Friday, June 18, 2010

In the Middle of a Beautiful Mess

I'm a bit of a mess these days. I mean, a bit more than usual.

If you've read the last few entries, you know from this blog that 2010 has had its hard knocks for me. A little grave illness here, a funeral or two there. It begins to wear on a person.

And that's not all that's going on to put me in this messy state. But that's enough for public consumption.

Suffice to say, it's not the best of times. To trip up some Dickens, it's not the worst of times, either. But it's a time of some messiness.

In my heart, I am a nomad, no matter how long I may stay in one place (so far, Houston is creeping up on a record---this address has already set a record at 6.5 years). I'm never quite settled. For a while, I felt like I was at least on the right track and now even that is fuzzy. Somewhere, I've been derailed.

An abba in the desert once said, "sit in your cell and your cell will teach you everything." So I suspect my current restlessness has some lesson in it. At the very least, I try to practice a "running to" rather than a "running from." During my 20s, I spent a lot of time running from. With the abba's words in mind, I've spent the last decade or more trying to make a point of not running from, but looking out for a reason to run to. The best example is that back in the late 1990s, I was anxious to leave a job I didn't much like, but rather than leave it because I didn't like it I stayed until I had somewhere to go, in that case, grad school.

Still, I feel change in the air. Or maybe just restlessness. Hard to tell, isn't it? I've even had dreams that, after some research (and by "research," I mean I googled "dream dictionary"), seem to suggest that I am contemplating or expecting change. Since my Lutheran congregation is reading through Genesis right now (in our expression of the ELCA's Book of Faith initiative), and at this moment reading the Joseph story, dreaming wants to take on more significance than it might usually have for me.

But I'm no Joseph. Are you? Not that I much care for all of Joseph's interpretations any more than the chief baker did, but some clarity would be nice. And maybe I'll get the chief cupbearer's kind of interpretation . . .

I'm rambling, aren't I?

The point being, here in this public blog, I confess that I'm a bit more of a mess than usual. I'm finding it difficult to make plans. I see doors I wish to go through, but they don't appear open at this time. I try to convince myself that where I'm at isn't all that bad, that I do actually experience forward movement in some portions of my life.

But I feel a mess.

Maybe it's just grief, maybe it's just a tantrum that some things haven't turned out as I wished. So I'll sit in my cell, waiting to learn the lesson this cell has to teach me. God is here, and where God is, there is hope and beauty. I'll try to trust God is trying to tell me something or will lead me somewhere or else will use me to help someone else learn something. (I have to remind myself it's not all about me, which I hate, but there it is.)

As I said, it's not the worst of times. Some actually wonderful things are happening in the middle of this mess. So I'll call it a beautiful mess and hope it ends up more beautiful than messy.

When the time comes to move, my nomad heart will be ready. In the meantime, I'll try to listen to this cell, what lessons it holds.