So… it’s been a while…
And the worst part is I don’t really have a reason. So many times I’ve said to myself, I’ll sit down and write something this evening, or this weekend, or whenever and it just never seems to happen. The intention is there but nothing materialises.
I could blame so many things, time, energy, the fact that my desk has a pile of paperwork I need to sort through and my study is currently a junk room… and all these things have had an effect, it’s true. But mostly I have lacked motivation. I’ve found myself with nothing to say, at least, not that I felt able to express in writing. I have found other ways of expressing myself, but journaling and writing blog posts have required a concentration I have not had for a couple of months.
In all honesty, I let myself get lost in the rush for a few months there. After finishing my MA, I was a bit at a loss with what to do with myself, so I started to fill my time with all sorts of things that packed my hours and left me drained. While some things were stimulating and fulfilling on some levels, deep down my soul was striving and I did not find rest in these things. I kept pushing on and piling on the activity, and I completely overlooked the still, small voice, whispering to me to slow down, take time.
I just looked back to see what word I picked for myself this year, because I had forgotten. And it was such a simple word:
How could I forget? To live my life by this simple rhythm of in, out, in, out. How different could my year have been if I had just slowed down. Not that it has been a bad year – there have been lots of great things – but my enjoyment could have been deeper if I’d allowed myself pauses for breath.
But God is faithful. Even in the rushing around, I knew he was leading me and calling me. Even through all the stress and worry and anxiety, I knew he was holding me and loving me.
He led me to Ukraine, where for two weeks I served and loved a group of orphans, who reminded me of the beauty of simple things. The days were long and hot, but I found a peace there that had been missing from my life for so long. And I heard the whisper again.
I came back with quite a severe case of flu, which forced me to actually rest for a week. (I need to learn to do that for myself, without illness or injury being necessary. Maybe I will learn this lesson one day.) But in that week I reflected on my time in Ukraine and gained a better perspective. One I am trying dearly to hold onto as life’s waves begin to crash around me again.
And though I have faced a few disappointments in the month since I have been back, I am reminded that God is sovereign. While I don’t think that means the things that have happened were his plan, I believe that He will bring good things out of them. I pray for this, and hold onto hope. I have also been learning to hold lightly onto the things I have been given. I have been so blessed in so many ways, that I cannot allow myself to be bitter over the things I have been denied.
This is not what I thought I was going to write tonight, but the words have flowed so I believe this is what has been waiting in my heart to be written. I have more things to say over the coming weeks, so I expect you will be hearing from me again soon.
One final thought I want to leave you with. I sponsor a couple of children through a charity called Compassion, and tonight I realised that I have not written to them for a while. I was looking back over the last letter I received from my little boy in Colombia (I say little, he’s become a teenager without me noticing) and he shared with me a Bible verse which hit me right in the feels. Here it is for you now.