Sunday, February 28, 2016

Hello Again

It's been a while.

I am sorry.

I think I've been waiting to post anything until I had something worthwhile to post, some sort of explanation or justification or even just a bit of resolution to my recent wanderings.  But I can offer you none of those things.  I'm writing this because I'd rather talk to you than wait.  I miss you.

Ever since I left the ship, I've been experiencing my own little "dark night of the soul."  It's a season of dryness, a feeling of distance from God, that scares the poop out of me whenever I think about it too hard (which is pretty much all the time, because I am never not thinking too hard).  I feel like I'm wandering around in a fog.  People keep asking me how things are going, but I can't even tell if I'm advancing or retreating.

Back when I first considered leaving the ship and coming back home I had this mental picture of myself sitting in a huge tree, blithely sawing away at the very branch I sat on.  I suspected I might be headed for some sort of tumble, but I figured that if God was asking me to fall then he would take care of catching me (or picking up the pieces).  And maybe he is doing that.  I just didn't think it would be so humiliating.  Or hurt so much.

I'm alright.  Really, I am.  I know it sounds terribly dreary, but there have been moments of sweetness and beauty too.  My niece Zoe knows who I am now--I mean really knows me.  We have our own little greeting even.  I say, "Hey Z!" (Z for Zoe) and she says, "Hey A!" (A for Auntie Lala--that's me).  I've had some really great conversations with my brother, my sis-in-law, my parents, my grandpa, uncle, cousins, cherished friends.  Things I could never say on the phone were wrestled out in person, and relationships are better for it.  I have been welcomed into homes, fed, ferried around, cared for, prayed for, included in friend circles and family routines.  I am deeply and profoundly loved.  For reals.

And I'm so, so grateful.

I just wish I could give you all some sort of return for the many ways you've invested in me.

Someday I will.
Or maybe I'll pay it forward.

Love is like a micro-loan.  You give yourself to someone in need, and when they're back on their feet, they do the same for someone else.