Sunday, February 5, 2017

MAYBE IT WASN'T JUST A PHASE

So, I have this new theory.

Here it is.

Maybe childhood obsessions aren't pointless.

Maybe those "phases" kids go through actually mean something. 

I mean, God does have a reason for everything.

He is teaching us and preparing us for our future through every season of our lives.

Even the things that make a child seem weird or strange, may actually be a sign of their calling.

The oddities, the habits, and the quirks could actually represent something very important.

The reason I'm saying this is because I just had a realization that put some key themes of my childhood into perspective.

It's actually pretty funny.

One of the phases I went through as a child was an obsession with The Great Depression.

Yes, the era when America was facing a horrible economic crisis.

A very...well depressing time in our history. 

Why would a child be obsessed with this?

I have no idea.

But I was.

I had to know everything about it. 

I needed to research, learn, and even interview people who lived through it.

I believe the phase started when I read the book, Kit Kittredge: An American Girl. 

Her character lived through this time period and I wanted to be just like her.

Kit was a resourceful, curious girl, with an adventurous spirit.

She knew exactly who she wanted to be when she grew up and she wasn't going to let anything stop her from getting there.

She wanted to be a reporter, a journalist.

Her favorite place was the Cincinnati Register, where she would send in her letters and articles, hoping that one day she would get published.

She was inquisitive and eager to shine a light on the people who were suffering, believing that her voice could help them.

This intrigued me as a young girl.

I was drawn to the way she saw an issue and quickly wrote about it.

When I read her chapter book, I was instantly hooked.

I begged my parents for the Kit Kittredge doll, and circled all of her accessories I dreamed of having someday in the monthly American Girl magazine I received in the mail.

Not to mention, I even did a school project on the Great Depression, where I acted as a photo journalist from the era, explaining in-depth stories behind every photo.

My project ended up winning and I went to the state fair. I took it very seriously.

...Told you I was obsessed.

Anyway, when my birthday came around, of course I hosted a Kit Kittredge themed party.

All of my friends dressed up as assigned characters from the book and together we solved a mystery by gathering several clues.

Then, to my surprise, the gift my parents gave me that year was, in fact, the doll I had been wishing for, along with her very own mini typewriter.

It was a dream.

Then, a few years went by and I grew out of my Great Depression stage.

I guess there comes a point when every girl realizes dolls and history projects aren't "cool" anymore.

So inevitably, Kit went back into her dusty box and onto the shelf in my closet.

As I got older, I never really considered being a writer as a career.

My mom did mention a few times that she originally went to school on a journalism scholarship but then changed her direction.

Also, I knew that my cousin, Diane Sawyer, was and is easily the most influential woman broadcast journalist in the history of the world, paving the way for women writers everywhere.

No big deal. I always knew that.

But none of it ever clicked with me or resonated enough to push me in the direction of journalism.

Writing just came naturally. I loved writing essays in school and still do just for fun.

Finding the research, the facts, and the details that encapsulate the story in the best way, excites me.

Kind of nerdy, I know.

I love asking questions and digging deeper to find out how someone is really feeling.

I long to connect with people and allow them to find freedom in sharing their story, knowing that it could greatly impact someone else's life.

Every story matters.

I'm telling you this because I have now been given the opportunity to do what I love on a whole new scale.

As a copywriting/project management intern at Elevation Church, I have been granted the responsibility of managing some of the stories that are sent in and shared with us.

I get to read about miraculous transformation, or even sometimes meet up with people for coffee and chat with them about their journey with Jesus.

I do this so that my team is able to identify which story would be the most relevant option to use in a video for our church.

Occasionally, I write scripts and post stories on our website.

So essentially, I am doing broadcast journalism.

Little did I know that writing would bring me so much joy.

Not just writing, but journalism.

The other day, I visited the American Girl store at the mall here in Charlotte, North Carolina.

I was walking around the room, having flashbacks of my childhood and then there she was...

Kit.

It was like I was a little girl again, as I raced over to look at all of her new dresses and accessories.

Then, I read her description.

Kit, the aspiring journalist...and it hit me.

I had a full circle moment right there standing in front of the Kit Kittredge display case and realized this is exactly what I wanted all along.

I am living in a dream I always had for myself but didn't even know it.

Maybe I never officially said I wanted to be a writer when I grew up, but it still intrigued me.

I loved it but I just didn't think of it as a career, simply because I didn't fully understand what that meant.

Now, here I am in an incredible church, doing work that I love.

I can honestly look back and see how God prepared me for what I am doing and how my story has unfolded to get to this point.

I could go on listing more signs that have pointed me in this direction along the way.

The point is, I feel very confident that this is exactly where I am supposed to be in this season.

I feel so fulfilled and grateful to be in such an amazing position under the leadership of passionate, hard-working people.

Sometimes, we all just need to look back on our childhood to see the passions we've had all along.

God doesn't make any mistakes and the plan he already made for us in advance has been unfolding since the moment we were conceived.

Every single step along the way has served a purpose.

Our personality, our strengths, our oddities, all come into play in the grand scheme of things.

So don't discredit those childhood obsessions or the quirks that other people possibly considered strange.

Those are the things that make you, you. They've shaped you and guided you without you even knowing it.

Only God has seen it all and you can guarantee that He won't let anything you've learned go to waste if it can be used to further his purpose for your life.

"For you formed my inward parts;  you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them."  (Psalm 139:13-16 ESV)

Here are some questions I asked myself in order to evaluate my journey as a writer and relate my past with my current position. Hopefully they can give you some clarity as well and help you see how God has worked in your life.


What did you love as a child that you still love now?

What passions have consistently existed in your life?

What are your strengths and how do they coincide with your purpose?

How does your personality integrate with your career?

Do you love what you are doing? Is it fulfilling?


I would love for you to comment below with a childhood obsession or phase that makes sense to you now that you are older. You know, something that was strange at the time but now actually relates with your career or lifestyle. Let's make some connections!


Always love,

D A R C Y