Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Treasure the Moment

I've been thinking about my time a lot lately. It flies by so fast. Before I even notice. And the worst is when all of a sudden, that thing I take for granted is gone. Or, I have such good intentions of doing something. Of serving, especially. But in the moment, I forget. Then later, I look back and say, "Well, I'll do better next week." But then, all of a sudden, you realize. There is no next week. It's done. You're opportunity's gone. While wasting your time away hoping for a better opportunity, you lost the perfect one you had to minister. To serve. To love.

This has hit me especially hard because I'm a senior this year. And for me, HPA has always been there. I've always had the opportunity, every week (except for a few lonely months in spring after the show has ended) to spend time with amazing, strong, Christian friends. To be encouraged. And, even more so, to be an encourager. I've just been blessed to always have that opportunity. And so, this year, after cast lists came out, as I was thinking about the upcoming rehearsals, I had this sense of urgency - it's my last year! And so, every week, all fall, I would have this great motivation. I would even be thinking about how I wanted to serve, and put other people's desires before my own, on the way there. But, I am very ashamed to say, that all too often I didn't remember that once I was there. The busyness of rehearsal just sort of choked it away. Sure, I occasionally remembered... and those were the days where I was most fulfilled at the end of the day! But somehow it never seemed to happen as much as I wanted it to. I would lay in bed and think about it at night, and just think, "Well, I'll do better next week." But now... There IS NO NEXT WEEK! Our normal rehearsals are over. We're at tech week! Not that I can't serve during tech/show week, I most certainly do, and find those are the times I grow the most.

I guess I'm just trying to get at how quickly our time goes by. And before we realize it, it's gone. So look at your life. What do you wish you would be doing differently? Are you? Next time you're doing something you enjoy (or even something that you don't), that you always think will be there, or with someone you always think will be there, just pause. And treasure the moment. Treasure the fact the the Lord has blessed you. With whatever it is you're doing. Whatever friends or family are right next to you. Because things are gone... we are gone... before we even realize it. So treasure the moment. Every moment. If for no other reason than the fact that you are alive and God has given you another day, another breath. Treasure the moment.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Starting Anew - Blessed

Hello, long-lost Blogger world!
(Please pardon the long outdated side bars and backgrounds - I'm working to fix it up.)

I have recently been inspired (by a dear friend :) to post on my blog more frequently, perhaps once a week. Why, you ask? Why spend time posting on a blog that very few people read?

The answer is simple.

Because the Lord has blessed me. And I want to share that with others. To be able to proclaim to the world that God is here and He is working. To be able to be an encouragement and a blessing to my sisters and brothers and Christ.

See? Very simple. And so, with that motivation, my first post in a very long time.

I am so blessed. Really, truly. There are so many blessings I could tell you about, more than I could even count. Right now, though, I want to guide this post the way my thoughts have been rolling. Have you ever had it - I'm sure you know the feeling - where it's been a long day, but well-spent, perhaps with good friends, and you look back, and, with a sigh of joy, think, "Wow. Today was wonderful. I am so blessed." I have. Yesterday, to name one. We had HPA. It was a long day. I was rehearsing "Jane Eyre" from 8:30-4:30 with only a quick break for lunch. I danced. A lot. Waltzed, to be exact. And you wouldn't think, but waltzing makes you sore. Really sore. Especially when you do it for over two hours.

Last night, I looked back on my day. I was tired, sore, and altogether worn out. But it was oh so much fun. We ran Act 1 with costumes. We worked scenes over and over. And we laughed. A lot. Particularly, in one 45-minute segment with Mr. G and Mrs. E. Have you ever thought about the incredible blessing of laughter? I'm not going to expound on the story, first of all because it would take too long to give you the context, and second of all because it was slightly embarrassing. But we laughed. For so long. Honestly, I've never seen Mr. G laugh so hard. IN MY LIFE. It was the bending-over-tears-in-your-eyes-you're-laughing-so-hard kind of laughing.

And you know what else? I think one of the main reasons it was such an awesome day was the presence of God. Through laughter, and also through trials. It was the presence of God that sustained us. For 8 hours even when you forget to pack your sandwich. When a dear friend felt queasy all morning. Especially when that friend happens to be playing Jane. It is the power of prayer. Instead of giving a devotion yesterday, we prayed as a cast. It was powerful. In the same way that I could take a minute and pray over Jane. And just altogether keep a focus on the Lord our top priority.

I think that's the secret. I think the days when we look back and just marvel on what an amazing day we had, those are the days we were near to God. He is the one that fulfills us. So let us draw near to Him! He longs for us and pursues us. But when turn to Him, and keep Him involved in everything we do, He blesses us.