Tuesday, February 14, 2012

beautifully rooted.

{photo by Alec Vanderboom}

God is a constant surprise.

That’s how I felt when, about a month ago, in the middle of my family’s mourning period, sweet Rachel contacted me to ask if I’d be a contributing writer for Beautifully Rooted, a new blogging project she and Heather were starting.

I couldn’t have been more surprised or more thrilled.

God was answering my prayers in ways I never expected.

You see, a little over a year ago, my mentoring and teaching opportunity at my church began to fade away. For reasons I can’t quite explain (but, happily, I have finally accepted), God wanted me somewhere else, wanted my gifts to be used in ways it’s taken me a long time to fully realize.

I know a lot of people think blogging is at its best, silly, and at its worst, narcissistic. They don’t understand why I choose to put my words and my life on the Internet for all the world to see, and quite frankly, there are days I don’t really understand it either. But I keep writing, mostly because I need to get the words out, and blogging seems to be the best medium to do that.

Over the years, God has shown me, though, that blogging is more than just a way to purge the words. It’s community, yes, but it’s also ministry. I’ve been blessed and challenged by so many of the words I read online, and it’s my hope that this very tiny blip on the Internet offers some of you that same comfort.

It’s my hope that, perhaps in ways far different than I ever envisioned for myself, this place where I choose to put my words every day serves as ministry.

Two Novembers ago, I felt silenced. I felt like the gift I’d been given as a daughter of the King had been taken from me unfairly. I was angry, hurt, and probably more bitter than I’d like to admit.

It’s taken a while, but He has shown me — as He always does — that He is faithful. He is constantly providing me with new ways to use my gifts. And even though they aren’t necessarily the ways I would have chosen for myself, I am beginning to wonder if they aren’t better, if they aren’t more far-reaching and God-honoring than the more traditional outlets I would have chosen.

That’s the thing that I am learning about this God I serve: He is so much bigger than I make Him.

I don’t know what He will choose to do with Beautifully Rooted, with the women and the words that come to rest there.

But I do know I am so glad to be a part, not just because of the ministry I believe it will provide, but because it has served as a reminder to me that God is faithful, and when it comes to who He is and what He has in store? I should always be prepared to be surprised.

Beautifully Rooted launches today, and you can now find me there once a week, sharing my thoughts on faith and the Father. I hope you'll wander over if you get the chance and explore a little. Heather and Rachel have created something special, and I can't wait to see what He does with it all.


monster cakes said...

Annie I'm so proud of you and happy for you! This warms my heart to see how God is working through your tough church situation. God is so good friend. Can't wait to read your stuff over there!

ps. I love you. Happy love day.

Anonymous said...

I love you, Annie.

Lauren said...

Isn't it always amazing when God constantly shows us that He is way bigger than we believe him to be? I don't know why it is that I never seem to let that sink into my heart, but hopefully that is part of the faith journey of life.

Looking forward to your thoughts and ministry at Beautifully Rooted!

TefMarie said...

God's journey is the best, isn't it? I'm glad you can see a new perspective with what you've gone through and I pray for this new ministry that you have. I love your words and am grateful for them.

Happy V-Day!

Heather @ Life Made Lovely said...

i feel the same annie.

in awe of how He chooses to use us and our gifts. i'm also constantly amazed at how much bigger blogging is than i ever expected.
it really is a ministry that reaches people in ways that we otherwise wouldn't be able to.

so glad you are a part of beautifully rooted!

Leslie said...

Congrats, friend! It is so sweet when Father brings lovely opportunities and changes that we didn't expect. Your words are important and move hearts - keep writing!

Anonymous said...

your blogging/tweeting/being you is a BIG encouragement to me often. It's no small thing you do. Excited to see you minister through this new way!

Annie said...

Annie, that's awesome! I am so excited to read your words at Beautifully Rooted. You are such an encouraging spirit, and reading your words always makes me feel like my own spirit is home. I just love that miracle of MI and FL being so close together even as they're so far apart. I am so thankful God has you here, ministering online!

Erin said...

You have ministered to me. I am grateful for you & your blog! And I am grateful that Rachel asked you to be on the b. rooted team. Your words deserve to be read!