Sitting here in a condo at the beach and all I want to do is go to bed. So tired, it’s been a long day. Why am I here, you ask? My husband and I are celebrating our belated anniversary this weekend, 23 years of marriage. (That’s a long time!) It’s just me and Jeff, none of the kids came with us. So what do we do? We eat at a fast food chicken place, get a few groceries at Publix, then sit on the couch and watch Castle. (Well, I am watching Castle, Jeff is busy as a bee on his laptop. Guess it’s easy to see who the pathetic one in our relationship is.) I know, incredibly romantic. The people upstairs are moving the entire condo around, at least that’s what it sounds like, or an elephant is dying up there, one or the other. We’ve been wanting to get away as a couple for a while, but now that we are here, we feel kind of lost and exhausted. Life sure does take its toll. Dealing with people, no matter how nice or not nice they may be, can be taxing; to be able to disengage from our schedules is a task all on its own, and now, all we want is sleep. I wonder if the Lord meant for our lives to be like this? (I’m pretty sure you and I both already know the answer to this question.) To be so busy that we stay on the brink of wanting to run away from it all. I know I need to slow down, to really take time to rest and learn to relax. Not just physically, although I realize that is important, but to rest from my mind. Anyone else need a break from themselves too? Now that I am here and I have a few minutes to breathe, to think, all I want to do is stop thinking. To be able to rest, to put a period at the end of that thought pattern and start a new paragraph. To just quiet my mind. Which makes me wonder, what does it mean to really rest? I mean, technically, I am sitting here on the couch not doing a thing, but I don’t feel like I’m resting. My mind is going a thousand different directions, and since I wasn’t really guarding my thoughts, they were mostly negative or worrisome. Anybody? Can anyone relate to this? I wonder why it is so easy to think negative thoughts. Why is positive so much less natural? I wish I were the kind of person who just naturally thought the best about situations and people. It seems like in my human condition, I tend to think the negative first and then have to talk my way to the positive; almost convince myself. It’s exhausting. Maybe all of this is why I love to read the book of Psalms; David’s thoughts and prayers to the Lord. His journal, or maybe it was his blog. 😉 He was so raw and honest, and I can relate to so much of what he was feeling. Well, I am not a shepherd who was being chased by a crazed king all over the countryside for a decade, but I can understand the fear, frustration, feelings of injustice and insecurity that he expresses over and over again throughout each entry. It brings me hope to see that such a devout man of God, one who God called “a man after His own heart,” can feel such things and still call God his Savior and declare that He was the best thing that ever happened to him. I find comfort in knowing that I can pour all these feelings out to the Lord and He will still claim me and call me His own. I think it even strengthens our relationship, the honesty and transparency in the confession of all this stuff in my head. So, I’ll just keep on telling Him the good, the bad and the ugly and keep on reading Psalms to find solace to remind me that I am not alone in these thoughts. And I’ll keep trusting that I am growing even if it doesn’t feel like it sometimes. One day at a time. Orange Beach, that’s where we are this weekend, it is beautiful here. Sandy beaches, magnificent blue water, the distinct smell of salt in the air, beautiful sunsets, peace is all around me, mine for the taking. I plan to make a conscience effort to take it all in so I can carry it home. This weekend has potential to be a fabulous get away with my husband, before the demands of school, kids, work, life set back in. I’m praying that I can get my mind focused on all the good so I can truly enjoy it. I don’t want to miss this time, this day, this moment. Life is too short.
A taste of one of my favorite books of the Bible, from one of my favorite heroes:
“Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. Point out anything in me that offends you, and lead me along the path of everlasting life.” Psalm 139:23-24