This month, I have experienced several "firsts" that I'd love to share with you! It started with seeing Anberlin in concert on the first of March. I've been dying to see them since 2005, and finally did it. I've also flown out to San Diego visit my family for the third time (in the last 5 months) which is so strange to me still, seeing as how this is the first time in my life I've ever been in a place where I had to travel to see them. I have also started to get back into running again, and ran my first marathon on March 17th (the Shamrock Run in Portland), and had an absolute blast. It really has inspired me to sign up for more marathons, and I have already signed up for two so far this summer (the Run For Your Life 5k supporting a local Christian-based pregnancy clinic, as well as the Color Me Rad 5k in Portland). I also got a chance to hang out with the coolest dude I've met yet--Josiah James. If you don't know him, you should. A Cali born and raised (like me) worship musician who has made quite the name for himself, made a pit stop on his west coast tour to our church to do an acoustic show for our youth group last night. Justen and I spent the day with him in Portland drinking coffee at Coava (also the hipest coffee shop I've been to yet) and grabbing insanely awesome burgers at the Portland food carts. If there is anyone else (besides Justen Martian) who is as addicted to coffee and adventures, it's this guy.
Also for the first time ever in my life, I was on the verge of being homeless. Backstory: I moved up here to Washington with a great job already lined up, an apartment picked out, a roommate to move in with, money saved and a church to attend. I had it set to where nothing could go wrong...but little did I know the drastic change of plans God had in store for me. Not only did I lose my job of 3.5 years, I also have gone through 3 different roommates, had to get new breaks for my car when they went out on me while I was driving, I could not find a new job to save my life, as well as went through my entire savings and credit card due to paying for my apartment/bills on my own, which my current roommate decided to not help pay for during these last two months. God was in the midst of (super) testing my faith, and though it was very difficult and painful I powered through the valley and have finally climbed to the top of the mountain. Prayer was generously answered when I found an amazing family from the church to move in with (rent free, praise the Lord), I landed an awesome job teaching kids how to swim and have made too many new friends to count at the church I attend. God has been providing for me in ways I couldn't even imagine were possible. When I thought I was completely alone, broke, and like I wouldn't last...I was carried through the storm by completely having to rely on God's promise to take care of us in our time of need.
New experiences and changes always make for amazing testimonies. Christ has an infallible plan for each of our lives that will lead us to greatness, should we trust fully in Him and perservere through all of life's trials praising his name. He never puts us through anything he knows we cannot handle, and I have learned to Live by Faith, Not by Sight like you would not believe (I knew I got that tattoo for a reason!). This journey experiencing life in the gorgeous northwest has been quite the adventure, and is only just beginning. I would not go back and change a single thing. God is sovereign and faithfull, and trusting him has moved mountains in my life. Why stop now!