Welcome to today. 😎
2021 is nearing it’s final moments. I pray that as you reflect on this past year and begin thinking about aspirations for the coming year, we can link arms as we move forward through the exciting and mundane of each week and lend strength and insights to each other. You may read my posts, but believe me when I say I would LOVE to hear YOUR thoughts and experiences as well via the comments section. You can also reach out to me privately too via the Reach Out To Andrea section of the website.
It can be a cool thing to read a blog or book for some encouragement, a good story, laughter, or inspiration; but it’s also nice to feel somewhat connected to the writer.
In that light, allow me pull back the curtain on my life a little – take a peek into Life In Psalm‘s Andrea:
Age: I’d like to say late 40’s-ish (but I’m older than that – ssshhhh😉)
Married: 18.5 years. Not perfect, but who’s marriage is? The success of a marriage is not how little conflict there is, but how those instances are used to learn humility, forgiveness, the value of serving each other, the critical role of prayer, laughter, and growing in our shared faith.
Interesting note: I didn’t get married til I was 36. Always wanted to be married, so waiting for the right guy that long was HARD! One day perhaps I’ll share stories of my years of wrestling with God over that.
Mom: to daughter age 14, son age 16 (wow – that went by quick!). Motherhood has been more of a challenge to my selfish bent than even marriage, I think. To PRAY is to let go of knee-jerk control. To hold my tongue is to let go of over-inflated role-importance. To choose even-toned, Spirit-controlled words is to let go of manipulation meant to relieve my own angst. It’s harder and yet more critical when they’re teenagers! Aaaaack! BUT, I LOVE THEM SO!!
Began Writing: Accidentally. Truly. I did not decide one day to write modern day psalms and publish a book. Back in my single days, I did a lot more journaling, which was more of a dialogue (ok…maybe monologue) with God, expressing to Him what was in my heart and once “out there” on the page, waiting for His voice or direction. I can’t even remember the year or who I was with, but I attended a conference and came away from it with a half-size 3-ring binder with “My Prayer Journal” on the front and sections of writing paper inside, separated by tabbed dividers. Here is where, as I went through painful or exhilarating moments in life, my written processing began to spill out onto the page in shorter phrases, sometimes lyrical, sometimes rhyming, sometimes just perfunctory, desperate lines of emotion. All calling out to or praising the Name of God. Thus began my collection of modern psalms.
Life Experience: Nutshell version: Grew up in Wisconsin. Both parents still married and alive. I have a brother 5.5 years younger, married with an adult son (my nephew). Pre-college: first international trip on my own to visit friends who were missionaries in Panama. College: Moody Bible Institute. Followed by 12 years volunteer urban youth ministry – basically holding down a “real job” in downtown Chicago to support my after-hours life of mentoring and pouring into urban teens on the north side. Earned my masters degree during that time – graduated from that program with distinction (masters degree version of honors). Worked as our church administrator – still a youth leader. Met and married my hubs. Transitioned out of youth ministry to partnering a pioneer effort to launch the Alpha Course – a place where folks curious about Christianity have dinner together, watch a video about some of Christianity’s basics, and chat about their impressions in a non-judgmental atmosphere. Had both babies while still living in Chicago. Moved to the suburbs because the work commute was killer for the hubs. He and I went on a short term trip to Bangladesh – fell in love with the people, and have partnered in the gospel there ever since, even while living here in the States. We simply support what the locals there experience in the move of God’s Spirit in their country. I have also travelled to Nicaragua and Haiti for similar short term discipleship support and teaching there.
As the infomercials say, “But wait! There’s MORE!”
Stay tuned for a peek behind Andrea’s curtain of her life in more recent days!
Blessings to you in the meantime!