Writer's retreat

“I’m too sad to write.”

I heard a friend say this just the other night at a small writer’s retreat we attended. 

Too sad to write. Yes. I know this.

She was referring to her own heart-trial, and though the words weren’t spoken for me, it was the first time in a long time that something clicked into place in my heart. The answer to why I couldn’t update my blog very often. Why I couldn’t seem to get personal. Those of you hanging around here might have noticed. I’m just not here as often as I once was. And when I am, it’s almost always about something fun–the good news. Never is it about the sadness. The sadness that has taken hold of my life so deeply, that I’ve lost my voice. It’s still there with beloved novels in the works. When I spend my evenings in the make-believe. In crafting the love stories at the very center of my writing career. My happy place in an orchard somewhere in the mountains of Appalachia. A place where love and hope reign.

But it’s also in these evenings that I sometimes find myself lacking the energy to write. Instead I put on my slippers, sit on the bed and pull a blanket close. Looking around at the room and realizing how empty it is. How alone I am. Oh, the sadness.

Has it really been nearly a year of this grief? Nearly a year of this broken? Was it really months upon months ago that those beloved feet headed off?

It has been that long and at times I feel myself growing faint with it. 

And yet ever-present is the body of Christ at work, bringing comfort and hope. With so much love that it keeps me going. It puts meals in the freezer for the kids and I and kindling on our front porch. It puts love in our hearts and smiles on our faces and in the days when I am so frail and feel like I have nothing left to give, these people wrap me up and whisper God’s promises in the deepest, most despairing parts of me. They speak right into the broken, infusing me with the strength to get through just one more day. One more night. And if I keep doing that, the sun really will rise. I can see it now. The faintest of glows on the horizon.

It’s in the Proverb I turned to this morning. Laced right there in the Psalms. Hope.

O God, You are my God; Early will I seek You;
My soul thirsts for You; My flesh longs for You
In a dry and thirsty land where there is no water.
So I have looked for You in the sanctuary,
To see Your power and Your glory.

Because Your lovingkindness is better than life,
My lips shall praise You.
Thus I will bless You while I live;
I will lift up my hands in Your name.
My soul shall be satisfied as with marrow and fatness,
And my mouth shall praise You with joyful lips.

When I remember You on my bed,
I meditate on You in the night watches.
Because You have been my help,
Therefore in the shadow of Your wings I will rejoice.
My soul follows close behind You;
Your right hand upholds me.

(Psalm 63: 1-8)

It is in this dry and thirsty land that I sit and finally type these words. Words to express both the sadness and the pain. Both the crying out and the trust in the Lord. He is good. He is faithful. He is in every corner of emptiness and every corner of alone. He fills in the broken pieces with light so that good can shine out of it. I hope one day these cracks might be able to help others, but for today, I am thankful for those who have gone before me and who remind me daily that He is the lifter of my head. Even in the sadness, to God be all glory for ever and ever, amen.



Comments are always treasured. For this post especially, will you help me keep them gentle and encouraging? Should thoughts arise of a different nature, would you be so kind as to lift those words to the Lord in prayer, or if something is pressing, please feel free to contact me privately.

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