Saturday, January 24, 2009

San Diego here I come!

Well, it's official. Next week I will pack my things and head for the west coast until May. I was accepted for an internship in the art/creative department for the most wonderful organization- Invisible Children!

CAUTION: This gets spiritual. ;)

This has been the longest process for any position that I have ever applied for and also the most moving. I first applied in November, completely last minute, and not thinking much of my decision. I was encouraged by a few people in my life to do so, so the day the applications were due(yea, talk about last minute!), I submitted my information not knowing what lie ahead. See, I'd applied for another internship only to be turned down a month later. I wasn't up for another rejection but I figured, heck...what do I have to lose? Well, the waiting process was quite longer than expected. I was eager and became increasingly impatient after the new year hit and I still had not heard a final word. Needless to say, spiritually I was becoming incredibly frustrated. This was something that I'd prayed about consistently since November...several times I found myself saying "God, where are you?!" But one thing is for sure-God's timing is ALWAYS perfect. I asked God since the beginning to shut the door if this was not His will. Yet the door was never closed. I'd hear one thing one week..then nothing for several weeks. It was as if God kept my hopes just high enough to keep me pushing toward this goal.

About three weeks ago I became incredibly worried. Most of my conversations with the Lord went something like this:
"God...hello? Are you there? Look, I've prayed and prayed and I'm getting nothing down here. I'm mad and impatient now. I asked you to slam that door shut. WHY DO I STILL NOT EVEN HAVE JUST A 'NO'? I NEED AN ANSWER...LIKE TODAY!"
Yeah, I was a big brat. Luckily, God knows I'm human.

Anyway, throughout the following weeks I would receive tidbits of information. Again, just enough to keep my hopes up. Finally the last two weeks God revealed a stirring in me about a particular "situation" taking place in my life-one totally separate from the internship. I even had a voice of affirmation a week ago telling me "Abby, it's time to move on". Brushing it off as best I could (although it pretty much consumed my thoughts) I went about the next week hoping for the IC answer and thinking of nothing else. Finally, this past Monday I reached a breaking point with the internship. During my lunch hour I walked to my car, looked to the sky and said "God, I'M DONE! I'm not holding onto this any longer!!!" (yes, three exclamations are necessary at this point)

5 minutes later I get a call from Invisible Children.

God would do that.

I'd given up and He came rushing in. Always on time. However, even Monday I did not receive the final answer. Well, that particular "situation", ya know the one totally separate from the internship? Well it came to surface that very night, was approached and it ended. The situation was over. Settled. The relationship done. And as much heartache as I felt that night, it dawned on me.

This was why the waiting process with Invisible Children was taking so long. I knew God wanted to strip me of particular relationships to do HIS work. It was no longer about me or Invisible Children's timing. It was solely Gods. And to my amazement, I had the most overwhelming sense of peace. I know this is going to be okay.

and the following day....I was accepted with Invisible Children.

Funny how God works, huh? I give up, I deal with issues in my life, and there He is. Where He was, waiting all along for me to take the burdens from me. I let go and finally let God and He delivered. (You'd think I'd get that this is how it works after years of believing in Jesus)

I tell you this long, drawn out story to give a testimony to fervent prayer and the moving of the Holy Spirit. Ever since high school I've had a pull toward the west coast. I even used to tell people that one day I'd live in California. I just knew.
My junior year of college I was introduced to Invisible Children and their amazing documentary. I had never looked outside America's borders until I saw the video and from them on, I was open to the idea of going overseas. A year later, the opportunity came along for me to go to Africa. And the year after. Now...3 years later, not only am I moving to the west coast, I am working for the very company that opened my heart and eyes to the very place I left my heart in 2007.

I know without a shadow of a doubt, God protected me throughout this waiting process. He wanted a situation to be confronted and he wanted to strip me of every fiber that could possibly hold me back in this upcoming adventure. I am so excited for the opportunities. I know the Holy Spirit is guiding every inch of this process!

