I'm conscious of the fact that I've not done a lot of blogging since Wonderful Husband and I moved to the United States. I'm not sure of the precise reasons for this. First was the simple disruption and chaos of moving. Moving an entire household overseas is different from moving a household to a different part of the country or even moving overseas with two suitcases and a few posted parcels as I did in my original move from the US to Belgium in 1987. As any middle-aged couple will tell you, house-moving is physically and emotionally demanding but this goes up a notch when the move is international.
More recently, I think that I've not been blogging because I still have not managed to get myself fully "settled" in the US. We undoubtedly picked one of the worst times in our lives to quit jobs and move without any employment prospects. And I have been unable to get gainful employment either in "the secular world" or within the church. But even more discouraging is the fact that I seem unable to even volunteer in the church in any capacity beyond answering a call from this or that committee for volunteers. One of the narratives of my journey to the ministry was a testimony about pushing doors to see if they opened. Here in the US, every door I've pushed has stayed resolutely shut. I particularly miss preaching and presiding at communion, but part of me is aware that these activities are part and parcel of being a church leader, which I am currently not.
I'm reminded of the part of John Wesley's covenant prayer where we pray "let me be employed for you or laid aside for you" and I always secretly thought "thank you that I am employed for you, and - truth be told - I don't really want to be laid aside for you, thank you very much." And then another part of me wonders what John Wesley himself was thinking when he said these words. His life story is not exactly one of allowing himself to be laid aside!
I don't think that this prayer necessarily implies passivity. I don't think it implies giving up on pushing doors. For me, I think it implies the need to find new doors to push and it also implies being patient whilst going through the process of finding new doors and pushing on them. There is also comfort in these difficult words, because other people throughout the centuries have prayed them in far more difficult circumstances than I'm in.
Do I now hit the "delete" button because this is too personal and sounds like whining? I don't mean to whine but I sense that I'm not going to be able to blog further until I'm honest about where I am. We'll see if I find further inspiration in the coming weeks. "Let me be full, let me be empty, let me have all things, let me have nothing".