“What do you want from me?”
The question eeeks out of my brain quicker than I can stop it with better judgement. It’s not a harsh, angry tone—just a sense of exasperation as I sigh and mark an email unread, because I don’t know what to do with it today.
I got a card this weekend from my former supervisor in India, a dear friend. In it was a heart-shaped magnet that said underneath, “I love India.” But that bottom section had been broken off in transit, leaving only the heart left. I immediately felt all the feels about that, because isn’t that how it all feels? My heart still holds India so dearly, but that love that tied me to it with a calling and purpose and hopes of acclimating and belonging there… that was shattered as God both called me to stay and, after my term, to leave without a vision for returning. Without a vision for much of anything, really.
Some of that vision, of course, has been filled in. I know I’m right where he wants me right now. I love my job (even when it drives me crazy). I am writing again.
I am all here. All in.
I still want to live overseas one day, but not in the way I always though I would. I still want to serve, but I don’t know how right now. So I find myself asking, breathing, What do you want from me?
Later that morning, at work, I put away my Lent—day 3 sticky note that had been on my computer. And, not that I knew this as I did it, I needed to read what was underneath it.
That question from this morning, like bitter-Mara’s voice in my heart, was still echoing around.
What do you want from me?
That’s it, my thoughts rang like the bell of this buoy, reminding me I’m at sea. That’s all he wants from me. And it takes all of me:
It takes my actions,
and my feet.
It takes all of me.
It takes all of my stories:
Oriented towards him.
I lived so long in “a house I built” (*cue new favorite song) because I thought my story was contained in one narrative, one plot line, one steady stream of consciousness. Turns out, it’s actually fractured across multiple fronts. One journey, many stops and homesteads and roots, driven deep and pulled up harsh.
One journey, many stories.
I’ve done justice in different ways. Loved kindness in different homes. And walked with God (though maybe not as humbly as I could) through many places. Each one has built upon the other, either through large stones layered together, or through shattered dust mixing with new clay — the latter is the current season, for sure.
And maybe that’s the answer to my Mara-question. What do you want from me?
One journey, many stories.
But here’s some good news: that’s not just what he wants, though. It is what he is already doing. It is how he is shaping my life in every season. It is who he is: the God of stories. Your story, my story. Shaped and oriented by him and his Spirit towards him: one journey—always, ever towards him. With many stories & seasons along the way.
Does this question resonate with you? What season or story are you in? How is he orienting those towards his one journey? Let’s chat.