My past is a testimony...my present is a testimony...all of Gods perfect timing.

I am so thankful. I've been SO humbled by this process (no more demanding of God!)
So undeserving!

Just wanted to share with any believers out there:)

In other news...I ask you to please say a prayer for my sweet grandma- my "Nanny". Her husband of a year and a half passed away Friday. I won't be able to see her (she lives in Louisiana) since I leave next week. I just ask you pray that God remove her loneliness and heartache.
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Nan & me

Thanks for reading! Hope your day is BLESSED!
-Abby

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Uncle Abby

There's something to be said about the amount of joy that enters ones life when babies are brought into the equation. The love is just indescribable. I am seriously obsessed with my beautiful niece and nephew. I thought I couldn't possibly love another baby as much as I love Owen until Ellie came along. Now, I can't imagine life without them...the thought of it just breaks my heart! Hopefully the Lord will take my life long before theirs so I don't have to live with that pain. Anyway, despite the hard work that comes with babies, I really can't wait to have my own. I mean, don't get me wrong...I totally can...but I look forward to the experience one day. LOOOONG down the road! Until then, I will continue to love on my little Oman and Ellie bean:)
Here are two pics of my little pride and joys. This is the first time I used my Christmas gift- Photoshop CS4! Woohoo! Diggin' it!

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Owen & his missing tooth...oh the joys of little boys.

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Ellie bean...isn't she gorgeous?

Happy Saturday!
-Abby

Thursday, January 15, 2009

I carry you in me and in the dust on my feet

My good friend Jacquelyn and I decided to venture on a random, last-minute road trip to Austin, Texas about two weekends ago. I don't even think I realize how much of a getaway I needed until I was already home. We had SO much fun! Luckily, my awesome cousin Drew allowed us to crash at his place for a few nights. I had never gone to Austin before, and although we didn't get to see a whole lot, we visited the UT campus (don't be fooled, I'm a Sooners fan), walked around campus & the shops along the outside, visited 6th street at night and had fun on 4th street the last night we were there. Drew happened to know all the hotspots for nightlife so that was pretty sweet! We had so much fun. While there I decided to get a little...ahem..tat. I say this so cautiously because sometimes, in the Oklahoma conservative mindsets, it is taboo. Or so it seems. BUT, before you are quick to judge, let me tell you that this was not something I just up & did out of nowhere. I've been thinking about this for a year & a half (I even had advice from my mom to wait a year...which I did!) and the opportunity came so I did it. I just did it! And it hurt like nothing ever before..but I'm glad I did it finally.

After my first trip to Africa in 2007, my friend Hayley introduced me to musician, Brooke Fraser. At that point in my life I was in a very vulnerable state with my relationship with Christ. Now, I am not one to come on here & get all holy on you, but I will tell you that Africa completely changed my life. COMPLETELY. DRAMATICALLY. FOREVER.
On Brooke's cd there is a song titled "Albertine". She wrote the song about a child she grew close with during a mission trip to Rwanda. This song, much like my trip, instantly pierced my heart and I've favored it ever since the day I heard it. It is seriously my life letter to Africa and all that it means to me. I couldn't have written it better. A lyric in the song that has always struck me is "I carry you in me and in the dust on my feet". This line and the song in general has inspired me and touched my life so much that I wanted to remember it forever. I want to remember my experiences in Sierra Leone, I want people to know what it means to me and I want the opportunity to share with others in a unique way.
All this to say...here is my new ink! I edited the photo and mixed in part of the song so you can get an idea as to how it inspired the tat...although it's pretty much a given.
tattoo
"I carry you in me and in the dust on my feet...
Now that I have seen, I am responsible, faith without deeds is dead. Now that I have held you in my own arms, I cannot let go til you are...I will tell the world, I will tell them where I've been".

Albertine is the first song on my playlist on here so listen to the words, if you will.
Also, check out the music video here:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WGx-xU6TnU8

peace,
Abby

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I follow my heart & pursue my dreams.

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