April 25, 2012

on trying

"We read," as one of C.S. Lewis' students quoted his father in Shadowlands, "to know we're not alone."  And sometimes as we read, we discover our own fears put into words by another.

excerpted from Jan Karon's Home to Holly Springs
"He realized as he cowered by the fence that he had struggled for years to get it right - struggled to experience the joy, the peace, the sense of oneness with the One who was born for him, gave himself for him, and in so doing offered Timothy Kavanaugh the supernatural gift of eternal life.
"He genuinely believed in this One, had even been ordained as a priest in his service, and yet, in all the long years of his faith since childhood, he had never deeply, viscerally known the warmth and protection of the divinely unconditional, even tender love about which he had heard and read so much.  He had trembled to think he was a fraud."

I, too, want to get it right.  Sometimes it almost seems I might be getting close.  Sometimes it seems I never will.  Mostly it feels like I'm missing something.

I am tired.

The words "mid-life crisis" left my lips recently, and I was startled to find out that a few of my friends have had the same thought.  In my head I still feel about 23 (and on bad days, fourteen), but something has happened since then.  Well, fifteen somethings.  I guess I got old.

[Ugh.  So dramatic, I know.  I think as I write this of positive, energetic 60-somethings I know and I feel ashamed.  Pity party?  Maybe.  Or maybe just unvarnished disclosure.]

I want it all to count for something.  For Someone.  I don't want to have failed, but I'm not seeing success.  And frankly, I'm tired of trying.

Somewhere in here is grace, and the power of the One who raised Christ and who, inexplicably, lives in me.  Somehow I know I will find a way through, because He is my Shepherd and He guides me in paths of righteousness for His Name's sake.  If there have been green pastures or quiet waters lately, they've been (or they've felt, which I know are two very different things) few and far between.

Somewhere in here is rest.  And maybe, just maybe, it takes being tired to learn to rest.


  1. God is good and you are right to trust him. [hug] That's all I've got. I love you.

  2. It counts. We just aren't accustomed to counting the way God counts. He counts Jesus. But I'm right there with you, seeking to know his love that surpasses knowledge, praying that it would sink into my heart. . . I'm sure he wants that even more than we do.

  3. Thanks, Sister, Queenie. In my weakness, He is strong. That is enough.


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