Days 6&7: Get Soaked.

Recently it has been raining a lot in Alabama.

April showers bring May showers?? 

In fact the other day there was torrential down pour as I was frantically trying to get to the Montgomery Prayer Breakfast.

I had anxiety about what I was wearing, how I looked, and for alllll my curly headed ladies out there, we all know that when it rains outside, you hair is a hopeless cause.

I rushed through the house, down the interstate in horrible traffic and blinding rain, and found a parking spot.

I had to meet my husband there and I frantically got out of my car.

My rain coat hood wouldn’t go completely over my head , to which I later realized was because my side sling purse was weighing down a side of it.

I grabbed an umbrella and used it for extra strength as I ran down the hill of Dexter Avenue.

Halfway down the hill I went to grab my phone to call my sweet, selfless husband and realized it was in my car.

I was already frantic because I was on the verge of being late, I was in a terrible storm, I was soaking wet, I had NOTHING together…. you know those mornings.

I started running back to my car for my phone so that I could find my husband efficiently, without stress, HA!

As I was running towards my car, I crossed the street in front of a LOT of traffic and my umbrella flipped inside out, my dress blowing in a million directions, and the only thing I could do was talk to myself saying , “Do NOT have a panic attack, you are fine, do not panic, you will NOT have a panic attack today, you are okay, this is rain, those are strangers, if you are late the world will survive, in fact Laura you will survive, do NOT have a panic attack.”

I got my phone, found my husband, and probably gave the large crowd of people blissfully sitting in their morning commute traffic a big laugh.

I still hurried to the breakfast trying to escape the rain that had flooded my day.

I raced through it.

I panicked through it.

I struggle with anxiety a lot of days.

So rain never helps an anxious driver, a person who doesn’t want to be late, a person who doesn’t feel put together.

As I reflected on those moments this morning I laughed because how HILARIOUS did a 5’11, frizzy headed, woman look running through downtown Montgomery talking to herself?? 

But as I reflected the Lord stopped my thoughts and said, “My rain is a symbol of my spirit in your life. Stop running through it, somedays it’s worth getting soaked.”

I imagined standing in that rain.

I imagined getting soaked by the Holy Spirit.

I also saw a picture in my mind of myself standing there, talking myself out of a panic attack best that I could and realized that Jesus was there with me.

When my hair was imperfect, when I was all out of sorts, when anxiety had decided to be a companion, Jesus was there.

Holy Spirit was pouring down.

And even then, I was soaked by His presence.

Even when anxious thoughts suppressed my ability to even have a clear thought,

He was there.

This weekend, rain or shine.

Take a moment to soak these words and let Heaven drench you.

Nehemiah 2:4

And the King granted me what I asked, for the good hand of my God was upon me.”

Happy Wishful Weekend.

Do incredible things.

Day 4 Wishful Doing: Throwback Thursday

Last year there was a day that my husband and I went exploring in a place that was a little extra special to me… and ended up experiencing something pretty magical.

Enjoy this #throwbackthursday

Roughly 13 years ago, I was sitting in my family Suburban with sponge curlers secured tight in my hair, breakfast hot-pocket in hand, and an excitement in me that I’m not sure anyone could understand.

My dad hopped in the drivers seat and said “you ready, moviestar?”

I nodded, almost with so much enthusiasm that I slightly lifted from my seat.

My greatest dream at this point in my 11-year-old-life, was to be an actress.

You see, Big Fish casting producers had traveled through Montgomery searching for 5,000 extras to be in the film that was soon to be shot in our town.

I was one of the chosen “few”.

And Y’all, I just KNEW it was going to be my chance to make it big. 

The scene I was chosen for took place in Millbrook, Alabama.

The Town of Spectre.

Apparently some family in that little farm town allowed the producers to send their crew to build a movie set on their land, or so the story goes.

And that movie set, well at least a few pieces of it, is still standing.

13 years later.IMG_5474

Our beautiful friend, Meredith had recently shot her engagements at this set and I was enamored by its now whimsical mystery and decided to trek my way back to Millbrook.

My sweet Cody Bell had not seen this movie set, so it was only natural for us to make it an exploration of the sorts.

We walked slowly looking intently at all of our surroundings,

marveling at the crooked architecture and barely-standing houses.

It was cloudy and drizzly as we ventured down the one street the holds the “Town of Spectre.”

Noticing movement coming from the little church building, we walked closer to let our eyes adjust…

goats.

Yes, goats.

We took some of our exploring to ourselves when I noticed Cody sitting on an old stump… and I knew he was thinking. 

For anyone who knows Cody, he’s a deep thinker, internal processor, and many other incredible things, but he is one who thinks the best thoughts.

