My first instinct when it’s time to be still is to evade the tough stuff, because that’s when the unprocessed pain comes up or when I learn something new about myself. It’s in the quiet moments when I unearth my real life, when the parts I’ve tried to shove down are allowed a bit of daylight. That can be scary, I know. But that’s also when the good comes. That’s when the secret love letters are whispered, when the mysterious beauty of creation, family, of a deep breath and a beautiful meal is truly experienced. That’s when the work really gets done, like sitting down to flesh out what God is saying in the stillness to me, to you.
Getting outside of ourselves is often an exercise in getting in. Into our brains, into our souls. Into our messy hearts that scare the crud out of us. Quieting down forces us to face our stuff. . .
It was definitely not in my script to move my family to Israel so that we could get our daughter Daisy last-ditch-effort cancer treatment. If it were up to me, I would have all my ducks in a row, wouldn’t embrace risk, wouldn’t have any reason to feel too deeply. I would keep life on the surface, keep pain and disruption at bay. I would stay in that middle space of safety, of ease. But to be honest, though that is my inclination, I would probably dry up and blow away. Surface living sounds fun for a bit, but ultimately it isn’t sustainable.
Going to Israel was a gift. It was frightening and stressful and difficult at times, but it was saturated with opportunity. Change is like that. We hate when we don’t know what’s coming; we hate that we can’t control our outcomes. We want all of life to stay the same: comfortable, routine. But, listen, when change comes, we must walk right into it. When we drop our bags and see what’s coming between us and real life, we must be willing to flow and move and grow, to face our fears, to pluck out the pleasures.