Friday, September 11 from 6:00 - 7:30 p.m. Central Time.
Speaking of welcoming people, please give a shout-out to PAIGE. She was a faithful follower of Tween You and Me when it FIRST BEGAN seven years ago and then she graduated to In Real Life when we started and she is now MARRIED and finishing college. She's one of the Tribelet Elders on the Join the Tribelet anti-bullying website and (drum roll please) this semester she'll be working as MY INTERN! I'm completely -- completely -- jazzed about that because she is awesome.
One of her jobs will be to write a post for you weekly. Whatever the topic is for the week, I'll write one post on it from my point of view and she'll write another from hers. It'll be sort of a cross generational thing. Then YOUR comments will add a third dimension. This is perfect timing as we work out the gaps in The Whole Christian Thing.
So please give PAIGE an In Real Life welcome. I know you're going to love her as much as I do (if that's even possible.)
Speaking of our e-book, here's where we are:
* I've found a person to format it for us and put the book up on Amazon when it's ready
* Melle (the amazing artist who does most of my graphics, such as the celebration cartoon above) will work with us on the cover, for which I hope we can use some of YOUR art and/or photography
* We'll be finished with the gathering of basic information for the book at the end of this month -- which is SOON
* I'll work up an outline and see where our gaps are
* We'll do posts and comments to fill those in
* I'll also help those of you who have taken charge of the Playlist, the Book Shelf and the Gallery to polish those up
As we bring this last topic to a close -- making decisions as Christians -- finding mentors to help us do that -- being mentors to other people -- being consistent in carrying all that out -- I want to address your thoughts about "Permanent Buts."
Just to refresh your memory, when we were discussing turning BUT into AND SO we can find solutions instead of whining about how we CAN'T, AMELIA posed the question: "Aren't some buts permanent?" I really couldn't answer that without more info, so I asked you to give me some examples.
You did. And I get it.
So I'm going to use those examples to help you some more (I hope!) with the "but" situation.
But Kicker #1: If a situation is physically impossible -- as for AMELIA, who wants to be a front row volleyball player BUT she's only 5' 2 1/2" and isn't likely to grow any more -- it's healthy to accept what is. Amelia could enjoy playing a different position -- in fact, she could be killer at it.
But Kicker #2: If a situation absolutely can't be changed NOW -- as for ANA sharing a room with four younger siblings who are a hopelessly unorganized bunch -- plan for the future, because this is only a temporary problem. Ana could dream and draw and make lists for the place of her own she'll have SOMEDAY.
But Kicker #3: If a situation seems overwhelming, -- as for BRITTANY, who wants to do so many things that she can't possibly do them all (I hear THAT, Brittany!) -- break it down into small steps or pieces. Want to take piano, guitar, AND French horn? Start with piano to learn how to read music. Make a plan for adding the others later.
But Kicker #4: If the situation depends on other people who don't seem to want what you want -- as for AMELIA who wants to be popular for her kindness and caring and is instead known for being "cute and adorable" -- remember that you can't change other people; you can only work on yourself. Who do YOU know you are? Go for that, and other people will eventually respect you for being authentic. Keep in mind that you aren't all that you're going to be.
But Kicker #5. If the situation has many layers -- as for ANA who wants friends and is homeschooled, lives out on a farm, and goes to a church that only has one other kid her age -- for heaven sake, PRAY! That's exactly what Ana and her one friend are doing; they chose three families each and are praying for them to join their church.
Here's the thing, ladies:"For nothing will be impossible with God." (Luke 1:37)
Those words were spoken to Mary by the angel who came to tell her that she would bear a child with God as a father. Talk about a BUT situation! She wanted to bear God's son BUT that could mean being shunned or worse by her whole community, jilted by Joseph ... the list of obstacles was virtually endless.
Except God was in it.
If God is on board with what you want -- if you want it because God put that desire, that longing, that yearning into your soul -- there are no buts.
There is only AND. There is only "Let it be with me as you have said."
If you want to post a comment this week (I'll be gone until next Tuesday -- last trip of the summer!), tell us which of those 5 "But Kickers" can help you or has helped you find an AND that gives you peace.
Feel free to help each other out with this one.
Until next week --