Nov 10, 2011

Solitude

Ever since we moved and put the children in school, my world has been turned upside down.  I went from Homeschool Mom/Stay-at-home Mom to....nothing.  Those things are what defined me.  Now I don't know what defines me. I'm still not sure what to do or what to call myself.  Am I this?:



I actually don't mind doing all the household chores.  This is all I wanted to be when I grew up.  I actually take great delight in serving my family.  But that doesn't keep me busy all day long.  And there's the problem....the word BUSY.  I guess I used to be so busy homeschooling and then taking care of my family 24/7 that I became accustomed to having every free minute of time accounted for.  Free time?  What's that?

Another unfortunate thing is, sadly, I had taken too much pride in what I did.  I often failed to see anything good that I was able to do or give was solely because of what God was accomplishing through me instead of actions based on my own merit.  Pride is so ugly and deceptive.  I tried to guard myself against it only to be blind-sided by it when all was stripped away.  Broken.

When we first moved, I filled all this new free time with decorating the house, painting, cleaning, organizing...that way I didn't have to think about the void. I could just stay busy and not have to deal with my heart.  Isn't staying busy the curse of our modern times?  Noise creates superficiality.  I was afraid of solitude and had become very superficial.

Henri J.M. Nouwen says:
“We enter into solitude first of all to meet our Lord and to be with Him and Him alone. Only in the context of grace can we face our sin; only in the place of healing do we dare to show our wounds; only with a single-minded attention to Christ can we give up our clinging fears and face our own true nature. Solitude is a place where Christ remodels us in his own image and frees us from the victimizing compulsions of the world.” 

After coming to the end of myself (again and again and again), I find all I need is Jesus.  I don't have to have a title, a ministry, a high paying job, homeschool, work, or volunteer to make a difference.  The difference starts in my heart.  In letting go of all my self-sufficiency, of all I have to offer.  All I have is my life to give.  Am I willing to be a nobody for Him?  Am I willing to spend my entire day praying if that is what He wants of me?

When I ask Him what He wants me to do now all I hear over and over is, "Be still and know that I am God."  Being still is not my forte.  I never sit for long.  I have to do.  It's part of how He made me.  But right now, the greater lesson is in the solitude.  Quiet time.  I have alot of it now.  I'm getting better at sitting still and waiting for Him and resting in Him....not because I'm trying harder but because I quit trying.  I'm letting go.  I believe that is called 'dying to myself' and dying in any form is always painful, but the beauty that awaits on the other side is priceless.

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