Tag Archives: blessings

The Little Things

Standard

Sometimes, I think God puts people and for lack of a better word “stuff” in our life to prove a point. Perhaps, it is even to get our attention. So over the past couple of days I am pretty sure God has gotten my attention by two things: losing/finding my debit card and through interviewing a genocide war victim.

I went home for the weekend because it’s fall break. Saturday was one of those perfect fall days, and I was blissful. I hung out with some of my best friends, and I didn’t have a care in the world.

My break was wonderful until Monday afternoon I drove up to the Starbucks window. I reached into my backseat and grabbed my purple wallet to get my debit card. As soon as I unzipped it, panic took over my body. Where was the gray piece of plastic that held all the money to my name?

I immediately went into my own form of panic. I was having all sorts of weird panic sensations, and when I reached the window I told the barrista, “I’msorryIcan’tpayforthisdrink Ihavelostmydebitcard.” . I freaked out. There are truly kind people in this world because the man just smiled at me and gave me my order.

I had other stops to make and errands to run, so I just decided to push it out of my mind. I had just run to the bank, and all my money was there. I reasoned no one had stolen it. I had simply lost it. I eventually returned home, and in a calm manner I searched my backseat and went through all the clothes I had worn in the past three days. However, it was in none of those places.

My best friend suggested I call the place we were Saturday to see if it was there. The entire time I was looking for the card, I was praying out loud. I kept telling God he had to help me find this debit card. He obviously knew what would happen if I didn’t. Luckily, the restaurant we were at had my card. I apparently dropped it on the way out, and the family behind my friends and me turned it in.

God got my attention Monday for certain, and he got my attention today. It wasn’t as little as my debit card (well, that is probably important actually, but still). I am doing an article for my college newspaper on the Holocaust/Genocide Studies Conference here this week, and my path crossed with a victim who survived genocide in Rwanada.

I barely talked during the whole interview. Nothing I could say or ask could contribute. I did simply ask if anyone had told her story before or at least written an article on her. She humbly said no, and I told her that was about to change. Her story needed to be shared, and I wanted to be the one to share it.

I am not going to go into detail about what she went through. When I write the entire story, I’ll definitely share. Point being, though, I am blessed beyond measure. I didn’t have to go through the horrific experiences she did. God never placed any trial of that size in my life. Who am I to even complain about anything? Compared to that, I should be perfectly content knowing I can live in a country where I am free. A country where no one is chasing me or my family. A country that is for the most part entirely peaceful.

Francesca Battistelli sings in her song “This Is The Stuff” one of my new favorite lyrics about in the little of our mess, we usually forget about big we are blessed. I am guilty of that on a daily basis. I get in small panics about little stuff, and I forget God’s even in the picture. Today showed me God is in everything. Big stuff or little stuff. Most importantly, God is blessing me beyond measure, and it would be silly of me to ever forget that.

Advertisements

So this is what it feels like?

Standard

Success is the strangest feeling to me especially since I am a perfectionist. Perfectionists are never truly satisfied, and they rarely think whatever they have done is good enough. That changed today though.

I am happy, proud, joyful, ecstatic. There are not enough positive words in the world to convey how I feel right now.

Today was the 2011 Tennessee High School Press Association awards day. This would be my last time to ever attend since I am a senior.

It meant an immense amount to me since I am the editor of the paper that was being judged for competition. I was on huge emotional roller coaster  the minute I sat down in my seat. I came expecting the worst.

I prayed about this day for a long time. Maybe you think that is selfish. However, this competition just meant a lot to me. I wanted to do so well because writing is what matters most to me. I did not want to fail or disappoint anyone.

Until I stepped into Lipscomb’s auditorium, I had felt this uncanny peace. Generally, I am nervous about something like this days in advance. You know that nervous. The nervous the grips your stomach because all the butterflies in there hatched out of their cocoon.Yeah, that’s the kind of nervous I usually am.

Yet, I didn’t ever feel nervous. I was just anxious. Anxious every time they called out a different category for our newspaper medium. It was hard to sit there and wait.

I watched as other members from our staff got individual awards which made the waiting much easier. It was fun to watch some of their facial expressions and cheer them on. After all, they worked hard too and they deserved to have their talent recognized.

After what felt like a small eternity, the ceremony finally drew to a close. Our award was last which made it even more painstaking to sit there. I must have slid almost to the floor in the chair I was sitting in by the time the reached the top three. I was about to implode.

Before they called out first place, I was about ready to cry. If they didn’t call us out, it meant I would failed at the thing that matters to me the most.

