I’ve found, at times, it takes more strength to walk away then it does to stay, more will power to be silent than to speak, more energy to not do instead of do.
I’ve found that great fear. That if I had to step away for a time, would I return only to discover how easy it was to be forgotten?
After all, we are by nature a forgetful bunch. Always looking to what’s new and improved. The hope always being in the younger while neglecting the stories of the old. What are we taught? You’re only as good as your last…?
And so the great fear emerges and we step not away. To the detriment of our beings we stay. Even when our spirits cry for the desert places and hidden caves of replenishing we turn a deaf ear. Because to be forgotten by those you loved so dearly and gave so much to would bring a reality too painful for the heart.
And what is that reality? That upon our return from this time away the masses will not be standing with flags and cheers and parades of our return. But one or two or maybe three will be sitting on lawn chairs, heated from the days work, with iced tea in big yellow cups saying, “Sit down! We saved your chair. Let’s share our stories of when you were away and hear the plans of what is to come. We saved your chair for it is fitted for you and we did not forget.”
We give the gifts He’s given us with an open heart and open hands. Remembering that Jesus healed the ten, only one came back and He didn’t chase after the nine.
As I walked by each one they dove or sank back in the water. Heads disappearing in fear.
One by one as I journeyed around the lake they would disappear. It wasn’t as I approached. Wasn’t when I was upon them. These turtle would swim away after I had passed.
What alarmed them so? What triggered their fears to run from the warmth of the sun they basked in?
Then one turtle didn’t dive. It stayed floating with its head above water as I passed by. Seemingly no alarms or worries. What was difference?
Each turtle wouldn’t flee as I came upon them but when my shadow touched them then panic arose. And that one turtle that stayed afloat? It never felt my shadow.
Why would a shadow cause such fear? A shadow holds no bone nor marrow nor flesh. A shadow holds no strength nor life. It is but a shadow. And in this case it was a shadow of what was. What had been. What was passed.
What shadows do we run from? What truth or substance do these shadows hold? They are but shadows of what was and is no longer. They hold not bone nor marrow nor flesh. They hold no strength nor life.
These shadows of our past. Shadows of our pain. Shadows of our thoughts. They pass their way by us. But it takes just a moment, a step, a move within the waters to come away from the darkness of the shadow and back into the warmth of the light.
To the shadows in life they await our response. Will we reside in them? Will we flee in fear? Or will we step back into the light and bask in the warmth of truth and the Son.
I can’t help but feel like an old fart!
I remember the days (that’s a sure sign of aging) when people built relationships by verbally communicating and shared experiences. Like they did stuff together. It’s been on my mind a lot lately. Wondering how much of my thought process is me being a “quality time” person and older or how much of it is conviction as to the true depth of friendships I’ve been nurturing. Of where I can do better.
I’m busy! I’m back in school, I work, I’m married and raising three kids. My days consist of switching gears constantly, juggling multiple calendars and making sure I’m there for those important events with my husband and kids. I have a household to run and home to maintain. I promise you…I’m busy. I have a friend who’s a single mom. Raising two boys, full time job, ministry, household to run and home to maintain. Another friend with a career, ministry, travel. Yet another who’s married, raising kids, getting to soccer and gymnastic practices, ministry, managing a household as well and maintaining a home. Trust me…we’re all busy. Trust me…text is just easier to stay connected. But is it enough?
I’m not talking about when you live far apart or those brief seasons of life going crazy. I’m not talking about the exceptions. I’m asking about when texting has become the rule. When there are rare verbal conversations where you’re in each others space and not behind the safety of a barrier. When there’s little shared experiences. When you’re not really walking through life together. It’s easy to hide through text.
Now that it seems I’ve declared texting a demon from the pit of hell, let me reassure you…I’m not saying that. I’m simply asking a question. If you couldn’t text with that friend, that one you say means so much to you, what would you do? What would happen to the friendship? What changes would be made to preserve the friendship. Or would you make any at all. These are the questions I’ve asked myself lately about my own friendships. The answers have varied along with their emotions.
I know I’m taking a risk in putting this out there. I know some cages are rattled right now and a few frowns have appeared. But take a moment and think about this. Ask those questions. If texting were gone and we care deeply for those friends what would we do.
And why don’t we do that now? Why haven’t I done it.
This morning I shared a picture here that brought me an encouraging response. One I think many would be encouraged by as well. Watch the video and then read Jon’s response.
So what I pulled out of that video and your picture is that God is constantly molding us and it’s not always clear, it’s actually pretty messy most of the time. And like everyone’s faces in the video they were puzzled and confused and were probably thinking “what the heck is this dude doing???” “There’s no way art is going to happen there!” But only the artist knows the final product and boy oh boy is it a beaut when it is finished!
Taking the time is not always wasting time. It’s more about how we use our time that’s of importance. Or rather if we are allowing time to use us. Our great dreams and endeavors remain just that. Great. But wouldn’t the Christian yearn for more than great? Wouldn’t our spirits crave the supernatural? Taking the time to lay our dreams, endeavors and yes, dare I say it, ourselves, gives place for the Holy Spirit to infuse Himself in us and create not what is great but what is the supernatural.