As the week goes by I feel the pressure to have written something good, something profound, to have ideas clearly and preferably dramaticly shifted, but how do I write in the small tough persistence when I am fighting against myself more than anything else? There is no clear movement here. But I continue to try, continue to pick myself back up and try some more.
It is hard, and every time I think it has been a good day, that things are starting to move and gain momentum, the next day seems even harder because things haven’t gotten on a roll, they feel as if they haven’t budged.
But still I keep trying, fighting against my own inertia, trying to push forward once again. Maybe the metaphor of motion isn’t a helpful one here.
I tell myself that every little bit counts, every chip of stone I remove gets me closer to the finished sculpture.
But I have trouble envisioning what it will look like complete, and some days I seem to do as much undoing as doing.
But I am learning to be obedient, even when what I am asked to do seems impossible or pointless. And I am slowly (oh how slowly!) learning to rely on God’s strength and ability to move things, not my own. But God asks for my hand to do the work, so back I go.
I prayed a dangerous prayer today. I asked God to help me find pleasure in this task, to see God in this task. I asked that if it is what I need to do this task, that I might find God in this task alone, not in any of my usual places. That my yearning for God might become a motivating force to keep me pressing on. I told God that I was willing to be frustrated in every other part of my life but this one task, to seek and not find God anywhere else, if that was what it would take.
There’s no greater motivating force I know.
And this has become a place with tough armour, where God wants it to be soft and supple, a place for God to flow through freely, not blocked by this hard self-protective shell. But that can’t happen without persistence here now, without bending myself to lean in here, with all my weight and borrowing God’s.
There is no tidy resolution here, I cannot tie a pretty bow on it and say this is done, this has been learned. Because it is on-going. A pressure I bear and need to lean into rather than moving away from. I seem to need a constant reminder that I am doing this with God, not just for God, a reminder that this is not my task alone, unsupported, unequipped. El Shaddai, the All-Sufficient, is with me. Emmanuel, God-with-us, is here, breathing through me. We are doing this together.