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Category: Identity

Announcing A New Project: Breathing Room

This is how my ideas come to fruition: I have an idea. I think about that idea for a long time. I say the idea out loud, but only to myself. One day, I say the idea out loud to a trusted friend. Then, I say it to more friends. I practice speaking the idea. Maybe it’s to gauge others’ responses. Maybe it’s to gauge my own. Am I really serious about this? Do I really want to do it? Or, do I just like thinking about it? I go one of two ways: 1. I decide it…

I Am Not Good at Being Me, Except When I Write

I am not very good at being myself. But I am very good at being who people want me to be. I can walk into a room, read the situation and take on a persona. (I would probably be a great spy.) A room of academics? I’ll try and act smart. A room of Christians? I’ll talk about the Bible study I’m doing. A room of not Christians? I’ll show all of my cynical-about-church cards. A friend once told me that one of the reasons I do this might be because I am an…

The Opposite of Fear Is Not Courage

A few months ago I had a week full of fear related to my work. I felt overwhelmed, andthe thoughts running through my head looked something like this: “I don’t know what I’m doing.” “This is too much.” “I need to just find another job.” “I’m not going to be able to fulfill everyone’s expectations.” You may recognize this pattern of negative self-talk. Rapid-fire statements rooted in a place of fear. Each one you listen to and believe hits you a little harder and if you’re not careful, you will one day find…

When You Realize You’re the Pharisee

Often when I read stories in the Bible about Jesus, I consider myself one of his disciples in the story, and I consider the Pharisees my enemies. But in reading a story in Matthew recently, I realized the reverse was true. Matthew 12 begins with Jesus and the disciples walking through some cornfields on the Sabbath. While they were walking, they picked some corn to eat because they were hungry. Some Pharisees saw this and accused them of breaking the Sabbath. Jesus stepped in and reminded them that even King David broke into the priests’ pantry and ate “sacred” bread…

A Key Question on the Path to Finding Your Niche and Your Purpose

Remember that time I promised you a three-part series on How to Become a Freelance Writer and wrote part one and then never wrote parts two and three? Yeah, well, I’m finally ready to address part two: finding your writing niche. This is ironic considering the reason I’ve been dragging my feet on this post is probably because this topic, I’ve realized, isn’t really in my writing niche. But I’m committed, so I will follow through. Even if part three doesn’t come out for another few months. Sorry…

The Truth About Writing Books and Perfection

  As I mentioned last week, I recently wrote a book. A dream come true. A freaking miracle. It’s about 65,000 words in its current state. Those 65,000 words are what I submitted to my editor. Then, there is a document hidden on my computer called “CUTS.” My dad told me about the CUTS document years ago. It’s a way to keep track of what you’re editing out in case you want to include it later or use it for something else down the line. My CUTS is about 31,557 words. Really, I have…

Creating from the Hard Places

I’m in a women’s class at my church on Thursday mornings. We’re studying the book Waking Up Grey, which is all about waking up your creativity. As I sat in class last week, I looked around and noticed several women crying. They were just sitting there, letting tears run down hardly wiping them away. They looked like the broken kind of tears. You know what I’m talking about? The times that you cry at little to no prompting but you can’t stop it because you just feel mushy inside and like nothing is working…

“I didn’t know myself without social media.” – Essena O’Neill and Knowing Ourselves

I don’t often drop everything to comment on newsy topics, but when it involves body image and identity, sometimes I can’t help myself. You may have seen that Essena O’Neill, a teen social media celebrity with half a million Instagram followers, has quit social media. I didn’t know who Essena O’Neill was until yesterday, but I’m not very cool on social media, and I’m also not a teen. So I looked her up. I read about her. Watched this video, and then read her edited captions on Instagram, which…

Why Being Still Makes Us So Uncomfortable

I hate being sick. I know everybody hates being sick, but I feel like I have a particularly hard time with it. I’ve had a cold since Friday, and I noticed that with this cold I was doing more than usual to try and make it go away as soon as possible. I took a ginger and cayenne shot at a juice bar. I purchased whiskey from the liquor store—something I never buy—to make a hot toddy. I Googled “home remedies for colds” and discovered that oregano tea can help, so I made some, and…

What It Means to Be Loved By God

I’ve been quiet in this space lately. Work has been consuming. Any spare time I have I devote to writing other things and writing here gets pushed farther and farther down the priority list. I don’t like it, but it’s the season I’m in right now. I listened to a song the other day that stopped me in my tracks. It stopped me so hard and rattled me so deep, it got me to finally sit down here and write. Because I want you to hear it too. It’s called “Love You More” and it…