It’s been a little over two months since I’ve stepped foot onto US soil and I’m still transitioning. Every day it’s different and two months in, it’s still hard. I went back to Georgia for a few weeks in January for a final debrief with our squad. Then, I had the pleasure of spending an entire week with my original team from the first four months of the race. Needless to say, it was wonderful, awful, frustrating, hilarious, beautiful and hard. But that’s what life is like living with people. Ups and downs. Ins and outs. We encouraged each other, we called each other higher. We prayed for each other. We binged on a lot movies and ate a lot brownies. What a life. What a family.
So what happens when seasons change and the Lord starts writing the next chapter of your life and… no one you’ve spent the past year with is in it? How do you live life when there isn’t anyone to live it with? Or so it seems.
I’ve entered into the temporary. I’m not here for the long run. But I don’t know how long being here – physically, emotionally, spiritually – looks like. In sharing my updates with friends and family I can only explain it as such: I’ve never known how literally it looks to live life one day at a time until now.
And living life day by day is exactly where my Father is calling me to be. Through much prayer and many wise counselors I’ve received words from him telling me to “Be still. Take rest. Wait.” I’m such a go-getter, doer, here, there, everywhere! And now he’s calling me to stay. Be still. This season is all about me. My own season of inner healing, soul care. I’m good at taking care of others, but myself? That’s a whole other story.
So in working on my own heart and brokenness I have to be pretty intentional. I’d much rather smooth it over by searching out a new friend or chatting it up with an old one. But I don’t think my Father bringing me into a city where I know 3 people was a mistake. He’s not keeping me from community, because it’s something that brings me life. Yet, it’s not a coincidence that he’s taken me away from those I know to be in a place where I just have him.
I think that a little time alone will be good. Remembering to focus on the here and now, not what’s next. Kind of like running. It’s been over a year since I’ve had a structured and disciplined running schedule. And yesterday, Jesus took me out for the first date we’d had in some time. I was waiting, eager for the mile markers I could see ahead of me. But he made me stop to catch my breath on several occasions. When I began to shame myself for not even being able to run a mile without stopping he cut my thoughts off mid-sentence to show me the beauty that surrounded us in that very moment. The lake. The brilliance of the sky at sunset. A sweet moment shared between a father and his child.
My eyes were set on the finish line ahead, not a bad thing, but I had taken my focus off the present, how I was breathing, my pace, the beauty around me and the journey itself. Every runner loves the finish line but it’s the miles behind it that make the race something to be valued.
So I encourage you not to get lost in thinking about tomorrow or next week. But enjoy the today, this moment and this hour. The ones who are around you or next door. Don’t be afraid of the stillness but invite it in. Because amidst rush hour, chaos, conflict and the unknown, the constant presence and eternal promise of our Father remains.