Friday, January 4, 2008

Living In A Tent

I went on a retreat a few months back with my husband's family's church. It was a lot of fun, in the mountains, rustic, you know. The camp we went to is one of my favorites, one I went to a lot growing up, so it was kind of like a homecoming, even though I didn't know a lot of the people there.

The speaker, a former pastor of the church, talked about living in tents. His whole meaning was that God calls us to live in tents (figuratively speaking, of course), that in our lives we're not supposed to plant deep roots in our present life, but to live in a tent so we're ready to pack up and go as soon as God calls us to move.

I did a lot of thinking about this particular concept - living in a tent. And I decided/realized that I'm not living in a tent. I'm not living anywhere. I've got my tent packed and ready to go. I'm so anxiously awaiting the next thing in my life, that my tent has never had its stakes in the ground.

This idea of living in a tent has come back to me many times since this particular retreat. It seems every time I start unpacking my emotions and thinking about putting down roots in the present, God calls me to be prepared to move. And then just when I get everything packed up again, God tells me to settle down and continue setting up camp. Living in a tent. It's an emotional rollercoaster, I tell ya. But it's kind of exciting. It keeps things interesting. What's going to happen today? Is today a day of packing and moving? Or is today a day of settling? And, you know, no matter which I wake up thinking it is, it usually turns out to be the other.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008


I like beginnings. Definite beginnings. And endings. I think that's why I liked school so much. There was always a definite beginning and ending. Beginning: First day of classes. Endng: Last day of exams. Forget all of the stress in between (I have). But things aren't like that anymore. Here it is, the 3rd of January, and I don't feel much different than I did on December 30. But a new beginning has begun. So I thought I'd mark it with a new blog. I mean, if my world no longer has definite beginnings and endings, then I can create them where I want to, right?

And with that, here is one beginning I'm instating for myself (is that a word? don't you have to instate something before you can reinstate it? makes sense to me...): A new attitude. Ali Edwards (once I figure out linking, I'll link) prompted readers of her blog to come up with a word that they want to focus on for the year. She's done this for three years now. Two years ago her word was peace. Last year it was play. She uses it as a way to focus throughout the year, maybe as a prompt for a scrapbook page or just a way to start getting words out there to talk about what's going on. I thought I'd try this out. My word for 2008 is content. I feel like over the past year I've been looking to the future - what's going to happen next, to the point that I'm missing what's going on around me. I don't want to lose my dreamer status, nor give up on what possibilities are in store for me, I just feel like I need to focus my eyes on the present, and look to the future with my peripheral vision.

So, with that said, I'm going to stop talking about the present and go live it.