Tuesday, April 26, 2011


Christ is risen today! Alleluia! Sunday's celebration of the Resurrection of Christ was as painful as it was beautiful. I know that sounds odd and I found it be to so at first. However, upon examining the oddity or what I thought to be the oddity, I realized that it what I was experiencing was living in the reality of the paradox of our faith -- that paradox being that new life comes only after death. I was experiencing that paradox in profound ways, and there in the experience of that reality I was struck by that oddity -- by this reality.

The season of Lent for me began with companioning my friend, Ann in her birth into eternity with God. Walking that journey with Ann and her dear husband, Ron happened just before Ash Wednesday. At that moment, I sensed that dying was going to be a theme for me through Lent. I'm at this place in the practice of my faith where I feel I can no longer really tell God, "No, we are not going there!" and so my only real choice was to be faithful and surrender to whatever God -- the Holy Spirit -- desired to do within my soul during the season of Lent. On Ash Wednesday the idea of this paradox about which I am speaking began to bubble up within me and I have looked at this paradox as though it were a crystal with each cut in the crystal revealing yet another lens through which I could examine this paradox.

I realized right away that while I knew Paul, the apostle, wrote of dying to ourselves so that we could be alive to Christ was real but that I had sort of externalized that notion. I had kept it out of the reach of my soul so that this dying to myself could only mean those external things -- those things others could see like addiction, gossip, lack of compassion, lust. I think you get where I am going. However, as Ash Wednesday came and went and I sat before God daily and throughout what seemed to be every moment of every day allowing him to look at my soul and reveal to me exactly what was there, I came to understand that Paul was writing of dying to all things of him within his soul so that there would be only room for God to dwell there. It was then God allowed me so just how wretched my soul was and just how broken I was.

I have already written about my original wound being that of a child of an alcoholic and how that happened when I was so very young -- about six years old. I remember the moment well as it is the moment in my life when my mother as I knew her to be and as I needed her to be died. My life forever changed that day. As I progressed through the season of Lent and had that experience on the beach at Perdido Key when God let me remember -- re-live -- all that pain all while he had his loving arms wrapped around me I began to sense that this season of Lent had yet another theme -- that of healing my original wound -- that deep gaping wound that kept a certain portion of my soul off limits to even God himself. It was that moment I realized that that very act was indeed sinful for it kept me separated from God and we all know that sin is really anything that separates us from our experience of God -- from our relationship with God.

As I progressed further through the season of Lent and began to give words to my experience and naming feelings with regard to my original wound, and yes! even to have many deep conversations with my mother regarding my wound and how it affected even how I made my decisions and how I perceived the world around me, I sensed then that God was up to something even larger and more beautiful than I could imagine. For you see, as only God would orchestrate it a woman who had been like my sister died on Maundy Thursday evening and her viewing was Easter evening. And so it happened that on Easter evening I put on my "big girl panties" and drove myself to Faith Chapel for the visitation. As I approached the guest book to sign in a man who had been like a daddy to me met me at the door embraced me with loving arms and an open heart, no judgment, no criticism. I felt as though I had come home. The feelings were so very overwhelming that it has taken me two days to have the emotional and spiritual fortitude to even began to write about it. You see, I had, like the prodigal son, abandoned this family of mine and was welcomed home and I desperately needed it. I understand that I had abandoned this family as a form of protection -- I just couldn't stand being around them any longer because they reminded me of my broken-ness. This beautiful family came into my life at the very moment my mother left me. This family had sustained me and loved me even when my mother could not -- at least not in the way I needed it. I know now that my mother has and always did love me -- that that love did not stop as I perceived it had when her disease took over, but you see I had keep that wounded child so locked up within my soul that no one not even God -- the Holy Spirit -- would be allowed to enter there and so I put on my running shoes and ran from anyone who could remind me of who I was -- that is until this Lent.

I am grateful that the practice of my faith has brought me to this place where I can see how wretched my soul is and can participate with God in terms of willful surender as he resurrects the wounded child in me. This work, this dying to myself -- to all things Donell even the wounded child within -- has been painfully beautiful. The welcoming embrace I received as I came home -- that's the beauty of it -- that's heaven on earth -- that's what it's all about, isn't it?!