I quickly walked over to him and sat on the stump perfect placed beside him.

I started the conversation (as per usual in all circumstances) and said,

“This place was my dream as a little girl. With life, obviously, I realized Hollywood would not be where I wanted to be, but it was a dream, a big one too. I wonder if there are places in us that are just wasting away in our hearts, with no movement or change.  I wonder if there are desires that we have and haven’t asked the Lord for because they seem too far and out of reach.  This place, especially with the cloudy skies and drizzle, makes me realize how much we don’t pursue because it could somehow disrupt us to go to uncharted or uncomfortable places.”

Cody looked at me with those hazel eyes that always seem to twinkle a little more than anyone else.

“We can’t grow in our lives if are aren’t willing to get uncomfortable. Growth comes in the uncomfortable and it seems to me that nobody is willing to go that place of discomfort. Do you think that there are places you aren’t willing to be uncomfortable to unveil the dream that you desire?”

Y’all,

in case you aren’t aware, we are deep talkers and I’m often emotional, so this conversation wrecked me.

We both word vomited our craziest ideas and dreams as we continued walking through the town.

Hand in hand we talked and talked, walked and walked, unable to really stop ourselves from blurting out our desires.

And then, before I knew it, Cody was just telling Jesus.

Gripping my hand tightly, he just started telling Jesus his honest truths.

Right there, in the middle of this uncharted place, he told Jesus everything.

In the sweetest way, humbly and boldly, asking the Best Friend of our Hearts to befriend our fears with Perfect Love.

I yelled scripture out and we both awkwardly laughed at the strangeness of it, yet the excitement of our realization.

This place of wasted “stuff” showed us the places of our hearts that we are willingly allowing to waste away.

We realized that we can’t throw away our desires even if the desires of our hearts don’t happen tomorrow.

Because really, those little things that give us an extra heart beat may have actually been placed there on purpose by the One who put your heart in it’s rightful spot.

We pulled up to this place that was once so magical, once so brand new and alive with Tim Burton and his Hollywood wizardry-hair, once a place where an 11-year-old girl from Montgomery, Alabama had a piece of her dream come true.

In just 13 years, this place is now desolate, paint chipped, abandoned and left to rot.

Left for people like me and my husband to go explore, play with random wandering goats, and stare up towards the southern spanish moss hanging so effortlessly with its beauty.

In 30 days of wishful doing, we are doing the simple task of asking Jesus what we have allowed to sit and waste away in our heats.

Praying that He would give it the heartbeat it once had to pursue uncharted territory.

Join us in worshipping in the ghost towns of our hearts, to bring them back to life. 

Day 3: Fear not.

A while back I wrote a little snippet of this story, but I feel like maybe this should be shared again.

When I was a little girl, we moved from a small gentleman’s farmhouse to a house in the city.

At that old house on that land, I shared a room with my big sister, Rebecca.

We lived a simple pasture distance from my cousins and maybe a mile down the road from my Grandparents.

Then we moved.

No, not to another town, but to TOWN.

I remember my parents saying,

“In our new house, you’ll get your own room.”

I totally thought that’s what I wanted.

Finally, I don’t have to share.

Well, that first night in our new house, the lights went off.

I heard sirens in the city.

I heard noises that were unfamiliar.

I was alone.

So I grabbed my pillow and went to Becca’s room.

for two years.

Eventually I eased my way out of being afraid to sleep alone, but it took night lights.

It took falling asleep before the rest of the house did.

But one thing I remember was my Dad.

He would tuck me in at night.

He would leave two lights on in the living room to shine into my room, so if I woke up I could see light and not be afraid.

He would say, “If you get scared, just holler out. I’m right down the hall. I’ll hear you and holler back so you’ll know how close I am. Remember, LouLou, Greater is He living within you than He that is in the world.”

That bedroom that I once slept in no longer has sunflowers and dolls, and dance competition medals dangling from every corner.

It’s a grown up guest room.

My mom made it pretty and welcoming for any guest who randomly decides to pop in and stay (which with the Plunketts is a VERY common thing.)

Recently I slept in that room after a surgery and opened my eyes in the middle of the night, only to see that living room light on.

My Dad still does it.

He still leaves the light on.

Maybe it’s habit.

Maybe they actually always wanted it on to begin with.

But it reminded me how close the Father is to my heart.

He leaves the light on.

He created us and knows what is scary.

That light is love, shining into fear with perfection.

No matter how old we get, no matter how scary our lives become, no matter how hard the enemy presses up against us,

That light is always on.

Day 3: Fear not, He is incredibly close to you.