A little flame lit in me a few months ago, when I saw Icebreaker (an outdoor clothing company) post an ad for a t-shirt design competition. I’m not usually one to enter design competitions, unless I have to - so it was a little unusual that I was even interested. I just went with it, though. I wanted to dig into the brand’s core, serious outdoor exploration, and create something related to the nature of it all: bravery.
I thought through each word, feeling the flow and concept echo in my core. I SO wanted to be this person - someone brave; someone who jumps in, takes risks, and grabs life by the horns (for those who've read Divergent - I basically want to be dauntless).
Mostly, that's just not me. I'm the girl who's afraid to ski down a bunny slope. I'd rather hole up in my apartment with a good book than spend a day making life-altering decisions or going backpacking – you know, thrill-seeker stuff.
I'm not the life of the party – I'm an introvert. So, how can God use an introvert to reach the nations? That brings me to my little dilemma.
Over the past couple years, I've been in a slow-to-act state. Professionally, I've made some moves, which has been an adventure in its own right. But I'm a creator at heart, always looking to make something new and interesting and important. For the past couple years, that "thing" I've been itching to make is a blog. Hah! That's it, you say? For me, the introvert, it's huge!
I've let fear and uncertainty bind me to perpetually plan without following through. And unfortunately, I've let those things creep into other corners of my life. They're just so darn hindering!
So, I'm not here to bash myself or complain. Over the past couple months, I've realized a few things that have pushed me to move outside of my own confines and reach for things that I have been afraid to chase after. Hopefully, what I've learned will propel you to make a move in your own life!
1. Community is INVALUABLE.
I work for an awesome non-profit with amazing friends. I'm doing life with my super cute/encouraging/funny/handsome husband. I share many conversations with my ever-faithful parents and my new in-laws. Both Tim and I know we have some real support, emotionally, physically, and spiritually.
2. We have a call.
Sure, I may not ever become the life of the party or the outdoor adventurer. But those things pale in comparison to my calling (and yours!) as a Christian. I know I'm to make much of Jesus in our broken world; so, how, as an introvert do I do that well? I've got to get uncomfortable – push myself outside of my introverted walls and ENGAGE.
3. The Lord provides, always.
For awhile, my husband and I have prayed for me to find more female community (something I shared with you all in my Ruby interview). God has provided community and friendships through my job that are so precious.
I also remember sharing my fears about heading into my new position with S.O.S., due to the focus on heavy subjects, namely sex-trafficking. Over the past few months, I've listened to many stories that are despicable and heart-wrenching. But I've realized that the Lord still provides. He provides water, food, generous hearts, and protection for the needy; He also provides hope which brings about an unquenchable restoration. But ultimately, He provides salvation, the greatest gift we could ask for. My heart rests in that.
Unfortunately, I missed the deadline for the t-shirt competition; let me tell you, I was one big ball of bummer that night. I still got something major out of working toward it, though. This design was the reflection point at which I told myself, “HEY! Wake up and move!”
I hope you'll feel encouraged by what I've found to embolden me. I know you all have a lot to give – don't let fear get in the way of pursuing passion and calling! And don't forget – always seek to make much of Him.
p.s. I've been working on my blog; it should launch this fall. Stay tuned!
Image via Hannah Johsnton
Hannah is a graphic designer currently based out of Grapevine, TX, working for the non-profit, Sower of Seeds. Hannah and I had the pleasure of meeting and having many classes together at Abilene Christian University, and studied abroad together in the summer of 2010. Hannah and her husband are such gems, and Chris and I have loved getting to know them better as a married couple this past year. Hannah was also recently featured as a Ruby! You can learn more about her in her Ruby post.