My welcome home party happened in a funeral parlor as family was celebrating my sister's heavenly welcome home party! I pray my words have captured not just my painful experience of Lent but the beauty and wonder that was my Easter gift. Perhaps what we should celebrate at Easter every year is not just that God raised Christ from the dead so that we would enjoy life eternal but what resurrection work God is doing within each one of us. I wonder... do you know what resurrection work God was trying to do within your soul?

As I visited with a dear friend this morning I found myself saying to her, "I wonder what it would look like if during the season of Lent we asked ourselves what is God trying to bring to life within our souls -- what resurrection work God is trying to do, and if at Advent we asked ourselves what is God trying to birth within us?" I think it might make a difference in how we celebrate Easter and Christmas -- those celebrations would become very personal experiences -- not just something that we celebrate that happened to Christ 2000 years ago. It would mean that our story -- our lives and how we live them really matter because somehow they connect very powerfully with God's love story that he has been telling us since time began...

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Were You There?

Were you there when they crucified my Lord? Were you there when they crucified my Lord? Oh! Sometimes it causes me to tremble... tremble... tremble. Were you there when they crucified my Lord?

No, of course not! That happened over two thousand years ago! And yet  my very soul trembles as I hear the question, "Were you there when they crucified my Lord?" And it is that soul trembling that causes me to reconsider -- to pause and reflect -- to search my soul... and consider could I have been there?

Were you there when they nailed him to the tree? Were you there when they nailed him to the tree? Oh! Sometimes it causes me to tremble... tremble... tremble. Were you there when they nailed him to the tree?
The trembling in my soul simply will not let me keep this question at arm's length any longer, and so I pause, reflect and consider my part in the suffering my Lord experienced before he was nailed to the cross and as he hung there... Oh Dear Lord, could I have participated in nailing you to the cross? Perhaps that time when I kept silent about another's suffering -- could it have been then? Oh, and there are other things too...
Were you there when they pierced him in the side? Were you there when they pierced him in the side? Oh! Sometimes it causes me to tremble... tremble... tremble. Were you there when they pierced him in the side?

The trembling in my soul is now companioned by my sobbing as I see that  because of my actions and lack of action, I pierced my Lord in the side as he hung lifeless on that dreadful cross. I pierced my Lord in the side by my lack of Love -- both expressed through my words and my actions. Oh that Love might forgive me...
Were you there when the sun refused to shine? Were you there when the sun refused to shine? Oh! Sometimes it causes me to tremble... tremble... tremble. Were you there when the sun refused to shine?
My trembling and sobbing have me on my knees helpless and overcome with the memory of all many times the Light of Christ's Love could not shine for someone else to see and experience because I chose to not be grace-filled -- gracious as you, My Lord, are gracious. I wanted to be God. Yes, Lord, I was indeed there.
Were you there when they laid him in the tomb? Were you there when they laid him in the tomb? Oh! Sometimes it causes me to tremble... tremble... tremble. Were you there when they laid him in the tomb?
I am fully overcome and overwhelmed, Lord, by the state of my soul as I attempt to answer this question. Just as the man who came searching for you under the cover of darkness because he lacked the strength of faith to live in the Light of your Love, I, too, lack strength of faith to live fully in the Light of your Love -- to love as you have loved. Could it be that the trembling I hear is not only my own gut-wrenching sobbing, but also yours? I am overcome with grief and sorrow, Lord. 
But you already know all this, Lord, don't you?
And you love me still...?
I hear your sweet melodic voice, "My dearly beloved child, it was for you and your soul that I chose the Way of the cross and I invite you, child of my heart, to choose the Way of the cross -- to choose to Love as I have loved." Faintly, and through my sobbing and trembling, I respond, "I choose Love."
And Love is enough.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Wait! I Need a Companion!

