Friday I concluded I was out of my mind/very confused and needed to get a grip on life and reality. If you know me well, this probably won’t come as a surprise. By that afternoon — and I honestly do not know where this came from, or if I thought of it before it came out of my mouth or if it just popped into my head that moment — when I saw Joe Keller in King Hall, I told him I was going on a 3 day sabbatical from life/people.
I’ll be honest, at first I didn’t know if it was such a good idea. I thought I could get to a real bad spot with that much time alone….but I took Friday night, Saturday, Sunday, and this morning to be off the radar, by myself, explore a little, and pray and think. I wish I had done it much sooner. Seriously, it was some of the best 3 days I’ve ever spent.
The rules were as follows: no phone, limited computer access, no friends or family.
I won’t say what I did, but I will tell you what I learned. And since music often expresses my feelings better than I do…I’m going to do it in song form.
1. God will never leave me or forsake me. In Him, my labor is never in vain.
I will not leave you all alone / When striving leads you far from home / And there’s no yeild for what you’ve sown / I will not leave you all alone. — Will Not Take My Love Away, Matt Wertz
2. It was yesterday morning as I was brushing my teeth that I started to think, “How come when I go shopping and can’t spend any money I find all kinds of things I want to buy, and when I go shopping and can spend whatever I want, I don’t find anything?” This is going to sound very, very silly, but it hit me like a ton of bricks, “Because I want what I can’t have.” Then I thought, “Why do I want what I can’t have?” And then it hit me, “Because I’m discontent.” Boom. That’s what has gotten me all twisted and turned around this year, I just was unwilling to see it. Nothing was ever enough for me. I didn’t want to face it. I started piecing together things…and within 10 minutes could trace how this was affecting almost every area of my life. So I thought, “What’s the answer to discontentment?” THANKFULNESS. Ha. Of course. Then I started thinking, “Dang git. Why didn’t I recognize this sooner?” But I was really comforted by this verse, “You shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins” (Matt. 1:21). PTL.
I am giving up on making passes and / I am giving up on half empty glasses and / I am giving up on greener grasses / I am giving up. — Giving Up, Ingrid Michaelson
3. I am a work in progress. Still a lot of work to go. But there’s progress.
Days go by and I’ll grow stronger / It takes time, but I’ll never let go / Days go by and I’ll try harder to make it mine, I know.– Something Special, Colbie Caillat
3. I actually enjoy being alone! This weekend I finally accomplished two goals of mine: I dined at a sit down restaurant alone and went to see a movie alone! It was wonderful! In the past I think I didn’t like being alone because it made me self-conscious. In the past few months I’ve learned to stop being self-conscious when I am tempted to worry about myself. My hope and prayer is that I will be more and more others-conscious — to love people instead of needing them.
“The more I get alone/ The more I see I need to get alone more, more / Cause just when I think that I’m alone / Your Spirit calls out to me / And even silence has a song / Cause that’s when you come / Sing over me
Still, let me be still / Let me be okay / With the quiet in my heart / Still, I want to be still / I’m so quick to move / Instead of listening to you / Shut my mouth / Crush my pride / Give me the tears / Of a broken life / Still. — Still, Watermark
4. God’s grace will always find us, no matter how lost and confused and desperate we become.
Counselor, Comforter, Keeper / Spirit we long to embrace / You offer hope when our hearts have / Hopelessly lost the way / Oh, we’ve hopelessly lost the way – Wonderful Merciful Savior, Selah