I have planned it repeatedly. My escape. Yes – I am going to do it. I am going to run away. I do tell my husband ahead of time and assure him that he can come too. Yes we will also take the kids and dogs. Where are we headed? I am pretty sure it is a secluded farm house ten minutes from local shopping and an interstate. It has a wrap-around porch with space for a large garden but best of all it has space for me, my mind and ideas to run free. It is free from the stress of this world. The windows on this lovely farm house are open with the wind blowing the curtains and I am in a sundress that actually fits and looks good on me. I mentally visit this place often, and occasionally do a google real estate search to see if it really exists…..just in case.
I am a youth director who had just completed Vacation Bible School, and then left soon after for three separate weeks of travel which were amazing. I returned home to a crazy rat race. For those of you who know me you’d say that is where I function best. Not this time. The demands of being a good wife and mom, helping at my parent’s furniture store, my job at church with the ramp up of fall activities, the school registrations, orientations and supplies, sports practices and a messy house were too much. Deciding what I would do for my volunteer and serving times had me overwhelmed. I entered the fall rat race full speed ahead wondering how I would put life in order. My focus was to only do activities that pertain to my family and critical existence. I Prayed….”Lord help me slow down, help me with this I cannot sort through this alone and I cannot function any longer in this environment and need peace”. I had guilt for having everything a girl could want from the outside-in and sadness that I had no current joy or appreciation for it from the inside-out.
So I ran – but not away. We had a youth lock-in at church. We had fun games, amazing volunteers, the kids came and brought friends – it was turning out to be a great night. While it was daylight we decided to get in a game of kick-ball. Chaperones and high school kids vs. middle school kids. It was old school fun. Our team was down by 3 runs I actually got on base – the bases were loaded. One of our team members, a junior in high school, kicked the ball and we ran! I ran as fast as I could go – there was cheering…..I knew we were going to tie the game. However, as I rounded third base something gave out in my right leg both legs buckled and I fell hard. After some wooziness, instead of celebrating a victory, my husband and one of the students carried me to the van for a ride to the ER.
Now here I sit in a leg brace not able to drive, not able to take care of the daily concerns. I remembered my prayer – “Lord, help me slow down….help me with this….I need peace”. Maybe I should have been more specific in my prayers because I wanted peace according to my schedule, in perfect health, and on my terms. This was not God’s plan. I was too busy wanting my version of what peace felt like instead of resting in God’s abundant reserve of perfect peace that He always has waiting for us.
I wonder. If I would have stretched out and warmed up before the kick ball game, would I have been able to round 3rd base and head for home injury free? I also wonder, if I would have stretched out and warmed up each day connecting with God before I headed into these busy fall days would I have wanted to run away?
Either way I am certain that God has me where He wants me and only He can make all things work for good. The scripture I read today came from a Psalm written by David after the Lord delivered him from the hand of all his enemies: Psalm 18:19 – He brought me out into a spacious place, He rescued me because He delights in me. As I sit in our living room on the sofa, I am unable to run and fully available to God. I have been reminded that wherever He takes me, it will be better than my fictional country farm house…….guaranteed……because it’s HIS will and I know He delights in me. Feel like running today? Take my advice stretch toward God first, it will go better, because He delights in you.