My husband and I returned yesterday from our week long stay in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. Our time away was amazing! A beautiful resort, stunning views, fabulous food, time with my husband and ample time for rest. I am so thankful we have the opportunity to travel and family back at home willing to watch our kids while we’re gone!
Before we left, I wrote about our trip. This writing posted last Sunday. I expressed my excitement, but reminded myself to seek joy always – not just from luxurious resort vacations. I also said I expected to “write – a lot!” But guess what – I did not write a single word during the entire week away! I did not even want to write… not even a little. I felt obligated to write, which was never my intent.
On our last morning in Cabo, I sat watching the waves of the Pacific Ocean crash against the light sand. I was ready to get home – eager to see my kids. I was aware it was time to re-enter the real world, but knew there were a slew of stressors anxiously waiting to bring me down from this relaxation high. Work, school, sports, church… The list continued and I realized I lumped my weekly writing into this mental list of “stressful things to do at home.” I had made writing a burden.
I used to cherish the hours I would carve out during the week to write. When I bumped into an interesting Scripture or had a unique conversation about faith in my real world, I would write it down and then continue to reflect and meditate on these musings through writing. This helped me see how God weaves in and out of life in unexpected ways. I could connect the dots and gain clarity on God at work!
But lately, these unprocessed thoughts have been left untouched. I have pages upon pages of writing prompts. My writing has seemed hurried, with the goal to meet my self-imposed Sunday deadline. Sure, God works through that too. But something is missing.
So right there with that ocean before me, I made a decision. I need to take a break from writing. Actually, it’s not a break from writing I need, but a break from this deadline to write something every Sunday night. I want to finish the 6 half-read books I have started by amazing authors like Shane Claiborne and and Nadia Bolz-Weber – and then apply the things I’ve learned. I want to revisit the texts and writings from my online seminary classes. I want to work through the pages of prompts. I want to sit in silence and listen. I want to do all of these things not so that I can complete a writing by Sunday night, but because I desire to see God in my life.
I’ve been posting every week for over 3 years – this post today is my 165th weekly writing! Why stop now? Have I failed if I take a break?
I am convinced this is not failure! I sense God inviting me to pause and I am trying to listen. But I know how beneficial this writing is – and for so many weeks this Sunday deadline was a helpful method of accountability. So this is just a break – a sabbatical, if you will! I challenge myself now to begin again on September 10 – hopefully with new perspective and clarity, and with God ever beside me!
Be merciful to me, O God, be merciful to me,
for in you my soul takes refuge;
in the shadow of your wings I will take refuge,
till the storms of destruction pass by.
I cry out to God Most High,
to God who fulfills his purpose for me.
He will send from heaven and save me;
he will put to shame him who tramples on me. Selah
God will send out his steadfast love and his faithfulness!