2018: A Review

I’m sure this will come as a surprise to no one, but I have to officially say that this last year has been the wildest, weirdest, and most life-changing one of my life thus far. There were so many things that happened, so many new places that were visited, and so many ways in which I grew, and in that I declare that 2018 was a game changer. I solo-traveled for the first time in March, followed closely by my big solo-trip around Europe; I learned more about who I am and the way I’ve been made (thanks for the assist, enneagram — a 4w3 right here); I learned how to identify my feelings and work through them in a healthy way; my confidence and belief in myself skyrocketed; I embraced my single status and am (finally) thriving in it; and — most importantly — I stepped into more freedom and abundance as I’ve continued to follow Jesus. It hasn’t been an easy year — not in the slightest. But it has undoubtedly been the best one yet.

So here it is: a quick recap of this last year . . .

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Wild Hearts with Gennean

I've called myself a wild heart for a few years now, which all began when I realized there was something in me that longed for more: more than living for the weekend, more than 50-60 hr work weeks, more than storing up physical treasures, and more than settling for the mundane. My heart was unsettled, and it became a real place of tension as my desires just didn’t quite line line up with what I felt like society and culture were telling me I needed to be getting after, especially as a young adult.

The thing is, though, that I've always believed that God didn't create us to just get by, live in mediocrity, or play it safe. He's never been mediocre or boring or safe (if we're honest) — so why do we subscribe to the thought that our lives should be? He's wild and free and full of adventure, and I've chosen to live wrapped up in that. All of my big decisions — and many of my small ones — have been made in faith, and they've led me to some of the coolest and craziest places that often didn't make sense on paper. Yet in seeking wisdom with each risk that I've taken so far, things have always fallen into place in the best of ways.

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Real Talk: Being Single

As I’ve been hanging out in New York City for the last few weeks, I recently decided to make a reservation for one at a popular and busy dessert restaurant. After spending countless hours holed up in my friends’ apartment clocking my work hours and hustling over a new project (that I can’t wait to share with y’all soon!), I decided it was high time to take myself out for a sweet treat. So I made the 1.5 mile walk across Central Park toward the restaurant, ready to devour all things chocolate, only to end up slightly salty about a comment that was made to me by a waiter. As I was sitting down, he motioned to the empty seat and asked, “Where is your second person?” to which I kindly replied, “oh nope, it’s just me!” He half-smiled and said, “Oh, okay . . . well, enjoy.” That was one thing in itself, but then as I was leaving, he made sure to say to me over his shoulder, “hopefully next time there will be someone with you!”

While I don’t think there was any ill-intent in that this particular situation, I know that his comment could have been taken one of two ways: maybe it was said in kindness because it seemed like there should have been someone with me (like I’m cute and should have had a guy with me, or at least a friend), or that he was annoyed that — at the peak of their busy time of the day — they would only be serving one person/one meal instead of a “full party.” Sine I truly believe it was the former, you should know that I wasn’t personally offended. I have done so many things on my own at this point that a meal is pretty basic, and the truth is that I am totally comfortable taking myself out as I have learned over the last few years to truly enjoy my own company. What did take offense, however, was my not-so-slight justice complex, because all I could think was, “man, if I wasn’t as okay with being by myself, that could have really stung.” Which got me thinking even more that there are too many misconceptions around singleness, and — having been single for quite some time myself — there are a few things that I think need to be said about it from a single person’s perspective. And while I’ve confessed some things about singleness in the past, I’ve been searching for more: more truth, more guidance, and more encouragement for all of us as we, together, navigate the rapidly growing population of singles. But unfortunately, apart from this spot on message* (which I will reference many times in this post and encourage all of you to listen to ASAP), I haven’t come across much that suffices, thus I find myself here once again, sharing my heart on something that can be uncomfortable to talk about bluntly: singleness.

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Your Calling: Do It Scared

“Calling” can be such a daunting, pressurizing word nowadays, and it can feel like the questions that we’re constantly being asked, or asking of ourselves, sound a lot like: what is your life’s calling; what do you feel called to do; and to what, whom, and where are you being called?   We spend so much time trying to figure out just what in the world our calling might be, asking God to reveal the things He wants us to do, searching our hearts to recognize our gifts and passions, and then attempting to piece it all together into something that maybe — just maybe — reflects what we should be doing with our lives.  But what if the idea of “calling” is much more simple than we think?  What if it has less to do with what we do and more to do with who we are in Jesus and where He has placed us?  I am not an expert by any means, but if there is anything that I’ve learned in my almost thirty years of life, it is that we are really good at complicating the things of God.  I have come to believe that the whole idea of calling is really quite simple, because if we look into Scripture, there are really only a few things that we are all called to do: to love God, to seek Him with all of our hearts, to love our neighbors, and to make disciples. I believe that this is our general call as believers, and regardless of what we do with our lives vocationally, these are first and arguably most important things that we are called to do.

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