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June 23, 2008

Food for Thought

You may be in a period of deep questioning right now. A new year is beginning. Perhaps your children are going to be starting school soon. The summer wasn't near what it could have been, that dream of family closeness never achieved. Perhaps you will be changing jobs or ministry positions. Yet, what should be a time of adventure - of new possibilities - feels oddly leaden and life-less. Maybe you're in the same old place - in your job, your marriage, as a single parent, or as a single human. The routine has become deafening and stifling, just as God is becoming more distant and unreachable.

If this is your place right now, I grieve with you over the loss of joy or clarity; the inability to make sense of life, or simply the inability to find yourself in the old, familiar places. While we grieve together, I encourage you to embrace your now: this obscure and murky place. Because, in this now, you can live in unprecedented, unfettered honesty. Instead of reaching for the nearest spotlight, reach for your journal and begin saying those things you haven't even dared whisper. Or, reach for a paintbrush, a sketchpad, the piano, or your camera. Paint, scribble, compose, or picture this strange, new world you inhabit, this landscape in which you feel an utter misfit. This is your time of psalmody, and unless you take it from yourself, it will not be taken from you. It is your gestation into new life.

As a deer thirsts for streams of water,
So my soul pants for you, my God.
My soul thirsts for God, for the living God.
When can I go to meet with God?
My tears have been my food
Day and night,
While people say to me all day long,
"Where is your God?"
These things I remember
As I pour out my soul:
How I used to go to the house of God
Under the protection of the Mighty One
With shouts of joy and praise
Among the festive throng.
Why, my soul, are you downcast?
Why so disturbed within me?
Put your hope in God,
For I will yet praise him,
My Savior and my God.

Psalm 42:1-5 (TNIV)

Excerpted from Soul Care for Women Leaders, a new downloadable resource from Gifted for Leadership.

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Exactly what I needed to hear. Thanks for the hope.

In the midst of a troubled season of ministry and life, your words restored my soul and reminded me to find joyful moments with God. Thank you.

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