One thing to constantly be thankful for is growth. It never seems to go away, and its pain is much less than that of disuse or injury. I didn’t want to lose what I already have, so I started blogging on the theme of contentment and thanksgiving to process through and track any progress made in this area, to see God’s new mercies every day and know truly how faithful He is in all things. I want growth. I want. I’ll spend more time on that in a bit, but first something a little more concrete.
Moving to Montana has shown me that there are still many mountains that stare me straight in the face; some need moving and some need climbing. I am grateful for both.
Last week I hiked the “M”, because earlier that day there had been snow on the ground but it turned out to be such a beautiful day. The sun had not set yet, and I was determined to watch with a good view. I went up the steep trail because it was the quickest and most direct path and I went alone. I had done the Incline in CO Springs early spring of last year, otherwise I would have seriously considered quitting the “M”, made some lame excuse about not being acclimated to the altitude yet, and turned around as though this quick jaunt wouldn’t help the whole acclimation process anyway. Similar reasoning influenced my completion of the Incline with Sam, and that’s why I this hike, being much shorter, could not be ended prematurely.
Then today (Easter!) I hiked the Drinking Horse trail with a local college group at 6 am for a Sunrise Service. So worth it. My favorite moment may have been when one of the guys pulled out his bagpipes and played Amazing Grace into the valley. And I forgot my camera, so I’ll have to do it all over some time and drink deeply all over again.
The more abstract challenge I share as side by side as I can from 18 hrs apart, I share with Joanna.
My older sister asked, “What do you want right now?” In and of itself, perhaps, not too hard to figure out. A million dollars, right? World peace? No, really. What to do you want right now, and what does that reveal about what you are really wanting from God? There is, in reality, no disconnect; however, we’ve lived in blindness for so long, we can feel something’s missing, but we can’t see it for what it is. We need Jesus to come near, spit on the ground, and rub mud in our eyes before we can get a clear picture. Maybe Jesus is asking us what we want–really– and like Bartimaeus we need to answer this honestly and then ask for something big enough that only Jesus is great enough to give.
I want to belong somewhere; I want to go to my real home. I want the fullness of God where I’m at, the fullness of His Heavenly Kingdom on Earth. I want Jesus to come and make all things right and new.
I want adventure. I want Perfect Love to cast out all my fear. I want to learn to press in when things are uncomfortable. I want to learn to rejoice in a new day and new opportunities, to “lean on Divine Intention,” if I can steal a phrase from Earthsuit (Jed would be proud). I want a vital and seeking faith, the right mix of being prepared but traveling light.
I want ease. At first glance I thought I needed to put this desire to death like a good Christian; however, I realized even fleshly desires are a perversion of a desire that runs much truer and deeper. I don’t want laziness when I say I want ease. I want the day of full flory when Christ comes on the clouds to end my struggle with sin for all time. I want, like Jacob, to wrestle with something–Someone– greater than my sin. I want to run again without pain. I’ve only experienced that once.
I want to add to my tattoo. I want wholeness, to feel complete even when bare. I want to trust God that He can redeem and beautify my scars.
I want to be poor. I want to know that God takes care of me, that He protects me, that none of this comes from my hand. I want to know He is still a Good Father and loves me when I have nothing.
I want a husband. I want to be married, to have human contact, physical and spiritual and emotional. I want intimacy with Christ while I’m single so that I can recognize the mirror image of Him when I see him on Earth. I want my marriage to shadow Unfailing Love, but to remain deeply hidden in the present reality of its Source now. I want rest from isolation. I want to know that I’m worth the risk of being known. I want You to delight in me, to romance me. I want communion and community.
I want to be a nurse part time and not forever. I want eternal purpose. I want healing for others that reaches body and soul.
I want to sing on broadway. I want You to thrill me. I want You to dazzle me and then I want to do the same. I want to tell stories. I want to be dressed up, to be thought of as beautiful, to be shown off. I want to be blessed.
I want to sit down and read for long periods time in the sunshine. I want rest in Him. I want to hear others’ stories in their own words, from their own mouths; to study or meditate on God’s Word, without feeling like dishes and errands are more important.
I want to lead worship. I want to emptied completely without being stolen from. I want Jesus to meet me where I’m at. I want to bring my offering before God and have it accepted by Him, and taste the all-sufficiency of Jesus in my life. I want to share that experience with others, to open opportunities for people to personally experience it until they forget my name because the work of Jesus Christ was so real and monumental in those times.
I’ll ask you the same question: What do you want right now?
You don’t have to follow close behind. There is still room on this trail to walk side by side, even hand in hand.