Hope for the Rocky Spiritual Road

The past few months have been rocky for my soul. Like an unpaved crudely cleared spiritual road, I have found myself praising God for the beauty of the landscape—and the next moment—caught in an expected hole, unable to move forward.

I praise God for my children one moment and wish to be anywhere else but in the season of motherhood the next.

I praise God for my schoolwork, then wrestle through difficult readings.

I praise God for my husband entering pastoral ministry again, then insert my demands and expectations.

I say, “God, I will go anywhere You want, do anything You want. My life is Yours.” Then grumble when the assignment he gives me looks less than how I want to serve.

In these months God has felt distant and at times so tangible. Like the morning I was washing clothes, pulling out weighted chunks of laundry from the washer and transferring them to the dryer, asking the Lord if he was with me—feeling stuck in simple tasks. The Spirit whispered, “Here I am. Washing your soul.” Or when I set aside my distractions to feel the weave of the dishtowel in my monotonous evening chore and the Spirit reminds me of God’s weaving all of creation together for His purposes, including the details of my life.

God is here. God is here on my rocky spiritual road, traveling with me through unmarked passes as we step out into the unknown. I ask God to help me be refreshed and he leads me to Mark 1:35.

The God of the universe, made flesh, took time alone to pray (Mark 1:35). Wasn’t he one with the Father? Didn’t he only do what he saw the Father doing? Why did he need to go to a secluded place to pray? Maybe it was his humanity that needed space to focus and connect. I am thinking these days, that part of the reason was to model for us how to connect with the Father just like He modeled serving by washing the disciples feet.

The moment the town folk woke up, Jesus was on. Teaching, ministering, and serving. The moment my family is awake, I am on. Teaching, ministering, and serving. And as Jason enters pastoral ministry, our teaching, ministering, and serving will only increase.

So, I asked the Lord to give me time. And this morning he woke me up at 4:00am and nudged me to pray, read, and write. And he has refreshed my soul.

God is in the secluded place and the every day moments. He is in the moments of cuddles and corrections, giving me strength and wisdom to love well. He is in the weave of the dishtowel reminding me of his weaving of our lives. He is in the watercolor painting with my toddler, reminding me of his creativity.

He is here. And he beckons me to dwell with him. In the ordinary rhythm and in the silence at 4am. Both are needed in order for me not to be stuck on the side of the road, ready to abandon the work he gave me to do.

How about you? What are the ways you see God in your daily rhythm? Do you have a pattern to solitude? What works for you to be spiritually refreshed? Please share in the comments.

* indicates required