Every time I get on a plane, I make a note on my phone documenting how I’m feeling and what’s going on. Mainly because I don’t want to forget how I’m feeling. I do it on my phone because my journal is always buried at the bottom of my backpack that’s squished under my feet. These are notes from the sky….
When I only see in part, I will prophesy your promise.“Prophesy Your Promise” – Brian & Katie Torwalt
Because you finish what you start, I will trust you in the process.
August has always been really busy for me. I just wrapped up my first full month of weekend runs with Bobby + Co. I’m headed into two full weeks of work helping produce my favorite event of the year (Belmont Welcome Week!), production assisting on a show at MCC, and doing gfx for another conference.
I haven’t slept right since April. This tour started moving so quickly on top of all my side gigs. Although at this point, I’m not sure what the side gig is? I’ve put in a ton of work, and seeing it pay off – every night, every show, every gig – gives me this intense sense of joy and peace.
I’ve woken up exhausted for flights and more shows with all of my teams. I’ve learned to trust my gut and trust that others will do their job. I’ve learned when to step in and be gracious & firm in my expectations. I have learned and grown all while surrounded by incredible people. I’ve been grinding so hard in every aspect of any work that’s been throw at me. This has truly been the most fulfilling, most rewarding five months of my career.
I haven’t been sleeping, but, man, have I been resting in gratitude and in Jesus’s peace.
I am so grateful for the moments backstage and the times ProPresenter has crapped out on me and the sleepy eyes on my flights home. I‘m grateful for this place God has brought me to, after all my kicking and screaming. I’m grateful for the space to create experiences with the best people out there. I’m grateful my body hasn’t given out on me, even with a bunch of unexpected tests at Vanderbilt. I’m grateful for my doctors coming up with a plan that allows me to stay on the road. I’m grateful for WiFi and all the dumb work photos on my phone. I’m grateful for last night testing me, my patience, and the fight inside me. I’m grateful for all the hugs and words of encouragement from the people I’ve chosen to be mine.
Everything about this moment keeps circling back to gratitude.
And I’m pretty damn thankful all this hard work is paying off. Thank you, Jesus.
I always thought I wanted to tour, but it never happened. — When I started Belmont Showcase Series I fell in love with live event production (and Dan LOL). I wanted nothing more than to production manage a showcase, and I did it. I wanted nothing more than to intern at Sound Image, and I did it. I wanted nothing more than to finish Audio 2 in one piece, and I did it. When I graduated, I was so set on knowing that touring would be my career that I failed to see God setting up something bigger. What I ended up seeing was disappointment.
For three years, I watched friends go on tour and was silently jealous. For three years, I was “stuck” doing corporate shows. For three years, I worked my butt off with “nothing” to show for it. For three years, I was bitter and angry at God. For three years, I could not even be slightly content with what I had. I was so sure that God was going to come through. Why would he light a fire only to put it out? I waited three years.
Girl, you were wrong. You had it all wrong.
Earlier this year, I started therapy. I started having more candid conversations with friends about my stuck-ness, my fears, and the absolute mess that my life had become. I handed over all my anger and fear to Jesus through some incredibly awful journal entries and prayers. There were a lot of tears and harsh words, but thankfully my friends, my husband, and Jesus are all so, so gracious. I found a fitness studio I absolutely adore. I put my head down, and went to work every day I could doing whatever I could. I worked some awful events to pay bills. I chose to be grateful, even if it meant thinking “I am very grateful for this awful client having a budget big enough to pay me to work their awful event.” I stopped thinking about climbing some arbitrary ladder in the event world. I focused on doing a good job at whatever gig I was on. I stopped hinging my identity on work, and just let go. I placed every ounce of trust in Jesus. And then some wild things happened.
I went on a weekend run on a tour in August. I managed a show for that tour on September 1, and will do a few more this fall. I worked my seventh Welcome Week at Belmont. I was hired for an event, and I got it completely on my own. No referrals, no recommendations— just me, a resumé, and an interview. That led to another gig. I’ve done graphics for so many events this summer, I can’t even remember what the conferences were about. I fell in love with corporate shows, and their intricacies. I started telling people I want to be a show caller. Lol what?
I’m not bragging about me. I’m bragging about Jesus. He came through. I was so frustrated that what I wanted didn’t happen. I didn’t hear him saying “You just wait.”
I’ve been so busy this summer and fall. My house is a mess. I couldn’t tell you the last time my clothes were actually put away. I started feeling overwhelmed at the beginning of the month so I decided to take this week off. Two weeks ago, I told my sweet, patient husband Dan that I was taking this week off no matter what. I’ve been going nonstop since July. I wanted to rest. But he asked if I wanted to join the production team for Salt because they needed another person. I flipped and flopped. Shocker, I ended up saying yes. And I am so glad I did.
Last night, I started out my “job” bawling like a baby at this video of a man named Roger Flournoy who considered cerebral palsy a gift from God. Please watch this. He said he struggles with loneliness, and I lost it. I started crying like a baby. I am sitting in the front row trying to get speakers on stage, and my mascara is running down my face. I knew I was in for it at that moment.
I go to church on my own every Sunday in my electric wheelchair. I really enjoy that, because I am a greeter at the 11:15 service. My favorite part is seeing all kinds of faces. That is such a joy, because I recognize that the church is made up of all kinds of people. I don’t have to listen to lies that since I am disabled, I am not important. God made me who I am, and I was born with cerebral palsy not because of an accident but on purpose. When I think of on purpose, I say ‘Oh man! How can I not worship God!’ Because He loved me that much to give me CP so I can encourage the whole body of the church and non-believers. It actually brings me to tears, and I am very humbled because not everybody gets the gift of realizing that. God gave me this life, to not waste it, but to use it. -Roger Flournoy
Last night Chris Durso spoke about Mary and Martha being upset at Jesus not coming through on his promise of Lazarus not dying. The waiting. The frustration. There are two instances of “If you had been here, my brother would not have died.” Jesus knows on Day One he’s dead. He doesn’t show up until Day Four. There was a lot of “if you had been here,” going on in those three years of frustration. And to my frustration and questioning, and to Mary and Martha, Jesus answered “Did I not tell you that if you believe, you will see the glory of God?” Did I not tell you? You just wait.
“Can you worship the Lord on day three in the waiting, knowing that the promise of day four is coming?” – Chris Durso
I can now say I’ve helped stage manage a show from the audience because even speakers need a little worship time.