What I Learned Spring 2017

I may only be able to type one-handed and in short bursts, but I didn’t want to miss out on this practice that I have come to value. This season has been intense in more ways than anticipated. September to November was always going to be busy with birthdays, calisthenics concerts, MOPS retreats to organise and attend, camping trips and so many other commitments thrown in. Add in a shoulder injury requiring surgery and the season ramped up exponentially. In the midst of the busyness, there has been so much joy, learning and growth.

  • What started as a season of limbo ended with unexpected changes.

So many areas of my life felt in limbo, up in the air with an underlying feeling of restlessness. Now I feel more settled, clearer and with some answers. Once more, I discovered that a season of limbo and restlessness precedes growth and new steps to take. If you are in that time of limbo and restlessness, hold tight and keep your eyes open. The changes you are waiting for can come unexpectedly.

  • Step ladders work best when you aren’t mostly asleep
I missed just one step on the ladder in our camper trailer at 4am and managed to tear a tendon in my shoulder. A brief moment of inattention has had a long-term impact. 

  • Recovering from shoulder surgery sucks!
Related to the above point, recovery from shoulder surgery is rough! Of course, this is still well worth it for the long-term goal of being fully functional and pain-free. I am so conscious of how lucky I am to be facing a process of months not years or permanent disability. It has made me value the everyday things that I am usually able to do.

  • Big next steps are scary every time.
It has been a series of a few years of taking on new roles with MOPS here in Australia. I was confident that I had reached the point where I would be sticking with the same role for at least a couple of years. I was wrong. Next year, I step into a national role. I am excited to be part of a team taking MOPS into its next season but feel the weight of this responsibility. I wasn’t looking for this opportunity but know that it is my next right step. If you are facing a scary next step, I know what that feels like. Don’t sell yourself short. Expect to make mistakes but also expect to have an impact that is unique to you. (You may also like to check out The Next Right Thing podcast by Emily P. Freeman for more encouragement and soul space.)

  • A retreat that you have organised can be just as soul refreshing for you as for your team.

  • I love writing with the purpose of encouraging in mind.
During October, I joined in the Write 31 Days challenge and asked my readers about areas they wanted encouragement for. It was the most inspired I have been in my writing for awhile. I quickly realised that it was because of the connection to the community around me and the opportunity to use my words to encourage others. What a privilege! 

Click here to receive a free ebook of all of the “For Your Encouragement” posts that also includes exclusive content.

  • I am not great at being able to sit and do nothing.
I thought I had been improving in this but a recent trip home from a camping trip where my headphones broke showed me that I have trained my brain to need constant input. My technology addiction is still alive and well and old habits have slipped in.My challenge for the next few weeks is to be able to use all the extra rest and downtime forced on me to rest my soul as well. So far it has mostly been Netflix but my brain fog is slowly lifting to allow reading and other more nourishing forms of rest. A good opportunty to practice stillness if I take it.

  • My love for Advent is still strong buts looks different this year.
You can read about my simplified Advent plans here. It includes my annual Advent planner pages free for you. It isn’t too late to create a simple but meaningful plan or Advent.

This has been a glimpse into my last three months. Maybe there was something you related too and you could say “me too!” I hope something has encouraged you or caused you to think for a moment. 

I am joining in with the community over at Emily P. Freeman’s blog sharing what we learned.