What Came With Abram

The Bible is filled with story after story of men and women following the Voice of God—either literally or metaphorically—into places of ambiguity, trust and surrender.

Mostly it begins with Abram who is told to leave his family and his father’s household and to go a land God will “show him” (Genesis 12).

And, almost unbelievably, Abram decides to go for it and trust the Voice.

But you know what else came with Abram?

HIMSELF.

I don’t know what all Abram left behind in his father’s house, but I can guarantee that what he did NOT leave behind was his own brokenness.

If Abram was self-righteous and greedy in Ur, he was self-righteous and greedy all the way to Canaan.

If he was given to anger and isolation in Ur, he took that with him to Canaan.

It’s tempting to think that we can change something “out there”—even in the name of FOLLOWING GOD—and so fix the problems that have plagued us (and therefore, plagued the ones around us), but that’s not really the way life works.

And “the way you do anything is the way you do everything.”

Because, you see, the problem is not “out there”, with our circumstances, our job, our family, our grouchy co-workers, fellow students or friends.

No, the problem is “in here,” in OUR hearts and souls.

Which come with us no matter where we go.

The bad news is that there is no place too far that we can go to get away from ourselves.

The good news is that no matter where we go, we always have an OPPORTUNITY to work on the problem.

There is deep, deep spiritual wisdom in the idea that whenever I’m disturbed, the problem is with ME, not with anyone else, or what’s going on around me. I have to examine MY heart, MY soul and mind, in order to regain my peace so that I may be of service to God and to others.

And Fear (Morning Pages, 8.30.2019)

I can see things I want, the things that I believe I am being called into. 

These are things and activities and movements that I love, that flow out of me as naturally as my breath. 

And yet I fear moving towards and into them. 

My self-talk can be ridiculous: I “know” so much about the creative process, and about creative/vocational courage, and yet…

I THOUGHT I WOULD BE BEYOND THE VOICES THAT SEEK TO SILENCE ME AND PUSH ME INTO A CORNER. 

It’s a reminder, isn’t it, that I am simply one of everyone else. We all suffer through this crap. We all have to push through the same barriers, and wrestle with the same demons, in order to find our true selves, our vocations, our callings, our “homes” in this world. 

So I sit down, and I face the darkness, and I name the voices, and I open a new document or pull out a piece of paper and pen (because, yes, I remain bent towards analogue), and as I type or write or draw, I TRUST

TRUST

TRUST 

TRUST

TRUST

TRUST

trust that every letter and scribble puts a dent in the darkness.