So yesterday’s post sent me spinning, whirling around like the cottonwood white I dodged while on my country road walk.
“Nobody wants to hear from you,” came haunting from old mother-places left long ago.
But when a new voice, the One who calls and your heart hears loud and clear what your ears can’t . . .
It’s time to talk—to walk back through corridors of time and share the harvest of good grown. Sometimes the greatest good comes from what we think is waste. The wastelands of our lives often lead to the greatest blessing, for us and for others.
I think back to this time of year, two years ago, and I can still hear the echo of a friend’s voice . . .
“When are you going to start writing?”
I had a story. My story. But I had never written it down and saved it. I burned it. I had never written anything I saved except academic papers, which were a great place for me to hide my heart and showcase my brain. How can an academic write from a heart she’s too scared to show? Could she bear to be shut down—rejected—one—more—time? An academic paper refused is nothing compared to rejection of heart and soul penned. But my friend’s mouth uttered only the question I already heard asked, and answered, by God.
I would write—now—and I would write because He was calling—wooing as strongly as He possibly could. How could I say no to God? How could I continue to hide under a basket any gift He has given—even if it’s a gift of writing about my basket-case life?
I couldn’t ignore the obvious any longer. I chose to step out. I chose to face my greatest fear. And my first blog piece was born. Care to read or reread? It brings today’s post full-circle . . .
Two years ago, two dear friends sat on backyard terrace and read the hard copy of my first post. And they didn’t run away or sneer or joke or tell me no one cared what I had to say. They encouraged me not just to write, but to write from my heart.
The choked voice, silent for decades, began opening and speaking truth—my truth. True words from a heart full of a wild range of emotion and thought and experience.
True Life with God was born.
The labor and delivery of my first born post was long and painful because I started with raw material. A raw heart, tired and worn and crying and at the end of self—the beginning of discovery, was painted in black and white for all to see. And everything in me felt desperate for fig leaves to hide my nakedness.
“Where are you?”
I heard God beckoning me to come out and come into the light of His love. And, ever so timidly, I did. I came out. I started writing.
Ever feel like God is calling you to something you’re just—too—scared—to even think about, let alone DO? Trust Him. Trust His gentle, loving, pleading call to healing and wholeness. Just a baby step beyond the fig leaf will delight Him. He can work with that!
Today, before I sat down to write, I walked out to our barn. The routine was routine—feed the horses grain, muck the stalls, walk the horses out through the sacrifice pen, open the gate, watch in wonder as horses passed through dead and dusty into green life. Sit in the pasture and marvel.
I thought back on my journey, these past two years, starting where I found myself this morning, but in a quite different place.
Two years ago, I wondered if I’d ever love life again. I wondered if I would ever FEEL alive again. Daily duties overwhelmed. Sadness crushed. Tears flowed. Self-judgment prevailed. But so did God.
God’s promise prevailed. His promise of the rainbow given that—very—day prevailed. Indeed, God gave me an arc of promise, for me and my household that day, in the depths of my despair. He gave me a hope and a future, right then and there in green pasture.
So today, two years later, I took new pictures of a new life—a new walk—a new perspective—all viewed through the lens of a new heart, grown by God.
I saw the muck of life and the boots we wear as we all trod through. The muck smells and it isn’t pretty much of the time but we still have to deal with our waste.
Our waste? Is it really wasted?
The stuff we want to discard and put in the back of our barns, get out of our sight, hide it all from others’ view? Yes, we desperately want to get rid of the muck. But it piles up sometimes, doesn’t it? And others get glimpses, don’t they? And what are we to do with so much piled up muck? And how can we survive being seen?
Don’t waste it! Not one little bit! Let it be transformed into useful life! Let it be turned and churned and transformed into something good—something nutritious—not just for us, but for all hearts and souls who need feeding. Turning and churning, when it leads to life, can be born with grace. And sometimes, if you’re like me, churning and turning leads to screaming and pleading which doesn’t look so graceful at all. No matter. The end result is the same. However God gets us to where we’re going—the harvest is what matters. Life. True life. For us. For others. All for God’s glory in which we all delight.
There is rich and green pasture waiting. Beyond the effort, the muck, the dry and dusty and barren, there is rich and green pasture waiting.
I’m about to embark on a journey through time. Tomorrow, I will begin my story of mothering. But it’s not about mothering children. It’s about mothering mothers. It’s about the whole crazy mix of love and laughter, pain and tears, anger and forgiveness—all wrapped up in gratefulness. It’s about growing up together into more than what we thought we ever could be—because of the love of God poured into, and through, just two willing souls.
Join me on my journey?
And share with me—for all to read—some of your own mothering mother stories?
As a mother, I want to be known by my children as the broken-made-beautiful work of God. Don’t you? I think all mothers long for such a complete embrace.
And here I am today, two years later, about to take another step into the wild unknown. I’m going to Alaska. To learn. To write. And I will start tomorrow. Will you come with me? Help me? Will you step into my past with me and share some of your own wisdom so I can pack it all up and take it with me to Alaska in August?
God only knows where this journey will lead.
Shall we journey together, step-by-step? Even if it takes us to Alaska—and maybe—just maybe—beyond?