Thursday, December 18, 2014

the breathing room :: the music

Today's words are not my own.  They belong to my dear friend and Breathing Room partner, Emily.  You're gonna love her as much as I do...

All my life I've been drawn in by the music.
When I was a child, it came naturally and all I wanted to do was sing John Denver songs in the kitchen while my dad played the guitar.
As a teenager, music was my escape.
As a college student, it became a part of me.

I started out as an artist with big dreams of fame and fortune.
Five years ago when I began playing music full-time my new dream was to pay my bills without a second job.  When people would ask me what my 'Plan B' was if I didn't 'make it' I would respond - I HAVE made it!  I paid all my bills this month and even have a little left over!'

In my career as a singer and songwriter, slowly but surely, I have learned to trust God in a way that I never did before.  I became truly dependent on Him for the first time in my life, and that changed me.  I've learned how to find my breathing room amidst fear and anxiety.
I've learned how to trust without clarity.
I've learned how to find peace even in the unknown.

These are just a few of the big dots in my connect-the-dots story.

Maybe you've experienced the power of music in your story too.
A melody that makes you sing when all you wanna do is cry.
A beat that makes you move when you feel paralyzed by life.
A lyric that says it all when you couldn't find the words.
When Elizabeth and I began talking about our vision for The Breathing Room I kept going back to one word - REFRESH.

Do you remember how good a cold bottle of water tastes in the 95 degree heat of July?
Or the bliss you felt in that eye-watering laugh with your best friends reminiscing about embarrassing moments?
Or that feeling of calm as you embraced a loved one you were reunited with?
Or the freedom of letting yourself be vulnerable enough to say something you've been holding in for too long?
Or maybe you haven't yet...

At {The Breathing Room :: Charlotte} my hope is that you and I will feel refreshed deep down in our spirits and leave with our souls singing a new song.

On January 25 you will hear some songs that are familiar to you, but you will also hear me sing songs that are original.
Songs about my own life experiences that may reflect some of your life experiences too.
Songs that break you apart and then build you back up again.
Songs that could become an anthem of hope and joy.
Songs that give you room to breathe.

As you reflect on Truth and the words Elizabeth will share, I hope we can
breathe in grace and breathe out praise...together.
~ Emily

If you want to hear Emily's sweet voice before January 25 
you can take a listen HERE
It's a little something she wrote with American Idol finalist Janelle Arthur.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

the breathing room :: the message {connect-the-dots}

Did you ever do connect-the-dots pictures as a kid?
Remember how the page was covered with all these seemingly random dots and then as you traced your pencil carefully along them in the proper order an image began to form?

Friday, December 5, 2014

the breathing room :: truth

You will know the truth and the truth will set you free.
Now that's a statement that opens up my lungs to find their breathing room again.  Ever wondered what the truth actually sets you free from?

Monday, December 1, 2014

every move you make

When the hot winds of September blew us out of summer and into a new school year I had a book's worth of words I wanted to share with you.

This past summer contained the same amount of days as every other one I've lived, but the contents of those days was something far greater than any I remember.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

the breathing room :: stories

Last October I reserved this blog space for sharing stories.  In the process I found myself and others beginning to breath strong and deep again.

Sharing our stories gives us breathing room.

On January 25, in a stunningly beautiful dairy barn nestled in the gardens of a 100 year old Victorian homestead Emily and I will show up to share some of our stories with you.  We will speak and sing ours into microphones but other brave souls will tell theirs
on a big screen or
across the dinner table or
in quiet corners.

The Breathing Room will be filled with stories.

There was a time when I wrote the stories of my life in a journal meant for no other eyes than mine.  There was value in writing hidden stories, but over the years I have found greater value in letting others take a peek inside.  Today one of the most valuable uses of my time is in speaking my stories out loud and inviting others to do the same.

This is why I believe stories are so important...

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

an invitation to breathe

Have you ever given a gift that was half wrapped, or maybe not wrapped at all?
Maybe you ran out of wrapping paper and the gift was too big to fit in all those reused bags stashed in your closet.
Have you ever just hidden something behind your back, had the other person close their eyes and then shout - surprise! - as you pass it straight from your hands to theirs?

When I speak or write I like to think I have a gift to offer people.  I spend time tying the words up like a bow around my offering.  I want them to be neatly packaged and beautifully presented.  I want the gift to reflect a certain sentiment.  A sentiment that says - you are important to me and I wanted you to have this.

Sunday night I delivered a half wrapped gift to a room full of some of the most influential women in my life.  I just pulled it out from behind my back and held it in my hands for all to see.
   Here - I want to share this with you.

Monday, October 27, 2014

NEW {day 27} :: renew

Over the past several months I have been inundated with ‘re’ words.  
When I read, when I pray, when I take a shower, when I sit in the preschool pick-up line…
're’ words keep coming to mind and I keep jotting them down and taking them in.

Here’s what I know about ‘re'.
It is a prefix indicating
The return to a previous condition
Repetition of an activity

And if we dig a little deeper we find…
word-forming element meaning "back to the original place; again, anew, once more," also with a sense of "undoing"