the BIG 3-0

I turned 30 this week.

That feels unreal.

My oldest brother is 11.5 years older than me.  (That makes him 41.5 for those of you who love math.)  

I told him when I was about umm, 18 that he would turn 40 before I turned 30. He loved that. 🙂

I found a baby picture of me and my mom.  Naturally I posted it to Instagram and Facebook.  Of course the world wide web wanted to see that cute 9.5 LB baby!  Yeah, my moms a champ, and for some reason she ran that marathon without an epidural.  Although she does admit that she had multiple Diet Cokes a day and an excessive amount of TUMS while pregnant.  Anyway..

I turned it over and it said “10/5/79” followed by “taking Anna home from the hospital”. Well my dear sister was born October 2, 1979, and my name is clearly Anna, so we may never know which one of that it is…  She thinks moms glasses in it are clearly 70s.  I am not convinced.  

Big plastic glasses, 70s or 80s people??  

After all, she was born a whole 2 months before the 80s!

We may NEVER know.

The big question as of late- how does it feel to turn 30?  

1. I feel thankful.  I am thankful for lots of stuff, but I found myself especially thankful for Charles D. Maher this year.  He really worked hard to make me feel special on my big day.  I had a smallish party, and there I was so overwhelmed by the incredible and encouraging friends God has given me.

2. I feel creative.  I’ve always been a creative soul.  If we were at my family dinner table {parenthood style}, one of my siblings would probably tell you about the time I put an empty bag of potato chips on my wall.  To which, I would respond, “lies all lies”.  No, but from a young age I’ve loved expressing myself creatively.  Last month, I stayed back from a mission trip to give my heart some time to breath, and I found one of the most refreshing things for me is creativity.  

Chuck came home after the trip and sweetly went around the house inspecting the painted furniture, re-arranged living room, and pillow covers saying “oh, I like this”.  That made my heart smile.

This looks like more writing at the moment as well as taking pictures with my new big girl camera Chuck got me for my birthday.

3. I feel expectant.  I feel very aware of the dreams in my heart that have come to pass, but also extremely aware of the ones that haven’t.  New seasons have a way of helping us take inventory.  So with a thankful heart for what I do have, I press in for the more that I desire.

I do feel that 30 is significant, and will vow to stop saying I am doing 29 again.  I want to be a person who believes that He is taking me from glory to glory, and that this next season/decade will be more glorious than the last!

My 20s were filled with many things.  I traveled to 15 countries, moved from Texas to DC to California, bought a house, and got married.  Its been a decade of growing and learning.  

I like that I was born in the spring, a season where things that seemed dead come back to life.  It’s a good season to dream, and to allow the Holy Spirit to breathe fresh life.  I generally think of fall or autumn as my favorite season, but spring is a close 2nd.  I pray that as you read this a fresh grace to dream comes upon you.  

I’ll leave you with a few of my shots from today.

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unconditional.

my birthday was wednesday.  and thus commences the last year of my 20s.

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every year i like to take a little time with a cup of coffee and reflect on the previous year and then start to dream about the next…

in the midst of this i am once again processing the love and grace of God.  i recently wrote about grace and today i want to write a little about love.

i have been drawn to ephesians lately, and i want to cling to the promise that He can “do immeasurably more than all we can ask or imagine according to his power that is at work within us” for this next year.

i administrated a conference this week and with that i got to hear some amazing men of God share from their hearts.  one of them said, “there are none of the promises He has made to me that are dependent on my behavior”.

wow, that pricks the strategic achiever in me and in the same instant forces me to take a deep breath and let go.

today i was struck by paul’s prayers for those in ephesus to “grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge-that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God”.

selah. 

that’s beautiful. filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.  

it’s not about my pushing. it’s not about my striving. it’s not about my efforts.

it’s about my yielding.

it’s about me clearing the space in my busy schedule.  it’s about me making time and space to be filled.  

that’s what i want this year… to know his love more.

to be filled to the measure.

to trust that He has the power to do what He has promised, even more than i’ve asked or could imagine!

to rest in His love and power.

to allow His love and power to simply flow through me and onto those who encounter me.

to embrace the basics and leave the complex.

to accept His love without conditions and to allow Him to teach me how to love in the same way.

so happy birthday to me and here’s to my best year YET!