Digging, Digging, Digging…but No Hole to be Found

digging

For those of you who write a blog or have attempted one at some point, sometimes trying to find something to write about can be hard.

Or maybe that is just me, because I am NOT a writer.  No really.  It takes me days and weeks to come up with content for one topic and then hours to actually write it all out.  And that is on a good day.

When life is frustrating, stressful, and discouraging, I find my content is devoid of authenticity because I am trying to write in a positive voice, and since I am not feeling positive, those warm fuzzies don’t come through very well.  I feel people may come away from reading my post wanting to stick a finger in their eye or mine.

So how does one write about walking in a valley without sounding like a whiner and causing everyone to go blind?

I have no clue.

But, lucky you, I am going to try.  Because…well….it is part of the journey.

The last few weeks have been stressful.  There is a lot to prepare for when going out in to the mission field.  It doesn’t help when there are hard deadlines with lots of tasks to complete, and I am not in control of the outcomes of some of those tasks.

If you don’t know me particularly well, I will reveal a truth most of my friends will agree on.  I am task driven.  You want something done and done well?  I am your gal.  Unfortunately, though, my drive to complete the task and complete it well, will overrun basic needs such as food, sleep, and mental health.  Also, I become very focused on the task(s).  This is good to complete the task, but not good when you lose sight of what is important in what needs to be done.

This is the hole I dig for myself all of the time.

When I would dig holes while working in the corporate world, I would just dig until I was exhausted and frustrated, and someone else would take over or I would take a break and start again until the hole was done.

This is not the case when working for God’s purposes.  Primarily because God has His plan.  He has work that needs to be done, and we are invited to participate in that work. We do not determine what the work is, how the work should be done, or even when the work is to be completed.  He does.  Unfortunately, these simple facts are what I lose track of when I focus on what I feel needs to be done.

I dig and I dig and I dig, and I go nowhere.  It’s like digging in bedrock with a garden trowel.  Since I am going nowhere, I must work harder or longer or maybe I need to use a shovel.  Because that will get me going somewhere…..right?

No.

After some stupid amount of time, I sit exhausted, frustrated, and stressed about the lack of what hasn’t been done.  Unfortunately, it is at this point that I begin to let go and really listen to what God has to say about the whole endeavor, things like:

“I didn’t really want you do dig there.”

or

“I have this jackhammer/bulldozer/stick of dynamite that I wanted to use, but you wouldn’t get out of the way.”

or

“I don’t really need you to dig at all right now, I just need you to trust/rely on/hang out with me.  I’ve got it all worked out, but it isn’t time yet, so let’s just wait and I’ll tell you when it is time and exactly what to do.”

This is pretty much where I have been.  I feel like I have been digging in bedrock, and my focus has been on the task of digging and trying to get somewhere with the digging, but I am not really getting anywhere with the digging.

The good news is, I finally have reached the place where I am willing to hear what God is trying to tell me.  It might take too long to write it all out in a lesson learned way, so I am just going to write what I think God is saying.

Anne,
You are digging too much.  There is nothing you can really do about this bedrock.  Besides, what I have planned for you is MY plan.  I have asked you to be part of it, not run with it.  This plan will come to be through MY hand, not yours.  I am also preparing you for what I have planned.  There is work for you to do. Not only will I reveal what needs to be done, but I want to make sure you are ready for when it comes.  Pay attention to me and learn.

Until then, remember I have a plan.  Stay close to me so that you don’t lose sight of my plan (again), and be thankful for everything that I have done, am doing, and will do to see this plan through.

Love always,
God

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About Anne

I moved from Seattle, Washington to join a ministry in Santiago, Spain called Pilgrim House. The Pilgrim House is a place where pilgrims of the Camino can come and find community, conversation, and prayer. This is the story of my journey.
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14 Responses to Digging, Digging, Digging…but No Hole to be Found

  1. Good word for all of us to consider Anne, thank you for sharing your heart… and showing us Jesus.

  2. Joana says:

    I know exactly what you mean…been digging one of those bedrocks myself since I stopped work to live the stay at home mission…it’s that feeling that i just gotta do it ALL or it simply won’t get done…as if God who created the world without me could not take care of some time to get laundry done. What a bummer that I am not in control, that this is not all about me or in my hands…and what an amazing blessing it is. I remembered a couple of times when I managed to let go in the past 2 months and the feeling was so wonderful. I felt like I was really living in peace at those times…till my project manager type A self woke up again…now I am striving to lock her in the closet again…and let God take the wheel.
    I will be praying for you….and i love writing…so if you have writer’s block and want to brainstorm…just give me a call.
    BIG HUG
    Joana

  3. Shannon Smith says:

    Anne- this blog is very timely for me. I think you know that we are wired similarly. I don’t deal well with uncertainty. Sometimes, it’s difficult to discern whether I am supposed to be entirely still with respect to some decision or circumstance or do some work and then wait. I find that when I do some work, I want to just keep working. Maybe, I can influence the outcome? This week I am focusing on Matthew 6:33 “But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.” When I feel anxious, rather than picking up a shovel, I need to pick up my Bible and realize that my focus should be on God and not on my circumstances. Thank you for posting.

  4. Beth says:

    Anne,your blog, beautifully written, ministered to me this morning greatly. Timeless, Biblical thoughts we should remember especially during the trials. We are all diggers… A HUGE thunderstorm came thru Peoria this morning. The only reason I took time to quit digging and read… Thank you! Beth Mc

    • Anne says:

      Sometimes it can be hard to remember these things in the midst of the trials. I am so thankful for God’s patience and grace in the process. And for storms that force us to stop or slow down. 😉

  5. Orlena Ballard says:

    Anne, thanks so much for your honesty and the insight God is showing you. He is grooming you for mighty things. I could so relate to how you do things — whether it be writing or tasks. Thank you for the reminder to listen to the Lird instead of going about things our own way. Blessings to you! Orlena

  6. becki christensen says:

    Thank you for sharing your heart I am praying praying praying… and i think you write very well.
    aunt Becki

  7. DeAnne Willis says:

    Great reminder to everyone that God is in control and he sees our path clearly! Thanks for sharing–still in prayer for you and the ministry!

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