Writing EMERGE was a bit challenging for me. I intended and wanted it to be something else but as I wrote, it seemed to take on a life of its own. It became more personal, more intense, more transparent- perhaps a little more than I was comfortable with. I found myself saying, “Oh wait. Hold up. Don’t go in that direction.” I tried to slow down the writing process in order to regain control over its direction and destination. It didn’t work. The words just kept swarming around in my head looking for a way to break out and spill onto the pages.
As I was writing, I was walking through my own dark period. My thoughts and feelings were at times fickle. I was use to addressing the crises and inner thoughts of other people- listening intently to their heart, helping to reflect their thoughts and feelings back to them so they can see them more clearly- own them, deal with them. God anointed me with a gift of counsel. I knew that, but this was different. This was me. Here I was in the midst of taking great leaps of faith, facing tremendous despair and fears, fighting enormous giants, struggling, pressing, at times tempted to feel hypocritical, doing all I could to keep believing … This was me! This was my life! What in the world?! I was in a place of transition, a place of pain, a place of purpose- in the midst of what turned out to be transforming and defining moments, as well as the heartbeat of EMERGE.
“…I had entered a new place- so difficult to explain. It was as if a perfect storm blew in and I was in the middle of an ocean on a boat by myself. I had been in everyone’s corner- cheering them, encouraging them, being a lifeguard- watching them get their breakthroughs- but now I stood in my own corner alone, in a boat that was filling with water, ready to capsize at any moment- the encourager, so in need of encouragement! The inspirer, yet feeling so uninspired… so needing a divine touch. Where in the heck were my cheerleaders?! Where were my lifeguards?! Where were the people I had poured into? People whom I always knew would have my back, went running for cover. I felt uncovered. Weakened. Exposed. I didn’t find solace at home. I found no solace at church. My passion had been hijacked and my dreams lay dormant on the shelf. I begin to awaken to unfulfilled promises, one-sided friendships, and internal wars. Darkness had shown up and for the first time, I could not clearly see. For the first time, I felt I was losing ground and possibly even losing my way.
However, here in the midst of these dark times, I felt an aggressive inner tug. God was compelling me to get up! “Get up! It’s your time.” What? Really? Are you kidding me right now? It should have been my time when everything was going right but You wait until I get “here” to say it’s my time? In case You haven’t noticed, things are a little messed up “here” and I could use Your assistance. What have I done? Whom had I ticked off? How do I make it right again? Better yet, how do I get out of “here”? “Here” was a place where I was wobbling between faith and fear; wrestling with brotherly love and bitterness- Stumbling around in the dark trying to find that light at the end of the tunnel. Here in this place You say that it’s my time? Please! I’m going back to bed…”
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