Before 30


Monday through Fridays at 8:05 AM you can find me surrounded by all my co-workers in a semi-circle. We gather each morning in the foyer for a quick staff pow-wow. To conclude the 5 - 10 minute pow-wow a quote of inspiration is shared before we go about our day. On Thursdays, my department shares the quote.

"You are never too old to set a new goal or dream a new dream. - C.S. Lewis" I read out to the group and smiled.

This quote immediately reminded me of my 25th birthday when I journaled out new goals and new dreams. Keep reading to find out what those are and for the invitation to help keep me accountable and probably also pray for me while you're at it, cause some of these are pretty challenging. Here we go!

I'm an August baby. August 19th to be exact. I'm just 5 years shy of being 30. So, I did what any other 25 year old does when they realize they are pushing 30, I wrote up my 'What I Want To Do Before Turning 30' list. Check it out:

1. Read 10 books a year 2. Read the entire Bible (from the table of contents to the maps) 3. Grow my baking skills - bread, cakes, etc. 4. Run thirteen point one miles... aka half marathon 5. Have my first child

This may or may not be an impressive list to you but it is to me.



I've always wanted to be an avid reader. I admire those who are. Calvin is. It inspires me. So, I'm on my way! One book down and 9 more to go before my next birthday. I'm half way through book #2. Book #1 was a fun read which included pictures and yoga demonstrations as well as great healthy recipes. (I'm a novice yogi in hopes of developing my practice.)

Here's the tentative list of books I am to read before 26. My list includes autobiographies, insightful books, and challenging books. The list also includes books I've picked up in the past and just never kept reading, for whatever reason. This list is almost scary because I know I'll be challenged in SO. MANY. WAYS. But my husband does always say, "if you aren't challenged, you can't change." And that's what I'm about, changing for the better.

  1. Yoga Girl by Rachel Brathen
  2. Bread and Wine by Shauna Niequist
  3. Wild Flower by Drew Barrymore
  4. Worship Matters by Bob Kauflin
  5. Unashamed by Lecrae
  6. How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie
  7. 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey
  8. For The Love by Jen Hatchmaker
  9. Savor by Shauna Niequist
  10. Seven by Jen Hatchmaker



Now, you may wonder why does the pastor's wife have 'Read the entire Bible' on this list? Hasn't she already done this? Shouldn't she have already done this? The answer to that last question is most likely, yes. But truth be told, I have never ever read the entire Bible, cover to cover. And yes, I've given myself 5 years for the very fact that I am a slow reader. Calvin, my amazing husband, has read the entire Bible various times. His Biblical knowledge is contagious. He is a fan of this particular collection of the Books of The Bible for any reader who wishes to read the Bible from start to finish. I shared this goal with him and he purchased it for me. It has no chapter or verse numbers and it truly feels like you are reading one big story. I am in the book of Genesis. Pray with me that I succeed and don't put it down. I want to tell the author one day, when I finally see Him face to face, of how much I enjoyed His book... every single wordof it.



Grow my baking skills. Pretty self explanatory. This is one of the goals that has been slightly pushed to the back burner until recently. I was home sick from work with a severe cold and watched through an entire season of The Great British Baking Show on PBS (via Netflix) in between doses of medicine and naps. They baked everything from cakes to pastries to dinner rolls to loaves of breads. It was lovely. It was as though the dust over my little baker's heart was blown away and now I've pinned new recipes like crazy, sent Calvin off to buy me baking ingredients and am determined to bake at least once every weekend from here on out. From scratch. If possible. Hopefully.



This past Saturday my yellow lab, Theodore Rex and I ran 5 miles! I think he was just as surprised with the accomplishment as I was. #theultimaterunningbuddy

My dear friend, college roommate, bridesmaid and the sweetest nurse I know, Jamie, will be running a half marathon with me this April! This has been a goal/dream of mine for the longest. I have always enjoyed running. It's not always been easy but it's such a rewarding feeling to see growth and improvement as you train for a race. If you haven't ever consider running, I hope you do one day. It's a sweet escape. I crave it. I need it. And come April 23rd, 2016 I will run 13.1 miles with a sweet friend by my side. (Side note: If you can find someone to cheer you on and come along side you to accomplish a life goal, rejoice in it and don't take advantage of it. It's a powerful thing. Accountability is everything, my friend. Two are better than one.)



If I was handed a box of diapers for every time I got the question, "When are you and Calvin having a baby?" well.. I would have had like 4 boxes this last Sunday at church alone. I should make that a thing. Calvin and I could make our spare room the diaper holding room and collect them until then. Could you imagine? We'd be set! (You moms/dads are probably thinking, 'she has noooo idea'.)

Calvin and I do want children. LOTS OF THEM! Just kidding. Some, not lots. We are waiting, for several reasons. However, by the age of 30 I do hope to hold our first child in my arms. I dream of motherhood. Babies are everywhere at the church now. They are such a miracle and a reminder to me that God's timing is always perfect. So until then, we will do our best to attend the birthday parties, baby showers (probably just me) and love on all the little ones that enter through Christ's Mercy Church as if they were our own. Good practice, huh? Pictured above is one of them. I mean, The Ninja Turtles. ;)

I simply want to make the most of every year I have to live. You should, too!

Try new things. Grow in the hobbies you already enjoy. Challenge yourself.

Get up no matter how many times you've fallen

and remember to LOVE those around you as much as you possibly can along the way.

Thank you for reading. Much appreciated. Now go... 'set a new goal.. dream a new dream.'

Already have a goal you're currently working on? Already dreaming big?

Share it in a comment below and let me cheer you on and believe with you.

            - CRYSTAL -

            - CRYSTAL -


Crystal Williams

Hi, friends! My name is Crystal and I’m a church-planting pastor’s wife. I am wholly a Texas-loving, city girl with the life goal of communicating Jesus to the masses. I do this by writing, speaking, leading worship and mentoring other women. I enjoy time spent with my husband and yellow lab, running, traveling, sipping honey lattes, reading and all things social media.