There's about a week before I leave for Uganda... and I don't really handle spaces like this well. There's something about dead space that gives me restless leg syndrome like nobody's business. I want to move, want to travel, want to create something, want to discover stuff. I don't enter into rest particularly well. It's always been this way. Give me a break longer than a couple days and I'm itching to go, to do something. My mind runs wild, I start planning out adventures, I'll sporadically play my guitar, try to teach myself a new instrument.
I have a really hard time just chilling.
There's been the restless, nomadic undercurrent that I've been living out for most of my life. Probably because we moved so much as a kid. When you change schools 8 times as a kid, it kind of drills that into you. So I have a tendency to pursue the next a lot. It's not so much that I'm bailing on things. More that I'm just focused on the next adventure. This can be problematic because there have been times when I've bailed on communities or groups that really are good for me/really care about me. Thankfully there are a handful of folks that haven't bailed no matter how hard I've tried (Emmet, the Whitsetts, the Lyons, Bear, the Salladins, etc.)... but it's something that I'm trying really hard to productively work against... because I'm running myself ragged.
Rest can be intimidating, because it requires a certain amount of vulnerability that we never really acknowledge. We have to trust that things left alone for a day, or week, or month will be okay without us. We have to be okay with others really investing, really learning about who we are because we sit still long enough to have the deeper conversations. We have to be okay with realizing that we can't do everything and that true rest, real meaningful rest means getting rid of the things in our life that we can't balance without obscenely loaded schedules. These can be overwhelming things, especially in a culture that defines so much by success, by what we accomplish.
I was talking to a group of folks last night, relaxing, telling random stories, just chilling. And we started planning out a missions trip, getting excited about what we could accomplish with a small dedicated team, getting focused on what we could do if we really set out minds on it. And in the midst of that I almost lost that it was really good and live giving just to relax, to talk, to set aside plan for even a couple hours. It was really recharging just to be real even for a short time. I almost lost that when the conversation turned towards what we could "do." It really would have been a shame if I had.