Sweet Home Santa Barbara

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

5 Days In

I'm 5 days in to this complete social media fast, and here's what I've realized so far:

One // I am blessed with some truly wonderful friends. I can't even remember the last time I simply wrote a blog post, clicked the bright orange "Publish" button, and didn't publicize it in some way, shape or form. 

I honestly didn't expect any one to read Saturday's blog post, and so when those wonderful, dear, loyal-blog-reading friends reached out with their sweet words of encouragement, it just made me feel mighty thankful for such a dear tribe of people to walk through life with. 

Thank you, friends, for constantly chanting "your words matter, Amy." 

Yours' do too. <3

Two // I forgot what it's like to have your phone, just be your phone. You know, solely for communication. Where the only notifications you get are when someone legit wants to say something to you, and they wanted to do so so badly that they took the time to text you. 

Or Snapchat you. {Okay, so I'm not entirely social media free. I mean, does that even count? It's like texting, but with pictures that last .5 seconds. Totally doesn't count.}

Three // When your phone is just your phone, you don't get a whole lot of notifications. 

And you know what I was reminded through that? My identity is secure in Christ, regardless of if my phone is blowing up, or silent as the moment after a bad, confusing joke. 

No matter how many times I hit that home button to see my blank lock screen, I'm still Amy, loved and treasured by Christ. 

It's not "Amy, loved and treasured by Instagram," or "Amy, loved and treasured by Facebook," it's something that is rock solid, and can never, ever change. 

It doesn't depend on my number of followers; it's entirely dependent on Who I'm following. 

Boom clap. 

Four // I genuinely miss it {mainly Instagram}, but not in the way I'd expect. 

It's really not as hard as I thought it would be. I don't miss it the way I would miss sugar or pasta, I don't crave it the way I crave those things {and pretty much all the food}. 

I just enjoy it. I really do love sharing my heart and my world in my little corner of social-media-land. And I look forward to being back, I really do. 

Five // I also have realized how much social media has taken away from my time of blogging, which I want to fix. This "Sweet Home Santa Barbara" blog is what started it all! 

It got me plugged into the blogging world, gave me a glimpse at some women who truly lived for Jesus, and helped me realize that my heart was aching for that. 

It gave me a passion for being a part of a community that shares. That's my favorite thing about the blogging community, we share. 

We share the cool and exciting new trends (hi, my best friend Stitch Fix). We share the life changing events, we share about our jobs, and our families, and our pets. We share what makes our heart beat with passion at a rate a gajillion times faster than it normally does, and we share what breaks it. We share the good times, but we also share the bad. The hard. The "things will never be the same" moments. 

And that passion to share? It's built into me. Right next to the part of me that craves all the food. 

And so, here are a few life updates. 

I've recently become really into trying to figure out how to do my hair. It's something I've always wished I could do, but figured my hair was just destined to always lay plain, and stick straight. 


I've even pulled my sister into this. 

I've been learning completely through YouTube, and these are my favorite channels:


I'm coordinating a wedding this weekend. After going to 6 in the last year, it's about time that I took it up a notch. 

I'm equal parts excited and nervous. Mainly excited, but let's be real. It's my friend Claire's big day, and I want it to go peeerfectly. 

No pressure. 


In less than 2 weeks, PJ and I will be celebrating our one year anniversary by running this half marathon. 

We will probably look something like this. 

It's gonna be great. 


I'm in week 8 of 10 in my second seminary class! This one has been kicking my butt much more than the last one, time-wise. But it's teaching me a lot about sacrificing time for building a dream. 

And the truth is? I don't even know what that dream is. Right now, it's just the dream of following God's path for my life, and I kinda like it that way. 


Enough about me. How are you? 

Saturday, May 16, 2015

One Week

I was sitting in Starbucks, doing homework, when I finally surrendered to something God had been whispering to my heart for weeks. "Put it down," He gently suggested. "Sign out of the account. Delete the app, if you have to. Whatever it takes, put the social media down. Seek Me instead."

Over time, I had noticed it. I had chosen to ignore it, suppress it, deny it, but it was still there. The comparison that was eating away at my joy. The friend who got engaged, the one getting married, the one re-launching her new and improved blog, all of these things that I was not doing. 

And I supported and rejoiced for all of these friends, I did! But there was something else going on in my heart, even if I didn't want to acknowledge it. 

That nasty comparison was not only sucking up my joy, but replacing it with something dangerous: envy

All the ignoring, suppressing, and denying could not change the fact that something ugly was brewing in my heart. Here I was, in quite possibly one of the most blessed seasons of my life, and I was so focused on everything around me that I was missing it. 

I don't want to miss the time of dating the man I've dreamed about for years. I don't want to miss the blessing of pouring my heart and time into studying the Bible through seminary school. I don't want to miss the people and opportunities God puts in from of me every day. I don't want to miss it because I'm too busy scrolling through pictures of other lives and thinking about what mine is not

And so, I'm giving in to the still small voice in my head saying "Put it down, Amy."

I'm giving it a week, maybe longer if needed. 

There is so much beauty in social media, so many ways that I see God glorified. My personal walk with the Lord would not be what it is today without the example and influence of so many godly women I've met through the internet. 

This fast won't last too long, God willing. But long enough to lift it all up as an offering, and say "God, this can't replace You." 

There is something wonderful and crazy about being known and seen, but it can't replace being known and seen by the One who created me. I want to be sure I can hear His voice above all the others. 

And that's where I'm at today. Humbly standing before God and admitting the condition of my heart, while simultaneously dancing and rejoicing at the thought of just how much He can move and heal and restore when we're willing to put things down for more of Him. 

That's what I'm craving, more of Him. Because I know my pictures and posts and tweets are nothing without a heart full of Jesus as the source. 

Happy Saturday, friends! <3