There was such a huge burden and pressure removed off of me this past year. For the first 24 years of my life, I felt like it was up to me. I had to pick the right job. I had to find the right husband. I had to figure out what church to get involved in. I had to say yes and no to important questions. I had to plan for my future and look ahead. Guess what? Pressure is off.
I have arrived at this new point where I realize it isn’t me. It isn’t my plans, dreams, and decisions. It’s God. That doesn’t make me a puppet, passive, or just doing things because I’m suppose to. It’s freedom! It’s like I can close my eyes and see God just a few steps before me, showing me where to walk so I don’t fall and so I fulfill His plan. It’s not worrying about how much money I make or where I end up, but knowing God has something big planned. It’s never really feeling stress, anxiety, or worry about my life, but confidence that God will use me.
What a sense of freedom from pressure.
Chest tightening. Hands fumbling. Mind racing. I can’t think of anything else. My thoughts are wrapped around it. I feel helpless, stuck on a leash that I can’t outrun. Conversations feel forced, eye contact is awkward. My desire is to sit and think about the problem. I can’t figure out how to fit it. I’m stuck. My mind continues to tell me to worry. No matter where I sit, I’m uncomfortable. What is the solution? How do I figure this out? I can’t. I let it ruin my day, my evening, my week.
I crawl in bed and see my Bible. I am reminded of God’s heart. He tells me to rest in him. He tells me my anxiety belongs at His feet. He tells me not to worry about tomorrow. I close my eyes and I feel my head dip in shame as I realize how tight I am holding to my worries. Somehow, I have been telling myself I can figure it out.
God, my purpose is your will. My only desire is to do what you would want. My life is ordained and planned out. Give me the strength to do what you’ve called me to do. Equip me with your words, thoughts, and wisdom. I love you. I have no reason to worry when my identity, trust, and direction are in you.
I open my eyes. My chest loosens. My hands are still. My mind is quiet. The peace I so desired, waiting for me. I breathe in and feel God’s comfort. I breath out and feel His love. What a reminder.
I can’t get enough of this guy. Have you heard of Jefferson Bethke? He is the one who wrote the famous Jesus>Religion You Tube video I posted last year. His videos have such great truth from scripture. I just love it.
This video reminds me of my dear friend Brendan. I can remember in college our senior year, we thought it would be a good idea to make a slip and slide going down a dorm hallway. It was awesome.
Giant tarp, water, college hallway, and ten screaming 21 year olds. We were laughing, getting bruises, and making an incredible college memory. At the end of slipping and sliding, we were sitting on the tarp laughing about what just happened and Brendan said “Can we just pause a second and thank God for this?”.
What? Praise God for a slip and slide? I don’t think I even closed my eyes for the prayer because I was in shock. We were thanking God for ruining a college dorm carpeting? I understand about praising him for a great Bible study or praising him when I get the job I wanted… but praising because of this?
I think of that moment often. Do I just praise God for the “Christian-y” things, or do I praise him for everything in my life. James 1:17 tells me that every good and perfect thing is a gift from God. Do you praise Him for EVERYTHING in your life?
A shout out to Brendan for the challenge that still haunts me 4 years later, and the awesome Hall Director who totally knew what we were doing but didn’t tell us to stop.
This weekend was Caleb’s mom’s birthday. Dear Sarah planned a lunch at her favorite restaurant, Miss Molly’s Tea Room!
We put on our dresses and spend a Saturday afternoon with some wonderful tea.
The place was adorable! Different chairs, lace, cups, and decorations at every table.
I had a great chicken salad croissant and a chai tea that competed with some of the best cups I’ve had.
How fun to celebrate with three generations of Nitzs! Happy Birthday Lynn!
Some highlights of the past few weeks.
My bestie came to visit!
My Real Life Group threw me a SURPRISE birthday party!
Trying some new recipes on the grill.
Spending two weeks in Colorado and Chicago for my new job- and getting to play with my adorable cousins.
… and hiking a mountain while I was there too!
Trying out some chunky jewelry.
Celebrating our 3 year anniversary!
For the past 3 years, every activity I do, thought I have, party we plan, picture I take, and conversation I am apart of, it has gone through a filter. In one way or another, I filtered it through the question “How can I put this on my blog?” I am one of those girls who loves blogging- seriously, go through the past 3 years on this website and look at all the crazy things I shared! When friends would ask me “How do you have time to blog 3 times a week? I would just answer “It’s relaxing for me, so I make time.” or “It just happens”.
Last month, something weird happened. I stopped putting my life through the blog filter. I haven’t thought about blogging. I haven’t desired to blog. I haven’t blogged. I can’t put my finger on it exactly, but I have a few theories (I’m sure you’re incredible interested).
Coming home from work, the blog was always a creative release to share what was going on in my life. With my new job, I get to be creative all the time. I am writing for them, pouring into social media, and spending the majority of my day on the computer. Since starting, I haven’t even thought about writing on my blog.
Another thing, the past month has been full of extremes. I have been drawing closer to God than I have felt before, while also walking through challenges and trails with my dear husband. Maybe it’s just hard to put it all into words, or maybe I haven’t wanted to share it all.
It’s a busy season for my walk with Christ, growing with my husband, discipling and encouraging my friends, figuring out a new job, and working to glorify God through it all- but I am realizing his may be a slower season for Rhymes with Hannah. I don’t think I’m throwing in the towel, just adjusting to something new.
