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Hello! I’m Kara–Married to an amazingly faithful and forgiving man, Doug, who is God’s gift to me. Momma to three crazy kiddos: Micah, Andrew and Abby, who keep me on my toes and on my knees. I’m learning daily how to lean on Jesus, live in light of the Gospel, and love the story God has written for my life.
I’m an idealistic Iowa gal married to a nutty Nebraska guy, and God has been weaving our lives together. Our latest adventure has taken us to the beautiful mountains of Colorado, and let’s just say it’s been quite a journey of letting go, holding on, and starting all over again. Most recently, I’ve hung up my homeschooling hat and am starting a new chapter in life returning back to the classroom to teach English as a Second Language. Slowly but surely, I’m learning to trust the Author of my life and realize that His story is bigger and better than the one I would have written myself.
Occasionally I blog at A Velveteen Life at http://karabutte.wordpress.com.
Meet me there?
Or better yet–come out to Colorado for a visit and I’d loved to catch up over a cozy cup of coffee!
What has God taught you about friendship?
Friendship takes work. And sometimes I stink at that. After moving from St. Louis a few years ago, I had to face the harsh reality that I’m not always good at starting friendships because I’m not much of a small talker. While I do try to put the extra effort into the friendships that are near and dear to my heart (although not always close in proximity), I have also learned over the years that sometimes I don’t try hard enough and other times I try too hard. It’s been the hardest for me to let some friendships sizzle and die, knowing that God had other plans for our lives.
These days, I’m trying to be the friend to others that I would want to have myself. When a friend tells me an important date, I will put it on my calendar to (try to) remember to pray and check up. Some of the best friends I have, I’ve met in what felt like a blind date. A mutual friend says, “You two have to meet,” and so we meet up at a park with our kids for a play date or at Starbucks for coffee and it feels all crazy and weird being set up like that, but I’ve come away with some great conversations and life long friends! It’s hard putting yourself out there like that, but God can do some amazing things when we do.
What advice would you give to a young woman just starting college?
I’ve been thinking about this because college is just around the corner for our kids. I would tell young women that while college is an amazing time in life and a time that many meet their future spouse, to really focus on their friendships with other girls first. These are the friends that they could have for life. While I had some great friends in college, I spent lots of times with guys. You don’t get together for a girls’ weekend with your guy friends, though, after college and getting married, so I really regret having invested in those relationships while missing out on what God could have done with a group of college girls in my life.
Rest. Trust. Pray. These days will fly by and no one is doing it right or has all the answers, so just stay connected to Jesus and ask Him to lead and guide you. There are lots of pressures to parent a certain way or have a Pinterest perfect life, but when the day is done, if you have read lots of books, played in the dirt, said you’re sorry, and thanked Jesus for the goldfish and apple juice, you have done just fine. Also, I would tell a new mom to find an older, wiser, been-there-done-that mom to walk alongside for help and encouragement. We really do need each other.
What has God taught you about trusting Him?
“Jesus loves me, this I know….when I am weak, He is strong…”
It really is true. Truly embracing God’s love for me is a matter of trust and faith, and a journey I have been on for quite a long time. God is showing me through His word and through the encouragement of others that He can be trusted. He is also teaching me to embrace my weaknesses because He wants to be strong and prove Himself faithful. It’s no fun to feel weak, but most times God can only work when we are weak because then we are most teachable. I’m still learning. Doug always reminds me, too, that God never abandons His children. I’m married to a man who thrives on change, but I run from it. With all the changes that we have had in life, and many that I have not gracefully embraced, God is gently reminding me again and again that He is faithful and trustworthy. And that He really does love me.
What else would you like to share?
Okay, I’ll open this can of worms. There is no perfect school. We are just coming out of our homeschooling days and seeing what life is like on the other side. While I did wonder for years if there would be life after homeschooling (because I loved it that much), I see the beauty and joys of Christian school and (gasp!) even public school as well. Every school has its pros and cons. God is bigger than our schooling choices and there are reasons and seasons for everything. I am passionate about education. I am passionate about teaching a Christian worldview. But I am most passionate about going where God leads you, and that may be where you didn’t think you’d end up. But God has a reason for everything. I am seeing my children wrestle and wonder through things this world is throwing at them now in their public schools, and it is wild and scary and glorious all at the same time. The biggest thing that God is teaching me is to trust Him and know that He is in control. Not me.