Tomorrow is the last day of Lent and Sunday marks the beginning of Holy Week or Passion Week. We will begin Holy Week with Palms waving and our voices shouting Hosana (Save Us, Lord!), likely not even sure that what we most want saving from is ourselves. And then after a few days of wondering what all the hoopla was about, we will progress to Maundy Thursday where we will celebrate The Passover Meal with our Lord and after that glorious meal, complete with remembering Love's Story to us, we will then be reminded, through Christ's example of washing feet, that we are to be a communion of people marked by serving others in Love. But then along comes Good Friday, the day we journey with Christ to his horrific suffering, crucifixion and death. We watch silently while Christ suffers and dies and his body is laid in a tomb. We fear that the very thing we needed most has died and all hope is lost. So we get up Saturday morning with nothing else to do but silently keep vigil and remember Love's Story -- from the Garden to the Tomb and beyond and wonder where our Story and Love's Story connect and what in the world we are to do about it. This journey will be complete (or will it?) when we arise Sunday morning and say with confidence and joy, "He is Risen!" and then hear with the same exuberance, "He is Risen, Indeed!". I just don't know if this is a journey my soul is capable of taking by myself. My soul is just too fragile and so am I -- spiritually, emotionally and physically. And I wonder, will anyone companion me as I walk this journey? For I fear that in walking this journey, I am likely to discover things about myself that need to die in the same horrific manner my Lord suffered and died. And yet, I know that Love has a gift to offer me on Easter morning -- the gift of making me into a new creation! Like Lazarus, though, I think I will need a companion to unwrap the grave cloths that have me tied down. I simply cannot do this alone. Is there anyone willing to companion me along this journey? Perhaps, this journey is one Love never meant for us to walk alone...

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Remember the Sabbath

Remember the sabbath day, and keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work. But the seventh day is a sabbath to the Lord your God; you shall not do any work--you, your son or your daughter, your male or female slave, your livestock, or the alien resident in your towns. For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but rested the seventh day; therefore the Lord blessed the sabbath day and consecrated it. Exodus 20:8-11

My dear friends, it seems God is stirring within me a conviction to remember the sabbath and keep it holy. I am finding this rather difficult. It seems that there just aren't very many of God's children who are remembering the sabbath and keeping it holy, and I believe this breaks God's heart. You might ask why? After much time wrestling with this issue, I finally decided to just ask God, "Why would you command your people to remember the sabbath and keep it holy?" And God's response was, "Because I am God and you are not!" 

I believe that God has been trying to restore his rightful place in my life and that he wants to do that also within his Church and indeed with all his children. Remembering the sabbath and keeping it holy forces us to stop all our doings and remember that God is God and we are not! It sort of puts us in our rightful place in God's created order. Surely if God can stop and rest on the seventh day of the creation process, then we can do the same. We simply have to trust that God will hold together our world (our congregations, our families, our jobs, etc.) while we remember the sabbath and keep it holy. The ancient church called the practice of remembering the sabbath and keeping holy as sabbath keeping.

I am finding it very difficult to practice sabbath keeping as it seems there are obstacles at every turn; however, I am finding that the first and most difficult obstacle to overcome has been myself. I have had to learn that my work and the ministries in which I am involved will not fall apart if I don't attend to them on the sabbath. I had to learn to trust that when I am practicing sabbath keeping authentically that God will hold everything together. More importantly, I have come to see that since I have begun practicing sabbath keeping my marriage and my family have been much stronger and healthier.

I invite you to consider sabbath keeping -- to find your own way to do so. You may have to be creative and it will likely be very difficult because you will find, as I have, that sabbath keeping goes against not only our human nature but is also very counter-cultural (and likely even counter-cultural within your own congregations). I have found the practice of sabbath keeping to be very worth all my efforts.

What about you? Will you join me in restoring the practice of sabbath keeping?

Grace and Peace to you, my friends, as we continue our journey through Lent.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Empty Hands

My weekend was pretty much consumed with soul care -- my own soul care. And this place of intimate nurture, guidance and support is something for which I lack adequate words of gratitude.

The state of my soul and my being able to see it so clearly over the past several months has been a source of deep pain for me. You see, while God -- the Great I AM, has chosen to allow me insight into my soul -- a view into the condition of my soul -- he has not and will not let me take part in the healing of my soul -- into how my soul becomes less Donell and more like God, like Christ -- let's just say it -- more holy or divine.

There are not very many individuals who have been giften with the ability to see into the soul of another human being. I am amazed by this -- in a state of awe of this. And yet, what amazes me even more -- what brings me to my knees even more -- is my spiritual director's ability to sit with me and love me even as she sees the condition of my soul. Okay, and here comes what makes me want to lay postrate before God, she can see the very gifts God has given me -- the deep yearnings within my soul that God alone planted there. She can name them, claim them and hold them for me because right now I am simply not strong enough to hold it all for myself.

More than that, God doesn't want me to hold anything right now. God wants me to simply be -- or more precisely to rest in Him as he births in me -- deep within me -- the I AM within me -- the God within me. To do that, I must release all that I have in my hands. I must be in this place with empty hands.

