The air was thick and wet. I could see the early morning dew permeate the sky and move sluggishly, labored and heavy, over the grass and in between the trees. My breath felt as heavy as the dew.
I almost missed the pair of wild turkeys as they meandered across the lawn in the way they always do, heading toward the pond, unaware of my presence. Unaware of time. Free from to-do’s.
The perfect red cardinals that fluttered between the two junipers anchoring the patio were not pressured by a check-list, by demands that sap the energy from their marrow. They flew effortlessly, nestled only in the constraints of the here and now.
And I almost missed them. I wonder if I miss a lot of things. Miracles. Life, perhaps. My innate constitution demands a schedule, coerces responsibility as a virtue. And responsibility is a virtue – unless responsibility becomes a well-dressed, more mature cover for my striving. My controlling. Doing, in some insane and addictive way.
I realize in those moments that I have wandered far from home. Far from the place that steadies and anchors me, that reminds me of my belovedness. That calms me in the Presence of my Abba, my Father. That speaks to me of His delight, His pleasure.
I have wandered from the freedom I knew just yesterday.
I think we all have moments like these. I hope it’s not just me. Moments where life drains and weathers us. Where we feel anything but free. Anywhere but home.
Rather than being defined as never falling down or never getting lost, perhaps success is defined more in how quickly we can pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off and find our way back home.
If you find yourself lost, there is a path that will lead you home.
Pick yourself up.
Stop in your tracks and breathe. Quit spinning. Quit shaming. Shame will only keep you chained to this lonely and terrible place.
Remind yourself of the things you know. For me, I might not know much, but I know who I am, I know my calling, my passion, my purpose. I know that I do the best to pursue excellence. Sometimes, that’s about all I know.
That alone can be enough to begin clearing away the clutter of emotion stirring within you, to calm the incessant thoughts that invade your inner sanctuary.
Dust yourself off.
Call His name. He is here with you. Don’t be distracted by everything calling out to you, vying for your time and attention. Focus on His presence. Feel Him hold you and calm you. Hear Him whisper words of love and encouragement to you. Quiet. Listen to Him tell you, It is going to be okay.
Focusing on Him reminds me of what home looks like, what it feels like. I can almost see the outline of the trees. I can almost hear the brook sing its familiar enchanting melody. I begin to take steps in His direction. I can hear Him calling.
Allow the truth to guide your steps back home.
Speak the truth to yourself. When we have wandered far from where we are solid and strong, it is because we have allowed a small lie to weave its way into our consciousness and become rooted in our heart and mind. We must recognize the lies that have become planted within us and uproot them.
No matter where you have become lost, begin to speak the truth. The truth is, He has a plan for you, not to harm you, but to give you a hope and a future (Jer 29:11, NIV). The truth is, though you can’t see your way out of the darkness you’re in right now, you will be able to see one day. The truth is, God has never left you. He walks beside you. You must remember that God doesn’t expect perfection. You don’t have to work so hard, to strive so much. He loves you exactly where you are, just as you are. Speak words of kindness. Compassion.
Slowly but surely, we are finding our way home. The path begins to look familiar. We can feel our heart and mind quiet. Settle. We no longer feel so constrained, so tormented, so overwhelmed.
This is the journey. One step at a time. One moment at a time. We all get lost at times. Remember, success is defined more in how quickly we can pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off and find our way back home than in never getting lost at all.
Pick yourself up. Dust yourself off. Allow the truth to guide your steps home.
Have you gotten lost lately?
How have you found your way back home?