“Rest & Reset”
were words given to me earlier this fall to describe this season. Insights to those two words kept showing up, numerous times, even in my emails. At the time, I didn’t know what “reset” meant for me, or how I was going to “rest” with all that was on my list. Then it all changed. My priorities were suddenly refocused and reorganized.
In a totally unexpected way, the events of the past month have brought about a new kind of rest: being out of town, waiting in the hospital, making consistent and healthy meals, not being able to make plans more than a few days in advance… all these things, along with my teaching appointments for this month being postponed (not by me), have been a catalyst for surrender of my plans with a small hopeful splash of new beginnings. In a way, it is like a work table or desk where all the work on top was suddenly swept to the floor. The pieces are still there, but not to be picked up right now. Instead I see the blankness of the work table and am accepting I have been set up for Rest and to be Reset.
Recently, I experienced a real life illustration of the idea of resting and being reset. I have a portable speaker to play background music when I go to teach. Sometimes it’s used in my studio when the sound system isn’t working well or is inconvenient. One day the portable speaker stopped working even though the battery was fully charged. I disconnected the ipod from the speaker and replugged the charger. The next morning the speaker still wasn’t working. It was disappointing. Then I Googled that my speaker was not working and found a check list of things to try. The last thing on the list was to reset it: 1.Press mute for 10 seconds 2.Turn the power back on. It worked…. I laughed and played music. Then it hit me: I had stopped working. God was pressing the mute button for a specific time and then the power could be turned back on, and I would be working again. It is a simple, maybe silly, analogy, but one that gives me comfort, and not surprisingly, rest. During this time, God is speaking and I am listening in deep and quiet ways that are changing how I think, feel, and pray. I don’t think I am alone in this. There may be many of us in unexpected circumstances that are being prepared and reset for new purposes and callings coming up just around the corner.
During this time, I was able to finish an art journal I have worked on for two years. It expresses my word of the year, or rather words of the years 2015-2016. At the end of last year, I felt disappointed I didn’t finish filling the pages. After I accepted that it wasn’t going to look as I expected, I decided to make it a journal of two years, with one side of the accordion representing 2015 and the other side 2016. Now it may be my favorite art journal. You can see the experience of grace I shared in the last post has been so meaningful to me that I put it in this journal. My word “Flow” for 2016 can only be done if I am flowing with “the unforced rhythms of grace.”
With so much change and unknown right now, there is a part of me that wants to cling to the old and familiar. At the same time, I have a sense of hopeful anticipation that the best is yet to come. God is good, and even though at the moment, I cannot see what the new year, or even what next month might look like, I do know God holds the future and my hand. I just need to be surrendered and ready to receive new things that will likely not look as I have planned…