It has been a while since I’ve written anything here; but that doesn’t mean I haven’t been around. The background of my blog is full of half-written drafts of posts I still hope to publish someday. I’ve stopped in, checked my stats and read posts at other blogs, but when it came to actually writing something worth posting it seemed all the things I felt led to say were just too big for me to compress into mere words on webpage.
Life has been a crazy, incredible whirlwind lately and I have been left in a consistent state of awe at the wonderful creator God and also a mostly consistent state of confusion at what exactly I’m supposed to be doing with this life He has made for me.
The past month has brought so many great things into my life; most prominently clarity and progress to a relationship that’s been slowly sprouting for a number of years. I have also found new friendships, job opportunities, a new connection with my sister, I’ve taken part in organizing and running a youth conference, and through it all started to learn again what it means to rest. It’s been a crazy month.
I started off August with a roadtrip to a camp about 3+ hours out of town, to help clean up cabins for a conference that’s happening next week. I settled into my friends truck at 10am, sandwiched between their 5 year old daughter and another friend from church, and we set off on a dirt road trip to an area I have never had an opportunity to see. This trip was out of the ordinary for me, a person who is known for turning down plans, and quietly celebrating when you cancel plans on me. I love new experiences, but I don’t like the anxiety ridden anticipation of new experiences. I promised myself that I would make an effort to connect with my friends this summer, to take advantage of opportunities and challenge myself to make some new memories this year. Something that doesn’t come as easily to me as I would like to think.
We didn’t make it to the camp; forest fires in the area caused an incredible amount of smoke that was hanging thick in the air. The further up the road we went, the thicker the smoke became. About 40 minutes away from the camp, we made the decision to turn around, knowing that even if we made it out the camp we would be useless in the 30C heat and choking smoke that was hanging in the air. It was decided that we would stop at a couple spots on the way back, places that two of us had never been to, to stretch our legs and eat our lunch. The first spot was simply a reminder of how incredible our creator God truly is as we stood on some rocks overlooking a beautifully clear river and I found myself surprised (again) at the intricacy of everything my eyes met. The second stop was a surprisingly quiet campsite, where we stopped to swim, eat our lunch, and let the dogs run for a while. I sat on the shore, listening the the dogs playing and watching my friends play in the water and couldn’t help but think that this day had turned out to be the complete opposite from what I had expected, and into exactly what I had needed.
I rarely feel more connected to God than when I’m sitting quietly, surrounded by the untouched natural world He created and it seemed funny to me that sitting there talking with friends, listening to dogs barking and the 5 year old squealing, amongst all the (beautiful) distractions of the moment, He was speaking so clearly to me. Reminding me that despite the chaos of the last month, everything is in the right space and time. That even though I’m prone to this confused and overwhelmed though process, even though I almost cancelled this trip, even though most things have defied plans and expectations…if I take a step back and really look, nothing is truly out of place. This trip for example, turned out to help accomplish exactly what I had set out to do this summer. Connect with friends I don’t always remember to sit down with, talk about something other than work, get outside, make memories, connect without tech…and this is just one of the many blessings this summer (and this year) has brought with it.
And isn’t that the greatest beauty of life?
That often, the moments and experiences that defy our own personal expectations become our greatest joys and His greatest testimonies.