Always learning.

I love to talk. I love to write. But sometimes I don’t know what to say and that often means I don’t know how to write it either.
So for those times I haven’t known what to say and I’ve found solace or wisdom in these words.
Thank you for saying it better than I ever could.

Waiting is painful. Forgetting is painful. But not knowing which to do is the worst kind of suffering.

Paulo Coelho

The Christian way is different: harder, and easier. Christ says, ‘Give me All. I don’t want so much of your time and so much of your money and so much of your work; I want You. I have not come to torment your natural self, but to kill it. No half-measures are any good….Hand over the whole natural self, all the desires which you think are innocent as well as the ones you think wicked—the whole outfit. I will give you a new self instead. In fact, I will give you Myself: My own will shall become yours.

C.S. Lewis (Mere Christianity)

This moment of difficulty is not in the way of the plan. This moment IS the plan. The difficulties are a sure sign of his redemptive love .. Not unfaithfulness.

Paul Tripp

When I understand that everything happening to me is to make me more Christlike, it solves a great deal of anxiety.

A.W. Tozer

In order to move on, you must understand why you felt what you did and why you no longer need to feel it.

Mitch Albom.

No one can pray and worry at the same time.

– Max Lucado.

“To me, being a grown up is saying what you mean and meaning what you say. The older we get, the more true we should be to ourselves and to others”

Steffany Willis.

The Meaning in the Meantime

Have you ever noticed that when people are going through a rough patch in life, they will often describe it as a phase? They describe the season and often couple it with a ‘hopefully it’s just a phase’. It’s like they know they are just in a season and at some point this season will end and they will come out the other side. Somehow, through a mix of personal experience, the word and guidance from others, we seem to be aware that rough seasons SHOULD end and so we hope and pray that they will and that we learn some lessons in the meantime.

In the meantime.

meantime
n.  The time between one occurrence and another; an interval.
adv.  During a period of intervening time; meanwhile.

I don’t know about you but the meantime is kind of the worst time. If I was in charge of dictionary’s I would add a third meaning which would say..

meantime
The time in which one feels stuck, trapped and is hoping and praying something better is around the corner.

It almost feels like wasted time. The very definition leads us to believe that it’s the blank page in between your story. The nothing stage.

I’m asking God for direction. Getting nothing.
I’m stuck between where I am and where I want to be. Going nowhere.
I feel like I’m banging my head against a brick wall – getting nothing done and going nowhere fast.

The problem is when the meantime lasts for a long time. When the phase seems less and less like a passing thing and more like a permanent reality. You start to get a bit edgy. Restless. Mad. And unfortunately, in the meantime is when we often make a lot of our biggest mistakes. We take the season into our own hands and things start to get a bit messy.

What is the meaning of the meantime? Why am I still here? Why am I still stuck?

I’m sorry that I can’t reach through whatever device you are reading this from and give you the answer’s to your whys. I wish I could. I wish I knew the reason for the phase I’m going through. I wish the meantime didn’t feel like the nothing stage. I wish that for you. I can’t promise your phase is nearly over. I can’t promise it will make sense, even when the season ends.

All I know, is there is eternal meaning in the meantime. For those stuck in an unfortunate season..

In the meantime, pray even when you aren’t getting an answer.
In the meantime, learn something about yourself and your God.
In the meantime, surround yourself with the right things and the right people.
In the meantime, worship even when it’s the last thing you want to do.
In the meantime.. wait.. hope.. trust.

Happy Talk

Who says you can’t be happy all the time? I know, but I’m still going to try. Lifehouse Family.

Replacing a dead pair of shoes with a brand new pair and the feeling of kicking off a pair of new shoes you are wearing in. Happy.

Texts, letters, postcards, emails – any form of written encouragement. Happy.

Catchy riffs and carefully constructed lyrics. There’s something about the power of a beautifully written song that sends me to my happy place.

Ticking things off lists, feeling productive. Happy.

An equally balanced friendship. It sounds mathematical but knowing you are appreciated in a friendship and feeling so grateful for the other person – knowing the other person is in the exact same place is actually rather wonderful and it makes me happy.

The presence of God. The inexplicable presence. Happy.

Small pleasures like lipstick stains on a coffee cup, the quick squeeze in a long embrace, wearing socks to bed only to kick them off under the covers and hitting snooze on Saturdays. That’s happiness.

Christmas time. I love carols, presents and sleeping on Christmas afternoon – it’s the only time I like to nap. Happy Happy Happy Christmas.

Losing your stomach in a fast car. Driving fast, being driven fast. Fast cars.

People have the love language ‘gifts’ all wrong. We don’t just want things and more things and perferably more expensive things. The very fact that you thought of me and then took any time or any amount of money at all is enough. It makes me happy when someone understands that and then does there best to show me love this way.

The look in someone’s eyes when God speaks to them and they just get it.

The rare opportunities I get to spend with my whole family. Happy Steffany.

Impersonations and accents. Deliveries in the post. Nailing a rap.

It makes me happy when someone understands that the Steffany the world sees is a myth and it makes me even happier when someone tries to discover what’s beyond that.

Writing makes me happy. I love to sit and write about nothing and everything. Sometimes when I have nothing to say – I just rewrite lyrics or poems. Just putting a pen to paper makes me happy.

Finding that comfy position. Whether it’s with a book in an amazing couch, that illusive sleeping position or the perfect fit within someone’s arms. There’s nothing quite like it.

Acting. Creating something from nothing.

Alliteration. Books. An empty house. Getting ready at my own pace. Answering questions – either about myself or on behalf of other people.

Helping other people. Sharing my mistakes in order to help someone else grow. It makes me happy to know that my pain wasn’t for naught.

My best friends. People who know me and who I switch off with. I love feeling free. I love not wearing “makeup” with them. I love that people are as honest with me as I am with them. I love that I live in a country, grew up in a family and am surrounded by friends who have encouraged me to be exactly who I am.

That, makes me extremely happy.