Overwhelmed. The best adjective to convey how I’m feeling as Fellows begins to wrap up. Fellows activities have somewhat slowed, but housing and job-hunting more than make up for fewer assignments. This is the 3rd time in my life the path hasn’t been well-lined for me: first just when I graduated in 2015, then this past year before Fellows, but this time is different. Going to Spain was a one-year commitment, as was Fellows. Now the pressure of finding something more long term feels critical.

Of course life goes on. No one and nothing stops so I can devote all of my time to job-hunting. There are projects at my internship, which will soon include passing off my duties for the transition. There are also friendships to maintain, some to build into next year and a few that distance will complicate. Over it all, I seem to be wrestling far more, deep spiritual questions than I ever have.

One of my high school teachers once pointed out to us the natural rhythm of life, that is, the almost universal pattern of wishful planning. Always wishing for the next big event. From high school on to college, then a job, marriage, children, retirement with other major events filling in the gaps. He warned that mentality leads to wishing our lives away. So live in the present, in contentment. Problematically, I have no idea how to do that for more than a few moments, and in the big decision periods of life, contentment seems counterintuitive.

I want a life not driven by checklists. The list in my head is too long to remember, but writing it down makes it feel unmanageable. And then my list of questions is daunting too. Unmanageable. Maybe the real issue here is my incessant attempt to manage my life instead of holding it before the Lord. I know from experience this doesn’t go well for me, and yet I haughtily seize control, insisting I know better. Leaning into the discomfort may be the better option, but I’ll fight with all I have until I’m forced to give up control. I have to remind myself my Father is giving me grace when he brings me to that place. If the best thing for me is to be close to him, and if I can only do that by letting loose my tight grip, then it must be grace that charges me to give up. Lord help me lean in.  

J. Nordstrom