29 Lessons I Learned in My Twenties

29 Lessons MIMSC

Yesterday was my last day in my twenties. As strange as it seems to let go of this decade (already?!), I am looking forward to my thirties and what the future holds.

This has been a wonderful, frustrating, identity shaping, and tear-jerker of a decade. As I approach thirty, I’m choosing to believe the best is yet to come. Looking back, here are some of the most important lessons I learned in my twenties.

1. You have issues. Start dealing with them.
We all have wounds from childhood and past relationships. The sooner you admit this and start working towards healing and wholeness, the more you will have to offer the world.

2. City life as a 20-something is a blast.
I finished college in Philly, lived five minutes outside of downtown Knoxville while working my first real job out of school, and spent the last five years living in Hoboken. With endless opportunities for entertainment, food, and culture right outside my door, it would have been had to imagine living this decade of my life anywhere else.

3. God is listening and speaks to us.
For years I threw my prayers in God’s direction, and walked away hoping God would later hunt me down and give me an answer. Over the last decade I’ve learned that there is greater value in being silent before God than talking God’s ear off.

4. Heartbreak is inevitable, but can be worth it.
It’s pretty much a guarantee that if you fall in love in your 20’s, you’re also likely to have your heart shattered. Still, taking a big leap for love to find out if its worth it (even if its not) can lead to learning your most important lessons.

5. You probably won’t land your dream job.
Most of us in our twenties think we will have “arrived” in our careers by now… even though we’ve been working for less than a decade. There are a lucky few of us who have, but the good news is the majority are still figuring out what’s next.

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How to Marry to Love God More

photo by Hoffer Photography

I saw a lovely little sentiment floating around the internet recently that said:

“Marry someone who makes you fall in love with God every single day.”

At first glance, that seems like a perfectly appropriate single Christian girl power sentiment to share on social media. But sorry (not sorry), I’m calling BS.

Do you know what makes me fall in love with God more every single day? Recognizing that my loving husband, smart, talented, and spiritually mature as he is… will continually disappoint me.

In my first year or two of marriage, I remember hitting a wall of frustration when I realized that my husband was not living up to the picture I had imagined for my marriage. I wanted him to connect with me on a regular basis, plan incredible romantic excursions, and ask me pointed questions. I started to feel like I was being gypped, like I deserved more. As I brooded over these things I realized I had real needs, and they were not being met.

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We All Want to be Known

Flickr_Amanky_walkonthebeach

Falling in love can be terrifying.

When Nick and I were dating and our relationship was becoming more serious, my doubts battled my love for him in a serious way. We were talking about marriage only a few months into our relationship, because we had been friends for over two years and had already dated once before.

As I thought about the future, of committing the rest of my life to one person, it almost made me want to hyperventilating. Almost every long-term relationship I had been in before had crashed and burned badly. After years of investment, they ended with glaringly obvious lists of each other’s flaws and all the ways we would never work. Those break ups made me wonder if I would ever find someone who loved me for who actually I was instead of some other version they had fabricated in their minds. I did not want to repeat that process ever again, and the thought of it exhausted me.

These doubts would creep out from my soul in the midst of conversations with Nick as each month passed. I would slowly begin to panic and tell him, “You don’t really know me.”

Continue reading We All Want to be Known