We tend to measure things in dollars and cents, and we like to get a certain return for our investment. I flew across the country for 8 hours of encouragement, 8 hours of investment in dreams that seem vaporous. It felt extravagant and a little foolish, and for weeks before the trip I sat in awe of the potential for failure in this wide-flung door and far-fetched idea.
Going where? For what?
But along with the confusing kind of awe, there is also the awe of grace and the God who owns the cattle on a thousand hills, the One who opens and no one shuts, who goes abundantly beyond all we could ever ask or even remotely fathom.
Things don't have to always make sense. As Emily said last weekend at The Barn - we can become addicted to drawing conclusions. Maybe drawing conclusions makes us feel justified, when what we really need is to walk in confidence of the Spirit's work in our life - convicting of sin, righteousness, and judgement.
The Barn was lovely, to be sure. The ladies were gracious, gorgeous, generous, real. Emily and Christa wove their words and music so naturally that the whole event felt like chocolate and peanut butter - meant to be. Myquillyn layered furniture and beauty and her signature love-of-imperfection so wonderfully that I almost put my bare feet right up on her coffee table. Almost. But I did curl them under me on the white slip-covered sofa and sink into the comfort of fellowship and art and the occasional kitty darting through.
For a small town girl, it was everything inspiring.
From the hours of tedious travel made better with Rachel - a dear friend who jumped for crazy with me - to the steeping of words and deep-down rooting of thoughts, there's no way to measure the effect. It was way more than 8 hours.
I've only just begun to look through my notes from Saturday. My husband wants details and highlights and I can't even put words to what are really just seeds, less concrete-and-bordered and more living-and-squishy. No good words yet. Thankfully my husband knows this about me and he is patient. And generous. And says yes to my crazy ideas whenever he possibly can.
What I can say is that love is generous and extravagant and down-home-comfortable and it doesn't often get defined satisfactorily. But we keep trying and Jesus keeps giving us new facets to examine. He shows up in people we've just met and in those we've known for years, and still we are shocked.
He loves me that much?