It came gradually. Like the spring storms in our region, what began as slight awareness became genuine concern. I admit, during the first few days I considered this was all about me giving up coffee. Only I didn’t plan this. I couldn’t stop or defer it either.
My usually reliable creativity began waning. My dwindling reserve of scheduled posts concerned me. And yet strangely, I felt remarkably calm. For years I’ve worked faithfully on my dailies. And for days I sent it all to the recycle bin.
I resisted, desperate to complete my lists of tasks and projects, unwilling to yield a smidgen. I wondered if this could be some mysterious new virus or bacteria. But I had no symptoms of being sick. I was not sad. My thoughts were clear. There was no hint of any crisis du jour or impending doom. I slept well and napped soundly when I felt tired. And yet I felt weary. I soon began to wonder if I was literally going mad.
I fought it every way I know how, resolved to forge onward, determined to regain my pace.
Soon I realized that for months, years actually, I’d practiced systematically slicing fragments of personal time wherever I could to produce more, serving the greater good, thinking I must work harder, do better. I hurried from one task to another, rarely pausing.
It’s not that I felt drained. Still, sparks of joy had become rare, no longer the integral element of my life. And I hadn’t noticed.
Days later, vanquished, I cried out loud, “God, I don’t understand! What am I missing?” Immediately I heard, “You.”
With that I surrendered.
I cleared my schedule, stopped work and began doing only rudimentary activities. It was hard, but I persisted.
For the time being my only assignments are animal and self care and Bible time. Even prayers are more about listening for God. After a few days I realized, I am literally living by faith, hour by hour and not by my strength or determination. This had long been my heart’s desire, but something else always seemed more important. Until now.
And the world kept turning!
This morning as I returned to the cottage, livestock munching alfalfa, the dogs happily running circles around me, I giggled. Then we circled back out to the pastures – for fun! I noticed with delight new bird nests here and there, clover flowering, tulips are opening and brand new lambs in the neighbor’s pasture.
Again I ignored the lure to work. It feels strange, but I’m okay with that today.
I don’t know when this hiatus will end, I didn’t call it, but I’m confident in the One that did.
“And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns.” Philippians 1:6 (NLT)