Thursday, April 6, 2017

So they went.

Welcome to my newest project! Tour de Taylors will be (what I hope and pray is) an inspiration to you to follow the calling on your life and well quite frankly to just get over your fears...and as a bonus? An easy and enjoyable way to keep up with all of our adventures as travelers for both leisure and work. Here's my heart and our story behind it...

Before we met, Landon was about to take a travel nursing assignment out of state. I tell him that it's providence for him that he didn't...because who knows where he would be if he had never met me? ;) So when we started dating, we threw the idea around for both of us to go together. Since we are both critical care nurses, we thought why not? But nothing ever really came of it. I didn't feel a peace about it at the time, and I didn't want to force the door open if it was shut.

Fast forward a couple of years... I'm comfortable. We have a cozy house in the country with a tin roof on the back porch that looks out into the woods. I'm in love with it. I'm finally adjusting to country life after growing up in the middle of a town. We both have careers that we work hard at and enjoy. I know my unit at work like the back of my hand. It's my place. I. Get. It. I've worked hard for over two years to get to that point. We have built a pretty incredible (though imperfect) life together. We've somewhat gotten the swing of things.

But God.

Those two words alone can preach. And if I'm being real honest, those two words have defined a lot of the turning points in my life, at both the best and worst of times. Those two words can be scary. But listen, I've learned to not ignore them. And when God starts to stir in your heart that it's time for a new season...well you basically have to listen.

I pray quite often that the Lord would know the Holy Spirit is welcome and desperately needed in my life. I need my heart infused with it and my mind infiltrated with it. Without it, I'm done. I fall back. I need Him! They say to be careful what you pray for. I will raise my hand to that if you're going to pray to be more faithful and obedient. A few weeks ago, we were out of the country on a trip and I was able to really focus my quiet time and talk to God a lot about my hopes and dreams and what's next for us. Something was stirring...I just didn't realize what it was at the time.

Then one day recently I woke up and knew. We were supposed to travel. Keeping with being transparent, my first thought was, "Really, God?" We weren't supposed to go when we wanted to, but now that we're where we are now, is it really the right time for this? Remember how I just told you that I'm comfortable? Ha! Joke's on me. ;) But if I've learned one thing in this evolving season of change, it's this: As servants of Christ, we aren't called to a life of comfort. Easier typed than lived out. I know. But God. I knew I had to act on this calling.

We reached out to our recruiter, the ball got rolling, all the doors were opened...and the Taylors are heading to Birmingham! We are following our dreams to travel nurse...and I have a peace about it this time because I know the Lord is in it. We will be working at a hospital there for a few months and still be working at our hospitals here at home too. It will be a little messy and probably chaotic at times, but we will make it work. We're a team (I don't take that for granted) and that's enough for me to handle whatever may come. What will come after Birmingham? We don't know. We will see in July!Wherever we are, it's my prayer to be dangerous to the kingdom of darkness as God is glorified in our careers as bedside nurses. That's our in small-town Alabama or all the way across the country. And I know everyone's calling is different, but I want to encourage you to follow yours despite whatever may be holding you back.

I would be lying if I said I didn't have to deal with fear and anxiety. In my struggles, I learn a lot from studying the life of Paul. One passage that has always intrigued me is 2 Corinthians 11:24-28. On first glance, it's scary...for me it contains all my "what if" fears. Paul endured a lot of crap (keeping it real) for the sake of Christ...he practically lived in constant danger. He was definitely not comfortable! So right there--in black and white--is the answer to any and all of my concerns a few verses over:
"But he said to me, 'My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect for weakness.' Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong." 2 Corinthians 12:9-10
This lets me know we will be okay. All my fears and anxieties? His power will rest on me in strength. I am not strong on my a follower of Christ, wife, sister, nurse, friend, or any of my roles. But for the sake of Christ? Following your calling has to beat being safe and comfortable any day.

So we will go.

The tagline for Tour de Taylors is an allusion to Genesis 12:4. It's a verse God used to speak to me in a previous season of life, and He is using it again now in a fresh way. The passage is about the call of Abram. To me it's about obedience. (Remember how I prayed to be more obedient? Are you seeing a theme?) Like I said, we don't know what will come after Birmingham. We don't have a five-year plan or much less an itinerary for the next 12 months. We don't know the endgame of all this. God could settle us right down in Killen for the rest of our lives...and if that's where we are supposed to be, then it's where we will be. It will always be home to us. But until He tells us otherwise, we go. We trust. I want to be like Abram. He followed God immediately and didn't question the calling upon his life. Oh to have faith like that!

On January 19, 2016, I wrote these words: Following the Lord must be of our own volition, and I hope when all is said and done, that I can say I went. It might have taken me a while to get to where I am now...but far be it from me to choose comfort over calling. I don't want to miss out on God's best for our family because I'm scared to leave all I've ever known. I might be scared to death at time, but I'm preaching to myself and I'm getting out of my comfort zone.

Welcome to our journey. And I hope you follow us along. :) There are icons in the top right corner to check us out on social media, or you can clicks the links below. You can also subscribe and get posts straight to your inbox by typing your e-mail in the subscription box to the right.

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Tour de Taylors will be a collection of stories and pictures and lessons learned along the way. We have a lot coming up. We have Birmingham soon. In May, we are heading to Europe so I of course can't wait to share with you about exploring Munich, Venice, and Lucerne. More than anything, I want Tour de Taylors to encompass what it means to live life for all its worth and to break out of the snug and secure box you've built for yourself to live in. It's always worth it, my friend.

And we're headed off! ;)

Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ. Colossians 3:23-24

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