My thoughts are heavy, heart burdened by my exasperation to be all that I’m called to be. I hear with thundering silence Father’s calling of his sons to rise up and lead, to flourish and to move mountains.
The self-imposed pressure is enormous. My soul runs from God’s calling like the wind along a dry prairie field, fickle in the direction it’s heading, yet kicking up dirt and debris as it makes its annoying presence known to all around.
I’m troubled as truth is wrestled with an eagerness to perform, to be somebody, to astonish the crowds…and yet all anyone really wants from me is the same thing I’m desperate for in acceptance, love, purpose and an occasional smile with an accommodating accolade.
To feel the embrace that doesn’t let go and the connecting eye that doesn’t look away is a reality that eludes me, yet the performance continues.
The Proverbs speaks directly to me as the foolishness of youth is described in detail. Yet I’m surrounded by men 5, 10, 15 years my junior that flourish with greater intelligence and knowledge that alludes even my most complex of ability. Do these amazing men even know? When I’m told it’s me that is admired, it takes all my being to not place my head at their feet in complete humility.
Surely I understand the wise king when King Soloman lamented, “What does a man get for all the toil and anxious striving with which he labors under the sun?” (Ecclesiastes 2:22) The desires I chased are fulfilled, the trophies are proudly displayed and I want for nothing and yet my heart is dry and contempt grows bitterly cold against the stock pile of pursuits now achieved.
Captivating chapters have been cataloged, yet this life book is blank and the story unfinished, leaving the owner mystified and annoyed by the careless scribbling were thought of so highly.
Sweet tails of nothing, mind creating grand tails of success, body in perfect alignment to bring to reality all that I’ve carefully planned. Oh the heart, the sweet beat that operates in pace to remind me it will not be left behind.
How it would propel me to marvelous proportions if I could only set it free to pursue its real calling.
The nagging of nothingness stalks me like a lion hungry for an easy meal. The crying out for the comfort that eludes me as the cataclysmic separation between mind and heart grows uncontrollably.
Surely, I cry and plead…someone before me has been here before and understands this insatiability.
“Yet when I surveyed all that my hands had done and what I had toiled to achieve, everything was meaningless, a chasing after the wind; nothing was gained under the sun.” (Ecclesiastes 2:11)
This lions heart I’ve been given…where does it come from? Why do I run from this gift of valiant passion when it’s the ONLY thing that has sustained my breath in times of perilous hopelessness? Oh how I miss you great and loving Father. How I long to crawl to the safety of your shade and rest so that I may be fully restored and delivered forth from my inherent iniquity to praise your name again.
My heart is weary, yet I will not tire, I will not quit. I must rely on truth that lies dormant not dead, between the voids in my soul.
“What do I do, after I’ve done everything”, I ask aloud, unknowing that my words would amplify across a small community of warriors that would be silenced at the question I believed was casual in delivery.
The men stare in trance-like state, awaiting the illuminating answer to the topic in question. I dodge and divert like the last kid selected among his boyish peers in a recess kickball game. I’m trapped with no escape. The men are fixed on me and the only maneuver left is the dropping of my head and pleading for help without concern for composure.
The room’s light is darkened as a circle of men is quickly made around me. Hands laced on my shoulders, voices are called out on my behalf as I’m lifted on the backs of combined strength that I’ve never known.
Tears spill uncontrollably as I release the weight of the burdens I needlessly carry and I’m lifted to a place I’ve never traveled and was not plotted on the maps I owned and relied.
In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express. (Romans 8:26)
A journey is made to a great calling. He wants me back from the fleeting pursuits that kept me distracted and discontent like so many tempting teasers the system deems important at the whim of frivolousness.
Now when I lie down, I will not be afraid; when I lie down, my sleep will be sweet. (Proverbs 3:24) This is all so new and there is nothing for me to do. My mind nags, but the eagerness to this developed discipline is exciting and I know the only task on the list is to live now, fully, engaged, loved and fulfilled.
Surely goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever (Psalm 23:6) as I lay aside my own vanities and pursue this calling, the meaning created will be something of deeper value and the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard my heart and mind to oneness. (Philippians 4:7)
There is now time and space allowed to praise and honor my comrade’s many years as we sit and exchange our fables together. We seek to understand and dare you to invest in each other, eager to discover what evolves.
No longer do I shrink back, living as though there is honor in living small. Let me be convicted and strong by choice, not the fleeting feelings that leave me cold and hesitant. Loved and affirmed, prepared to fight another day and embrace the story yet to be written and told with vitality and anticipation. To know the deepest of desperations and lay at the bottom as a spiritual practice, knowing there is a sacrifice of grace and mercy that for Christ's sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong. (2 Corinthians 12:10)
So now I ask again…what did I do after I did everything?
I did nothing and became someone new.