I apologize for the length of time since the last post. When I started this venture, my intent was to have at least one, if not two, a week. I will briefly tell my story of more recent days. It is no different than most of you and for some, it is not even on the same page as far as intensity is concerned, which is to say that my struggle does not even come close to what some must bear. But maybe it will help for us to think together. Suffice it to say, there just seems to come those occasions when the inner well runs dry. There is no sense or willingness to give the "bit more" that is needed.
I'm sure that a part of what I struggle with still is the recent loss of my Dad. He died on a Thursday before I was scheduled to see him the next Tuesday. I had seen him a little over a month before and am now grateful that I had that time. I really thought I would share one more visit. It was not to be. I still think of him every day and recall years of past memories. But I have yet to shed a tear since his death. And that is strange, because we are an emotional family. I have long held to the notion that tears help wash away some of the grief.
I know the reason I have not wept. Along with other contributing factors to the dry spell, I have to take a particular medication for about a year, every other year. The side effects are awful and I am left with a daily sense of serious fatigue. But thank goodness, I have been prescribed something that eases the symptoms considerably with the exception of the fatigue. The only problem is that the medicine is an anti-depressant. So, while I can now avoid disconcerting side effects, I also have trouble feeling. And I hate it! In a few months I will be off the meds for another year and I'm sure the emotional surges will return. And perhaps also the tears.
When the well is dry, who we are seems to be affected at some rather deep levels. Do we need to just get more rest, have a change in environment, work on changing negative habits? What? I have worked at the shelter long enough to know that I can almost go through the motions and still get the job done. But I am charged with the responsibility of being a proclaimer every Sunday morning and on some of those days, I feel as though I just cannot get in touch with what I need to say.
Jesus spoke of living water. I believe in such nourishment. But how do I get it? Do I need some kind of body-slamming religious experiences? Those don't seem to come to me. My challenge and my vulnerability is knowing that mine is a day by day sojourn. So I look to my time with a group of wild men every Friday morning over coffee, the embrace of dear, dear friends, a freedom-loving congregation, the face of Jesus in those who hurt, and the love of a family that never seems to be willing to give up on each other. Cool refreshment comes in a variety of cups. And for a while my thirst is quenched.