My dear friends, laying down my primary call was what I thought the most difficult thing God had yet asked me to do. To empty my hands and, indeed, my life, of everything is incredibly difficult and painful. I feel very vulnerable and empty. And that is precisely what God intends for me now as I continue to journey through what has been a very long dark night of the soul. I must become nothing -- no thing -- even as God whonames himself only I AM (no name, no thing) has become nothing -- or no thing because there isn't one name or thing that can adequately capture who or what he is. Just as God in this dark night journey has stripped away all my former knowings of him so that he could become no thing or more accurately ALL to me, he strips me of all things that are associated with my former self -- the personality that is Donell -- so that he can bring forth into being the I AM that has all along been within me but that had no pathway to be brought forth because my own identity (or personality) was blocking the way. This is so painful and so hard and yet this is what I have asked God to do with me for many, many years and is truly my heart's desire -- to become holy as He is holy. So I will be faithful and more than that -- I will remain faithful. And I will rest in Him and Him alone.

One of first things I wrote to you all about at the very beginning of Lent was that the beauty of Lent -- or the gift or purpose of Lent -- was clean hands and a pure heart so that in order to more fully celebrate the Resurrection. In order to have those clean hands and receive a pure heart, I must be empty handed. There is no other way.

I covet your prayers, my friends, as I continue to journey through my dark night experience empty-handed but alive -- or becoming alive! -- in His hands.

I am right where I need to be! Praise be to God!

So what about you, my friends? Are you right where God wants you to be? Why or why not? I have come to see that this matters deeply for it is a matter of the soul.

Friday, April 8, 2011

A Little Humility

My dear friends, as you might remember I began this season of Lent with the intention of practicing the Prayer of Examen more regularly (translation:  daily) and it seems that I have failed. I simply have not been able to sit down and go through the process of the Prayer of Examen I found -- the one that captured my heart. And this inability to remain committed to my intention to practice this discipline has garnered much of my interior thoughts and time with God.

And so I have been wrestling, and I've been pretty judgmental and harsh with myself on this issue. If I were to be honest with you and myself, I would have to admit that I have felt as though I failed at this whole Lent thing this year and quite possibly missed out on an opportunity for deeper, more intimate union with the One who is Love. And, my friends, I have lived with this question ("Have I failed?") with God and myself these past two weeks.

When I awakened this morning I felt well rested, which is very unusual for me as I am a rather restless sleeper; however, along with that feeling there was another one -- one I could not name. But, I continued on with my morning quiet time, found my favorite spot on the couch and set about the business of my quiet time with God. Nothing really happened -- nothing monumental, but this unnamed feeling remained, until just before my quiet time ended, and its name bubbled up -- empty! I felt empty, but not in the negative connotation of that word but rather in a most positive way -- I was empty of that feeling of being a failure. 

At almost the exact time I was able to name this feeling, a familiar question bubbled up. John Mogabgab, editor of Weavings: A Journal of the Christian Spiritual Life, says we are called to ask ourselves a question that is the true measure of success in life, "Have I loved well?" And so, as the question, "Have I loved well?" bubbled up, I realized that I had been asking that question of myself regularly during these past few weeks. More than that, I realized as I had been taking not only the asking of this question but also the answering of this question very seriously, as a matter of my soul -- that I had been practicing the Prayer of Examen! I had over these past few weeks cut out all that didn't work for me and narrowed it down to the one question that alone mattered, "Have I loved well?" In the asking and answering of this question, with God's loving arms wrapped around me, I was practicing the Prayer of Examen.

I share all of this with you, my dear friends, not to direct you to my way of practicing any spiritual discipline or practice but rather as a way of reminding us that the purpose or intent of these practices (spiritual disciplines) is to draw us -- to point us -- to Grace and to draw our souls toward a deeper, more intimate union with God. If after practicing a discipline or method for several weeks isn't doing precisely that, it may be time to seek the Spirit's guidance and wisdom or perhaps to find a wise Spiritual Director. I say this, also, because I know that this realization didn't just bubble up within me at some obscure time -- I know my Spiritual Director was in deep prayer for me and my soul last night -- asking God to give me a Word not just for those with whom I sit giving direction but for also for me. My dear friends, spiritual disciplines matter, really matter, and we need guidance in the practice of them.

