Lately, I have been sorting through some unmet expectations: Things that didn’t go according to plan (my plan), or weren’t as they seemed (to me). I have, as we all often are, been disappointed over the last several years in various ways – in my career, in love, in where I thought would be now (that is, age 30).
The most basic of human instincts is to avoid pain.
When we feel cold, we put on a jacket. When we feel hungry, we eat. When we’re abused, we run, or fight back to stop it. We’re built to avoid falling down, wired to not step out in front of a moving vehicle, and taught to pursue survival, comfort, and safety.
Lately, I’ve felt God speak to me through the idea of soil.
It’s sort of funny, because I don’t garden. In fact, I’ve never grown a plant, vegetable, fruit, or flower in my life. I grew up on asphalt, mowed grass, and pool water. Far from any farm or vegetable patch (Though I’ve always loved the phrase “vegetable patch,” because it sounds sort of inviting and yummy).
Nonetheless, I believe there is much to learn from nature, and the substances and cycles of nature – even if we’re not well acquainted with them in our daily lives. Jesus used a lot of farming analogies to explain faith and life, and I think we should try to make an effort to understand them. So, soil.
I believe we’re all wired to be storytellers. You may not be great at remembering details. You may not have that cadence and timing that makes an otherwise pretty ordinary event extra dramatic, or funny, or suspenseful. Regardless of all of that, you do tell stories – even if they are only the stories you tell yourself.
These past couple of weeks have been difficult. Two weeks ago, I had a plan. I had finally reached a “life stage” I had been anticipating for about a decade. Now, I’m back to where I started – no plan and no idea of what the future holds [if it’s not clear already, I went through a breakup].
What I found in the midst of feeling like “the bottom fell through” on my hopes and dreams were things I didn’t expect: security, faith, some courage.
When you think of “prayer” what is it exactly that you picture in your mind’s eye?
Do you think of falling on your knees? Hands clasped together? Is prayer out loud? Or is it silent? Is prayer done in a church? Or in the privacy of your home? Do you pray by yourself? Or with others? Is prayer all of the above? Or is it none of the above? Continue reading “What is prayer?”→
I recently returned from a trip to Paris, during which my priorities were shaken up, stirred, and reordered. Still stuffed with French butter, baguette, and chocolat noir, I spent my plane ride home drifting in and out of sleep and melting memories of those things that make Paris Paris: the gray and cream cityscape at dusk, the steep ascent to the hill at Montmartre, the assurance of perfect croissants on every block. I’ve been to the city many times, but this particular trip moved me in such a way that I’ll be processing, remembering, and living in it for weeks and months to come. Continue reading “Cultivating creativity + community in Paris”→