Archive for November, 2008


I’m picking up the U-Haul truck in five hours.

It’s all a bit surreal. My entire living room is full of tightly packed, overly organized boxes. Twenty-four of them to be exact. I have errands I would like to run this morning, some more important than others, but the only real priority today is to pack up life as I know it into an old U-Haul truck.

Packing is the weirdest phenomenon. I’ve packed up and moved between homes, dorms, and apartments approximately 12 times in the past five or so years. And every time I pack my things in preparation for another transition, however small, I get all nostalgic and sentimental about silly things like an encouraging note a Sunday school teacher wrote me when I was fifteen years old or the teddy bear my first real boyfriend gave me in high school.  I find the shelf with all my old journals, and I usually end up reading most of them from start to finish, smiling at how dramatic I can be about silly details and tearing up as I read through some of the most intimate secrets of my heart being poured out on the tear-stained pages. I look through every old photo of friends and trips and camps, and I just get lost in hour after hour of non-productive packing-induced nostalgia.

And even though every packing transition leaves me right back in the same place of nostalgia and fond memories and unexplainable thoughtfulness, I always get this feeling of desperation when I look at the stack of boxes, ready to be loaded. Taping up the box always feels like I’m closing off the memories. Like I’m shutting out one part of my life completely in favor of another. Like I’ll never again see the essay my 8th grade best friend wrote about the end of our middle school years. Like I’ll never be able to pull out the quote journal I started in high school when I first started reading books outside of my literature class. Like I’ll never be able to sift through my box of college photos and remember the ridiculous fun I had on this trip or at that retreat.

And that is why all twenty-four boxes are currently still open.

I have a hard time closing them. I know. It’s weird. It’s just a box full of books/clothes/kitchenware, and at some point next Friday, I’ll be unpacking everything into a new apartment, putting everything in a new place and having just as many nostalgic moments unpacking as I’ve had packing up this week. And at some point this morning, all twenty-four boxes have to be taped up, stacked and ready for my friends to help me load.  

But for someone who knows what it’s like to have my life turned upside down and inside out by major moves and transitions, it’s the sight of closed boxes that sends that rush of uncertainty and that sends me into waves of grief that everything is changing again.  It’s the look of a closed box that makes me wonder whether or not I’ll be able to create new memories and new joys in the next phase of life. And it’s closing the boxes that always – always – feels like there must be some sort of mistake in my understanding of God’s plan. That His will shouldn’t involve so many question marks and uncertainties.

But the boxes always get closed. The truck always gets loaded. And one day at a time, life in a new place eventually becomes comfortable again. I always make new memories and have plenty of time for revisiting old ones. It’s just a matter of closing the first box, loading up the truck, and then, one moment at a time, recognizing that God’s plan is not uncertain to Him. He has no question marks. And He doesn’t mind closing the boxes on one phase of my life and shaking me up a little to prove that He is still the voice behind me saying, “This is the way. Walk in it.” And that voice is the only thing that gives me courage to close up the first box.

So, we’ll pack the truck in a few hours. And tomorrow afternoon, my dad and I will pull out of Tennessee and start our trip to Colorado. I’m not sure what kind of access I’ll have to the internet for the next few days, but I’ll update as often as possible. Thanks for all the prayers, notes, and phone calls – I so appreciate the sense of community that I find even in leaving.


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I’m leaving to drive to Colorado in three days. Holy cow.

In honor the chaos that is currently surrounding my transition, my annual Thanksgiving Grateful List is centered on the move.

So, in no particular order, I am grateful for:

1. Sketchy U-Haul employees that are going to help me load my car onto the trailer on Saturday. To think of doing that by myself…well, it’s laughable.

2. The chance to watch Christmas Vacation six consecutive times while packing. Everyone needs a little more Clark Griswold in their lives.

3. The fact that Itty Bitty Bake Shop (my FAVORITE ever) is now open on Saturdays so that I can have one last lunch before leaving H-ville.

4. Finals. Because who doesn’t love two or three good ten-page papers due right in the middle of significant family holidays and moving across the country? ::Insert Bitterness::

5. Mozart. I may be leaving my beloved dog in Tennessee, but at least I’m getting some good holiday snuggle in with him this week.

6. Pumpkin Creme Brule. I did not know that this existed until today, but my sister-in-law is making it tomorrow, and I’m considering it a personal going-away-present.

7. John Denver and Willie Nelson. Do you have any idea how hard it is to satisfy Allan’s musical taste? It’s a long drive to Colorado for the two of us to be silent, and I’m just grateful for the only two options he happily rotates between.

8. Gas prices. Down 50% on average just in time for me to have to fill the U-Haul tank for 1500 miles. Seriously, that saves me approximately $6million.

9. Cracker Barrel. Thank God (seriously) for these precious restaurants being on every interstate exit between TN and CO. I’m sure I’ll get my fill (and then some) along the way.