However, I didn’t cry. Well, I almost did. I almost burst out into this huge mess of tear because we won. The EDGE was named the 2011 Best Overall Newspaper in Tennessee. I almost combusted.

All of the deadlines and staying late after school finally paid off. All of the printing fiascoes finally paid off. All of the stress, worry, and hectic days finally paid. The hard work all of us put into this newspaper finally paid off. And it showed we were number one. 

God blessed me with this newspaper, and He certainly didn’t have to at all. He blessed me with a wonderful staff and an awesome adviser. Most importantly, he blessed with the opportunity to just be apart of this for the past four years of high school.

Even though hours have passed since we were awarded this, I am still happy. I am just simply thankful that this happened.

Success feels different, and it actually feels weird. I get to share my success though, and I couldn’t think of 18 other people I would rather share it with.

Once upon a time…

Standard

We all have a story.

 

I can vividly remember being four or five and fully believing my life was a storybook. I thought someone else was reading my story, and when I went to sleep at night, that the reader shut the book and stopped reading. Perhaps I watched a few too many Disney movies that caused me to think someone else was reading my life story.  However  a little over a week ago, I was reminded of myself doing this as someone announced in one of my classes she did the same thing. I thought this was my secret shame.  I thought I was the only peculiar, little child that did this.

I still have a warped sense of reality, but that is alright. Who wants a real sense of reality? But if my life were a real storybook, there would be so many elements and sub plots. And the characters? Oh, my. There are just so many characters. And now, I am at the point in my story where I am not sure where I am going. But, I am thankful for the people who are accompanying me on this journey.

Somehow, the year 2010 flew by and tomorrow is Thanksgiving. And that is where my imaginary reader of my story has dog-eared the page to stop. It’s hard for me to comprehend that my last year of high school is half over.  I have reflected a bit upon this year. So, while the reader has paused in reading my book, here are some of the major characters or blessings God has placed in my life.

Emily to the second power

Other than my immediate family, there are several poor souls who put up with me. One of which being my other half. I am not sure why the writer of my storybook made us have the same name, but He did. So, Emily Winton, I am very thankful for you. Thank you for putting up with me the past four years of high school and being my best friend. Yes, you deserve that title. Not many people have a Winton, but I do. You carve pumpkins with me, dye  Easter eggs, and take me sledding. You translate bbajgall into the word “Mexican” and take me to Los 3 for Aztec chicken. You even speak telepathically with me, and are still my friend even though I am sure I have embarrassed you on countless occasions while out in public. Yes, bless your soul.

And we danced the night away. Sorta.

Of course she isn’t the only friend who puts up with me. She is just one of the few who deal with my madness on a daily basis. There are plenty of other characters in my story that help me out along the way and keep me sane. It is no secret that I am weird or say the wrong things at the wrong time. But there are those friends who are always there to go to Wal-Mart with me, to order the same meal at Burger King every time, or to spend hours at Hastings gazing at books. They are always there to share the moment and laugh with me. Or at me. Most of the time it is at me. So, Katie Fults and Milton Jones, thanks for being there this past year as we encountered all sorts of surprises and random moments.

It doesn't hurt to see things in a new way.

Other than just my friends, though, I have an entirely different family. They spend almost two hours a day with me everyday. They see scary sides of me, but most importantly they see the quirky, uncoordinated side of me. I would have to say that they are most creative bunch of people I have ever met in my life. The EDGE. That’s what they are called to the outside world. They are all so unique and talented. And man, they all write so well. It’s no wonder they live in the insane asylum at school with all the fire turtles, ceiling ninjas, and real life superheroes. I am blessed to have each of these people in my life. So my little EDGE people, I am thankful. Thankful for each and every one of you. All of you put so much laughter and liveliness in my life each day. How can I not be thankful for all of you?

The EDGE in true form.

Tomorrow really is Thanksgiving. I can’t believe it. There are so many people in my life that I am thankful for, and I would be sitting here all day if I named all of them. However, most of the unsung characters won’t be sitting with me tomorrow when I devour my turkey and dressing.  So, thank you those who have listened to me blabber when I am upset, been my second mother, and allow me to live in your classroom. Or those of you who let me take you on crazy car trips that lead us into following the mail man, and being someone I look up to even though you are younger than me. Thank you all for blessing me by being in my life.

They say count your blessings. Well, you all are the blessings I am counting. My imaginary reader is turning the page now, but before she starts reading again, Happy Thanksgiving.