Wednesday, May 16, 2012

To Love is To Burn

Where does the time go? Like Anne says of sleep, maybe it is "over the mountains of the moon. Down the valley of the shadow. Beneath the waves of the deep gulf stream." But I suspect that, just like heat waves shimmering off Florida asphalt, it's not real at all. 

Suddenly I blinked and I'm 17 (almost 18) weeks pregnant. My job as interim youth minister is drawing to a close since we hired my replacement yesterday, but I'll stay on as his assistant. I'm beginning my Bar prep class next week and am headed to Virginia for an ordination in two weeks. I have two baby showers and the Bar exam to take before August. 

Busy, busy summer. 

Some aspects threaten to overtake me. Whereas I was incredibly excited to register for our wedding, I feel helpless when thinking of registering for my baby showers. What does my baby need? I don't know. Even after I read lists, I don't know. I don't know how I want to decorate the nursery or what "style" diaper bag to have. It seems like so many decisions to make for a tiny person I don't even know very well yet. In my mind, I had always designed my dream home, so getting married was just bringing that to fruition...and of course, I'm still working on that. But when I imagined myself as a mother, it wasn't ever a mother to a newborn; it was a mother like my mother or sisters, complete with four children at various stages of growth and a perfectly calm aura of control. 

I didn't think this out too well. 

My thoughts are converging and cascading in an endless landscape of wonder. This Fall, by God's grace, I will become a mother: the job I have wanted with my whole heart for my entire life. And yet, as I walk away from the job I've held as youth minister, I wonder if I am supposed to work out side the home; as I begin to study for the Bar, I realize that not all my professional ambitions are gone. What do I do with this full heart, these gifts from God? How do I become the woman he is asking me to be? 

It's certainly not by worrying. As I am drawn deeper into the Word of God in this season of my life, I am finding great comfort in realizing that blazing a new path in one's life doesn't mean that I messed up somewhere before. Reading through Acts, I realize that what Luke is describing are the Apostles building the Church, brick by brick, with the Holy Spirit to guide them. Jesus was not there to speak to anymore, but He had not abandoned them, and they were doing His work. I too can do God's work - even though I feel frightened and often very alone, with no path to follow. The fire of the Spirit will blaze a trail for me and I will follow it, and that will be more than enough.

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