Since the beginning of 2017, I have made “home” of at least a dozen international cities and had at least twice that many bedrooms or couches. A good portion of that time has been living from two suitcases. I’ve met a lot of people and forgotten a lot of names. I’ve made some lifelong friends. Sometimes familiarity was the people I was with, sometimes it was the book I held and sometimes it was nothing at all.
It might seem like I’m lost and I’m even struck by that idea as I do the math. I’ve heard more than one time, “You’ll find your place,” as I briefly get to summarize the season of my life. Some people might even wonder what I’m running from, though no one has asked that to my face.
But looking back I’m reminded of how redemptive this experience has been and how much I’ve learned about faith. 2017 was when I “saw the light,” so to speak, after decades of darkness that preceded it. Some of it was trauma and a lot of it was my own pride, selfishness and deceit. I may have appeared as the cover of “adventure and seek,” but the reality was that I was desperately reaching for anything that might let me feel I had control.
Life to me since then has been seeking what’s behind the veil of the pseudo human experience the world has to offer. It’s been seeking biblical truth and coming to terms with my own sinful nature. I’ve experienced grief, released shame and had to ask for a lot of forgiveness. But I would say that the greater theme has been that of patience and of delayed gratification. It’s been seeing the beauty of what was to come on the other side without needing to get validation about it.
I always knew I’d end up here – this ambiguous sense of here. It always looked and felt and played much like Hawaii and now I’m living in Oahu.
But then you reach paradise and you still wonder… what’s next? And I think that’s the essence of what I’ve learned about faith. Sometimes you get a glimpse and you have to trust the challenge of the process to get there. And then other times yet it’s a completely blind step, praying that the path comes beneath your foot before you land it.
While the world battles the ugliest fight I’ve seen in my lifetime, I’m surfing aqua blue waves and that hardly seems fair or even present – but nothing about that makes me feel uncertain that I’m in the right place. There’s also nothing about it that makes me certain that this will last. I’m mostly just uncertain about 99.9% of everything.
Except for this one thing: what I want to remember in every moment is that all of this was already written and that there is a Light extending into everything we cannot yet see.