what's next?

The last two days have been really hard. Wrought with disappointment, frustration, and anger. Filled with lots of tears and painful feelings.

I have done the equivalent of donning sack cloth and ashes: I have sat around in capri yoga pants with unshaven legs. I have sported a neon blue tank over a pink sports bra and layered bobby pins on my head for lack of washing my hair.

In some very real ways, there were some losses to mourn. I’m not ready to delve into that right now.

Mostly I’ve just been asking God to help me be content again. Once I let my mind roam into the possibility of more, it’s been hard to go back to less. And I don’t think that’s a bad thing. Just normal. And less isn’t a bad thing either.

So. At nap time today I curled up with Charis and chatted about her new Wednesday night class at church. They had learned about church plants and she wanted more information.

I recalled when I was 12 years old and our family left sunny Florida to plant a church in the Promised Land. It must not have been easy on my parents. Our current circumstances in Florida had been very hard for them. People were being malicious and unkind. I remember watching my dad weep and my mom struggle to make everything happy for us kids. We were poor. We received government welfare, even though both of my parents worked two jobs. It was just hard.

So I was recounting these events to Charis, how the Lord led my parents to Georgia on a wing and a prayer. How we lived in a rental house for many years until I graduated high school. I remember that house. It had a whole wall that was 1969 era marbled mirror. I bet my mom hated it. Did she have friends in fancy houses that made her squirm with wanting more for her family? I don’t know. I cant remember her complaining. I can’t remember anything except that my mom could make a shack beautiful. And she made that house pretty.

Then I told Charis about how my parents bought their first home, their current home, just as I was taking off for Bible college in Texas. At that same time, her daddy was leaving Arkansas for Texas too. And then her Papa and Nana moved to the Promised Land, where her Grammy and Grandpa already were.

She giggled. If you’ve heard Charis giggle, you can appreciate how comforting that was.

Then I told all about how eventually mommy and daddy fell in love, and with Arwen in my tummy, we moved back to the Promised Land. To Grammy’s house, where Arwen was born.

Then we moved to a rental house in Tucker, Georgia where Charis was born.

More giggling. 

Then we moved to Pell City, Alabama to another rental house, and Ezra was born.

Then we moved to our current house and Evie was born. And then Titus was born.

“…And now we are still here…” my story trailed off.

Charis smiled and looked into my eyes like an old soul and said, “I know what you’re thinking, Mamma.”

She turned to a page in a little book she’s been working through for fun.

"Give this page to an adult"....

"Give this page to an adult"....

What’s next?

I don’t know. Maybe nothing? Maybe this is it. We stay here, we continue to work hard.

I know one thing for certain that is next: I lay it down. All the hoping. I just.lay.it.down. And I repent for longing for more than what Christ has already done for me. Because what Jesus did is more than I will ever need or hope to accomplish on my own.

I will always hate my kitchen though.

And that’s where I’m at.