Welcome to Over the Brim: a life filled up and overflowing. I'm Shanda, a mama creatively living and loving in Nashville, TN, sharing bits and pieces along the way.  I love Jesus, truth and beauty, books, coffee, and being intentional with my family. I value vulnerability and togetherness and so, I write here and invite you in. 

{Pursue Presence} Embracing the Season

{Pursue Presence} Embracing the Season

I got married a couple months before I turned 30.  My husband was 34. We'd both been single and living solo adventures long enough to really get used to the freedom that comes with that. We traveled a lot. We lived abroad. (Separately. Pre-relationship.) As we joined our lives to one another, we dreamed of more of that. It's in our DNA to explore cultures and places and people. It's uncomfortable for us to stay in one spot for too long. 

This September we will have been married for 4 years. Pre-marriage, neither of us had stayed in the US for more than a year at a time in over a decade. Now, the last time we left the country was our honeymoon. I can not even begin to put into words how antsy we were getting for a while, but we were feelin' the itch in big ways to get up and go --- somewhere!

Our dating and marriage relationship began as The Lord brought us into a community of believers and said, "root yourselves here." I got pregnant. We bought a house. We had a child. Our time and our finances are not as flexible as they once were. 

"We have to go overseas before Evan turn two," we kept telling each other. Our reasoning was that he would fly free and we needed to take advantage of that, and maybe mostly that it had been too long.

Then the Lord began teaching us about presence and slowness. He reminded us that life is long and full and that we don't have to do EVERYTHING NOW. There are seasons. This one, apparently, is for staying -- even when parts of our insides are screaming "get me out of here!!!" We are quieting those voices. We are pursuing presence and learning the art of staying put.

My personality type lends itself towards wanting to do ALL the things. I want go a lot of places and accomplish a lot of things. I want to know and help a lot of people. I want to make a lot of stuff. A lot of what I want to do, I'm not doing today. For a while, I thought that meant I was "losing myself." That's a lie. I'm finding another part of myself. The staying part. The waiting part. The today-is-beautiful part. The my-life-is-not-just-about-me-and-what-I-want part. It's an important part, and I'm so glad that my community and my son and my home came into my life to help me find it. 

My husband and I will probably live a long life. If nothing crazy happens, we've got LOTS of decades and seasons left to live. It's okay that this season is not about ALL the things. It can be just about one or two of the things. We haven't sold out. We haven't given up our dreams. We just found some other ones to live in for a while.  

We have not lost our sense of adventure. We are living one, right here and right now. 

Thank you, Jesus, for seasons. Help us to pursue presence in the current one and to have eyes to see what it is for and what it is not for. 

There’s an opportune time to do things, a right time for everything on the earth: A right time for birth and another for death, A right time to plant and another to reap, A right time to kill and another to heal, A right time to destroy and another to construct, A right time to cry and another to laugh, A right time to lament and another to cheer, A right time to make love and another to abstain, A right time to embrace and another to part, A right time to search and another to count your losses, A right time to hold on and another to let go, A right time to rip out and another to mend, A right time to shut up and another to speak up, A right time to love and another to hate, A right time to wage war and another to make peace.
— ‭‭Ecclesiastes‬ ‭3:1-8‬ ‭MSG‬‬
ENJOY and CELEBRATE {Pursue Presence}

ENJOY and CELEBRATE {Pursue Presence}

Ear always inclined

Ear always inclined