My blogging has slowed practically to a standstill. Maybe the world is a better place with a little less "talking" from me, but it's very anti-my character, and sort of an unsettling place for me to be. Maybe that means it's growth. Not sure I can really be sure. Even on Facebook, there have been longer stretches where I have less to say.
This morning I was walking to work after dropping my car off with a local mechanic. I had to cross a railroad track to get there and I had sort of a picture in my mind as I was stepping over it. In my mind's eye, I could see myself walking across as the safety guardrail would begin to come down, warning of an oncoming train. It was sort of a metaphor for where I feel like I am right now. Because the thought that occurred to me as I pictured it was "what would I do?" Would I hurry across to the other side, moving forward? Or would I step back behind the guardrail and wait for the train to pass?
My "logic" says I would hurry across, but something in my spirit checked me, because in life, I feel very much like I am stepping back behind the guardrail, in to the familiar, not moving forward at all. I'm just trying to avoid getting hit.
I love our new church, but I still don't feel like I have really found my place there. I have met some lovely women, and even gotten friendly with a few, but I have not moved on far enough to grieve what I've lost. I still miss people from "before." And it's hard.
What I REALLY find myself missing is teaching. It had been a VERY long time since I was allowed to teach in my old church, and when I took it upon myself to teach in my own home (well, my mother's home) last summer, it was the consequences of that choice that were beginning of the end of our time at our church of twenty years. It was an amazing summer, and I leaved sharing and teaching the Word with a wonderful group of ladies, but it came at a cost.
When my husband decided (after a long summer of events) that it was time for us to find a new church, God very quickly moved us into a wonderful new place, but they don't have a women's ministry, and there is still no place to teach. I've been facilitating a growth group this summer with 5 other women and I like it a lot, I love the ladies, but it's not the same. Leading discussion over a video curriculum isn't the same as digging into the Word and teaching it. It's the heart of discipleship, and one of my greatest passions.
I've been praying for God to take away the desire to teach, but He hasn't. I have tried to translate it into teaching my children, but it's not the same. Even the desire to share insight here at the blog has waned. My heart aches. Last week at our growth group I slipped into "teacher mode," but I wasn't supposed to be there. And as a rule follower, it kills me to have stepped outside of the role I'm supposed to play. (I don't like that terminology... perhaps better said, "in the capacity I'm supposed to serve.")
I find myself standing on the tracks. The train coming at me is the heartbreak of spending another decade not serving in the capacity I believe I was called. I know God has given me gifts for His good purpose, and His glory-- and that even the desire to do so is from Him, but again I find myself in a place where there is no room for them. Unlike the past though, I don't feel like there is no room for ME, which is an improvement, but the gifts I bring-- the suitcases that carry what defines me-- there is no room for them. And even in my own life, I seem to have lost the outlets I once had that at least gave the pressure system a release.
I've been praying for the want to go away, but it hasn't yet. I suppose that's a good thing. I KNOW it's a God thing, because He said Himself (in the bible) "the gifts and calling of the Lord are irrevocable." But I don't like standing here on the tracks not knowing where to go. Should I push forward (in hope) and try to find somewhere to participate? A community Bible study? A women's group at another church? I doubt opportunity is going to be found there either. Do I step backwards and just stand and watch the train go by? Exchanging the discouragement and heartache of standing still knowing my husband and kids at least are in a good place? Or do I stand on the track and let the train take me down? Perhaps (like the Bible says) that if I do that, life will be found in death. I can "lay myself down" for the good of my family, and die to the gifts and desires and just let go.
I thought I had done that before, but maybe I'm wrong. Maybe I didn't "die" well enough or long enough for the new life to be created. Maybe where I am is that planted seed waiting under the earth for God to bring the rain and produce new growth. Maybe that's it. Maybe this "limbo" is really the grave, because the train has already come, but rather than letting it consume and destroy, I am still holding on to my desire? I don't know. But I do know I feel stuck. I do know I don't know which way to move. I do know that "limbo" is my least favorite place to be, and yet here I remain.
It makes me think of a lyric to a sing I have held to for many years. It says, "Lord, move in the way that I've never seen before, there's a mountain in the way and a lock on the door, I'm drifting away, waves are crashing on the shore
So Lord move (move), or move me."
I don't know how much longer I can take this Limbo, Lord-- please move something. IJN.