Saturday, December 17, 2011

Dear Houston: The Big Leap

Dear Houston,

I've heard it said that the unknown can inspire the greatest of adventures. You're calling out to us in unfamiliar voices; my head is swimming with strangers' words that affirm and shake what I know I couldn't possibly be ready for. My heart sinks and I breathe in deeply at the truth: ready or not, here we come. 

Aaron received a job offer we knew he wouldn't get or take. Isn't it scary when something you know to be absolutely true is quite wrong? I am reminded who is really moving and choosing and changing and giving and taking away in this life. We know so little. Aaron was offered an engineering job in wind energy... a job that will stimulate this adventure seeking heart that I love so. He will travel, leaving me months at a time with just you, Houston. With two and a half days to make a decision, we sought the council of friends and spent nights silently rummaging for the "right" words to process how we could possibly begin to choose what is "right". Discernment. Houston, I don't know what I'll think about you in a few months, but you will forever be remembered as "that time we learned about discernment." Discerning is hard. And I wish we could say we went about this ordeal in the exact way He wanted us to, but I am far from perfect. But He forgives. And not only does He forgive, He is good. And has been reminding me every day since. He teaches us married folk how to trust Him and communicate with each other.. how to let the other know "I respect you enough to go" and "I hear your concerns and want to validate your fears." 

Sometimes when life throws a new one at you, tears will come and words will dump out that you didn't know you knew about in your heart, because they're those dark heavy words that sleep deep down inside and don't come out unless they really have to. Unless they are provoked. In two days, all of my fears rose to the surface, and I couldn't swallow them and bury them again. Houston, i'd be lying if I said you didn't ruffle some feathers. But you're taking a shape of your own; our hearts are connecting the dots and forming maps; we're listing names and neighborhoods and we're hearing that God's faithful people are there, too. It all seems so strange. 

Now, to start things off on the right foot, you should know that although I hope not to, I may be dragging my feet a little. Come June, Aaron and I will be packing up the only life I know here in Raleigh and heading your way. I'm prone to wander, prone to shut off, prone to welcome my friends isolation and the reclusive. But I will fight to keep my eyes on Him; I will let you hold me accountable for practicing the language of gratitude, for seeking out purpose and who He says He is. I'll try my best to let you see me... even in the dark. May He use these letters to draw me in close, to remind me I am not alone, and to show me that we are called to you, this city, to love and learn about, to gain friendships for His glory, to leave our mark. I pray my words will help me call you home and help me to clearly see our purpose with you.



  1. Robert Wicks... Crossing the Desert...

    Appreciation of one's Vulnerabilities...In response to someone who sought his advice, Ranier Maria Rilke wrote Letters to a Young Poet. 

    Only someone who is ready for everything, who excludes nothing, not even the most enigmatical, will live the relation to another as something alive and will himself draw exhaustively from his own existence.
    For if we think of this existence of the individual as a larger or smaller room, it appears evident that most people learn to know only one corner of their room, a place by the window, a strip of floor on which they will walk up and down. Thus they have a certain security. And yet that dangerous insecurity is so much more human which drives the prisoner in Poe's stories to feel out the shapes of their horrible dungeons and not be strangers to the unspeakable terror of their abode.
    We, however, are not prisoners. No traps or snares are set about us, and there is nothing which should intimidate or worry us...We have no reason to mistrust our world, for it is not against us. Has it terrors, they are our terrors, has it abysses, those abysses belong to us; are dangers at hand, we must try to love them.

    We must be willing to use our vulnerabilities as a tool to gain perspective in life. If we do, it will keep us from being pulled into the type of denial that is based on the illusory feeling that change will never challenge us.

    Love you...Dad

  2. Thank you dad :) love you

  3. Mollie, I'd be lying if I said I was thrilled my best friend is leaving me. However, I am excited for you. This is a new adventure. Something we never imagined you would do! You're able to experience a new land and make new friends while entertaining those that miss you with your stories.

    During the past couple of days I've had to repeat to myself over and over again that the Lord withholds no good thing from us. Though it's hard for me to believe, I know it is Truth. I know that He has a plan for you and your wonderful husband and I cannot wait to watch it unfold. Also, I can't wait to visit you.

    So, thanks for being my first friend in college. Thanks for not only telling me what the Lord believes about me, but showing it though your actions. Thanks for going to Pullen Park and watching Beauty and the Beast. Thanks for sitting in Global Village with me as we fantasize about the novels we'd write and how future generations would visit that coffee shop so they could "sit where Mollie and Alli once sat."

    I love you so much, my dear Mollie.

  4. Alli, I love you. Thanks for your sweet words... you have always been an encourager, lover of all things beautiful and nostalgic, a heart that clenches on to childlike faith.. to me and to all the people around you. I will be sad to leave you friend.. but our adventures aren't over ;) I know this is true. AND of course, you'll be visiting and I'll be visiting all the time.. (one trip being your own beautiful wedding that I can't wait to be a part of!) I love you :)

  5. Mollie, I live in the Atascocita area of Houston. We just moved a little over a year ago! What area have you relocated to?

  6. Susan! That is so exciting. I don't know where the Atascocita area is.. but we'll be in north Houston and we're looking at neighborhoods like "Montrose" and "the Heights" if you know of any other areas to look into I'd love to hear your thoughts!

  7. Mollie, I've just stumbled on your blog from the link-up on Amber Haines's blog, and saw that you are packing up life and moving to Houston. I'm about to do the same in three months to join my boyfriend (a first-year medical student) and to teach high school English in the inner city. I've never lived in a place with a population greater than 150,000, so I'm pretty terrified of moving to the big city, not to mention a bit nervous about taking the huge step of putting everything on the line and moving to a new city for our relationship. Eek! But I hope y'all adjust well; I'll be living in Montrose/The Heights/med center/West University, so I'll be keeping an eye out at HEB (that's the supermarket name in Texas) for a cute blonde girl named Mollie! :)

  8. Kelsey!
    WOW! How crazy is this! I have to tell you, it is a HUGE encouragement to me that someone else in planning on moving to Houston in the next few months and is also terrified! I completely understand your anxieties. Hopefully we can be an encouragement to each other throughout the whole process! AND we're actually looking in the montrose/heights areas too! CRAZY I mean we should probably be friends?! Haha. Thanks for commenting here, I'm so happy you did!



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