I Cannot Give That Up. {Team Journal}

Our team journal today was written by the DWITW Administrator, Tech/Design Guru, and our beloved sister, Mindy Braun.

A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.
— John 13:34-35

I've always called myself a dreamer. Someone who never stops thinking about what's next and the big ideas I have for my life. I like to be a part of change and want to be involved with anything and everything that is making a difference. I want to say yes to it all and have a fear of missing out or not making as much impact as I could. Let me tell you, it's exhausting. 


A little while ago we released a podcast episode with Kathe Bricker. I had the honor of being a co-host with Jillian in that interview. I will never forget Kathe talking about her "no give": The one thing she can't give up and will always say yes to. 

This week my husband and I are on a work retreat. We run a photography business out of our home, and for the first time we are setting time aside for 2 days to completely, 100% focus on it. No kids. No laundry that needs folded and dinners that need cooked and t-ball practices to get to. We are discussing everything from our personal aspirations to our pricing to who sends the emails. We just spent the last 3 hours talking about the biggest part of it all: our whys. Why do we do what we do? Why do we want to make changes? It didn't just stick with our business - it came home and got personal. Why do we live where we do? Why would we want to move? Why did we join a church plant? Why do we want to serve in this way? Our answer always came back to the same thing. 

To love people. 

That is and should be the beat of our hearts. The Word of God is full of commands and instructions on loving one another. We even just covered this on day six of our Beyond Titus 2 study. 

We are all called to the work of making disciples: the only qualification is loving people and following Jesus.
— DWITW, Beyond Titus 2

The Christian faith is that simple. Love God above all and love others like He does. Sounds so simple, but because of our human, sinful nature, it's not. This retreat is not simple. Sharing our homes is not simple. Speaking with soft, kind words to our disobedient kids is not simple. Loving people who are not you is never easy. But God has given us the Holy Spirit to walk us through it: He is our guide. He will equip us well and perfectly. We can also look to Jesus as a living example, ask for forgiveness when we stumble, and keep on walking this life in His light.

So this week, God is asking me to ask this question: Why am I doing the things I do? What dreams do I have and what are their purposes? I'm tired of being exhausted, feeling like I'm not doing anything well. I've said yes to too many things. So now I'm learning to let go of things, things that are honestly good. God is calling me to focus on Him and carrying out the simplest commandment: love Him, and then love people. I'm refocusing on loving my husband, my kids, my clients, the church and my city. 

Loving people. I cannot give that up. 

Mindy is an Ohio-born-and-raised, small town girl who has grown to love the city of Dayton. Her family resides in East Dayton.  While she's not being mama to her two kids, she and her husband run a photography business out of their home. Mindy has a love for deep friendships, truffle fries, sleeping in, the outdoors, serving the Church, and ice cream after bedtime.