I used to think thirty-five was old.

Like really old.

Like you must not even understand anything that is cool or relevant old.

And now I know it’s true. And it’s kind of the best.

I always thought I’d be a young mom.

I made a deal with God; I proposed the timeline. Bry and I met when I was 17. We were married at 22 and planned to enjoy life for a little while, travel for a few summers, and then have our first baby by 30. We started trying for babies when I was 27, Bry was 28.

I gave God three whole years to bring us our first baby. I thought I was being plenty generous.

Turning 30 was hard for me. 31, even harder. Then came 32, 33, 34…

Each birthday that passed was a reminder that we still weren’t parents. That we still hadn’t brought a baby into this house. After trying for more than 8 years, that dream just seemed to be slipping further from our fingers, more each day.

I begged the Father to either bring us a baby or bring us peace. But if I’m honest, I asked in vain.

Because the only real answer in my mind was a baby.

I wanted a baby more than anything else. More than my husband or Jesus at times. I idolized the idea of becoming a mother, believing that I would only be complete, worthy, or whole, and truly living the life I was called to live once someone called me, “Mama.”

But then, one day in my 34th year, it came. Peace entered our home.

No baby, but peace.

I’m a thirty-five year old woman with no babies.

And I have more joy, hope, and peace than I’ve ever had in my life!

Because the Father revealed to me that the purpose of my life is not to be a mother, or a wife, or an educator, or anything else.

My only purpose is to proclaim the incredible, never-ending love of a man who lived thousands of years ago, who is living and active today. To love, serve, and give until He is the only thing people notice about me. To be a reflection of the selfless love of our Savior.

The Word says that Jesus “came to give us everything in abundance, more than we can expect - life in its fullness until we overflow!” (John 10, The Passion Translation.) Is this only for those who have children? Absolutely not! It isn’t just for married people, either. Young or old. Asian or American. Prostitute or priest. Regardless of any category we can think of or how unworthy we feel we are of this love, it’s for every single person!

Jesus’ heart is that we would live life to the fullest, regardless of our circumstances. He wants to bless us beyond our wildest imaginations. He wants to bless us abundantly - He said so Himself!

Recently we decided to take back our house.

To make it ours.

Let me explain.

When we bought our house, we mainly thought of the space we’d need for a family. The schools and parks nearby where our kiddos would grow up, learn, and play. And we’ve held on to these spaces, living in limbo in our spare bedrooms.

For a while, we weren’t sure if, or when, we’d have babies, adopt, foster again…

So we allowed the house to become a time capsule, holding us captive in our indecision.

BUT once the wave of peace washed over us, we were determined to take back our home. To make each room work for us, not against us.

I’m not saying this has been easy. It’s been freeing, but not easy.

Was it easy to throw away the baby clothes our friends had gifted us after praying with us for our miracle? No.

Was it easy to toss out the journals I’d monogrammed with our future babies’ names? Nope.

Or for us to give away the bunk beds that would provide a safe place for our foster children? Well, that one was a little easier - have you ever tried changing the sheets on bunk beds? Ugh!

But still, not easy.

It will take a few months to finish remodeling the bedrooms into a guest room and a music studio, but each time we walk into these rooms we feel so much peace. And joy - expectant joy, thinking of the beautiful things that will be birthed in this home.

Even if it’s just an original song, good things will be born here.

My mom sent me a birthday card this week and on the envelope she wrote, “Happy birthday, baby! You’re 35 - that’s so fun!!”

It caught me off guard. My first thought was, fun?? What’s fun about getting old?!??!

I stood in the kitchen for at least two whole minutes thinking about what she wrote (because I like to use my time wisely), and it brought the tiniest smile to my face.

Thirty-five is fun, huh?

We’ve passed the age where we have to waste one second worrying if something we’re wearing, saying, or doing is cool OR relevant (cause we know the secret - no one cares and nothing we do is cool!) Our bodies function at at least 80% of what they used to and they let us do pretty awesome things. There’s no pressure to go to school anymore, cause if we were gonna get another degree, it would’ve happened by now. We get to read for fun and take dance lessons on YouTube if we want.

Basically, the options are endless.

Here’s to year 35.

This should be fun.

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Guest room as of 1.6.19. More updates to come!