And I am immensely grateful.

And humbled.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Taking Up My Cross

This season of Lent has been for me one marked by loss and suffering, grief and letting go, and chaos and confusion. And yet there seems to be abiding peace. That abiding peace, my friends, is what strikes me as being rather odd; however, this abiding peace is exactly what Christ promised those who follow him. I hear in my heart those beautiful words Christ spoke to his disciples (and to you and to me) in John Chapters 14-17. It is those words I carry with me these days and so it makes perfect sense that even in midst all of this, Christ's perfect peace still abides with me.

Last week in my silence and solitude, Psalm 27 appeared yet again in the lectionary and as I read, rather as I prayed it, so much gratitude bubbled up within me. I could only think how grateful I was that this beautiful psalm was so generously sprinkled throughout the season of Lent.

If you will remember, this psalm and I had met earlier in the season of Lent as God was reminding me that he alone is my light and salvation and in the strength of his loving arms I have nothing (no-thing!) to fear. As I sit here, I suppose that moment was preparing me to carry that beautiful psalm -- that Word from God -- to some dear friends I am journeying with through some awfully difficult times. As I say this I know that this beautiful psalm is still a Word for me today as it is this morning's Psalm!

So, here it is again, my dear friends, Psalm 27 from Nan Merrill's book Praying the Psalms: An Invitation to Wholeness. May it be God's Word for you and for me as we journey through this difficult place in our lives:

Love is my light and  
               my salvation,
whom shall I fear?
Love is the strength of
              my life,
Of whom shall I be afraid?

When fears assail me,
    rising up to accuse me,
Each one in turn shall be seen
    in Love's light.
Though a multitude of demons
               rise up within me,
    my heart shall not fear.
Though doubts and guilt do battle,
    yet shall I remain confident.

One thing have i asked of Love,
     that I shall ever seek:
That I might dwell in the
              Heart of Love
    all the days of my life,
To behold the Beauty of my Beloved,
    and to know Love's Plan.

For I shall hide in Love's heart
    in the day of trouble,
As in a tent in the desert,
Away from the noise of my fears.
And I shall rise above
     my struggles, my pain,
Shouting blessings of gratitude
     in Love's Heart
And singing melodies of praise
               to my Beloved.

Hear, O my Beloved,
               when I cry aloud,
    be gracious and answer me!
You have said, "Seek my face,"
     My Heart responds,
"Your face, my Beloved, do I seek;
      hide not your face from me."

Do not turn from me,
     You who have been my refuge.
Enfold me in your strong arms,
                O Blessed One.
Though my father and mother
    may not understand me,
You, my Beloved, know me and love me.

Teach me to be love,
                as You are Love;
Lead me through each fear;
Hold my hand as I walk through
     valleys of illusion each day,
That I may know your Peace.

I believe that I shall know the
             Realm of Heaven,
   of Love, here on Earth1

Call upon the Beloved,
              be strong and trust
    in the heart's courage.
Trust in the power of Love;
    the Beloved 's unconditional and
               everlasting love for you.

My dear friends, God knows our pain and suffering and he is attentive to that pain and offers to us to dwell in Heart -- to seek refuge in his strong arms where he alone holds our hand as we walk through this difficult place and he promises us his peace and his heart as our refuge. Be strong and trust in the power of Love!

Grace and Peace to you, my friends, as we journey through this season of Lent towards the Day of Resurrection -- that day we celebrate New Life!

Friday, April 1, 2011

Leaving & Receiving

I have been very silent over the past week and intentionally so. My encounter with the Word on Sunday in my reading of John 4 -- the story of the Woman at the Well has left me feeling restless. I captured what I thought was the essence of my encounter, of my experience, and as I did that I felt that God was trying to say more to me than I initially heard.

To jog your memory, my Word from Sunday's gospel lesson was John 4:28, "Then the woman left her water jar and went back to the city." I first connected this Word to my recent experience in watching my daughter pack up all her stuff, load it into a U-Haul and confidently drive away and sensed that God was trying to comfort me in my distress at witnessing my daughter leave the nest. I believe that to still be the case; however, there's more.

