As I’ve been meditating on the Passion Week I’m struck once again at the process of it all. Jesus spends 3 years unveiling Himself to the disciples. He tells them…shows them…lives in front of them this message that He’s not who they think He is, and His way is not what they’re expecting. By the time we get to Gethsemane and Jesus’ offering His unbound hands to the soldier, He is effectively saying, “We’re not walking familiar-to-you-paths anymore. The journey from here walks into a way of being that changes everything.” And then He invites them to follow.
Recently I’ve been thinking a lot about my reflexive actions. Too often I respond to situations or conversations with assumptions that have been true in the past, but in changing times, may not be as true now. These assumptions are so ingrained that I may not even know I’ve made one until the response coming back to me doesn’t match what I expected. These assumptions can be about everything: what a person wants from me in a conversation, what kind of help is needed in crunch time, how things “ought” to proceed, the outcome we’re looking for, how I am viewed, how God sees me…the list is endless really.
Sun shining the past several days has felt so good. Warmer air, the smell of grass, birds calling to each other…change is literally in the air…change of all kinds. How tempting it is to skip through the change process to answers and activities we love. Often the work involved can seem to take over everything. It doesn’t take long before we get depleted. The waiting for answers, direction, or relief wearies us. The lack of normalcy in rhythm, task and sheer enjoyment of life can make us feel out of sorts, off kilter or like we can’t quite get solid footing.
I am one of those TCK’s (Third Culture Kids) who, at 57 years of age, still stumbles when answering the question, “Where’s home?” Do I answer it currently, historically, emotionally, or from a family perspective? In some situation’s it’s really hard to know. For the longest time, I tried really hard to make location encompassing enough to genuinely answer the question. But it never did work.
This morning as I was thinking through my day, I felt anxiety tighten my chest and creep into my shoulders. I felt the inward clamoring of stuff: an email needing to be answered right away, the writing deadline in front of me that needed inspiration, the upcoming events that require preplanning.
“Who thought this was a good idea?” cried my heart to my mind. How is it that we invest the whole of our lives into kids only to launch them into their own place in this world apart from us? What was, won’t be again. The season, the era, definitively over…And my heart aches. Sentimentality and nostalgia over years of joys, hardships, wins and losses form a warm image of “good.”