sometimes i have days where i feel more alive. my senses are buzzing, my mind is clear, my eyes seem to open a little wider (yes, it's possible), my heart is joyful and trusting, my body calm. i walk through the day filled with thankfulness and wonder, and fall asleep feeling overwhelmed with blessing.
i haven't had a day like that in a long time.
it's amazing what stress will do to a human, how the body, mind and spirit will cope. i feel like i have been forcibly hibernated. not completely turned off, but placed on a sleep setting.
we just returned from 5 days at camp homewood. this was our 10th year at family camp, and usually driving onto the grounds is such a rush of feeling and excitement, but this year...nothing. we were driving on quadra island, getting closer and closer, and i pictured the staff. i used to picture them tense with anticipation, so looking forward to the arrival of another pile of campers. but this year i saw them pulling up their figurative boot-straps, mentally coaching themselves, sighing and staring at each other with those "you can do it!" expressions. i was self-projecting i'm sure, because we were greeted with the usual enthusiasm and extravagant kindness that we've experienced every year.
but i was
the good news is, each day of camp i could feel myself waking up a little more.
my dear friend Marsha has been journeying through food sensitivity issues that she now realizes she's been battling for years. for the first few months of this journey she would weekly say to me "i've never been this awake before! is this how you feel all the time?!!", which i would just smile at because she had said the same thing not 7 days prior. but now i get it Marsha, (i get it!) you were slowly waking out of a food-induced slumber. and now i'm waking out of a stress induced one. and it's not a fast process.
i'm coming to enjoy beauty more, to laugh sincerely, to have that warm sensation of awe and wonder spread across my chest. i feel genuine gratitude for the life that is blooming here, for our new home (which has been one of the major stress causes), for this beautiful neighbourhood and the city of north vancouver. for our new church family.
one night at camp a group of us put our kids to bed and went down to 'the point' - which sounds all romantic, and it probably would have been if there wasn't 6 of us - and we lay on a wooden platform, usually used for campfire skits, and stared at the stars and tried to remember christian songs from our childhood. i saw 5 falling stars, one of which was like a flaming comet streaking across the sky. we musically traveled through michael w. smith, striper, connie scott, psalty, petra, russ taff....it was awesome. phosphorescence were glowing below us, the milky way above (at least, i think that's what i was seeing), and we sang our hearts out. something in me woke up a little bit more.
we skipped chapel one morning and took a family canoe ride over to this island pass where we usually spot a few sea stars. this year we saw hundreds, and crabs and sea cucumbers, jelly fish, sea worms with these bright red flowery-looking tongues, hermit crabs and even a mink slinking along the rocky shore. it was magical. there are worlds above and below that are so vast i cannot begin to grasp them, and my God holds it all, sustains it all, loves it all.
and loves me.
it is good to wake up and find this truth has held me in my sleep.
we have been here for a month now and have done too many renovations to tell. the lower level of our two-story home is still in chaos. new walls are still being finished, then we paint it all, then somehow move all the boxes out and re-carpet. hopefully it will be done for september so that we can have a tenant move in, and i can finally unpack my paints. i don't even know where my easel is presently.
the upper level of our home has been transformed and is truly lovely. there were moments when i despaired, i'm not going to lie. but thanks to the help of our parents, it is really a beautiful space. my kitchen is so big i actually have a drawer just for water bottles (!!!!!!). and our property is a garden paradise (which will soon loose some of its paradisaical qualities if i don't get weeding). i picked a bouquet of dahlia last week - what grace! the doorbell rang last evening and it was three neighbourhood girls, wanting to splash around our creek with my kids. it doesn't get better than that.
please pray for my waking, that i don't rush the process and that i'm wise with my work and my rest. this week will be scott's first full-time one as the lead pastor of Capilano Christian Community, which means my first full week back to work as a stay-at-home-mom. (don't worry, i won't stay at home :) ).
may we all awaken to the myriad of voices surrounding us daily, calling out the truth of God's goodness and reality, inviting us to participate in this great adventure of life with Him.