Feeling At Home In The In-Between
On this 43 day journey into inhabiting my own life, I’ve come across so many forks in the road which always slow me down and invite me to consider my way. Is it this direction? That one? Am I on the straight and narrow or will this lead me astray? So many questions and so very few answers later, I’ve noticed that fear always speaks much louder than wonder. For some reason, wonder isn’t encouraged. It’s like when one wonders, they for sure are not going to go the right way. I’ve been taught for so long not to trust my OWN inclinations and my own voice, so to allow this thing of “wonder” to persist has been it's own thorn, so to speak. If you “WONDER”, for sure you would “WANDER” from the straight and narrow path. But, is that true? Does God always want us to make sure we are “safe” at all times from our own selves? If we WONDER will we WANDER? And what would be so wrong with that?
Maybe all of our ducks would lose their place in line?
For 48 years, every morning of my life has been spent sitting in a perfect chair with my Bible, and my notebook. I’d spend hours devouring the book I loved with all of my heart. I grew in knowledge beyond my years and I had always approached it with excitement and wonder, because that book held so many possibilities for not only mine, but everyone’s life I would come across. Yesterday, someone took my Bible in their hand and exclaimed how old and “used” it was, falling apart at the seams. It created “wonder” in me as he talked about it. I mentioned I had been reading it since I was 14 years old. This little experience brought me to one of those moments where you felt like you were “home”. Even though I wasn’t at home, that conversation took me back YEARS and the very first time I got up early in the morning to make my little sacred space, MINE.
The Words always brought joy to my heart as a little hippie chick trying to find her way in the world. I was searching for peace and love at such a young age and that is where I found it. Jesus Christ became my “Superstar” and though I wasn’t “lost”, I still found that sense of home that I had been searching for. It was my little girl “aha!” moment that has continued with me today. BUT, somewhere in that journey, I was taught not to wander or wonder. I was taught not to approach that Book with such either. It should be approached with ” systematic theology” rather than imagination. If one used their imagination, they certainly would be picked off, the same idea that if one wondered or wandered from the systematic thinking, certainly, it would bite you in the butt. I was told that “sheep were stupid” and as a sheep, I needed to be SO careful lest I lose my way completely.
That didn’t happen, though some might think it did. I love the brain and the thought processes it took, and so I had to decide whether I would lose my way or lose my mind. It was a hard decision but I needed to find that sense of “Home” that I had somehow lost early on by giving up my sense of wonder. So…I wandered away from the ducks in the row mentality to made my way home. It was a long process and I find that gathering speed only held me back. This was a journey that God was taking me on and wanted me to do some “sightseeing” along the way. Special places that I had never seen before, and some that I had missed early on. “SLOW DOWN CHILD”.
Leaving the comfort of my “easy” chair, I set out on my adventure, not sure of where it would take me, but knowing I needed to take it anyway.
What stands in the way of us saying “YES” with intensity and intention to our story, our lives? Sometimes it is most definitely baggage and other times it is people. People with well meaning concerns and beliefs, but nonetheless, often people filled with their own fears and pass them on to you.
I found that when you follow the voice of truth, it will always give you hints and directions along the way. And whenever I would feel a little lost in the unknowing of it all, I always found those in the most interesting of places. And they always encouraged me to keep going.
I love this journey I’m on “out of fear” and into wonder again. There are so many new sights and people along the way that I would have never encountered if I stayed stuck in what I was told was “safe”. As a woman, the message was even more restrictive because as a woman it was taught that I would most CERTAINLY be led astray since my “mother of old” had been so.
As a “good” daughter of Eve, I had to forever remain “her” child and never grow up into my “own.”My lessons from her were poignant: “Wonder… and a snake will bite you in the ass and surely you will WANDER away from not only the Sheep fold, but God as well.” Little did I know there were other sheep “not of that fold.”
I did encounter snakes in the grass along my way, but they never bit me and here’s why: I am a woman of wisdom. Remember all those years of getting up early? Remember the Book I devoured and was falling apart at the seams? Remember my “Superstar”? I had many stones of remembrance along the way. They weren’t stones of stumbling as I had been told. They were Stones of REMEMBRANCE.
I’ve always loved collecting stones and just recently a very good friend mentioned her own “touchstone”. That word stood out to me because of this love for stones, and I am so thankful that HER word meant something for me as well She “lent” it to me for the moment. That still, small voice reminded me “Remember the child-like wonder I instilled within you? Remember the sense of awe and delight you had with ME back then? Remember the excitement when you would get up in the wee hours before the dawn to talk together of what I had in store for you?”
What an adventure! Though I’m on the outside of something created by man, I’m on the inside with that which is not. You can’t hold God within any walls whatsoever. One MAY find God there and many do, but God cannot be contained or held back when one wants to experience life.
I am still on this journey and this “in-between” space is like the day in-between Good Friday and The Resurrection Sunday. There are deaths to die along the way and then you know that Sunday always comes when the truth rises again within your heart and stands right before your eyes. So often, you don’t know for sure WHO that is at first, but the voice of truth never changes. It’s inflections and tone are always the same though it might change appearance coming from the tomb. I don’t know where I will be at the end of it, but I know that once upon a time, a man was called forth from the grave named Lazarus, and people were told to UNWRAP him. In all those little deaths we die along the way , more than one “rising again” happens. This one thing I do know. I will always be where God is.