I have been silent here for what feels like forever. There have been a few false starts: halfhearted posts that sit idly in my drafts folder, paragraphs written and rewritten a hundred times, only to be given up on in the end. I did something strange this morning: I turned the radio off for my commute to work. I sit here physically, emotionally, psychologically, and spiritually exhausted. But the truth is, I think underneath all the exhaustion is the bitter fear of silence and stillness. White space intimidates me, and I hasten to fill it.
I have said yes to too many things over the past few weeks, and in the process of the seemingly unending yes, I have said no to my husband, my home, and my health. I had a panic attack recently, and pretty much live in fear of having another one. Last night, my drive home was spent in sniveling tears. I have been packing heavy for too long, allowing each person, each snide social media post, each frustrating situation to take up residence in my heart. I wonder what this is, this stark inability to let things simply roll off my back.
The rain is falling outside my open window, speeding cars humming and splashing as they travel up and down Grant Street, and this is the first silent moment I have had in ages, and what do I want but to turn on the music, check Facebook, browse for something new to occupy. I can only take so much silence, so much stillness, before I begin to get antsy. I start to twiddle my thumbs and shift uncomfortably in my chair, my stomach uneasy, hanging in the balance between craving the quiet and fearing it.
I think, I must be doing something, must be completing something, must be meeting with someone, answering someone’s call. But the phone sits quiet on my desk, and deep down inside, I secretly dread the ring. I dread someone else needing another answer, blaming me for another problem, and I can’t help but take responsibility.
I stare at the wall, painted deep red and scarred from too many nails, and I think of all the things that have been nailed to the deep red walls of my heart. I think about the possibility of being sick from all of this, and how the only sure antidote to sickness is worship. Worship is the only anti-venom when the snake slithers.
We worship by building the kingdom through the passions Creator God infused in our cells before the foundation of the world. We worship by magnifying His light in the things that bring joy to our hearts: the things that give life.
Sometimes its hard to find any semblance of life when the whole world seems stormy gray. I search for the signs, and my mind wanders to the pink tickle of mimosa flowers, the new grass sprouting in our front yard that began as the tiniest of seeds poured out of our hands, and I remember that we are made the same way: to push up through the black layers of earth and respond to the rain with one brave bloom, and another, and another, until all has come alive.
There comes a time when we must reevaluate the yes and the no, a time to return to that which renews after spending so much time in the desert.
Hence this blog.
Linking up with Lisa Jo Baker and a host of other brave and beautiful women for Five Minute Friday.