There's this lingering question regarding this story and here it is, "What would make a woman leave what is very likely her most valuable possession?" This woman left her water jar -- the one thing she needs to maintain the life of the members of her household. Without water, people perish. And yet, this woman leaves her water jar. Did she intend to go back and get it after sharing her encounter with her family and the people in her city? Or did she intend to get another one -- maybe one that better represents who she really is at the moment? For some reason John, the writer of this gospel, did not give us any insight into what the woman did with her jar only that she left it. What John wrote is as important as what he did not write and so that is the place where I am drawn -- deeply drawn. And, my friends, as I have been deeply drawn into this place in the story of what was left unsaid, I have had to open myself up before God, before the Spirit of God -- to become wide open and awake, available -- in order to hear the Word God seems to want to give me. And so I have been silent and still for almost a week holding this Word and waiting on another Word.

It seems God has me remembering my primary call to be a mother -- and not just a biological mother but a spiritual mother, more akin to a spiritual director for my children. I couldn't name it as such at the time because I had no knowing of what a spiritual director was. Now that I am in training to be a spiritual director, I can name what God was asking me to do for my children. I took that primary call very seriously -- with all three of my children. Which brings me to the real heart of the matter, I think, of what God is trying to say to me -- Can I put down my primary call and will I?

Why would God ask me to do such a thing?! Perhaps because there is a season for everything under the sun. Perhaps because God has something else in store. Perhaps because God is giving me another primary call. I think all of those statements are true. A statement from a dear friend whom I am companioning as he learns to live his life after the death of his beloved wife keeps bubbling up. He said to me, "It's like I'm letting go and holding on at the same time. I'm letting her go physically, but holding on to her through remembering -- through my memories of her." There's tension there and I know God is at work there.

And so, my friends, just as the woman left her jar at the well, I leave my primary call -- that of a mother to my three children at the well. In doing so, I feel such grief and vulnerability. I do not really know myself other than that of mother to my three children. My heart hurts and this is not easy but Christ offers to me his Living Water, I have drunk of that water faithfully for many years and trust that abundant life flows out of that Living Water. There is still within me a deep yearning -- a longing -- to nurture the faith but I think it is not for my children but for God's children. And so I will wait and trust but most importantly, I will let God hold my heart as only he can do.

Lent for me seems to be still captured in Bruggemann's orientation, disorientation and new orientation and it makes sense that I would experience deep healing, grief and vulnerability but I know I can also expect God to birth something new.

My friends, what is God calling you to leave at the well in this season of Lent? How will you respond? My prayer is that you will do as God asks so that when the day of Resurrection comes around (and I know it will!), you will experience a new orientation -- the birth of something new in your life!


Sunday's gospel lesson was quite surprising, likely because I wasn't expecting it to appear this year. However, it became very clear that it was just the Word I needed to hear!

The gospel lesson was from the fourth chapter of the gospel of John, verses 5 through 42 -- the story of Jesus meeting the Samaritan Woman at the Well. Since it is a bit of a long story, I'll ask that you read the story yourself and I'll share only what seemed to speak to me in this story. The Word I heard was, "Then the woman left her water jar and went back to the city..." (Verse 28) This is not the first time I have been drawn to this verse in this story but not with this force. I know my heart has been hurting for the past several days as my daughter moved all her stuff to her new apartment with her husband in North Carolina, and this "heart hurt" is what I felt when I came across this verse Sunday morning.

As I carried this Word with me and pondered it in my heart, it became clear that God was gently (or perhaps not so gently) showing me I had done my job well as my daughter could load up her stuff into a U-Haul and drive away confidently and full of excitement for what possibilities might be ahead of her. I trust that I have done well raising my daughter in the knowledge and love of God and that it is time for me to take on a different role. I'm not certain what that will look like but I trust that God will help me find my way. John doesn't tell us whether the woman came back to get her water jar but what we do know is that water jars are essential, just as mothers are essential. My daughter will still need me as her mother, just in a different role.

It seems this transition for me is best described by Walter Brueggemann's concept of orientation (hands on mothering); disorientation (she's leaving the nest/transition and anticipating something new -- a birthing of sorts) to new orientation or re-orientation (a new and different relationship). I also know that this situation with my daughter is but a tiny part of this process. I wrote already about the deep healing God is doing within me and how it looks like this process. My friends, I am convinced there's more to come -- that God isn't finished with this work he wants to do within me.  

And so I'll wait patiently (or at least I'll try!) and surrender to the work God desires to do within me. I'm certain that there is so much more to this...