Thursday, September 27, 2012

On a ledge

First, an update on the kiddos.

School is going well this year.  I absolutely think we did the right thing putting the boys in school.  The girls are learning so much and I actually feel like we are getting everything done that we should.  I am so happy with our arrangement.  Nate is loving school and making friends.  We are working with the school on his dyslexia therapy and he is making progress.  The little boys are transitioning, not without some bumps along the way, into a more structured environment.  I think this is good for them, and will help them if/when we decide to homeschool them again.

And as for me, well, I am here.  I've had some major changes in the last few months.  I quit my job to be home more, though I am looking for one with a smaller time commitment each month.  I left my church, as I could no longer receive in a place that does not allow women to teach men.   I found a church where I felt home (thank you, St John the Apostle UMC, for being a safe landing spot for me), but my husband didn't like it.  So we are looking for a new church together.  I left our homeschool co-op, as I just couldn't handle teaching another class right now, and felt the prevailing winds of the group were too legalistic and patriarchal for me.

So I've left behind a lot of friends.  And I feel like I'm drifting in a way.  I don't really know what to cling to except Christ.  A lot of the things I've been taught for the past 10 years seem like garbage now:  ways to control people, control women, control children.  As if the Gospel were a fantastic self-improvement plan instead of the water of life.  I've found that I am so desperate for grace.  My efforts are never going to be enough.  No matter how many fancy plans I make, I will always fail.  So I have to cling to One who won't.  And I have to be quiet enough to let Him speak and reclaim the words that seem so twisted in my mental dictionary.

Jesus answered, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”                                                                                                   John 4:13-14
Looking at my daughters has changed my life.  My girls are growing and asking questions about their roles as handmaidens of the Lord.  And I'm realizing that the box many of the people around me are building for their girls is so, so small.  That the yoke they've placed on young necks is anything but light and easy.

 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.  Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.  For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”                                                                          Matthew 11:28-30

Serving the Lord where He has planted you should be light and easy.  Not easy in the sense of "never being difficult," but easy in the sense of "wow, I love this pair of jeans."  And for me, it has not been that way for a long time. (Would it not make sense that the One who made me would fashion me to fit perfectly in the role He has for me, but to chafe at the wrongness of an unfit spot?)

Right now I am waiting.  I am asking and I am listening.  I am considering seminary.  Feels scary to put that into words, but I feel like there is so much I don't know and so much that I want to know.

I've just felt for the longest time like I was standing on the edge of a precipice and the tiny ledge I stood on was slowly shrinking.  I felt like I could keep clinging to where I was and standing on the things I had been taught, knowing it was not a true safe place.  Or I could listen to the Voice that beckoned and just jump, trusting in my Savior to catch me and bring me into a real green pasture of rest.

So I'm choosing to jump.  To follow Him and trust that He still speaks. To believe that the One who made mountains also made me and has a perfect niche in this world just for me.

I remain confident of this:
    I will see the goodness of the Lord
    in the land of the living.
14 Wait for the Lord;
    be strong and take heart
    and wait for the Lord.      Psalm 27:13-14