"Come away...," He calls to me.
So, finally, sixteen years overdue, I take a 'Mommy Sabbatical.'
Four days, four nights, alone in a solitary place; away with my Jesus.
Time away from my husband.
Time away from children.
Time away from chores, and schedules, and demands.
Time away from pleasing others.
Time to see beyond the chaos of my busy-filled life.
Time to rest.
Time to read.
Time to write.
Time to run.
Time to sit in the sun.
Time to do nothing.
Time to live naked with my Creator, remembering, experiencing, that He did not make me to walk in shame.
Hours and hours out at Red Rocks, running, hiking, sitting, soaking. Relishing the at-last clear view, grinning with the View-Designer, "wow, Lord!" And feeling His answering delight, "I know, I know...such grandeur, isn't it!"
No one to prepare meals for, clean up after; I eat when I'm hungry, and leisurely tidy up right away. Decadent, organic, gluten-free, health&life-giving savory bites of greens, fish, tomatoes, sugar-snap peas, rice crackers, chocolate. So much ice-water sipped in the sunshine; and the naughty indulgence of all the diet soda I want, right out of the bottle!
The only agenda is the call of the Holy Spirit.
Watch taken off; left on the bathroom counter. Sleep when I'm tired; wake when I'm rested. Sit on the deck and practice the words of James...or just watch the solitary cloud-puff meander by.
After 24 hours, I begin to see more clearly, breathe more deeply.
After 48 hours, petty irritations slip away; I smile into the emptiness of a room full of the fire-warming presence of Christ's Grace.
After 72 hours, the slow-release finally succumbs to sincere rest, joy that might even overcome circumstances.
My angst-filled cry of "Hosanna! God, help me!"...becomes a contented and coming-to-understanding sigh of "ahhhhhleluia...."
And each night, slipping solitary into the hot-tub, gazing up at the stars: awed by His Glory, overwhelmed by gratitude. "Who am I Lord God, and who is my family, that You have blessed us so?"
I awake Monday morning...with a sigh of sadness.
Yeah, wishing I was so holy & fulfilled, rested & refueled, rarin' to head back into the craziness of home & kids & schedules & diapers & laundry. But...not so much.
No, I woke Monday morning and wished I had another week. Maybe then I could come to a place of really missing the crew. But after four days? I just wanted more of God. Okay, and the peace of sleeping till 9 in the morning without some little person needing me. And yeah, the joy of just sitting in the sunshine doin' nuthin.
Still - I did find this:
I found a strange sorta beyond-myself peace for loving the children even when we headed straight into a week of home school madness & birthday parties & puke-up-yer-guts flu virus.
I found a tenderness for Kevin where one-week-prior I might've bit back with my own dose of over-exhausted-bitter-woman venom.
I found longed-for pleasure in running, finally, after a decade of wishing for it, between so many months of pregnancy & nursing.
I found new delight in His Word again, all at once thirsty and quenched, after weeks of dry-mouth in the desert.
And now - back in the reality of home & family & chores & schedules & demands -
I have found that I am the same ol' cranky woman...
I take time,
for a taste of that Mommy Sabbatical.
Oh - and I promise you this -
I won't wait sixteen more years for the next getaway!
No, I don't deserve it, and I didn't earn it.
But I need it.
I need time away with Jesus.
"Then, because so many people were coming and going that they did not even have a chance to eat, He said to them, 'Come away with me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.' So they went away by themselves in a boat to a solitary place." --Mark 6:31-32
Have you ever taken time away to rest & refuel? How do you get a taste of that God-time on a weekly/daily basis? Seriously - tell me about it! I could use some creative ideas...and maybe someone else could too...