*Parts of this writing has sat in my website drafts for 3 years and 26 days. Sometimes writing needs time to find its full circle.
There has been a question that has changed my life over the last season. It is a very simple thought, with huge implications. Five words, that create clarity in a moment.
If you studied all the personality types, Gallup strength finder results and hung around me for a little while, you would quickly see my personality. I like things to end and I am pretty terrible at the in-between.
Finishing a project, ticking off my task list and closing my computer with satisfaction is the greatest part of my day. Yet we live in a time throughout the world when we all seem to be stuck in the corridor.
Over this season of so much change, have you found yourself scrambling to find the energy to finish simple things?
That’s not your fault, you are not a bad person, it’s the difficult part of the in-between. When I have found hope sliding and the option of giving up is so close, I stop and ask myself a simple question…
And it has brought so much relief.
One day sitting in a professional development class a facilitator asked the attendees to imagine a place where we feel most inspired. In my mind, I leapt across foreign places, remembering travel overseas. The cedars of Lebanon, the jungles of Northern Thailand, Libraries in London and the cafes on street corners in Paris.
These were memories that took my breath away and recalibrated my season in a moment. When I travel, I am always inspired. Then I softly smiled when my mind landed somewhere else. An unexpected place. Somewhere I spent many years running away from. Escaping, hustling, working harder and harder, just so I could run away again.
I began to imagine myself lying in my loungeroom on the floor. Tears dripped down my face as I realised the place that I now feel most inspired, is my own home. Surrounded by the simple things, I felt safe, that all the hard work I had been doing writing to heal, had changed things. It has taken years for me to come home to myself.
I spent many years searching out inspiration from far off places, hustling for a sense of inspiration and success.
Coming home to ourselves, means that we listen to the small still voice. That we are not graded by our Instagram feed or our external appearance. Coming home, means we are capable of rest and recovery. It means we don’t have to keep doing more and being more, to feel a sense of inspiration and grace.
You see I would keep doing more because I lived my life from a place of wanting to please others. I wanted people to like me. I wanted to do all the things, be in all the places and achieve beyond. Each achievement though, couldn’t escape this feeling though that I was not enough.
The question that has radically changed my life this year is this one;
Am I graced for this?
When I hustle for worthiness to finish a project that is overdue, with notifications shouting. I simply ask myself, do I have the grace for this today?
The definition of grace is the smoothness and elegance of movement. It also is defined through scripture as unwarranted mercy or favour. When I think of the season we have walked corporately there is a universal trauma, that has held us all captive in our homes.
In times when difficulty faces us all, many people would just push through to finish the task at hand but I am learning to look for the grace.
I come home to myself, by asking do I have the inspiration for this?
This question is not a cop-out, where I don’t face the hard stuff. It’s not about the everyday chores that help life tick over smoothly. It’s not about shrinking responsibility or not finishing what I have started.
It is about the passion projects, my writing, creativity, those things that require inspiration to be drawn out from the depths of who I am.
I’ve realised that for many years I have chased the approval of others, to finish work in a way that makes people proud of me. I have realised that I thought I could pray a little harder and if I could follow all the rules, then I would be enough.
Seek out inspiration from far off places.
Asking myself the question about grace is a moment where I honour the little person inside that is just longing to be enough.
But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.– 2 Corinthians 12:9-10
This is a place where we lay our burdens down and remember that imperfection sometimes is the greatest freedom, in living a life that is fully uncontained.
Growth in this season looks like letting go of things, letting people down, not answering text messages, recording radio scripts a month late and not being available to everyone that I have in previous seasons. For no other reason, then I am just not graced for it in this season.
I am unpacking the deep questions that have surfaced from watching my father pass away. I am learning and growing in a new role that has so many challenges and I am focusing on being present to my family in those moments in between.
Tell me below in the questions…
What are you graced for in this season?
Looking forward to hearing the stories of coming home to yourself.
11 thoughts on “May: Essay- Coming Home”
What am I graced for in this season? After finishing a term teaching students online in a country that is in a season of interesting upheaval, my hope was to cling to the month break that I could see on the horizon. Unexpectedly my plans dwindled through my fingers like the sand I wished I could feel at the beach. Six flights cancelled, car hires cancelled, bus trips cancelled, trainings cancelled and holidays shortened. Today I sit in an unexpected space. I know that His plans are far greater then mine and though it appears everything is going wrong, just maybe it’s what’s needed for me to be in the right place at the right time to hear His still small voice. I am in His grace. I don’t know the reason just yet but I know His plans are best. Im feeling benched in the waiting, but know that in this season of preparation He has given me the grace to endure and to rest in Him.
Kate, I am so sorry that your plans have been upended in already what has been a massive season. I am praying for grace, creativity and rest. xxoo
Thank you friend. I know now why my plans were cancelled and why I need to be in this place. Even when we don’t see It He is working. We may not have the whole story but His grace is in the midst of the unknown. X
Beautiful, Kate. Your journey the last few years is inspirational. You are not benched-just in a rest space. ???
Thank you friend, I see this now. Sometimes a little forced rest is a good thing.
What a beautiful post, Amanda. I can relate to every part of your journey here.
This last year has been disruptive but in a good way. To slow down, to see the blessings right in front of me, time to think and create, time to dwell with friends, family, and God is a blessed disruption.
This is one of your best posts ever!!! ???
Oh thankyou Elaine. You’re so kind. May grace and peace lead us into new days and new ways. Surrendering what was and leaning towards the new opportunities.
So good to read this. I think I’m on a parallel journey. I’ve heard myself asking ‘me’, “Do I really want to do this?” or alternatively “do I need to be doing this?” and funnily enough I’ve been reading about Grace this week too. Did you know its first mention was in relation to power? Maybe sometimes we just need GRACE POWER to rest!
Thanks Amanda xx
I love this idea. Grace empowered living. So good Steph.
Amanda, what a great post which resonates so much with me. Words like ‘home coming, ‘being the beloved’, ‘rest vs striving’, ‘grace’, ‘am I enough?’, ‘deficient vs sufficient’ – have been swirling around my mind and in my experiences during 2020 and 2021. I’m on my own homecoming journey – it’s a reckoning with one’s self. Thanks again, and for the helpful question: ‘Am I graced for this?’ – what a liberating question!
The interesting part about the question, is not whether this task is hard, easy or boring. The question is…can the grace smooth the energy required to finish this commissioning. Am I graced to lead through this change? Yes. Yes you are.