I'm Andrea Howe, and I endorse this message:
I'm lucky enough to know Rachel in real life, and not just in blog circles real life, but like, she really is a friend in real life (there I go getting all SoCal on you again with the "Like" word, sorry). Rachel is sassy, she is funny, and her personality is larger than life, as is her love of all things vintage, and of course Mary Poppins. Duh. Hence the No. 17 Cherry Tree Lane reference. Rachel writes from the heart and I love her for that, and to prove that, here is one of her beautifully written posts that truly hits home for me.
That's much more my style.
Last evening we joined friends for dinner and while we were waiting for them to box up our leftover fajitas and for the husbands to pay the bill, a revealing conversation began (isn't that when all great conversations start? Just when you have 3 restless children, needing to go to bed and a waiter waiting for you to leave your table). How it came up, I have no idea, but within 3 minutes, both my friend and I were sharing how we longed to leave Southern California. Not in the "I hate So Cal" kind of way, but more of the "general discontent with the lifestyle" variety.
We played verbal tennis, shooting reasons back and forth about why we would want to leave. There were plenty of reasons shared and enough realistic to solicit a move. We both agreed that moving would be the easiest part.
All through the conversation, the phrase, "Bloom Where You Are Planted" kept creeping through my mind. It was quite annoying, to tell you the truth. Besides being kinda kitschy, it's never something I say or share with others. It's not a cliche statement I email often, so why was it there? The more I thought about it, the more I realized it's purpose. I totally got it-in fact, for the first time last evening, I embraced it.
I have been placed in California. Southern California.
God has selected this to be our home for the time being and while I tend to think I know best, intuitively I know that the Lord doesn't make mistakes.
He has us embedded in this community, on this street and in this house.
He has us mingling with our neighbors, attending our church and spending time with the dear friends we have made here.
We live here for a purpose and this purpose won't and shouldn't be wasted because it's for a divine reason.
Believing that God has a reason for what He does, I can only assume that there is a reason we are here and here is where we will remain until HE gives us a reason to leave. Not until I find one.
Otherwise, imagine all of the wonderful opportunities I would be wasting. Imagine the friendships I would be saying goodbye to and the home we would be driving away from.
Yes, Southern California might not be my very favorite place in the world.
But my LIFE in Southern California is special to me. My friends, family, church, home, community.
They are mine.
And I will Bloom Where I Am Planted.
Enjoying the moments, rather than complaining about the weeds.