I don’t think I’m the only one who didn’t realize the emotional toll this year would take. Living in the midst of something beyond our control to fix on our own requires openness and resilience. Living with something bigger than ourselves is eye-opening. Experiencing grief in losing what’s normal and being grateful for the new revelations within it holds a tension all its own. Opposite emotions all at once can feel disorienting.
After 9 months, Covid continues to hang over our heads requiring what can feel like daily adjusting as we try to catch our breaths behind the masks. Deeply rooted racial wounds in our country continue to cry out for the need for awareness, repentance, and healing, not to mention (because I hardly want to) a political season weighty with divisiveness. My soul is tired.
I don't think I’m alone.
Just a little over 24 hours ago I was sitting in the sacred space my spiritual director creates for me. I don’t think I got more than five words out of my mouth before I started crying. “I am emotionally tired”, I said, feeling the depth of my emotional reserves on low. My #7 enneagram energy level isn’t where it usually is and I find that a little disorienting.
She had a few things to say in reassurance and then she simply asked the question, "If Jesus asked you what you want most right now what would you say?" In seconds, I knew. "I just want a silent retreat to feel refreshed and replenished."
I don’t think I’m alone in this.
Over the last 24 hours since meeting with her I’ve prayed and been so grateful for this awareness. I’ve asked Jesus, besides a retreat, what simple every day things would be life giving for me right now? It's amazing what we find in our hearts when we ask and listen. Simple things like, holding a warm mug of tea between my hands just staring out the window. Lighting a candle and putting on beautiful music. Playing a board game with my family. Sleeping in on a Saturday... Each of these things are surprisingly simple. Things I might even take for granted or not have much time for under “normal” circumstances.
So often I'm reminded, the solutions for our soul are often humbly simple but we have to listen for what they're crying for. We find hope when we hear and gain a greater perspective to live with awareness that we're experiencing something more real and true and raw than we saw before. We're experiencing our own limitations. We're experiencing our need for a Savior and to work hand in hand with one another. I'm grateful for what Jesus can do in us in the midst of where we find ourselves in the story of history right now.
I know I’m not alone.
"Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the LORD your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you." Then Moses summoned Joshua and said to him in the sight of all Israel, "Be strong and courageous, for you shall go with this people into the land that the LORD has sworn to their fathers to give them, and you shall put them in possession of it. It is the LORD who goes before you. He will be with you; he will not leave you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed." - Deuteronomy 31:6-8