Isaiah 61:1-7

It's easy to feel incredibly mundane.

Do you ever have those days where it just feels like your life is just one painful black streak on the massive canvas of humanity?

[I admit, my analogies are odd.]

I can't sleep tonight. My head hurts, my tummy hurts, & the thought of my alarm clock hurts, but my eyes are wide & bright, as if my mental exhaustion from the day means Nothing to them.

I move my laptop & myself to my bed, in futile hopes that I'll wake up to find I was lulled to sleep by words.

Fun Fact: this has Never happened.

Mundane restlessness.

Mundane solutions.

I remember when I used to be the girl that turned her bed into a canvas when she couldn't rest. I would artfully spread notebooks, sketchbooks, brushes, pencils, pens, tea mugs, & odd bits of information across my bed, taking a picture of the beautiful mess after diving in.

I listened to a song tonight about a girl losing a version of herself. "She used to be mine." In a way, the nostalgia in me relates to the lyrics.

But there are parts of that girl that I'm glad are long gone.

& there are parts of this girl that I'm really glad were brought to life.

Sure, she's a lot more mundane.

She's known for having her room in constant order.

She's that one person freaking out over a family dinner, but unconcerned about what she'll eat, herself. [this has always been her way.]

She wants to find the poetry in the rain, but she's more or less offended by the way it makes her dog smell & stops the cycle of some things.

She has a really hard time setting aside her to-do lists, her chores, her studies, & her paperwork to just sit down & sketch.

Her soul has lost some of its free-spiritedness as it's aged.

She's almost to the point of dozing off in her rocking chair, but not quite - she's far too concerned with what will be left undone if she stays still too long.

She's trying to be strong, I guess that's it. She's being strong in all the places she used to just be whimsical.

Let me slip back into first person here & admit that I'm terrified that responsibility will crush my whimsy.

I can't let that happen. That doesn't look like Jesus.

I am burdened, but I am anointed.

I have a lot on my shoulders, but I have good news to proclaim.

I can't let my to-do list overshadow my mission.

He's calling me to minister, right where I am; wherever I am.

To bind up the brokenhearted. With the very Love, & maybe even the very words that were used to bind up my broken heart. It's crazy how He does that. How our healing isn't just for us.

He's called me to testify. To set free.

I think of the dream He's placed heavy on my heart: to speak love & destiny over those who have been told they "can't" since their birth. To be an occupational therapist, yes, but more than that, to be a voice & a channel of hope into the lives of children with disabilities. To me, that looks a lot like the whimsical love of our Jesus. & you can't just stuff that into a box. It cannot be contained!

The opening of the prison to those who are bound.

Freedom, freedom, freedom.

I think of those lives that mine already intersects with, that are just bound by fear & doubt. I'm called to proclaim the opening of the prison!

Oh, the connotations of this. If this is the reality of what I've been called to, what have I been missing in my inactivity? This is a call to War, & I've been stressing over how no one else will clean these bathrooms for me. This isn't just apathy, I've grown stagnant. & it's time I opened my eyes to it all.

My vision is better than it used to be. I just haven't been stepping up to the plate. What I see is like a weight of responsibility, & I've been ignoring it. This calling has been described to me as a triage nurse, & the heaviness sets in when I allow it to; I have been called to stop the hemorrhaging that I see around me, & I've oftentimes done nothing.

I see mourners. I am called to comfort them.

Not just to pat their shoulder, I am called to give them a beautiful headdress instead of ashes.

To me, that speaks worth. That speaks revived life. Awakening. & I'm supposed to have a role in bringing it about.

Silence is warfare, at times. "When good people do nothing." I've been known to fight for the wrong side of this war.

Since when has my joy been so contagious that it flows over people like the oil of gladness. That it clothes them in praise, lifting up the faint-spirited. To make them into oaks of righteousness. The firm planting of the Lord.

This is speaking about words. Words can do this. They have the power to. I've let mine lay quiet, or worse, spread discontent. But what if I could do This?

The Lord would be glorified.

The broken would be empowered.

Walls would be rebuilt.

Breaches repaired.

Cities restored.

Ruins & devastations, revived.

Generations, healed.

Leaders would rise up.

People once looked down on would have worth & purpose.

My heart thrills as I think of how this would bless the heart of my Lord. Minister to Him. Glorify Him.

These words slow as He whispers over me that I don't have to live in shame anymore. That He honors me. That in Him & His will for my life, I'll find everlasting joy.

& knowing His heart ... even though the dream He's given me is Beautiful to me ... I'd still want it if it were just to be a ditch-digger that was called to speak all of the life & love I just mentioned. His glory would still be worth it. & no matter where He places me, it's still going to be beautiful.

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