It’s hard to believe that we’ve been in our new home for two and a half months. Often I still feel like I’m visiting Clarkston when I drive into my driveway. The fact that we’ve had our first leak, our first dinner guests, our first re-organization of closets, and our first birthday in the house make me know I’m home.
I’ve been absent from the blog much of this year – little time to write due to the demands of job and family and move. I’ve also shied away from writing because, while I want to process the heck out of this move, I also wonder how relevant my own stirrings and musings are to anyone but my own journal and me.
One of the things that God has nudged me about, several times, is the urging to bring others along with us. Traveling with friends is so much more satisfying, orienting, and encouraging than travelling alone. I’m here to update you and to bring you along, should you care to join us.
So, where are we today?
Well, I’d have to let Doug speak for himself, but I do think that we’d both say that this has been one of the most intense seasons of our lives so far.
As for me, I’m struggling with “being Rabbit.” Winnie the Pooh is my all time favorite children’s story series. Perhaps I love the sweet community, or maybe I really enjoy the British take on being a child, but I think I most appreciate the absolute type-castability of Pooh’s neighbors. In my four walls, we have a definite Owl, a total Eeyore, a budding Kanga, and even a Christopher Robin. Unfortunately, I’m the Rabbit around here. Got to work hard and get it right. Can’t play – too much to do. “Why is she cranky?” “Not sure, but she’s too busy to ask.”
There’s really way too much to get right – being a neighbor, step-mothering, career choices, supporting my working-so-hard-too husband, learning a community, plugging in with refugees (with what time?), and staying connected with friends. The Rabbit in me is daunted and wants to put a sign up in the yard that says “no trespassing” until I get my rows tilled and my seeds planted and my seedlings labeled. Sorry, chickie-mama, but this life doesn’t allow for that level of control.
The problem with Rabbit-weaknesses is that most people name them as strengths when they compliment you. Efficiency, care, awareness, and industriousness – these are good things that can be really important in running a home and nurturing family. They are me, and they matter to our life. Right now, though, they feel like they’re causing me fret over a level of order that I have no business trying to attain. Lists, lines, rows, priorities and tasks are dangerous rabbit trails (excuse the horrible pun) that are apt to suck the joy out of this transition for me…and therefore for everyone in my house.
Yesterday morning in my devotions, I stopped short at a verse in John. Jesus said, “He who believes in Me, as the Scripture said, ‘From his inmost being will flow rivers of living water.’” (John 7:38) Rivers flow. They sweep. They swirl. They rush. They meander. They cleanse. They bubble. They refresh. They reflect. They ebb. They flow. They curve. They cut. They nourish. They are alive. Things that are alive cannot be contained, cordoned off, parsed, or neatly organized.
When I stop my Rabbiting, lay down my list, give up today’s fret, and believe Him, the well-defined rows may very well disappear, but they will be replaced with a powerful, nurturing force of Holy Spirit life that will allow for both adventure and order, both calm and chaos. I don’t have to get it right, but I do need to lay it down and just believe.
So, “where am I?” – I’m caught in the tension, and I’m glad He keeps showing up and loving the Rabbit in me enough to ask her to lay down her garden tools and take a walk with Him.