Home Again, Home Again

I made a quick trip to NC this week to meet my enchanting new nephew and see my beloved brother bask in his "new dad" glow. I knew we would not all be able to go down together for at least a month, and I didn't want to miss this special time when a new life is so NEW to all of those around them, so I just jumped in the car and ran down for a couple of days. (I figure, "Shoot! If I can bring two kids into this world myself then I can drive myself down the road to see my family!")

Since I had so much time alone on the six-and-a-half hour drive I got a lot of overdue thinking done. Sounds scary, huh? The following represents the highlight, or at least the only part I could legally put in print.

I spent time with those who know me best and love me anyway. The ones who have seen the good, the bad, the ugly, and the downright indescribable in me. The ones who remember what I looked like in Wonder Woman underoos, and know all of my childhood nicknames. I listened to the voices and looked into the faces of those whose DNA I carry, whose own stories have shaped not only who they are, but who I am as well. I drove around and saw the places where monumental things happened in my life. My Ebenezer Stones, so to speak. The places where my sweetheart kissed me. The church were we discovered God's call on our lives, and where we pledged to love each other until death. The hospital where my baby boy was born, and where one life ended for me and another one began. And I realized that doing these things grounds me again-it makes me remember who I am and what I can do. It also reminds me of all that God has done in my life. It serves as a kind of plumb line, bring me back into alignment with the core of who I have been and who I am today.

The constant push and pull of expectations and deadlines that make up being in ministry tend to reshape me like the tides redecorate the shore every day. Being surrounded by people who don't know your whole story kind of redefines who you are, as you morph into only being what those people see in you. The reflection of more shallow waters. But I have come back stronger and more centered from my quick trip home. I not only drove several hours to cuddle my baby brother's baby, I launched myself back out into the deep waters of who I am.



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