Monday, August 5, 2013

in which I take a deep breath and get ready for the end of summer

We have been gone for nine long days. Youth camp has ruled our schedules and captured our hearts, complete with the joy of sharing it with our own kids this year. It has been good. And as always, when God does the indescribable I often find myself caught up in the onslaught of the everday once I come down from the mountain.

I was startled to flip the calendar yesterday and see the bright glare of August. That long  but quick stretch of summer is about to burn itself out. And suddenlty I find myself caught up in the frantic frenzy that comes as summer winds down and the school year looms ever near. At one time in my life the frantic was caused by the curriculum gathering and schedule planning of homeschooling. Now the frantic anxiety comes as I look at back to school budgets and the need for longer pants and proper undergarments. 

All at once I find myself torn between the bliss of the right now summer days and the ever growing list of things to do. And it gets to me. I want my summer camp back. It's the place where Jesus is evident in every moment and the days stretch long from one to the next, with hardly a thought of what the calendar says. It's the place where laughter ran deep and joy was contagious. 

But the truth is that Jesus wants to meet me with that same joy and light and life, even when I leave camp and settle back in the ordinary. In fact, I think he longs to meet me here even more so because my need of him in the everyday is so acute. When we are reveling in the joy of his presence we find complete wholeness, whether we are on the mountain or trudging through the valley. And he is the same Jesus up on top as down below and how I need his light and the steadfast grace that flows from him.

He is the same Jesus even in the valley, after the shadow of the mountain. When my days suddenly seem overwhelming, I call upon his grace and his nearness and listen hard to hear him. With memories of the mountaintop experience I can enter into his presence right in the middle of the laundry and freshly chewed couch cushions and the holes the dogs erected in the backyard. Not in spite of the everyday, but because of it, he meets me.  

And his presence is like balm to the soul of this mom who is frazzled about the end of summer. When my anxious heart wanders away his grace pulls me back in. And with his help I can not only make it through these dog days but thrive in them as I relish the joy of the everyday. 

And I hear his voice whisper:

I am in the busy and in the calm. My presence and nearness will bring peace to your anxious heart. Call on me and lean hard on me as you walk through the season, from one to the next. Never will I leave you and I will provide all that is needed for this season. My daily bread is available for you, the provision of grace and space and calm moments in the midst of it all. And when your heart races allow it to run to me.

1 comment:

  1. Yes, the arrival of August is a bit more bitter than sweet for me, too. Why can't it always be summer?! But yes, Jesus is LORD of and in it all. I want and need his Presence in every season.


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