A “to-do” list sits a mile high alongside a letter from jury duty that I haven’t even bothered to post. I feel as ancient as a tortoise, and my eyes have begun to garner circles from many sleepless nights. Needless to say I have not a single ounce of energy left to do even the most menial of tasks, as I attempt to make sense of what I call “the raw season.”
This morning I woke up to a tweet from a friend that rocked me, “…Sometimes you drive around the block to let a whole song finish out because its worship and real and it hasn’t happened in a while.”
Truly, it hasn’t happened in a while. It’s been almost six months since the last time I’ve stepped into a church. Six.
The number seems odd, almost like a sacrilegious utterance.
Yet, I know that it is not, I know that God doesn’t love me any less. I believe in his church in his living breathing body, I believe in all that it can be. But lately as I continue to search for home the more disappointed I become. It’s not because of the pastors, its not because of the worship its because of my heart.
I’m a bible college graduate, serving and attending church is in my blood, but after doing it every single day for two years and returning back home has taken its toll on me. Somewhere above the Pacific ocean I lost my heart, somewhere in the atmosphere in the midst of billions of swirling particles between the U.S. and Australia, there my heart lays.
And I don’t know how to retrieve it.
The incessant everyday waves crash in, and I feel myself unanchored yearning for home but unable to truly grasp it. It is as my friend says, sometimes it’s on those drives when a song comes on that you are reminded…
You are reminded that you are in a real raw world; filled with pain, toil, confusion, frustration, messiness…and that you dwell within an earth clay body that is also fragile and that grows tired, that yearns for the creator that breathed it into existence.
I’ve found myself on those drives. When all I can manage is a weak raise of my hand and a single line of lyric, of declaration. I don’t wish to undermine church and the fellowship of fellow believers, but what I mean to say is that in this very fragile hard season its in those drives that I find a small glimpse of church, a small collision with the heavenly.
It’s in those moments that I manage to gain a semblance of strength and pieces of my heart, and its in those moments that God finds me. It’s my threshold like the desert was to Moses. Where God spoke to him through a pathetic briny bush, taking the simple ordinary “nothingness” and transforming it into a holy encounter.
It was in a dirty dingy jail cell that Paul cried out to God, and it was on a cross that Jesus called out to his father; these places were far from church, but they were able to call out to God simply because God met them where they were. And I know that I know that I know, that He in his grace and mercy is willing to meet me in a jeep wrangler on a lonely dirt road and collide with my broken self, giving me the time and space I need until I feel like I can begin again.
This raw season may be far from an oasis of flowing water, but it isn’t too far from the living God, whom time and time again has proven to dwell in the messiest, dirtiest places. After all he breathed us out of the dust.
Friend, take heart and know that while you continue to search for home, He’ll meet you in a jeep, on the bathroom floor, in the middle of broken dream, on a mountaintop, in a valley… He is not far gone friend.
All my love,