Ramblings on Brown Paper: Haggard and Worn

I first wrote this in a little brown notebook with my blue pen, then got the courage to post again. This is my first post of Ramblings on Brown Paper.  I used to be a blogger. I blogged about food, books, outdoors, hopes, dreams, plans, ideas, knitting and farms I dreamed to live on one day. At one point not that many years back God had another idea. There was a deep loss, and then more loss, then a calling to cross the seas to a land I never even cared to visit. I used to be so honest, I hope to break open those doors again. I always used to say, ‘in honesty, vulnerability and brokenness God shines through’, but then I was really broken and didn’t want to shine because somehow I equated that to being hurt more. That is a lie. This is my first attempt to show my heart in a while. Please be gentle, for I am broken. But He makes broken beautiful.


IMG_6628Beautiful cumulus clouds border the sky. Bringing out all the shades of blue. The sounds of the people chatter quietly, there are birds signing their bedtime lullabies.  If I look out the windows of our house all I see is beauty. We are in the midst of the rainy season, but since today has been dry and the sun shinning- all of creation seems to be soaking in the moisture, the sun’s rays and rejoicing. Greens of all tones and hues, budding tree leaves of that new and tender chartreuse. Long, lean eucalyptus trees sway slowly as if raising their hands in praise. All the colours accent each other and join purposely into harmony.

It is as if they are saying, singing, chanting over and over ‘this is the day that the Lord has made, we will rejoice and be glad in it. We will be glad’. Then those words come to my mind and I realize just how much I have to learn. I am learning so much and still so reluctant to trust him as I should. Over and over I’ve thought about these blank brown pages in this notebook. Like a friend who you neglect because she knows you too well to lie to. It is in my face, written in my eyes: this is hard. Daily I trudge on.  I wonder if in one and a half years time I look ten years older, I feel even older than that.  I am haggard and worn.

If that same friend were to ask why, it would be hard not to chuckle. What would I even say? How can I explain what this world here is like? It is amazing and so broken. It is beautiful and shocking. Joy filling and completely painful. Sometimes it is a dream come true and then like living in a nightmare. I will attempt to tell in the remaining pages of this journey (posts to come in this case), this place, this people- and more than anything mostly God’s own story in this life he’s given me. Because if my life were my own, I would never choose live here. I’m not that selfless.

That is selfish, but it is true. I love freedom and comfort and my friends back in Oregon too much to have left.  I am no better than you, no more mature, this life is not easier for me than it would be for you. So imagine life, a million miles away from comfort, from cheddar and bacon and pre-made meals, from reliable power or internet, from the love of family and friends. It is never easy, but daily I am being transformed. Daily growing. Don’t put me on a pedestal, this hurts me daily just as bad as it would  hurt you. Suffering is something we all run from- I am learning to be still amidst pain. I am learning that where there is death, there really can be life.

I am constantly learning to say, sing and chant, ‘this is the day that the Lord has made, I will rejoice and be glad in it. I will be glad’.

Maybe you are too.