I come from a writing family. My dad has been writing for years, my sister, my aunt. Published in print for others to read, or published in purposeful thank-you notes about visits and presents and laughter.
And I, too, love words.
I love to read words, to read other's words, God's words; I love to write them, to share them, to sit in them, to cry over them, to laugh doubled over right off my couch with them.
Words are where I've found grace. And joy. And healing.
Words have rewritten new songs on my tired heart and have slapped me on the rear like a good old-fashioned basket ball coach and told me to get in there and play some defense.
And when you go to something like She Speaks you feel like for the first time - a very specific niche was carved out for you for a passionate 48 hours. Women. Speakers. Writers. Jesus-lovers. Publishers. Authors. Agents. Inspiration. Encouragement. 700 shapes and sizes all looking around - while encouraged to keep looking up at the One who gave you the message inside.
The odd thing is: I just keep crying. Tears here and there and everywhere. Why? I was in an incredibly inspiring place, taking pictures with authors I love and hearing messages that were absolutely for my heart.
The best thing I know to do is give those tears words. Naming tears. Naming gives me something to work with. Something to hold onto and consider.
Thankfulness: I have tears of thankfulness. Many speakers have messages to say but nowhere to say them. Maybe it's because we are women. Maybe because it's timing. Maybe it's because only God knows what. But I have been given a few places to speak and I teared up telling that to a new friend I made there.
Frustration: I have 3 beautiful little people and many, many dreams, messages, thoughts on God and His ways and how they intersect our daily life. I can feel stuck, already full and wondering why this passion? when it can only come out in small drops. I have gallons full.
Smallness: When you sit down with a publisher who has published NY Times best sellers and are told you need 10,000 people AT LEAST to email as subscribers - you feel down right small. Silly. Unsure.
Encouragement: When you sit down with a publisher who has published NY Times best sellers (a different one, Day 2) and are smiled at and are told: "That's a great hook" then you think maybe, just maybe, something is there. And even if that something isn't published with a capital P, it's still a great hook. Even if you just hook the little heart in your home.
Directionless: Now what? It was like gathering a glass of water with an eye-dropper underneath a waterfall. Pretty hard to capture it and drink it down. I am making Next Steps...but the ground feels sludgy.
Here's what I do know for sure, as it was whispered in different ways while I was there: I am going to be faithful and obedient in whatever and with whoever is in front of me today. Whatever the job assignment God puts before me: playing trains on the floor, speaking to someone at the park, being diligent in my job, laying down anger for peace, naming tears - mine or others. If I can't be faithful with Today, how can I be faithful with Tomorrow?