The last week or two, I have continued to move in and out of my “dark place” as I have lovingly named it. My demons keep popping up their ugly little heads and whispering uncomfortable things in my ear. “You can’t do this. You’re drowning in this all by yourself. No one knows how lonely and overwhelmed you feel right now.” And I tell them that they’re lying… but I can still hear them.

A friend of mine bought a book for me and I started reading it this week– Ruth Haley Barton’s Strengthening the Soul of Your Leadership. So far, though it is about the demands of leadership and not about the demands of normal life, it has contained a lot of wisdom I need to hear. She speaks about the importance of owning what is going on inside of our souls, about being willing to (and this is key for me right now) STAY INVOLVED with our souls. I hear the invitation: Don’t walk away from what I’m feeling or the darkness inside that scares me… but sit with it. Stay involved with it. Yes, it’s uncomfortable, but it’s my precious soul. I need to love it even when I wish it were a happier place to be. And my healing will be grace– God will do this work. I won’t stay here forever.

She speaks of the soul as this wild animal that needs to be coaxed out into the open and not scared off by loud voices and un-tender hands. I must be gentle with myself right now. I must trust that God is going to be gentle with me, too, as I continue to walk between two houses, juggling all the demands and working at each task… little by little all things will be well, my soul included.

So I’m going to try to stay here for now, in the un-comfort. It doesn’t feel good and I wish I were feeling happy and excited and at peace. But I’m not. I own it. It’s mine. And I’m God’s.