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A haze of unknowing…

I entered this month with relief, knowing that few work commitments and less travel meant that I would have more time to think, reflect and choose what I do. I quite expected to have efficiently sorted out many things that have been left unattended for a long time, had space and clarity of mind to make decisions that I have put off for too long and stitched with vigour and inspiration. Wrong again!

Instead, I have struggled through a fog of frustration and weariness that has sapped my energy to work and dulled my thinking. I have procrastinated and pondered in a haze of unknowing, unable to make simple decisions or possess the motivation to simply get on with things.

2016 07p1Back to basics…

I have sought survival techniques and found them in stripping things back to basics, finding sanctuary for my soul in the simplest things…hanging fresh washing out, cutting flowers that grew in my garden despite my lack of care, tidying a cupboard, savouring silent space with a cup of tea, reading books, sleep. I know there is so much to do before work commitments clamour for my attention again and emails arrive pressing me for decisions, but my body and mind have simply blanked it all out, unable to process the complexity of pending tasks. Over the last ten years, I have spent much of my time working away from home and the relief, this month of not having to get up and travel or prepare for workshops has made me wonder what on earth I am doing….

Coming home…

Particularly, I have been struck by comments from Ian Adams in his book “Cave, Refectory, Road” as he talks of “The monastic way of rootedness…” that calls us to find our place of being and to stay there; “engaging with the place we find ourselves…taking time to settle into a place so that we can get out of the way….” He speaks of how ” part of life’s wisdom is learning how to come home” and “not ignoring what is right in front of us”

It’s the simple things…

Through the misty muddle and fug, I have recognized this truth… that it is the simplest actions right here, that are aiding my recovery; things that quite often I have little time to relish and cherish and be grateful for. Yet they seem key to my wellbeing; part of the Creators prescription for the restoration of our weary souls.

It’s so easy to look to somewhere else to provide what we think we need, when all we require is right where we are. So much is right before our eyes, that we simply miss God’s gifts when we are busy. We are blessed with so much, and perhaps over the last few months, I have been getting in the way of it all.

Dwelling in the land…

Is this partly what psalm 37 extols when the psalmist encourages us to “dwell in the land”?
It seems a slow sort of word- “dwell”; one that you want to deliberate, savour, ponder on. I think I have learned yet again that my living needs to be slower; relishing the extraordinary ordinary things that go to make up our everyday special days.

“Do not fret
Trust in the Lord and do good
Dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture
Delight yourself in the Lord…and he will give you the desires of your heart
Commit your way to the Lord…he will make your righteousness shine like the dawn…
Be still before the Lord…and wait patiently for Him…” (words from Psalm 37, NIV)

2016 07p2Treasure at Home

Throughout my ministry, it has felt right to use my creativity to draw others closer to God, wherever that has led me. Maybe the time is coming to “come home”, whatever that might mean or look like. Perhaps when the fog that surrounds me clears, all will become known and I may wonder why I ever felt lost-blinded to the view that is right before me, because my treasure and dwelling place is right here. I’m just waiting for the mist to clear…

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