Friday, June 28, 2013


For those of you who don’t believe in coincidence and prefer instead to call it Godincidence …

Here’s your sign.

Sometimes it’s a dream, a daydream even, an inaudible whisper of the Holy Spirit.

A name popping up over and over in weird places. Meeting you where you are.

Things you hadn’t thought of. Things that were not in your plan.

Several years ago I read a couple of Marcus Buckingham’s books about strengths. The women’s leadership group where I worked at the time was doing a lunchtime study of one of them. Bring your lunch, watch a video, discuss, maybe do some type of activity. The idea behind the books is that you should focus your work activities and personal development toward the areas of your greatest strengths. Weaknesses must indeed be managed, but your greatest growth will be in areas where you already excel.

Every annual review I’ve been subject to was more like two minutes of kudos for a job well done followed by an excruciatingly long discussion of things that “could have gone better”. And in most goal setting sessions … the bone they throw toward personal development is often to address a weakness, not a strength.

Buckingham’s premise is revolutionary for the Corporate America world from whence I came. A world where buttoned-up corporate ladies from big pharma get together over lunch to learn from this dude who’s been on Oprah. And ultimately learn that they do not in fact suck.

Miss Overachiever went above & beyond, and I took the strengths assessment. It helps you hone in on your top five from a list of, I don’t remember, maybe two or three dozen. My number one top above-all strength was communication. Ergo how I made a career out of project management and herding cats.

One of my top five was connectedness. The little description that goes along with each strength tells us that connectedness has a lot to do with faith and believing that “things happen for a reason” (secret code in the secular world sometimes for us Jesus freaks to identify each other). But it also just goes toward being able to see patterns and causes & effects and the overall big picture.

Guilty as charged.

I think it’s hilarious that my master’s thesis (yes, kids, I have one of those … nerd alert) had a lot to do with pattern recognition.

In an attempt to make this long story short and bring it home … fast forward to the last week or so. I started seeing a couple words all over the place. Directly and indirectly. Songs and scripture references. Random social media postings. Sometimes it required a leap or two of logic, but for Pattern Recognition Girl it was super obvious.

There were so many that I finally started writing them down. So many that it’s kind of ridiculous. So many that I think someone’s trying to tell me something.

When I figure out what that is I’ll let you know. J

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Is It Time?

Ugh! Writer’s block. Or avoidance. Or something.

In my defense, after a crazy week of vacation bible school I made the big mistake about a week ago of spending several hours outside in the pollen. I should have known better. I’ve been off kilter ever since.

I tried medicating Sunday morning with Panera hazelnut coffee. I had the same thought I did a few days prior while sipping on some green chai tea I made at home …

“Yum. Tastes like Christmas”.

Green chai tea. You may have turned into a food Nazi if … you drink green chai tea with honey. I don’t think it was organic or even local, though. (Sacrilege!) And you may be longing for the death of pollen-producing plants if you’re thinking about Christmas in June.

I’m in a season of waiting and practicing patience, that’s for sure. Learning to let God lead, even in the details. Letting him push that thorn a little deeper in my side until I say, “Okay, fine. Can I at least have another Sudoku to keep me occupied in the meantime?”

My brain just doesn’t shut off on its own. It takes a conscious decision. And in those moments he often speaks to me. Reminding. Reassuring. Revealing. Doing wacky things like inspiring me to read the entire book of Micah in one sitting. I give it two thumbs up. You should check it out. It’s actually a quick read. Good prophetic stuff. And the inspiration for my favorite Audio A song – for which you have to read to the end. J

I’ve been paying more attention just lately to God throwing random things in my path throughout each day. There’s my plan and there’s God’s plan. I think we know whose is better and whose doesn’t really matter in the end. So everything from who I encounter – strangers, acquaintances, large numbers of fourth graders – to random texts I get to plans I’d like to make. Throw me a roadblock or throw me a bone, I don’t know. 

A lot of my habits are in pretty good shape at the moment. Exercise, healthy eating, daily devotions. Always a work in progress, but I’m in a good place.

I mean, it’s not like I don’t have goals and to do lists. Please. I help people for a living. And I’m always flattered when people share with me that I inspire them. (I have bills just like everyone, but that right there is better than a paycheck.)

So while I continue to hang out on the treadmill and/or yoga ball … I’ll keep on keeping my ear to the ground … well heaven really …

What’s he telling you? Is it time for a change? Is it time?

Thursday, June 6, 2013

What I Want

I may be channeling Daughtry, although I’m listening to Switchfoot as I write.

The malaise and apathy are darn near audible this week. 

Shhhhh … listen …

That’s the sound of people wasting time on things that aren’t important. If it doesn’t help people … or make you a better person … or ultimately somehow fulfill a purpose ordained by God … is it worth spending your time on? Rest & relaxation … yes, important. Building relationships … yes, important. It’s not all about grueling manual or mental labor.

But I see some of you spending an excessive amount of time with your technology or with your French fries or spewing negativity or being paralyzed by depression. Oy vey. Stop it, will ya? Set a goal once in a blue moon and go after it.

Honestly how many hours of video games and tv do you need? All good things in moderation, my friend. We all like a game, a show, a French fry now and then.

We were not put on this earth to live ordinary lives. If you think we were, perhaps we need to have a theological discussion and parse the word “ordinary”. Note I did not mention fame or wealth …

I’d say living according to God’s will would be fairly extraordinary.

So here’s my wish list this week. What I want …

  • For people to stop being so depressed!!!
  • For people to stop refusing to acknowledge mathematical facts because they’re scared of math. Or because they’re too gloriously busy to spend one minute focusing.
  • For people to realize that passive-aggressive is still aggressive.
  • For people to stop and breathe long enough to recognize the working of God in their daily lives.
  • For people to stop quitting good things & to start quitting bad things. And to stick to it. You know, not quitting. Or not quitting quitting. Okay, my head hurts now.
  • World peace.

That pretty much does it for now. What I want. But not what I need … that would be … Jesus. Just Jesus.

Peace, my friends.