“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.Read More
Since returning from my adventure around Europe, I’ve found that I get asked on the regular about the ins and outs of planning a solo trip. From saving the money to how to stay safe while traveling solo (and everything in between), I’ve loved being able to answer so many different questions around the practicalities of planning a solo holiday. While I am no expert, I do have a few trips under my belt now — both within the states and abroad — and I have learned a lot around the practicalities of planning a solo trip, especially from making some mistakes along the way, so I wanted to round up some of the most important tips I have collected as I’ve planned and executed both short and long-term solo trips. So whether you are going away for four days or four months, here are some of the things you should keep in mind when planning a solo trip of your own.Read More
Paris was easily one of the cities I was most looking forward to spending time in while I was in Europe, as it has been near the top of my travel bucket list since I was sixteen. And let me tell you: it was well worth the wait. Despite meeting other travelers along the way who had expressed that Paris was overrated, I refused to lose my wide-eyed wonder and excitement for the city of love… and it did not disappoint, as I fell in love hard and fast. Six days hardly felt like enough time — as I’m convinced that I could have spent many more days wandering the charming streets and arrondissements that make up metropolitan Paris — and yet they gave me enough of a taste to know that I will definitely return some day. And while there are so, so many things you can and should do if you find yourself in Paris, I wanted to compile a short list to get you started. So here is a little guide for your (hopefully) next weekend getaway in Paris…Read More
It has been just over six weeks since returning from my Europe trip, six months since I left the states to start that adventure, and about one year since sharing the news that I was leaving Nashville to move back to California to prepare for the trip. It’s an understatement to be sure, but the last year has been a complete whirlwind of emotions and growth that included countless bouts of loneliness, excitement, frustration, and everything in between. After living in that beautiful city for four years, leaving who and what I knew and loved in Nashville proved to be one of the hardest decisions I’ve made thus far, only being slightly surpassed by choosing to solo-travel around Europe for almost five months. Both were difficult choices to make, and yet both were worth it in almost every way.
Speaking of, I realize that I haven’t properly shared an update on how the second half of the trip went (first half is recapped here), and the easiest way to do so is to say that it was even more eye-opening and life-changing than the first.Read More