10. My family. There is no one with whom I’d rather spend my last few days here than my family. You will not find a funnier holiday than one with the Lockerman’s. Guaranteed. I’m sad that we’re not doing our annual Lockerman-Brown T-Day Marathon with the extended family (with not one, but TWO meals. Out.Of.Control.), but I can’t imagine anything better than spending tomorrow with my parents, brothers, sister-in-law, and nephew. 

Happy Thanksgiving! Pictures to come.

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There is an element of this whole transition process that is incredibly lonely. 

No one else is moving across the country with me. No parent. No friend. No one. Just me. And even in the midst of saying goodbye to one set of relationships and saying hello to an immediate new set of relationships…at the end of the day, it’s just me. I am the only one who can take this journey. No one else can go with me. No one else can see what I see in this. No one else will feel the tension of transition like I’ll feel it for the next few months.

But it’s a good thing.

I don’t know if you’ve ever felt like this before, but I’m beginning to think the loneliness could be the absolute greatest part of all transition.  The thing about loneliness is that it drives us into relationship. When we are lonely, we crave and desire relationship in a way that we can’t when all of our relational needs are satisfied. It is our great relational motivator.

And there is something about knowing that I am totally alone in the midst of a huge transition that literally drives me back to the only relationship I know to be constant in the midst of change.

There is something about my relationship with the Lord that is so much sweeter in the midst of loneliness. No one else can go with me. No one else will feel the pull of the transition. But the secrets of my loneliness, the joy of anticipating an entirely new life, and the struggle that comes with the both the leaving and the coming…well, it’s just a secret between us these days.  No one else knows the secrets I am sharing with the Lord in this whole process. And I wouldn’t trade those secrets for anything in the world.

The last week or so has pushed me to the climax of the moving transition. Reserving a truck, planning the route, buying packing supplies, telling the girls that I’m leaving, meeting one last time for accountability with my girls… I’m beginning to believe that part of getting better at transition involves learning to feel the struggle of it more immediately. It’s been hard. And lonely. More than I originally anticipated. But in the midst of the chaos, the drive for relationship is strong. And the desperation I feel for it is the only thing that gets me up in the mornings.

Lonely? Yes. Stressful? Incredibly. Uncertain? Definitely.

But not alone. Not independently. Not by myself.

Just me and Him. With all our secrets.

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My nephew is an indian…

Okay, so maybe not. But he does look tan, and I can’t figure out what member of our family that tan could have come from. It was not from his Aunt Jenn. But I just had to post one more picture of him. Please tell me that that triple-chin is the cutest thing you’ve ever seen. What a chunk. hunter

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103…the number of times I’ve written in my prayer journal in the past two years that I miss living in Colorado.

128…the number of times in the past year that I’ve written in my journal asking the Lord for a girls’ ministry job.

42…the number of times I’ve remembered in my prayer journal to ask God to be a greater delight in my life than any place or position.

14…the number of times in my current journal that I’ve surrendered my wildest dreams to the Lord.

I’ve never known of the way God delights in my life like I am learning in this process. I’m moving to the place I love for the position I’ve wanted… with a deeper delight in knowing God than my wildest dreams would once have ever dared to imagine.

In case you haven’t heard, I am moving to Colorado Springs in two weeks. I have taken a position at Woodmen Valley Chapel as a Student Women’s Coordinator.  It would be impossible to write out the entire story in any sort of orderly fashion. But it is likely the most significant faith lesson I have learned since my time there two years ago, and I could not even begin to recount the ways God orchestrated things in my life to open this door at this exact time.

But it started with a trip to Colorado Springs scheduled (not joking) around the premier of High School Musical 3. And it ended with a surprise interview and a hundred connections and a God who will move mountains to get me back to some. 

I’ll be posting more about the move in the next few weeks, but for now…all I can think to write about is the incredible faithfulness of God in my life and the way He is delighting to give me the desires of my heart.  And not just one desire. Both – Colorado and girls’ ministry. And to think that both are coming together at the same time…well, it’s just plain overwhelming.

More to come…

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Significant News #1

I’m an aunt!!!

Robert Hunter Lockerman was born last night, and I could not possibly be more excited…except, of course, if I could actually see him in person. Two weeks until I see him. Until then, this is the only picture I have so far. I’ll post a few more as soon as I see them. 🙂

Mimi (Alice) and Papa (Allan -pronounced paw-paw) Lockerman are beside themselves with joy.


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But my computer is in the shop, so it’s a bit difficult to get enough computer time to write.

I heard a rumor today that my computer might actually be fixed tomorrow.

So I, Jenn Lockerman, do solemnly swear that there will be a significant blog post at some point in the next two days. Significant…because it’s been a week, and we have a lot to catch up on.

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