Hey everyone! So, nearly three months later, here we are! 🙂 Seriously though, it’s been ages and I haven’t really felt inspired to write anything as I’ve been just enjoying the steps of my own journey. As of late, I’ve felt like I am in a place of creating. After a season of so much being broken down and torn away, things have changed in a tangible and delightful way.
I’ve had some experience with creating pieces to be fired in a kiln, but construction (which took place in the same day) was completely foreign. My friend’s boys wanted a treehouse, and so they got a treehouse…well, at least they got a treehouse started…
But this is what really happened: the guys and my friend (for whose boys we were building) did the construction while I couldn’t resist the urge to be utterly useless and just climb and hang from their handiwork…
C’est la vie. They were all in their element with building and I was in my element climbing on everything and holding planks of wood level. They did manage to teach me a thing or two and let me drill and attach a few nails and lags. The floor’s frame is level, so our task was pretty successful in my opinion.
So, anyways, it’s been a while. Soon after writing my previous blog post in January, I was offered a job with a new YMCA branch as their Wellness Coordinator. I am essentially putting together all of our Wellness programming, but that has sort of taken a back seat to just getting everything we need to run day in and day out put together and organized and ensuring that we have a functional and AMAZING Wellness Center and well-equipped staff to do the absolute best job serving this community. (For the record: literally creating procedures from what feels like nothing is stressful!)
To know that I am impacting the YMCA experience of nearly every member who will set foot into the Y (and every member who utilizes the Wellness Center) both directly and indirectly is sobering. We are moving into a community that hasn’t had a fitness center before, and the Y is more than that—it is the people who are serving and it is the people who are being served. It is a beautiful community that I have had the privilege of being a part of for nearly all of my fitness career life. The Y has been a community that I’ve been plugged into for years and I’m seeing that all come full circle as one of the Wellness Directors in my current association also worked for my very first YMCA branch. Today we had our equipment reps come in and go through the new equipment with our staff and they literally knew people from my first branch by name; I had met one of them briefly while working there. It is such a small world! I was reminded of that earlier today as I was driving behind a vehicle with a NY license plate—upon closer inspection, it was a vehicle from a very small dealership in my very small town in NY. I nearly followed them to their hotel, but decided to not be a crazy weirdo following a vehicle with someone she might know someone who knows. 🙂
Along with taking on new employment responsibilities and getting plugged into my new YMCA association family, I’ve been enjoying new friendships while at times realizing I miss a few good friends I’ve had over the years a whole lot, and that’s been made worse on a couple of occasions when I’ve met someone who reminds me strongly of someone who has been very dear to me in the past but is in literally and figuratively a very different place right now. It makes me sad, but I thank God for the time I’ve had with all whom I’ve encountered and lived life with for a season (or a few). There is a season for everything and a purpose in everything—I have no doubt that every step of our journeys can be used for the glory of God and has a purpose. This moment, these circumstances, are the appropriate and perfect season for this moment and these circumstances, while if they were to take place two years ago or two years from now, perhaps it just wouldn’t fit the storyline of our lives quite so perfectly. I came across a perspective-shifting truth tonight. I think the last time I really felt “inspired” by Ecclesiastes was during my Freshman year of college when life just left me disheartened and discouraged. At the time, I spent a good amount of time in Ecclesiastes 1:
“Meaningless! Meaningless!”says the Teacher.
“Utterly meaningless! Everything is meaningless.”
What do people gain from all their labors at which they toil under the sun?“
Good question, Solomon, because I feel like all of THIS season is meaningless! (I really should have read a bit further into the book before deciding how to perceive my circumstances.) I wasn’t really looking for guidance or inspiration, though, I was looking for empathy. I felt like Solomon knew what it was like to feel like life was just hard and at times felt like hardship and toil was pointless—almost like he was going through it with me. I felt like everything I was doing was silly and futile (and failing)—simply not as awesome as I’d expected. I struggled both academically and athletically. Freshman spring was the hardest semester throughout my college career, as it was my first season as a Division I athlete and I found my butt on the bench. A lot. Talk about a season learning how to rejoice for others. I almost left the school but felt God telling me to stick out my four years. Of course, little did I know that a year later I’d be getting on the field against top 10 teams and pitching wins—while in my weakest moments athletically, completely dependent on God every pitch. How fitting—in my weakness He carries me to rest and to victory. 🙂 But I digress—there is a season for everything—a season for bench-sitting and a season for playing at the level I’d always dreamed of; a season for intimate friendships and time with family, and a time of being away from them…
“…a time to be born and a time to die,
a time to plant and a time to uproot,
a time to kill and a time to heal,
a time to tear down and a time to build,
a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance,
a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,
a time to search and a time to give up,
a time to keep and a time to throw away,
a time to tear and a time to mend,
a time to be silent and a time to speak,
a time to love and a time to hate,
a time for war and a time for peace.”
While some seasons are harder than others—because war, being alone, being broken, mourning, and tearing down are hard and painful—in the framework of God’s plan for everything this season fits and you fit. Seasons of peace, being in community, being healed and restored, rejoicing, and building/creating (ahem) will also come.
Not every time is the right time for everything, but “He has made everything beautiful in its time.” (v. 11) He will make this season beautiful in its time.