had to shout to
because the fear was loud
among a whitewashed crowd
from their privilege
love it weeps
when humanity sleeps
while its own soul dies
too much self to despise
wake up, lazarus
death don’t die
we might be covered in ashes
if i could keep
to shield it from
the ache of losing
i would bury it
in a deep pit
by a forgotten sea
and sail to the opposite shore.
she keeps me daring
makes me brave
so my heart remains within me
Today I want to be back on the other side of the world. Where cobblestone streets, canals, buses, bicycles, and beauty abound. I long to be back in the heart of Amsterdam, sharing stories over coffee with strangers in a hostel of dreamers and nomads. Backpacks towering over dusty faces of adventurers with worn soles and weathered souls and hearts open like maps to the stars, because they caught a glimpse of something about being human that has them chasing cities like a dog chases cars.
It’s a dangerous game of risk and desire and never looking back and your heart might get burned along the way, but that’s just the price of being free. Of leaning into mystery. Of being fully known only in moments among strangers over something that is shared and spending the wandering days feeling misunderstood. And maybe we are all hopeless wanderers.
And maybe a handful of us find home in the eyes of strangers traveling the same weary road more than we find home in a set of digits affixed to the post of a permanent structure on a paved road between fences.
Wanderlust is a light that never goes out.
Comparison, competition, and conformity kill the beauty of individuality and gift of self-worth. We were each designed as unique beings – and when we live into our authentic, true selves, we do humanity a favor by playing our own unique part in the world. The culmination of this authentic individuality creates diversity in community and this diversity is something that we should celebrate, not fear.
What if instead of measuring our lives against the lives of others we instead sought to live our own best adventure – in whatever unique form that takes?
What if instead of competing for applause or approval or affirmation we instead focused on cultivating a community that empowers one another in their strengths?
What if instead of seeking to conform others to our way of perceiving life, we instead sought to learn from those whose ideas and view of the world might be different than ours?
This journey through life would be a much more beautiful and harmonious place if we celebrated diversity and sought to listen to the experiences of others more. For a moment, try to put aside your preconceived notions regarding race, socio-economic class, sexual orientation, and religion and let conversations and interactions with real people replace stereotypes. Just try it. Even if it is only a short-term experiment for you, maybe it will overflow into something that changes the way you love people and dramatically impacts the way you experience love.
At the end of the day, if rules dictate our life above love, then we are prisoners to ideas. But if love governs our life, then we get to experience the fullness and freedom of meaningful connection and authentic community and we are not slaves to comparison, competition, or conformity. So try it. Have a conversation with someone and listen to hear, not to respond. And if your boxes get shattered in the process, you are that much closer to freedom.
|| Homesick is the room in our mind that hinges our heart to every doorway we’ve ever walked through and called our own. It is the thread that has woven its way from our past to our present and will find its way to our future to remind us, like a gentle pulsing, of all we have ever loved and left behind. ||
In this world, we have to cultivate gardens for our hearts to blossom and grow when the chaos of life has made our hearts a wasteland. We have to find places where our souls can mend in the broken places and be nurtured into wholeness again. Sometimes the adventure finds us and sometimes we have to find the adventure. And sometimes, our hearts and minds need only be still so we can soak and flourish in these gardens of life we discover.
I have left pieces of my heart out on these rocks. And I’ve reclaimed fragments of my heart that have been taken. I’ve cried my eyes out, sung my voice raw, cried out to God in anguish, contemplated life and death and everything in between. I’ve shared this sacred space with people I’ve loved, but it is still my own sacred garden.
Even when we don’t know what we are growing up and into, we have to learn to trust the soil in which we’ve been planted. We have to allow our spirits to be washed by the rain after a drought, even if we are slow to trust the water to sustain us.
Find these gardens for your heart. Find your sacred space. The stamina of your soul, longevity of your life, and wholeness of your heart depend on it.
Here is what I think: that everyone deserves someone who writes them love notes all throughout their favorite book and sends it to them to help fan the flame of Love back into their worn out heart.
A heart that has trouble believing the Love story is really for them anymore, since some people say it isn’t.
I think everyone deserves someone whose voice sounds like the smile of God as it whispers words of life and encouragement straight into their desert spirit.
I think everyone deserves someone who cries with them, laughs with them, and does not give up on them even when others do.
Everyone deserves someone who is faithful enough to the Still, Small Voice that they are able to see the very seed of Heaven hidden deep within a tattered and worn out soul.
I want this for every heart. I want to be this for others someday.
This dear friend and mentor of mine is Jesus to me in every conversation, love note, and surprise gift in the mail. She knows my journey in its entirety and loves, loves, loves like a candle that never stops burning – a light that never flickers or goes out.
And you will know them by their love…and the knowing will leave you changed.