~these are the day of writing, writing, writing~
Raise your cup of coffee with me! (or your glass of wine if you’re reading this later at night)
As I hit publish on this final post in my series, I breathe a huge sigh of relief. And celebrate, if only for a minute, that I made it! Not perfect writing, mind you. But real-time, everyday life writing.
31 days of living small~not just for the writing challenge, but also for my life, for my soul, for my spirit.
I wrote here about why I decided to write this series and as I explained, I don’t want to leave this “season” of writing daily unchanged.
But, I thought an appropriate way to end this series would be by sharing what I’ve taken away from the act of sitting and writing and living small every day.
Time with my hubs is limited due to his working schedule and full days of raising little people. When the kids go to bed, that’s generally our limited time to talk and just be together. We sacrificed a bit of that this month.
I paid a few bills late. I tend to delay bill-paying as long as possible these days since that’s the season we’re in, but a few I simply forgot. My head was always full and writing daily seemed to take away from some other household and living tasks that just have to get done. My house isn’t the cleanest right now. I plan to remedy that a bit this weekend.
I mentioned sleep, right?
When I said “yes” to writing, it meant saying “no” to a few other things. I can’t do it all. Congrats to all the bloggers and business owners that have it much more together than I do.
I’ll continue blogging and have been inspired on some other topics for the upcoming months, but it won’t be daily. Honestly, at the beginning of this challenge, I was like…31 days of writing…hard, sure, but I can handle it.
Ha! Writing daily is no joke, friends! Although I’m glad that I’m not just a foodie blogger or a faith blogger or an education blogger. Because I need some eclectic variety in my life to keep-it-real. One of my friends told me she was impressed I had something daily to even write about. That, was simply God.
When I started this series, I didn’t really intend to link most of my small moment living back to my faith. It just sort of happened that way. I realized a few things about this. One: my faith weaves through everything I do. I realized that before, but it became so much more evident as I was writing. I couldn’t really leave God out of it. And two: in the day-to-day of looking and living out small moments, I found God’s kingdom, in the way Emily described it, one-inch off the ground.
I confess that I’m in a season where I’ve struggled to hear God’s voice, in my own life and on the behalf of others. I’ve been in seasons where I felt God talking to me all the time and I was able to share that with the people around me. I would get a word on someone’s behalf or feel like I had something to share with others. In these seasons I felt God’s presence both in the natural and supernaturally (perhaps a story for another day).
Sometimes I wonder if this season now of struggling to hear God has something to do with the mom life (and holla’ mamas because I know you’re there with me). You know, the days are full. If I’m not conscious about it, my day can pass me by without spending any time with Him. Most of the time, I don’t have a nice block of uninterrupted devotional time.
But what I found this month, is that I do spend time with Him daily, just not in the way I perhaps want (or have been taught to). I found that in the small moments of living, I was talking to Him throughout the mundane tasks or small moments. Washing dishes. Nursing Judah. Sweeping the floor and wiping the table. Folding laundry. Playing games. Reading with my kids. Watching my baby sleep. Finding a hole in my sweatshirt.
And as I reflected on these small moments, I realized God was speaking to me. When I paused long enough to look for Him in these moments, He really was there. He spoke to my heart over and over. Only a few times was it really obvious and in-my-face so to speak, like when I watched my daughter in the waves or watched my other daughter running into the ocean, or when my kids saw the sunrise over the beach.
But mostly. Mostly. He was talking to me in small whispers. I just had to be open to hearing Him.
I can’t say that I never noticed the small moments of living before. I’m aware that life is made up of these day-in and day-out moments of breathing. That there are chapters of seasons of highs and lows, but life, real living, is found in the pages of the in-between. That if you look for God, if you really, really want to find Him, you need to look no further than the everyday moments of your life.
Thank you to those of you who read this series. Your words of encouragement helped me continue on when I felt like skipping a day here and there. Even if you only read one post, you chose to live small with me.
Because of you, those of you who commented here or on Facebook or Instagram, or texted or talked to me in person, I realized something that’s not so new, but really in my face right now. Perhaps I ignored it before because the season I’m living in now is the hardest one yet.
And that is that we are all in this life together. None of us is exempt from hard times. We are all dealing with something. Some of us have deeper and harder things than others. Some of us would trade our difficult season for someone else’s difficult season.
And it’s not about comparing. It’s about coming alongside each other and being Tuesday people for each other and really, really, showing the world and each other what love looks like. The things I wrote weren’t unique to just me. Many of you saw yourself in my words and stories. You saw your own kids in the way I described mine and your own life in the pages of what I’m learning.
I had already written most of this post and then came across these words from Ann Voskamp. She says:
It’s a really kind & beautiful thing for us all to walk together through a hurting world realizing that every single one us is fighting a hard battle & it absolutely changes everything when we realize that sometimes: people aren’t being *difficult* — they are having *difficulty*
Yes and yes. Amen and amen.
Living small has not only helped me to find God in the small moments of my life, but to recognize that we are all small together. And paying attention to the small stuff is really important. And sharing the small stuff with each other is really important. Because we’re all fighting big battles. But just as David killed Goliath with just a few small stones, we can fight the big battles with small moments.
Hugs. Words of encouragement. Sitting and holding hands with someone who is hurting. Crying with someone. Texting a prayer or kind word to a friend. Watching someone’s children so they can have a date night. Taking a meal to someone for no reason at all. Offering a small piece of our time or talent to share with a friend. Or a stranger.
It’s all small. But small is underestimated. And small can do really big things.
Won’t you continue to live small with me? Share this blog with your friends and family. I plan on doing a small living post on a monthly basis, as well as a few other monthly features. In between those will be writing about my passions: real food, family, intentional living, a sort of out-of-the-box perspective I hope.
**And if you want to check out my entire #write31days series on living small, you can find the link here.