Cheers to new seasons, my friends.
WHERE I’VE TRAVELED: Some of my favorite traveling memories- eating hummus in Israel/Palestine, hiking waterfalls in Jamaica, watching sunsets with my husband in Captiva Island Florida, learning to 2 step in Texas, connecting with dear friends in Oregon, family vacations on a Caribbean cruise, Hiking a 14er in Colorado, and serving families in El Salvador & Haiti.
WOULD LOVE TO TRAVEL TO: I want to see some of the beauty out west- Grand Canyon, National Parks, Yellowstone, Sedona- I have yet to experience a whole part of God’s beautiful creation!
FOOD I CAN’T LIVE WITHOUT: Ice tea, cheeseburgers, fruit, soy chai lattes, cottage cheese, bread, red peppers, and chocolate chip cookies fresh out of the oven.
FAVORITE TV SHOW: Seinfeld is such a classic, 30 Rock is my current Netflix obsession, I wish we had the Food Network, and I giggle whenever my husband turns on Swamp People.
FAVORITE BOOK: Sacred Marriage, Shopaholic, The wonderful and holy Bible, What’s it Like to be Married to Me, and Battlefield of the Mind.
FAVORITE ANIMAL: My husband and I don’t like to take care of things- no pets or kids! I am quite fascinated with pelicans though. Have you ever watched them swallow an entire fish?
SECRET TALENT: Dancing confidently to any song at any time, a large knowledge of poverty and social work, naming all the US presidents, and speaking in gibberish (dithigo yithigou knithigow ithigit?)
LATEST OBSESSION: Lighting candles all over the house, gel nail polish, and I’ve always been obsessed with cooking- it’s something my mom taught me very young.
GUILTY PLEASURE: Jim Gaffigan’s comedy, playing hooky with my husband and planning all day dates, and am I allowed to answer cheeseburgers again?
“IF I COULD DO ANYTHING, I’D…”: Take a 6 month sabbatical with my husband, leave normal life and study God’s word in a remote place.
While most friends throw baby showers, our Real Life Group decided to take a different turn to celebrate Sara & Dustin’s new addition.
We reserved a room at an adorable paint your own pottery place and had a wonderfully girly night.
Wine, snacks, paint, and laughs.
With such looks of determination, we are hoping our masterpieces all turn out perfect.
Congrats, dear Sara! It was such a joy to bring the girls together in your celebration. We can’t wait to meet your new little one!
That moment when everything crashes together.
God asks me to step back from things I love.
We wrestle with what God wants.
I feel relationships that are shifting and struggling.
I question if I’m doing the right things and if I’m good enough.
I feel overwhelmed with what God is asking me to do.
I don’t know what will come next, what my future looks like, or if this is even what I want.
I hear opinions from everyone.
I look to my husband for leadership, knowing I can’t answer this on my own.
I feel tired.
Then all of a sudden- it all crashes together. It makes sense. It fits. I am filled with joy. My heart beats with passion for what is ahead and the new journey. God is given the credit. It’s more beautiful than I can describe.
What a wonderful crash. What a powerful God.
I love to accessorize. Bracelets, red lip gloss, a new necklace, or bright shoes just seem to make any outfit better. It doesn’t mean I’m an expert, but it sure is fun to dress things up. One of the things about being a diabetic is I have to wear a different kind of accessory- my insulin pump.
This month Caleb and I were able to have some time on vacation. While I usually have the advantage of hiding this little device on my stomach, back, or under my shirt… swim suits are not very forgiving.
I had it on my back for the first half of vacation, and moved it to my arm the second half. It’s funny to get the look from strangers, but I have learned to wear this little thing proud. It keeps me alive! If it gives me a weird tan line, I think that’s an OK trade off.
I was walking out to my car this week and stopped by the garden to check it out. Look what showed up! GIANT zucchini! We made it into fried zucchini yesterday, I’m planning zucchini bread this weekend, and already gave some away.
We also have cucumbers, baby tomates, banana peppers, and green peppers ready to be eaten.
I seriously love how God had this awesome idea of growing food. Really, I put some seeds in the ground and this is what I get? Score!
Last Saturday we continued the great tradition with our friends of trying all different restaurants and bars around North East Ohio. The past 4 times we have been hosted by the charming Niki & Judson around Clevland. Here is a post from one of our great Cleveland trails. This time we moved a little further south and experienced the first Akron trail. Look who joined in the fun!
My beautiful friend Megan!
The night started at one of our favorites- Edgars. We highly recommend the stuffed pork chop and the smoked pork plate as an appetizer.
We had 14 friends around the table, a great welcome back after a week of vacation.
We sat outside and listened to some live jazz music until it was dark. Everything about it was relaxing.
Next, we hopped in the car and rode over to Old 97 Cafe in Kenmore
We sat outside with candles, lamps, high top tables, umbrellas, and chill music.
Thanks to our dear friends who made Akron trail a night of laughs.
A week with my husband- vacation.
Beautiful sunsets on the beach.
Bike rides around town.
A boat ride to watch dolphins and tour the island.
Waving goodbye on our last day.
Coming home refreshed, encouraged, and more in love after 7 days with my husband.
My dad is awesome. Look what he sent me in the mail this week.
This is my dad’s way of reminding me I turn 25 this week.
:) Isn’t he cool?