white space is waiting

For me, white space is a place where trouble and awe meet in the hands of Jesus.

The Beautiful Cull taught me this.

When I carve out time to refresh my soul with the One in whose hand it was woven and spun and reflect on my footprints in the world, I find things meet that need the meeting. Things like noise and quiet, rushing and stillness, thirst and water, problem and inklings of an answer, sifting and gathering, sin and forgiveness, body and soul.

Those are the kinds of meetings I need to take, face-to-face with myself, my savior and that otherness world. My soul is crafted for those kinds of meetings. But I find I am often waiting, waiting for one or another to show up, usually it's me!

I read recently about Sherpa guides in the Himalayan mountains who lead others up the mountain by pushing and pulling and wisdom. They will surprise their mountaineers by stopping suddenly and setting down all they are carrying and resting for a moment. They tell the climbers they are leading,

"We are waiting for our souls to catch up with our bodies."

Waiting. It is hard for my hurried soul. But waiting, like white space is not empty. Waiting is getting ready and watching expectantly for Who is coming.

That is why I need white space, to get ready, to watch and to wait for deep stirrings to rise to the surface. I am working on not letting my body get way out ahead of my soul. I do not want my mind, my ambition, my appetites or my decisions running in front of my soul. Can't I wait and let my Holy Ghost-filled soul lead the way?

I'm thinking the Spirit of risen Jesus will lead me where I truly need to go, but might not go naturally, willingly or first.

When the people of Israel left slavery, God led them by a pillar of cloud and light and it wasn't the nearest way, but the long and winding way through the wilderness. Why? So they would not change their minds when it got tough, but also so God's glory could shine.

Some days poetry says it best for me. I wrote this in response to thoughts on where I meet God, what I find when I get there and how my body and soul carry His image.

Holding Glory
by Terri Conlin

How can I hold glory
Glory piled on top of glory
Lightning strikes in fair skies
Streaking through my hair
Pouring out of fingerprints
Current from electric blue eyes
Iris to iris
Heart to heart
Fireworks spark dragonflies

Cross my fingers
Curve my thumbs
I make a bowl with my hands
But glory overruns
Filling up and passing through
Leaving traces in my plans
I met him at the table
In the broken bread
Pouring stars and sands

I wander between the worlds
Crossing boundaries
Barbed wire fences and broken gates
Searching for my soul
I am holding it, of course
Onionskin opaque
In my dirty fist
Cracked and weathered dry
Thirsty to the slake

Glory shines in the dirt
In the blood and sweat
Touching skin and bones
Leaving seeds in wounds and scars
Watered with my tears
Scattered on the wind and sown
Within the circled hawk
Hallelujah under shadowed wing
Carve out my heart of stone

Banner photo by Kayla Brase.