It started with scissors.

I hate going to a hair salon because I feel like all the ladies there have all this secret knowledge acquired through dark rituals (probably). They even speak another language – with words like layering and ratting and texture. Unless I speak the secret code words, I’ll identify myself as a non-hair person and they’ll probably give me a purple mohawk.

You might scoff, but something similar happened at my brother’s wedding. My soon-to-be sister-in-law was getting her hair done gorgeously, and all the other bridesmaids (and me) made a pact that we would just have out hair done simply, ‘pinned out of the way,’ so as to keep all the attention on her.

So I sat down awkwardly in the hairdresser’s chair and declared that I wanted my hair simply ‘pinned back’.

She looked at me like I was a Martian, straightened my hair, stuck a couple of bobby pins in my hair and said, “Like that?”

Not knowing any better, I shrugged and said, “Sure.”

I hopped out of the chair and turned around to see ALL of the other ladies with their hair twisted and braided and curled in ways I didn’t know possible. And my sister-in-law had this magnificently complicated bun with stray curls framing her face and flowers interwoven between the strands and her veil magically attached to the back of her neck.

And me with my bobby pins.

See what I mean about code words? Continue reading


Seen and Unseen


I don’t know why I’m here.

I mean, I understand my purpose on Earth and existence in general (to love God and bring Him glory by loving his people and drawing them into relationship with him).

I just don’t know why I’m here. Here, in this city; here now.

Every so often I find myself content with the situation and feel successful and good at what what I do.

And then a picture, a recollection, a word from friends far off and the adventures that they’re having and the impact they’re making…

And then regret and envy wrap icy fingers around my heart and s q u e e z e until it starts leaking from my eyes and nose.

And I wonder why I’m here. Why here, why now, why not with that ministry, that missionary, helping those people, using my gifts and passion to preach the gospel and enable its preaching?

I feel like I’m puttering in a sandbox of vanity and meaninglessness while so many others around me are making an eternal difference, today.

There aren’t answers to my questions – or at least, not that I’ve heard. I’m asking, waiting, listening, wrestling, demanding, weeping, wondering.

I don’t know the answer. I don’t know. I don’t know if there’s reason at all or if I’m even in the right place at all. I’m just… here. Like a lump on a rock.

I would say that I feel forgotten. But it wasn’t three hours ago that I was reminded differently. 

“Then she called the name of the Lord who spoke to her, You-Are-the-God-Who-Sees; for she said, ‘Have I also here seen Him who sees me?'”
– Genesis 16:13

El Roi, you see me and you do not forget. You remember and you act. And your timing is perfect. Thank you. Be here, be with me. I need you.

I don’t know why I’m here. But I do know who is with me. I have not been abandoned or forgotten.

Until these tearstains dry, until I hear the the reasons why, here I will remain. Waiting. Watching. Listening. Sitting in silence beside my Beloved.

And for now, for this moment tonight, that will be enough.

Although it’s hard and it’s heavy and it hurts, and so much in me wants to be doing something more, I know that I am seen and known and loved and I have been planted here.

God, help me to be content with the seen and unseen.