I don’t believe in coincidences. Things happen for a reason, whether we understand at the time or not.
Last Spring Kevin and I were neck deep in decision making mode, and to some the choice we made STILL doesn’t make sense. Kevin was offered a position at Intel (Austin), on paper something that could have been construed as a ‘better’ offer. I had a pretty sweet gig going with Dell, Austin had been/still was a great city for us, providing a cost of living that was unparalleled for the city we got to live in. We had built a great life; with friends we loved, an amazing church family, and a great family friendly neighborhood. Austin hands down was the EASY choice for us to make… security, comfort, a healthier financial position… it would have been cush!
A few of my posts from last year alluded to why we went against the grain, and left what appeared to have been a very comfortable future behind. We wanted the adventure of the unknown, we wanted to step out in faith and see what God had planned, and I couldn’t be happier we did.
Two weeks after we arrived, we attended our first service at DC Metro Church. I’ve likened it to our Church in Austin only instead of 10 years old, its 3 and growing. The energy is contagious, the messages empowering and moving, and the people are SO incredibly welcoming, it almost feels like they were just waiting for us to come home. From the moment we found it, I’ve been signing us up for EVERYTHING under the sun… I wasn’t making the same mistake I had in Austin and waiting for friends to find me… I was gonna find me some friends!
Over the course of the 4 months we’ve been attending I have felt stronger in my own faith, and as a result my confidence continues to grow in pushing my limits spiritually. Last year… I NEVER would have written this post… the whole time I would have been thinking it, but paralyzed by what someone else might think if they read it. I’m almost embarrassed to say that now… that I cared SO much about what other people would think that I denied who I wanted to be.
Well, if your reading this because your curious as to my recent proclamation of signing off Facebook, TV, and curbing the diet… Yes, it was influenced by our church, however, I am doing so in coordination with almost 1 Million other people from over 1000 churches World Wide. There is no edict passed down from a church leader on what you have to give up, its all a personal choice, but the motivation is knowing its part of something larger and that we’ll be able to draw encouragement along the way. The intent… to give up those things that come in between you and God (time stealers… duh Facebook and T.V), choosing to incorporate the “Daniel Fast” (http://daniel-fast.com/), was something Kevin and I felt would be a challenge for us as well.
The question I’ve gotten since from some is… “This isn’t lent, why not save it till then?” To be honest, I haven’t been at this church yet to witness what they have in store for lent, maybe it will be something similar, maybe not. However in the ~20 some odd years I was a part of the Catholic church, despite the MILLIONS+ who claimed fasting during lent, it was never something I felt motivated to do… it always came across with the heavy guilt message that I just could never find it in me to respond to.
This message was 100% different, and it’s only something I’ve found/heard since attending a church in the non-denominational sect. The message that comes across feels more like… “You have nothing to prove, do it IF you WANT to”. Learning it’s not about ‘proving’ how faithful you can be, and that God’s not going to smite me where I stand if I mess up, removed all the pressure… allowing me the opportunity to actually feel a desire to do this.
Ok… next logical follow up… why in the WORLD would you ever WANT to???
I think that’s something that comes from God… and for me… it came. We are in a great place, with amazing support and leadership, and I can’t wait to see what comes next. Not to mention, even from my post just 2-3 days ago, where I had laid out my resolutions… To me it was basically like God saying… let me help you out with that and give you a jump start! In that regard, I’ll take all the help I can get!
Keep us in your prayers, if you’re the praying type, and if not, try to limit the judgments if you can…. I don’t THINK I’m hurting anyone by doing this, so it shouldn’t really affect anyone else anyway! Will keep ya’ posted how its going along the way, and if you have any interest in knowing what our meals for the day/week have been, in case you’re thinking about something similar let me know and I’ll start adding them to the bottom of my posts!