learn & be encouraged. Her life is a beautiful and brave and encouraging thing.

06 October 2013

the humility of hope

Some little baby friends are growing into toddlers, and it's so encouraging!

(Not literal babies growing into toddlers, just to be clear; rather, several young friendships growing a little deeper and stronger and easier.)

Something else encouraging today (from C.J. Mahaney):
Scripture calls us to cast all our anxieties on God, because he cares for us.

'Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you. (1 Peter 5:6-7, ESV)'

Casting all my cares upon the Lord is a means of humbling myself before the Lord. In reading these passages we discover that casting our cares upon the Lord falls under the command to humble ourselves. Casting our cares is an expression of humility. When I fail to cast my cares upon him, I display prideful self-sufficiency.

Self-sufficiency is one of my favorite things, so I need to hear this. My schedule is not my own. My strength and ability are not my own. I am in great need of humility. I desperately need it for my survival, flourishing, and joy.

Humility requires releasing my worry. Worry and anxiety are not honoring to Him. They are not truth-reflecting, life-giving, or fruitful. Sometimes I feel like I should worry, or else I'm not giving due concern to a situation. This is absolutely untrue. Concern and thoughtfulness are very different than worry. Concern and thoughtfulness end in trusting action, with joy. Worry and anxiety drain and paralyze. They set me up as the burden-bearer, rather than Jesus.

Lord, let me then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that I may receive mercy and find grace to help me in my time of need. May this confident hope in the great God I serve prevail as an anchor for my soul, firm and secure. For it is good for our hearts to be strengthened by grace, continually offering to God a sacrifice of praise. And may the God of peace, who through the blood of the eternal covenant brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep, equip me with everything good for doing his will, and may he work in me what is pleasing to him, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory for ever and ever.