I went for a walk the other night, right at dusk. It was still light outside when I left my house. The air was warm and the sky was a beautiful, bright blue. As I neared the halfway point, the sun was dropping behind the trees, shining through in glimpses of pink and gold. By the time I returned home, it was not yet dark outside, but the sky was shadowed. It lingered in that place of twilight- no longer day, but not yet night…. somewhere in between.
That is where I find myself today as I write, and where I imagine many of you find yourselves as well.
After a month of social distancing and sheltering in place, the doors are slowly beginning to open and we are all holding our breath.
How is this stepping forward supposed to go? Do we fling open the gates and rush out, arms open wide like Maria in the Sound of Music? Or do we approach it with caution- cracking the door open just a smidge and peeking out, trying to catch a glimpse of what’s out there waiting for us?
To be honest, I am somewhere in between.
I have embraced this time with my family, because I know how fleeting time is and how much I will miss these days. I am grateful for this pause, for this time at home together, especially before our oldest daughter goes off to college. Sure, I have a few regrets, things I wish we had done differently, but overall it has been a gift- one we have opened every day.
Still, I miss my freedom, and I miss my friends. As much as I love my family, a lunch date with my girlfriends has never sounded so good! The chance to laugh, to catch up, to just be together- that would be a gift, too.
And yet, it seems like it’s all happening so fast; a little too much, too soon, maybe. Our communities seem so fragile, as though a gust of wind (or a huff and a puff) might just blow the whole house down.
And then what?
So if I’m honest, I’m feeling a little grateful, a little excited, and a little scared, all at the same time.
That sounds about right for the in between.
I find myself looking back at our life before the Coronavirus pushed the pause button. With a family of six, it’s bound to be busy, but it was too busy. I filled my time with a lot of good things, but over the past few weeks I have realized some of those good things have been crowding out some of the best things. When the restrictions are lifted and the busy-bus revs back to life, there are things I’m looking forward to, but there are also several things I need to let go of, even if it’s hard.
I find myself listening now, in this space in between. Listening to my heart, to my family, and to the Lord. As I experienced on my walk the other night, there is a shifting taking place in my soul. One season is ending, and a new one is beginning. I am on the edge right now of something new God is doing; He is turning my gaze away from the past and out towards the future. I have used this time, this in between, to dig into His Word and listen for His voice. “Behold, I make all things new!” He declares. I am ready.
And I find myself looking forward to whatever lies ahead. Like the Israelites overlooking the Promised Land or the disciples eating breakfast on the beach with the risen Christ, I can’t help wondering what comes next. I don’t know exactly where He is leading, but I know He will lead me and that’s enough. I choose obedience.
What about you, friend? Do you also find yourself somewhere in between?
Let me encourage you to:
LOOK BACK… What should you hold onto and what should you let go of?
LISTEN NOW… What haven’t you missed from the daily rush, and what are you most grateful for in this pause? What is God whispering to your heart?
LOOK FORWARD… What are your next steps? Where do you go from here?
If you let Him, Jesus will meet you somewhere in between.