Although I’d consider myself a runner, months of allowing the demands of motherhood to transform me into a 3-mile-a-day runner have certainly made my more recent long-run Saturdays painful. I’m rusty.
Here I am after a 3-month writing hiatus feeling a little clumsy. I am a bit out of practice in many areas of my life.
Before I started this blog — and really, for much of my life — I had an ongoing conversation. All my thoughts, dreams, revelation, and day-to-day commentary rolled around and around in my head and sometimes I’d catch it coming out of my mouth when no one was there. I’d sermonize to myself on long car trips and, when I was more socially aware, whisper under my breath on runs.
Yes, some of these times I talked to God, but maybe let’s not over-spiritualize something that might have just flat out been strange: I talked to myself. A lot.
Then when I started writing the blog, I realized the dripping thoughts in my mind really just needed an outlet. Not even an audience, but a page.
You see, each of us carries the fingerprint of God in a different way. I seem to see it more clearly in others than I do in myself. Nate comes alive when he plays the guitar. Something about his fingers across the strings makes his heart race. My friend Nicole is an artist, a phenomenal artist. Her art speaks of God and even those who don’t know Him can’t avoid seeing the complexity of beauty in her art. In the same way, Lucy can manipulate her lens against the light to draw out an element of charm or elegance that the naked eye could so easily miss.
Trina came up with the menu for our wedding in an hour. Our caterer loved her suggestions. The prep day for Trina’s annual christmas party felt like a sweatshop. She’s a fabulous cook and can pull together an event in such a way that it looks effortless, but tastes like New York’s finest gourmet. And Gloria has healing hands. She talks to me about nutrition and Jesus while she does cross-fiber massage on my weak spots and I leave every time feeling refreshed spiritually and physically. Her evening prayers for her next-day’s clients carry power.
While I’ve always marveled at these God-given nuances in others, I never imagined I had one of them for myself. Or, more accurately, I expected perfection to be the true “seal” of divine gifts. Since there wasn’t anything I’d perfected (heck, I had a heat stroke — even worse, wet my pants — while trying to win the women’s 4-mile race in our town), I suspected His fingerprint was most evident in what I worked up to be single-hearted devotion to God.
If we were all androids, my theory would hold. But God made beauty … and beauty reflects God. Single-hearted devotion and passion for an earthly-manifested gift are not mutually exclusive.
And as I’ve taken the past few months to pray and ask God “so what?” about my writing … and my reading, I’ve realized that I come alive when I read … and when I write. To steal an over-used analogy in the circles I’m in, Eric Liddell in Chariots of Fire said “I believe God made me for a purpose, but he also made me fast. And when I run I feel His pleasure.”
My years of soliloquies were not just craziness. Some of my most memorable encounters with God involve this little coffee shop 5 miles from my house, my computer and my bible. When I put thoughts together on a page, I feel His pleasure.
Because publishers are not beating down my door (and the expectation I’ve had that perfection is a pre-requisite to exercising a God-given passion has some significant holes), this blog will continue … as my practicum.
I’m going to write 2-3 times a week for as long as I feel so led to practice, in public. If you will so indulge my training wheels (all 15 of you left reading this blog — my mom and Nate’s mom included in that number), I’m going to do the thing that draws me close to Him… a little more often.
And the subject matter? My heart for adoption has only increased. So you’ll probably continue to hear about this crazy dream Nate and I have to raise up more former-orphans. Without disregarding the sanctity of my children’s personal stories, they still are the coolest thing about me right now … so it’s likely you’ll keep hearing about their antics and my fumblings through motherhood.
But I may also delve deeper into this whole experience of finding triumph buried in a pit of what seems like defeat.
And your question: why even write on a blog? Why not just do this privately, between you and God? I don’t know. At a stage in my life when my want for an audience of many has faded, I don’t quite understand why I feel a prompting to continue to publish my diary. I’m just doing the next thing I think He’s put before me.
So, come back if you will! You may read about my latest social blunder or fresh juice concoction … or, on more inspired days, my thoughts of Jesus, adoption and family.
At the risk of sounding desperate :), I welcome comments from here forward. Tell me what you want to read about, what irks you about a particular post or what makes you want to find your own God-given birth-mark, or just say “hi.”
It makes this public privacy a lot more fun!
(By the way, I loved finding out who some of you are. The rest of you who were too bashful to reveal your blog-lurking habits … you haven’t lost your chance! :))
So there you have it. The big announcement. I’m back to writing, maybe just a little more often. And a little less focused.
And I’m pretty psyched about it.