And then God showed up.
I wasn’t going to put up a blog post today. Fact is, I’ve been feeling pretty ambivalent about keeping this blog going at all. I vacillate between “It’s not worth the energy; no one reads it” and “It’s so important; this is what I’m passionate about.” I am alternately discouraged that I don’t have the stats to rival my favorite bloggers and discouraged with myself for not producing whatever would earn me those stats. “I am tired; I am weak; I am worn. Take my hand, precious Lord.”
So yeah, I wasn’t going to post today. I was feeling whiny and small and overlooked. I was feeling voiceless. I was giving up.
But this morning I woke up at the crack of dawn. Which I hate and never do because morning people are all terrible, chipper, and HAPPY in the morning. I cannot relate.
But this morning I woke up anyway, before the sun was up, before my husband was up, and by 6am I had tossed and turned myself right out of bed, into my clothes, and across the street to the misty, deserted salt marsh.
The marine layer was so low I couldn’t even see the tips of the mountains to my left or the horizon between the cloud cover and the Pacific Ocean on my right. Everything was quiet, except for that man talking loudly on his phone as I passed his window. (Who makes calls at 6am? Morning people!)
I walked slowly, not quite contemplatively, through the sage along the gravel path and wound my way across the estuary. I stopped on the bridge and watched the ducks and leopard sharks swim in wide circles and figure 8s. I breathed deeply. I looked up at the misty morning, still dark enough that my sensitive eyes could take everything in through their own lenses and not the dark ones I carry with me everywhere. I continued on.
I turned on my iPod and played a guided Lectio Divina reading I downloaded from my new friend Christianne Squires’ Cup of Sunday Quiet. (I highly recommend it, by the way!) I walked slowly through the salt marsh, noticed my breathing, and listened to a gospel reading in Christianne’s measured voice. I walked. I breathed. I listened.
And then God showed up.
I don’t know why I am always surprised when God does that. But I am, every single time. Maybe it’s because at the bottom of everything, at the very root of the deepest lies that cause the woundedness in my life, I don’t believe God is trustworthy. Still. Even after all the healing, all the truth, all the trust God and I have built up in our relationship over the years. Even after the dark night of the soul and the wilderness experience and all the ways God has tried to mature my faith, even now I am still surprised when God shows up.
I expect it more often. I trust that despite my lack of faith it will happen. But I’m still surprised.
Or maybe it’s more that God just enjoys surprising me. Maybe it’s that God delights in delighting me. Maybe it’s like God is playing hide-and-seek with the child in myself.
Me: God, where are you? I’m looking for you.
God: Here I am! You found me!
And you know what? I just couldn’t wait to get back home and put up this blog post. Because really and truly, my lovely readers, know this: God delights in delighting you, too. God enjoys surprising us. God, with infinite wisdom and gentle grace, continues to show up for each of us, every time. All we have to do is get quiet, get listening.
All we have to do is show up, too.