Happy Thankful Tuesday, people!
Today I have a post over at A Deeper Church. It’s one of those really-hard-to-write posts because I care about what I’m saying so passionately. It’s one of those it-took-three-weeks-to-write-this posts. One of those, I-trashed-3,000-words in-the-process-of-writing-this posts.
Here’s a smidgen of it:
I was sincere as a college student, completely earnest in my love for Jesus, in my plans to graduate and jet off to a life in Africa. I was going to give up everything: the idea of a husband and kids and a three bedroom house, the longing to live near my family, the secret unsaid dreams that I would one day write. Under all of my plans, there was a deep-aching hope that I could make God like me. Somehow, in my spirit, being extraordinary was tied to being loved by a demanding God.
The story goes this way: I sat at the kitchen table in my college apartment, holding the application in my hands, my ticket to a life of fierce Christianity, a life where I’d never regret succeeding at the wrong things and begged God to just let me complete the form. There have been few moments in my life where God has made his physical presence known. But that afternoon, there in my kitchen, God pressed hard on my hand until I released the pen.
I laid it down on the table and wept. I could never complete that form; I could never complete my life plan.
The weeks and months and year that followed were a delicate spiritual retrieval of what was in the depths of me, a repressed longing to write words, to tell stories, to make something beautiful. I finally let go of the missionary plan. In shame, in deep-planted guilt, I went to graduate school.
And so has gone the story of my adult life. Striving and letting go, believing and doubting in the same breath, learning to trust that God might have actually wanted me to put the pen down on that application form, learning to believe that God might have actually given me the love for words because I was called to write them in a small, ordinary life. Learning, perhaps, that my small, ordinary life has been the biggest thing I could have ever done for the God I strived to please.
Read the rest at A Deeper Church?
Forget not all God’s Benefits. This week, I’m not forgetting:
- My husband’s health. He was sick last week and when he’s out of sorts or out of town, I’m reminded of how much all of us depend on his presence and kindness and joy around here. I’m thankful for the reminder.
- 30 hours and one night with friends in sunny Santa Cruz: a beach view from the hotel room, the sound of waves at night and during that one (10 minute!) nap, running into and out of the waves with August, watching August and Brooksie ride the cars ride on the boardwalk, a chocolate covered banana, a date night with our friends and the one and only amazing sister in law, Charlotte, who gave up her college Saturday to stay with our kids.
- Little boys who wake me up in time for this sunrise
- My messy life and my new attempts at organizing it
- August’s thoughts this weekend on the wrongful capturing of sharks and how “God gives fishermen another chance and another chance and another chance to make the right choice, right mom?”
- Clementine oranges, those raisin/rosemary crackers from Trader Joe’s, all existing cheese in the whole world, and cats who don’t run away even when their (unnamed!) owners forget to close the front door.