you exist. make it count.

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Ever since I read Amber’s post on being a person @ The Run-A-Muck, I haven’t stopped thinking about it. She speaks of home and God’s art and eating a chicken nugget. And somehow it all fits together. Because that is her gift. That is part of her person.

The Invisible Photographer @ Shutter Sisters was yet another confirmation of the importance of including ourselves in our family photos. Focusing on the arms-length portrait, Kate Inglis leaves out the word ‘self’ because it’s not just about capturing photos of me, but of noting my presence in the midst of a captured day. Well said.

My Dad talks here on being a person as it relates to God: This is not about my wife

Megan @ Velveteen Mind talks about being a person in the blog world as only she can: Will you hit your saturation point before your tipping point?

And Chickadee, in the simple, quiet way that is unique to her, beautifully communicates being a person among her family in An Evening Walk @ A Familiar Path.

These posts all eloquently communicate the importance of being. Of living well, discovering truth, loving deeply and basking in this present moment. Thank you Amber, Kate, Dad, Megan and Chickadee for inspiring me today. If you have a minute, I encourage you to check them out.

on the playroom floor

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This never would have happened in my house growing up. No brothers. And no trucks with teeth. I like to call this one Life With Two Girls and a Boy. Or maybe Monster Polly? Polly on Wheels? Any other ideas? Come on. I could use a good laugh.

tuesdays unwrapped

At the risk of sounding cheesy and sappy and slightly dramatic, I’m going to go ahead and tell you that I think Tuesdays Unwrapped is changing how I live. It has been four weeks since I started the series. Originally I told myself I’ll give it a month.living

After four weeks of reading your posts about everyday moments you are unwrapping, I think I’m hooked. Take, for example, the classic moment we all face nearly everyday: dinner was over and the dishes were screaming my name. The kids ran outside to play, giving me the perfect chance to clean up the kitchen.

But the kids were outside playing. Playing, living, enjoying the moment. The air was warm and the breeze was cool, just like May is supposed to be. So I sat in the rocking chair outside, closed my eyes, and let it all be around me.

What was once a chance to finish the task is now becoming an opportunity to slow down and enter in. Let me assure you, this is not my normal. And the task will eventually have to be done. But because of this focus every Tuesday, I am slowly remembering to remember. To notice, receive and celebrate.

You are essential to that subtle change in me. It is one thing for me to share ways I am living on purpose, but another thing altogether to have you share your messy, lovely and unexpected gifts. I read every post. I laugh, I cry, I eat ice cream.

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Even though I read each post, there may be times when I simply can’t comment on each one as much as I would like to. It turns into Emily being on the computer too much. I’m not sure how much longer I will keep unwrapping Tuesday, but for this week I want to invite you to join me again. You know the rules:

Link up below to the permalink of your Unwrapped post. To find out what yours is, simply click on the title of your post and grab the permalink from the address bar. If you do not use the permalink, your link will be deleted.

Link back here in your post so your peeps will know what it’s all about. Grab the pink button if you feel so inclined.

so I married a youth pastor

I don’t talk much here about The Man’s job because it’s his job and well, you know. That also means I don’t talk much about our church here because church is The Man’s job. But today, I’m talking about both.

Our church values students. I love that there are over 200 of them going on a 10 day service trip in June along with 50 volunteer staff. There was a line of adults who wanted to go on this trip because of how much they love these teenagers. I love that these students serve on Sunday mornings by volunteering in the nursery, making the coffee in between services or running video cameras in big church.

Youth ministry is our job. But I can’t imagine doing anything else, even if it wasn’t.

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Want to know something I do not love? I do not love that every year, we have to say goodbye to a whole bunch of them. See those students there on that stage? They are some (yes, only some) of our seniors who will be graduating in the next few weeks. Leaving, moving on, growing up. Not only do I not love saying goodbye to them, I think I might hate it.

As our kids get a little older, it’s becoming easier for me to slowly ease back into the lives of these students. This class in particular. I can’t really think about them leaving without tearing up.

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So I don’t really think much about them leaving. Not yet. But that is the thing about youth ministry. They always grow up and move on. And then we get a new freshman class to keep for four more years.That’s the only good part.

What a blessing it is to know them. I can’t imagine being the parent of one of these graduates. I’m having a hard enough time sending the twins to kindergarten.

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I know this is entirely unrelated to this post, but scroll down to enter the I Heart Faces photo contest this week. The theme is “your best face photo ever” and you should all enter because it’s so fun!