Tuesday, June 29, 2010

when peace like a river attends my way; when sorrows like sea billows roll...

(art - mark demsteader)
It is Tuesday. The twenty-ninth of June, two thousand and ten, to be precise. Only a couple of days til my birthday. My uneasiness about my birthday has little to do with age, but everything to do with the feeling I'm not where I wanted to be. In fact, I'm in the same place I was over a year ago... outwardly anyway. Inwardly, everything feels completely different. Last night before I went to sleep, I pulled out this little book I keep under my bed, a sort of journal. I started reading some of the entries from a little over a year ago, and found that I was saying very much the same things that I find myself saying now. Except when I wrote them, it was from a place of wanting. I was talking about a place I wanted to be, in the inner sense. They were words I wanted to believe… words that made sense in my head, but hadn’t been grasped by my heart. After reading it, I was dumbstruck in the middle of my bed unsure of whether to feel despair or absolute excitement.

I’ve pretty much always known what I’ve wanted to do… I am well acquainted with my heart’s desires...with these dreams and goals of mine. I have a vision and I’ve been running for that as long as I can remember. (and i'm not stopping anytime soon.) Somewhere along the way, though, some thief… the villain in my story, if you will, stole my hope. I lost heart. If you lose heart… if you lose your hope... you're heart sick and propelled by fear. And if fear is in the driver seat of your life, oh good grief. It’s a tragedy waiting to happen. It’s a tragedy being written. It spills into everything you say and do and think. It’s crippling and stifling. You become afraid to really enjoy anything. Your heart gets harder and more closed off… Your art and your craft comes from a place of reservation. You become a hoarder… frugal with your friendships, in your emotions, with your money, with your time… full of unrest... filled with anxiety.
It makes you absolutely self-absorbed and sucks the life right out of you.

This is really hard to admit… but here goes:

I’m thankful I haven’t yet reached the goals I’ve set for myself because I've had fear in the driver seat of my life. Who needs another person saying the same thing, singing the same songs of despair, making the same selfish decisions, another person on another carousel of one mistake after another. another person propelled by desperation... another person begging the world to love them for 15 minutes of fame. That isn’t what I was made for.
I’m thankful for the disappointments that have happened in romantic relationships over the last couple of years, because I wouldn’t want to do this life journey with someone while fear dominates my heart. I dont want to love cautiously... always looking over my shoulder and watching the door. I want to love deeply and love well.
I’m thankful for this time at home. I'm not especially happy about the heartache that's taken place within my family. However, I am thankful that it's brought us closer. I'm thankful for the healing that has come out of that.
I'm thankful for this time away from the friends that I miss til I ache, because it's really been an extended season of enlarging the walls of my heart. Even, creating a new one. I’m thankful for a new beginning in which I can enjoy people right where they are, for all that they are… unafraid of the shadows of rejection and abandonment looming ahead.
I’m sorry it took me so long to learn these things.
But this is what it’s all about.
I’m grateful beyond words for the darkest night my soul has encountered. To lose the fear that has dominated too many years of my life and be found by love.
I’m excited about the days ahead.
Not because of some heightened expectation or specific events or because of the promise of outward changes. Not because of anything I can see. There’s just a quiet confidence... there's rest in my heart. there's peace that i can't fathom, let alone explain. an undercurrent of joy that come what may, all is well and all will be well with my soul.



idaretohope said...

i really love your heart.

hope this year brings you all sorts of enlightenment and wonder.


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