There have been many new things going on in my life recently. For starters, Matt and I have started a community group in our home. We've invited friends from church and other places. It is still small and we hope that it will grow into a group that welcomes people from all walks of life, people who have a relationship with Jesus, those who are just curious, and everything in between. It has been interesting embarking on the small group journey, never knowing who will show up or how the evening will go. It has caused me to give up control and just let things develop as God leads them. As you think of us, please pray that this small group with develop as we seek Christ and his kingdom.
The other new thing in my life is my new job, as I have shared previously. I love this job! I find it so rewarding. I get to be that adult that is excited to see the kids and make them feel like they are the most important thing in my day. Their faces light up when I walk in their classrooms---seriously, it doesn't get any better than that! Some have told me how happy they feel when they talk about the "secret things," and I know what a privilege it is to listen to their broken lives and be a caring and listening adult. On a further note of praise, I received something very important and long expected today in the mail. I have been waiting with baited breath the last four months to get my intern number which allows me to start billing hours towards licensure. For most of you this won't make much sense, but rest assured it was a major hoop that I jumped through. God has allowed my counseling career to blossom in tremendous ways in the last month and a half. To commemorate the thrill of the white envelop sitting in my mailbox waiting for me to discover it, I took a picture with the official slip stating I am now a marriage and family therapist intern in the state of California. I know it's kind of goofy. I was left wondering why I always get "fat-face" when my picture is taken.
On to holiday news, Matt and I are excited about the arrival of family over the next few months. His parents are coming for Thanksgiving and mine are coming for Christmas. We are so thrilled to have family making the long trek to see us and what our lives are like out here. Yay for holidays spent with family! I also followed up on a book tag I received months ago from two of my sisters in law. Sorry Kelly and Megan it has taken so long. Here is the book tag I promised I would complete.
1. A book that changed your life: The Ragamuffin Gospel (Brennan Manning). This book was an incredible and risky dive into the depths of grace. Radically changed my faith during college!
2. Book you’ve read more than once: Reviving Ophelia: Saving the Selves of Adolescent Girls (Mary Pipher). This is such a good resource for parents, youth pastors, teenagers, anybody who has ever been an adolescent girl, had an adolescent sister or dated a woman who was once an adolescent girl. (I think that covers everyone.)
3. One book you’d want on a desert island: One of those trick books that when you open it up has the inside carved out so that there is room for objects. What would be the objects you ask? A satelite phone, a compass, and one of my Dad's famous rolls that as kids we all thought we could live off of for a week because they were so dense.
4. A book that made you laugh: I haven't been in the habit of reading books that make me laugh...maybe I should.
5. A book that made you cry: Ragamuffin Gospel, again.
6. One book you wish had been written: The Answers to Alina's Teenage Years Dilemmas, by God.
7. One book you wish had never been written: The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands (Dr. Laura Schlesinger). [Puke, gag, blech]
8. Book you’re currently reading: I actually just finished a book called White Oleander (Janet Finch). I am loving the newfound pleasure and relaxation to be found in reading for fun and not for assignment. This didn't turn out to be a lighthearted, relaxing read, but it did further stir my passion and desire to adopt a child one day.