on wobbly legs.

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Over the summer I wandered into a tiny children’s bookstore. It was full of all the very best kinds of things: glossy picture books and thick, story-filled chapter books, and it smelled like new paper–the very best smell.

The owner was there. We chatted about favorite books and raising readers and all the joys of getting lost in someone else’s world. I’ve always loved to read. Always, always. And this bookstore owner was a kindred of mine down to reading aloud chapter by chapter in the last dusky moments of a day.

I wanted to be her. I left that place bubbling over with all kinds of ambition to open a little bookstore. I dreamed of the perfect location. I dreamed of all the things I could do: writing clubs, reading clubs, smelling books all day long. I wanted to be her.

There’s a reason. She followed her deep-down, not-going-away dream. I asked her while we were there how she ended up there. She had started six years earlier. Six years before with a dream and a business plan. Six years of not changing her mind.

With a handful of months now gone, I understand that I wanted to be the dreamer in her. Not the bookstore owner. That was her dream. My dream is something different. The truth is that I want to follow everything that makes me feel alive instead of investing in one passion. I’ve declared we should move to Africa! To the heartland! To the big city! To a farm! I have a heart for everything but endurance for naught. This was God’s great gift to me in calling me to walk beside my husband: he puts my feet back on the ground and keeps me tethered to who I am in Christ.

There are lots of things I’d like to do but six years from now I hope I can look back and see that I made the hard and narrow choice, that I knew my own God-given dream and that I was faithful to it. It feels a little selfish to think this way but I’ve been reading Emily Freeman’s new book A Million Little Ways and I’m beginning to understand that maybe it is actually disobedience to keep stuffing, ignoring and belittling the heart God has given me instead of simply sharing it.

I don’t know how to end this except to say that I am going to stand on my wobbly passion legs and try some scary things this year. And I hope I’m not alone.

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5 thoughts on “on wobbly legs.

  1. I am the girl with the six-year-long dream. It’s been the same one all these years. I don’t know if I’m scared of it or if I’m waiting for the right time or if I’m just day-dreaming and it’ll really never happen. But it’s big (to me) and it’s the kind of God-dream that takes a lot of faith and trust and at last a big ol leap. I want to try that scary thing but I’m just not sure when/how/if/etc. Sometimes I hate how much I’m in my head, because I waver back and forth through fear, faith, uncertainty, inspiration, unbelief, logic, feelings… it’s a mess up there. Sometimes I wish I could just jump out of my skin and DO it already. I do think there’s much to be said for waiting, and the learning and growing that happens in that space.

    One last thing and I’ll leave you to your day– It is a precious gift of grace that your husband points you foremost to Christ. We don’t all have that, so please please cherish and treasure it.

    Aly | blossom & vine

  2. Nope, you’re not alone :-) I’m with you on the I want to pursue ALL THE THINGS, but the still, small voice in me keeps reminding me to listen for the one thing that He has for me to follow. It’s till fuzzy and vague, but reading A Million Little Ways is bringing the questions that need to be asked and the thoughts that need to be thought :-)

  3. Emily’s book did that for me too. And this post? It reminds me again that we are kindreds to the core. “A heart for everything for endurance for naught.” Yep, that’s me. AND I too have {and still do} entertain dreams of a one-day book / coffee shop / my favorite things shop. Maybe we’ll open one together in our next life. : )

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