Thursday, May 19, 2011


Must be a part of grieving, this flat-ness.  Everything seems, well, gray. 

Could it be my perspective?  Day Job is within two weeks of being over.  Packing has begun for our move to Virginia.  We don't know where we are going to live yet.  I'm supposed to preach in two weeks at a big church in my town - one I've never attended, but they seem nice.  The scriptures are not yet speaking to me...  oh yea, my best friend just died.

I pray.  I run.  I sleep. 

Still. Flat.

So I thought about this poem from Joyce Rupp, called "Old Maps No Longer Work"

I keep pulling it out -
the old map of my inner path.
I squint closely at it,
trying to see some hidden road
that maybe I’ve missed,
but there’s nothing there now
except some well-traveled paths.
they have seen my footsteps often,
held my laughter, caught my tears.

I keep going over the old map
but now the roads lead nowhere,
a meaningless wilderness
where life is dull and futile.

“toss away the old map,” she says
“you must be kidding!” I reply.
she looks at me with Sarah eyes
and repeats, “toss it away.
it’s of no use where you’re going.”

“I have to have a map!” I cry,
“even if it takes me nowhere.
I can’t be without direction.”
“but you are without direction,”
she says, “so why not let go, be free?”

so there I am – tossing away the old map,
sadly fearfully, putting it behind me.
“whatever will I do?” wails my security
“trust me” says my midlife soul.

no map, no specific directions,
no “this way ahead” or “take a left”.
how will I know where to go?
how will I find my way? no map!
but then my midlife soul whispers:

“there was a time before maps
when pilgrims traveled by the stars.”

It is time for the pilgrim in me
to travel in the dark,
to learn to read the stars
that shine in my soul.

I will walk deeper
into the dark of my night.
I will wait for the stars.
trust their guidance.
and let their light be enough for me.

How are you navigating, in this moment?


  1. Two verses I'm thinking of for you - There is a time to mourn. You loved her well, you miss her intensely. Be sad. I'm sad with you. And then Psalm 30:5b Weeping may last through the night, but joy comes with the morning. Your morning will come.

  2. I miss my yaars even more when I hear you're sad. Makes me sad too, but not in a bad way, like your saddness is spreading, but like in and 'I'm sad with you' way.

    And I agree with Erin, this is your time to grieve, and while it won't feel even better to hear that your morning will come, that is our job as your friends to keep speaking to you that as we're sad we trust Spirit that morning will come and brighten our day, our lives. Blessings.