We have had a delightful summer of fun getaways and regular responsibilities, but these middle weeks of July had remained relatively unscheduled. I happily anticipated using this time to focus on my writing projects, with plenty of uninterrupted hours for reflection and serious effort. Instead, I found myself drained and depleted, uninspired and unable to write any words that I felt were worth sharing.
To overcome this empty feeling, I began asking God for the inspiration and determination to persevere. Then (to help God with my request 😉) I began listening to numerous podcasts, hoping to glean one helpful insight. I began reading books, hoping to find an uplifting story to share. I journaled often, hoping to clarify my inner thoughts and longings. This morning I told Jim that I was feeling desperate; desperate to fill my thoughts and spirit with something that would guide or inspire, something that would help me keep writing.
Some surprising questions suddenly came to me…
What if my lack that draws me to God is a holy invitation to something new?
What if my prayers for perseverance or determination have been misguided?
What if God wants to fill my emptiness with something else, something completely new and different?
Other prayers soon came to mind. How often could my prayers be short-sighted? How often have I assumed to know what I need? When I feel frustrated or irritated, I tend to pray for peace and patience; what if God is ready to fill me with courage or motivate me to action? When I am sad, I usually ask for trust and hope; what if God knows I need compassion or wisdom along with these? And now, when I am praying for inspiration and perseverance – what if I am being invited to rest in God’s loving presence instead?
May I learn to regard this emptiness as a gift, as an invitation to let God fill me with what God deems best. Trusting that the Spirit intercedes for us (Romans 8:26), that God loves us with an infinite love, and that God knows exactly what we need, I can simply bring my emptiness to God without a specific request. May my sole expectation be that God will fill me – and maybe even surprise me – with every goodness that is found in Love alone.
Photo by Karen (Anna Ruby Falls, GA)