Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Swimming to shore....

I probably need therapy....  Treading water, keeping my head above the waves, getting knocked down over and over, always surfacing and surviving, but never making it towards shore.  Lost in the abyss of expectations, giving away pieces of myself to any who demand my time while watching my family slip away.  I have always been a giver, a supporter, sturdy, but the cost is getting too high.  I feel trapped, trapped by obligation.  One person told me that I don't have to help people.  And she is right, I could just look out for myself, but I don't want to end up like that person.  Only looking out for myself, placing my needs above the needs of others.  If I didn't care about people it wouldn't be so hard.  But I do care, deeply......  And so I give, and give, and give till my hand is slapped away.  10 years of living in community, 10 years of giving, 10 years of expectations, of people getting angry at us for being human.  I chose this life, and continue to choose it.  I believe that it is a life worth living, even though it feels so hard on days like today.  I am not perfect, my children are not perfect, my husband is not perfect.....  We will fail you.  This drive for perfection in Christian leadership is stifling.  Everyone else can fall to pieces, but not you..... I look at my children.  Fern is in nothing but a diaper from nap time, pen on her legs and arms, messy hair, dirty face.  Yet as she sits in the sunlight watching her brother play with Lincoln logs I think that there is no one so beautiful as her.  She is completely lovely, griminess and all.  If only we could view ourselves and each other with such grace and compassion.  Am I okay?  Yes, I will be fine.  At this moment it is hard, but I am still treading water, and hopefully soon will begin swimming to shore.

Friday, June 9, 2017


My children are at the age where Sunday school answers are the norm, neat and tidy.  So it should have been unsurprising that when asked for ideas to write about they gave me "Jesus" and "Aslan".

 Oh to have the answers be so simple, so absent of grey.  Sweet child the world does not think as you do and perhaps that is the problem.  We are unable to follow one simple direction.  

Turn.  Just turn.  No formula, no equation, no check list, no shame, no guilt.....  Just simply turn around.  See, taste, follow, pray, seek, find, love, forgive, and share.  

Humanity mucked it up, added to it, and thus removed from it the power of simply trusting.  Trusting that God is good.  Trusting that we don't know all.  Trusting that there is hope.  Trusting that redemption is possible.  Trusting that Love is real.  Trusting that transformation happens,  Trusting that death has been defeated.  Trusting that there is more.  

But we don't trust.  We want to know.  To be demi-gods.  To have all the answers.  Back to the garden we go, day after day, eating the fruit, saying that we want to be like God.  Not understanding that the only way to be like God is not to steal it from him.  To be like God we only need turn, open our arms, and accept a gift that could not be done in our own strength, complete and total forgiveness, through the sacrifice of Jesus.

When Digory was tempted to take the fruit from Aslan's garden the witch promised him all those things, having just eaten it herself.  Not realizing that from then on beautiful things would be bitter to her, and life would loose it color, just as her face had lost its.  Digory choose to not take for himself but rather give of himself, lay down his desires to heal his mother, and honor the agreement he had made with Aslan.  Once his journey was complete Aslan spoke to the longings of his heart and told him of the peril that would have befallen him had he taken.  But freely given, the apple gave life, health, beauty, and a doorway back into Narnia some day.

We like to teach our children many things, one of them being that it is okay to ask for help.  Another being that we will never stop loving them.  That we will hold them accountable.  That we will encourage them to grow.  And that we want to see them become the people that they created to be.
Maybe we should start practicing it ourselves.