Sunday, February 26, 2012

The Civil Wars, my mac, coffee, and Sunday afternoon pondering life

So now, I am a blogger. Life is too fun to go it alone and God shows me so much that sometimes I feel I need to share. So this blog will consist of crazy Bet thoughts, moments, and well ideas. So bear with me as it all explodes onto these pages.

Life, it's a crazy thing. I always picture it as a roller coaster going over many hills at lightning speed and every once in a while....every once in a while it slows enough for you to take in the view and look back on the hill you just conquered.

Looking back:

I am blessed to be on a journey lead by a most Awesome Creator and Savior.  My life hasn't been bad. I have just been through some deep molding as I like to call it.

A lil about my life, I am 21 and it's a good year. Growing up with four amazing brothers brought much laughter and bruises, but I wouldn't trade it for the world. Saying goodbye as we grew up and all going in different directions was the eye opener that we aren't in Never Never land. What do they say? "Time flies when you are having fun" More like "watch it go as you grow, hold onto your trousers!!" Life changes, and it's quite the transition. It is exciting though! God has brought me through many a valley and many a hill top, but I've learned to really, truly, passionately cherish the valley experiences. Experiences where your heart is truly aching from brokenness and your mind wandering hopelessly in confusion. The valley experiences are precious moments wrapped in God's deep grasp of love and grace.
God has called me to a journey harder than I thought and I love it. Graduated in 2008, and there began my journey. I chose not to go to college because I had no calling to. I chose the path less traveled. Which brought many questioning from people, "Why?". It was so hard to answer that question with people looking at you when you said, "I am not going to college" and the look was purely "are you insane? what are you going to do. Don't you need a degree?". Well, the answer to that question became easier and easier to answer over time. "No, I am right where God wants me and I am excited to see what he has in store.
It's been a crazy adventure so far. Pursued photography with the hopes of jumping right into starting a side business one day and getting married at the age of 19/20.  That was MY plan. Funny how MY plans changed and I am glad they did. God brought many experiences along the path which this Bethany would never ever have chosen for herself. My battle with fear had to be overthrown. I wasn't fond of change, now my heart longs for it. The fear was conquered at the age of 18. God introduced me to a coffee shop which took me out of my comfort zone. I met so many people from all over the world just in a small coffee shop. God revealed the dream he placed within me to open up a coffee shop of my own one day as a ministry. It's such a chill environment to get to know people and so many ways God can use it as a tool. I love coffee too ;-)
Along my journey was a moment I will never forget. One step on a plane changed my whole view on life and awakened a passion in my heart for foreign missions. It was my first trip out of the country to a place I call home, Guatemala. God showed me how ones life and smile can say so much where language barriers prevent words. Language barriers have nothing on God. I witnessed life lived different than here in America. WHAT???!! Yep people there is a world outside of America and your own world. We get so wrapped up in our own lives that we pass by people who are in need of food, clothing, shelter, and most times just a smile. I spent two weeks in Guatemala, January 2011. I camped(which I totally have never camped before, "roughening it") one week in the Mayan Jungle. There I saw a life so full of nothing materially but full of so much more! They lived on very little, no shoes, cribs, computers, ibprofen, video games, beds, and that's just how they live. I look around and ask myself, "how could we survive like that?" They're social activities are, coming together as a community or as families, playing soccer, and working together. Watches don't exist there. It's not go go go. I feel as though that they actually cherish more moments and share more stories than we could ever imagine! We miss out on so many moments due to technology and the constant go go go mentality. When's the last time you actually sat down and enjoyed a meal as a family and shared stories about life. Or more like when is the last time you actually stopped, looked around you, and actually thanked God for another day to be alive. We take so much for granted. Clean toilets, clean water, shoes, our own Bible(s), and we don't even recognize it as a blessing most of the time. Down in Guatemala, God showed me that there is more to this life than living and breathing. It's called true love. Not the "prince charming" kind of true love but TRUE Love for people. This love is observant, bold, selfless, and ready.

Observant: Noticing people and their emotions, needs, and that they are a human being just like you
Bold: Overcoming the embarrassment of what other's think or your reputation
Selfless: Stopping what your are doing or your life to be in the moment of another's
Ready: Ready at all times for God to use you

I felt for the first time in Guatemala, that people actually care and truly love and appreciate people. God brought many new special people into my life. I made lasting relationships down there and I saw God's hands at work in their lives. I went back this year and was introduced to a little girl named Catalina who showed me what pure joy looks like. I went through a hard year last year and God knew that I needed this girl in my life. I needed to feel joy again and she brought it back to my heart. I feel like the Guatemalans give us more than we take down to them, and none of that is material.

God conquered fear and blindness on that adventure. Guatemala has such a huge place in my heart and such an impact on my life.

Ok, now that I have babbled on. God's next mission field after the 2 years at the coffee shop he introduced me to Chick-fil-a, my new mission field. It was my last job choice, but God wanted me there and now I know why. He has brought so many people into my life that I am so incredibly blessed to have met! Many of them a puzzle piece in this crazy puzzle called my life. I could tell you so many stories about life at Chick-fil-a but we will wait for those ;-) I'm gonna write a book on 101 things  not to do through a drive thru. Hahahaha! The job is a piece itself because I am gaining experience in the manager field as to better prepare me for the coffee shop one day. ;-) Crazy how God works!

It's exciting to see how God is building this puzzle. Every piece has a purpose. Every experience in my life, the ups, downs, and dizzy loopty loops have brought me to where I am now and who He wants me to be.

Looking ahead:

My dreams and desires of marriage at the age of 19/20, well it's not God's timing, and I am excited about that. I am not lonely or alone. I have my Creator and Savior whom I am falling deeper and deeper in love with each day and if it's singlehood for me, I am honored. My purpose here on earth is to glorify God and whatever His will is, let it be done. I want to be that willing vessel. If he chooses to put together a team, than I am also honored. Either way I am happy and enjoying this journey He has for me.

Hebrews 12:1

As we are surrounded by a great cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily beset us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us.

This verse has been becoming more evident in my life as I run. I have learned recently that as we run don't forget to slow down and enjoy it. God has lots to show us along the path are we willing to let Him show us :-)

So this has been just thoughts about life and what God has been doing in my life.

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