I could try to blame this 3:30 AM blog post on my newborn baby, but truthfully he’s sleeping soundly next to my husband in his little cutie dock-a-tot and I’m lying awake.
Chances are, if you’re reading this, you didn’t know me in my Beloved Adventurer blog days (don’t go searching for it, that got archived long ago). Maybe you did. It doesn’t really matter all that much except that it’s worth putting out there:
I’ve lived afraid most of my life. And fear made me stop writing almost 6 years ago today.
Life was free, wild, and risky in the old days. This was before my family as I knew it imploded 3 weeks before my wedding and God miraculously restored my Mom, sister, and I one by one.
I didn’t want my Dad, who had deeply wounded me, to read my words, my more vulnerable thoughts. And now that I’m even typing that, I realize that evil won in that way.
Satan wanted me afraid and suffocating.
God will always make you unafraid.
To paint this picture, I woke up at 3:30 AM this morning because I suddenly was terrified that my digital file saving methods were inadequate and what if I lost all my files? Oh and I had to make a list of my sister’s wedding to-do’s.
My files are uploading to a hard drive 1 MB at a time as I write. Behind me is my freshly organized bookshelf of very adult books like child birthing methods, 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, old Bible study workbooks how-to-train-your-toddler books. Just over my screen sits two strollers I seriously need to sell on Craigslist and my three year old’s box of ‘pay-dough’.
I’ve been living really afraid, calling it pragmatism. ‘I’m just being realistic’. And it has driven me into a tight, air constricting straight jacket.
Do you know what this feels like? Some say this is just growing up. You get married, have two kids, a mortgage, start paying people every month to kill the weeds sprouting up in your lawn, meal planning, start wearing clothes and shoes and underwear because they’re comfortable, lean over the sink to analyze the wrinkles forming between your eyebrows or pluck the gray hairs from your head in the preschool parking lot.
Now hear me on this - there’s nothing particularly wrong with said aging/pragmatism, but if I were honest, my soul has sort of settled into these as limits to God’s power in my life. I stopped dreaming or expecting God to do much.
Seven years ago today, I was up at 3:30 AM to the sound of the slow, rhythmic chanting of the mosque below my window in Kampala, Uganda. The white cheese cloth curtains beating against the sides of my patio door frame. Life felt really full of meaning and purpose back then. Because I was ‘living on the edge’.
The thing is - my choices and life commitments, children, marriage, etc. are really not the ‘problem’ here, being a mom hasn’t made me afraid and shriveled up. The things of life really are not our issue in the face of fear.
It’s how our souls interact with a limitless, powerful, wild, beyond our dreams God.
How have you stopped talking to God, trusting Him like you used to? Or maybe you talk and trust to Him today more than you ever have and somewhere deep down in your soul you think this must be the pinnacle of human experience with God? And you’ve limited Him to what your eyes can see?
You read your Bible (or don’t) and if you were really honest, there’s a part of you that says ‘God did that back then, but He doesn’t now’. Or better yet, He moves powerfully in HER life but not mine. That’s what I said to myself after leaving a gathering last year.
And frankly, I’m sick of living this way.
I’m asking God with all the little words my mind and heart can muster to be near to me and show me how He really is the same throughout the ages.
While your station in life will change by the minute. Or maybe you’re in a season that feels never-ending. God is always ready to break through any walls you may have built up around your soul and your life and do things you’d never dream of. I’m asking Him to do that this year. Teach me more. Show me more dusty places in my heart that have gone unnoticed. Show me more of how beautiful and utterly delightful He is.
I am making the choice to stop being so afraid.
P.S. You probably won’t find pretty, curated photos here. You’ll probably find a conglomeration of things I’m reading and into at the moment. Recipes. Playlists. Who knows. I want to keep a record of beautiful things in the world.