Sunday, August 26

small wonders

Dear friend,

I'm starting to discover small wonders, starting to relearn that nothing is small and everything is extraordinary.  This past month has been loud with responsibility, and I get so easily sucked in.  Writing gets pushed further back, further back, until I almost forget about it.  And then I find it again, and I pick up my pen, and I try to remember where to start.

After coming home from Nicaragua, my brain felt busy with questions and memories, beauty and opposite skylines.  Missions has this way of shaking up your thoughts, rearranging your priorities, and challenging your sense of comfort.

You get filled up with love for people and your shoes get dusty and your ideas about what it means to be like Jesus get really messy, in a good way. Then you come home, and your heart is brimming with big things, while your life has remained exactly the same.

So slowly, I am relearning that the small things are okay.  The doing laundry, writing emails, getting my oil changed days are beautiful.  These are honest, good things.  There needs to be seasons of flying and resting, and this is a season of resting.  This is where real faith meets real life- not always in the obviously grand, but in the quiet.  Not always in the storm, or the fire, or the hurricane, but in the stillness afterward.

This week has been a rediscovering of small wonders.  Of belly laughs and hot tea and good friends.  Of chasing fireflies at dusk.  Of warm laundry and writing letters.  Of hiking with my nephew.  Of ending days with dirty, black feet.  Of shutting off the radio and just being.

I am finding a joy in this stillness that I didn't expect.  I am finding a renewed sense of passion- a passion that I pray would be rooted in loving God first. the most. more than anything or anyone else. more than motion. more than my dreams. more than whatever comes next.

I'll leave you with a few of my favorite words from this week:

"When I get honest, I admit I am a bundle of paradoxes. I believe and I doubt, I hope and get discouraged, I love and I hate, I feel bad about feeling good, I feel guilty about not feeling guilty.

To live by grace means to acknowledge my whole life story, the light side and the dark. In admitting my shadow side, I learn who I am and what God's grace means. Grace proclaims the awesome truth that all is gift. All that is good is ours, not by right, but by the sheer bounty of a gracious God.  My deepest awareness of myself is that I am deeply loved by Jesus Christ and I have done nothing to earn or deserve it."
 -Brennan Manning, The Ragamuffin Gospel

"Jesus tells me what I already know, what I don’t want to believe. In order to do anything worthwhile, we must all be crushed into wine, mixed up with each other, enmeshed and entangled and bruised. This was never about me saving anyone; it was about all of us, equally, being redeemed." -D. L. Mayfield

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