I edited all morning – trying to use active verbs instead of “be,” and taking out horrible catchphrases that dominate my writing: “Note the….” “I’ve noted that the….”. I had been counting the number of times I use the word “you” when she called, and taken out the dashes that pepper my prose – a scourge of good writing.
Always the introvert.
Introverts are not shy people; we simply gain our energy from within, rather than externally. As a teenager, I spent hours in the garage, practicing for the next singing competition, learning the words, falling in love with the notes, understanding the composer; or I rode my bike for miles, just me and the wind. I feel closest to God when I connect in silence.
The pandemic gave me a chance to do this again. I enjoy new activities. I tend to the yard, I plant, I walk, I water the flowers, I brush the dogs, I talk on the phone, and I write. I come up to my office at church and am alone there too. Yes, life is not normal, but the past few weeks have been an answer to the prayer of needed respite from an increasingly busy and hectic schedule.
What had I been hiding behind the busy-ness? Was there fear of rejection or self-doubt, irrational uneasiness about the precariousness of my life? Was there a dreaded fear of failure that would eventually be punctuated by homelessness and destitution?
Now, with the schedule wiped clean, the fears have been replaced by a sense of peace and comfort; I keep writing, hope, enjoy the silence, and wait. I realize again that God has always had my back; has always led me down paths I didn’t really want to go only to find that at the end of the journey was a destination far better than anything I had planned for myself.
My answer to my friend on the phone, “I’m happy and content.”
God has been good to me, and through this all, I really am. (another “be” verb)
Prayer: Our hope is not gone, for we hope in you. Help us find peace in today’s stillness. Help us find patience. Help us find mercy. Help us find truth. Open our eyes, O God, that your wonders, often in splendor, may be made present before our wandering and distracted eyes. When we despair or bemoan our current outcast state, help us to understand that Your Word reminds us that our hope, our splendor, is not gone, it exists through you. For our hope is in you, O God above all understanding. We lay our fears of the future at your feet. Amen.
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