January 8th. 7 1/2 hours until my plane leaves Kansas City. It’s a day that I knew would come but never could see. And still I can’t see it. My heart feels breathless, trembling with thousands of emotions as one standing on the edge of a cliff, the view blocked by clouds, wishing for a hand to hold and unsure of what lies beneath yet unable to keep my feet from creeping nearer…nearer.
In my ears is an album inspired by Aslan’s singing the world into being, & heavenly voices sing “Be still my soul the Lord is on your side…” my mind whispers an agreement to my ever pounding heart “be still, be still, be still”.
Tonight I watched my sister glowing with love & joy at her engagement party, surrounded by so many rejoicing at the season before her & wondered how in the world it has happened that I could walk away & not be apart of it. But I know the Lord has thoughts I can’t imagine, plans I couldn’t dream of. Five, maybe six times today I burst into tears in different parts of the Compound while getting ready for the party, wondering how daily life can happen without the Bohlenders. They have been to me a family, a home, Shepherds, counselors, friends, & I have found more healing in two years of late nights around their kitchen table than I ever thought possible for my broken weary heart.
Tonight I visited the Nightwatch & couldn’t help but crack up laughing as I walked through the door, remembering. Remembering weeping through my internship in that nearly empty room, remembering the year & a half following of pouring out my heart in those chairs, singing out my soul on that stage, in those side rooms, in the night. Ten minutes later I’d hugged my faithful friends who remain steady; cried on Kyle’s shoulder, ever thankful for his wisdom & the kindred heart that beats inside his chest, cried on Jacob’s jacket as a lifetime of late night talks raced through my brain & cried again when Audra came off the stage to kiss my cheek. Oh how I love the family I’ve been blessed with in this city.
Tonight I placed my books in a box. Took the last pictures from the walls, but left the stars across the ceiling. Every room I’ve ever lived in has been left glowing with stars. Looking around it is no longer my own.
In every change, God faithful will remain
Over the last few weeks many have looked excitedly into my eyes & declared “you’re really going & the Lord is giving you the desires of your heart!”. And yes I’m excited, yes I am going, but can’t help but chuckle inside at the smallness in that idea. Fredericksburg & DC are not the desires of my heart. From behind my eyes it is as though the Lord has opened a door before me, a gentle invitation to take Him by the hand & though my heart may tremble, to step through & see what He might do. There comes a point when love-strings bid us follow & though fearful we find ourselves unable to deny their gentle call.
He never forces us to come. And at the same time love is a violent force, ever driving. When the revelation came that my puppy would not be coming on this move I picked up my guitar & wept, knowing that my Friend knew the pain of my heart in leaving her behind, that He wouldn’t chastise me for the tears, & that He was worthy of them.
He’s worth of every price we’re asked to pay; the tiny and the most painful . The leaving of home, the comfort of familiarity, the years spent mining the hearts of my friends unto striking communion… only to leave. The leaving of family, my dear, beloved sister & best friend. The teens I’ve given my heart to, the ones who’ve becoming sisters & brothers. No one is surprised by my abundance of tears, I’ll make no apologies for them, but I am surprised at the joy budding in my heart as I shed them. He’s worthy of the costly offerings, & what costs me might not cost you, but if it’s of value in my heart then He treasures it. And so it becomes worship as I gladly offer them to Him. So I gladly offer them Jesus.
The desire of my heart; that Jesus would find faith… find friends on the earth. That broken hearts would be found bound, imprisoned hearts be found free, lame hearts be found leaping, dead hearts be found beating, all for the love of Christ. The desire of my heart is that the youth of the Nations would see Him, & that they would love Him.
There are no words to describe the thankfulness in my heart for the last five years at IHOP, the treasures He has given in the dear friends who have come and gone, the last 4 years of living daily life with my sister.
In a few short hours my favorite, my brother Nathan will hug me until I can’t breathe, make fun of my cane & cry when I walk away. I will kiss my Daddy’s cheek, squeeze his neck longer than he’d like, cry on my mothers shoulder and hold my sister’s hand until we walk up to the gate where most likely I’ll weep in her arms. She’ll miss me more than all my friends combined. And when I step off Jeremy will be there to give my heart the strength to walk into whatever is waiting on the East Coast.
DC? A door that I must step through, simply leading to another door. When that door will open and where it will lead I haven’t the slightest clue, but my heart is set to follow the Lamb wherever, whenever He goes. 4.50 am. Breathless my feet draw nearer… nearer… “but the view from the top of the cliff is not as exhilarating as the free fall.”
Be still my soul, the hour is hastening on when we shall be forever with the Lord. When disappointment, grief & fear are gone, sorrows forgot, loves purest joys restored. Be still my soul, when change & tears are past, all safe & blessed we shall meet at last.