A Call To PASSAGE
"Oh, mirror in the sky/ What is love?/Can the child within my heart rise above?/Can I sail through the changin' ocean tides?/Can I handle the seasons of my life?/Well, I've been afraid of changin'..." - Fleetwood Mac, "Landslide"
1. A movement from one place to another, as by going through, over, or across
2. A journey
3. The right, permission, or power to come and go freely
4. A path, channel, or duct through, over, or along which something may pass
(Source: The American Heritage Dictionary 4th Edition)
I've been working on this post (mostly in my mind, but I did have a draft saved with the definition of passage down) for at least two weeks now. I'v been procrastinating (Surprise! Surprise! NOT!). I may have even procrastinated about it today except that yesterday I told one of my friends (Hey, Mary, girl!!) that I would post it today.
There are two other things that kind of jump started today's post - one was my prayer time in the shower last night...I find that I'm most bare, naked, and vulnerable with God, when I'm actually bare and naked...and the other was remembering the Fleetwood Mac lyrics I quoted above.
I'll get to both those things in the rest of this post. But for now I invite you to take a deeper look inside my life as I explain how the word PASSAGE relates to my life right now.
If we were playing the word association game then the words that I would associate right now with PASSAGE are Transition and as Mary put it In Between.
Currently there are four main areas where I am experiencing movement from one place to another:
My Marital Status
To be perfectly honest up until my conversation with God last night the questions of my heart were perfectly articulated in the lyrics above:
Passage is a term often used to describe a journey made by water - i.e. The Middle Passage - which refers to the journey Africans were forced to go on across the ocean from Africa to the Americas when they were enslaved.
With my own call to passage I wondered in my heart although I wasn't able to articulate it until I recalled the words to that song this morning-
Can I sail through the changing ocean tides?
Can I handle the seasons of my life?
And those questions were all there because I was afraid of changing, especially with so much is changing at one time.
I'm going from being a single person in a happy relationship to becoming a man's wife! Not only is wedding planning a different monster altogether more importantly I need to be whole as an individual and understand God's requirements for me as a wife in order for our marriage to be the reflection of Christ's love for the church that GOD intended marriage to be.
I'm FINALLY transitioning from relaxed hair back to natural after years of contemplating, stretching and relaxing my hair only twice a year. I'm having to deal with two textures and the real challenge is actually having to do my own hair. My hair is thick, even with a relaxer! I love pulling it back and rarely ever wear it down. My head has broken many plastic unbreakable combs. It's a beast, literally. I've never been big on spending hours in the mirror on hair and make-up (tomboy ways die hard) and natural hair is going to require work! But it's also a part of me. It's another aspect of myself that I want to learn and manage and deal with just like any other aspect (i.e. feelings, habits, etc.)
I'm taking a more preventive and active approach to my health which means taking exercise and eating clean seriously. Eating clean always seemed like it would conflict with my foodie ways. I didn't care about the calories or the ingredients as long as it tasted good! But the more I learned about some of the crap (chemicals, pesticides, coloring, synthetic ingredients) found in processed food especially the more eating clean made more sense. Once I made the effort to make that change my palate adjusted. Exercising was hard to get into because I just wasn't use to having to make time. But old dogs can learn new tricks and it's a matter of forming new healthy habits.
I'm taking my writing more seriously. I'm a writer, have embraced that side of me. Oddly, enough I haven't been writing as much as I would like or as much as I think I should but I understand that it's a matter of timing - and as it should be taken seriously it requires planning and executing.
In college I would pride myself on being a multi-tasker. However, those tasks and projects were usually an end in themselves, few had a life changing impact. For major undertakings such as the ones above, before now, I would have never attempt to complete such major life overhauls at one time.
That brings me to the third definition of PASSAGE.
But first let me clarify-
If there is a Call to PASSAGE then someone must be doing the calling. In my life, that person is GOD. HE knows me better than I know myself. HE sees in me what I do not yet see in myself and HE challenges me to rise the occasion while backing me with His Grace. In His Infinite Wisdom GOD blessed me with two wonderful men who often serve as His mouthpiece in my life and who add a human touch element.
First, my fiancé, who has exuded and extended so much patience and understanding towards me in the past couple weeks, in times when I needed it most, and I know its nothing short of God's love and light in him. I'm so humbled and honored that God cares about me enough to see fit to join the two of us to together as husband and wife.
Secondly, my Amazing father! My dad is the first man I ever loved and my first example of a man who is capable of reflecting the heart of God for his family and for me.
These two men have been a source of strength and support through out my life and I'm grateful to God for blessing me with both of them. Both of these men speak to my potential and challenge me to believe GOD and what GOD has said about me. And so those questions in my soul are often answered by them with a resounding "YES!"
Still, there's nothing like the still small voice.
Last night in the shower GOD took me back to my early tween years and allowed me to see in such a vivid way how He orchestrated every detail of my life from then until now. I was so overwhelmed with gratitude, I broke down in the shower! I think that was the first time in a long time that I looked back at the path I've walked and fully embraced my journey simply because of the security and peace that comes from knowing that GOD is in control as He's always been!
And so that call to PASSAGE is one made by GOD himself and HE has given me His permission as well as power to make these transitions freely.
Our lives are never our own. They affect a great number of people and that brings us to the 4th definition of PASSAGE, a passage as a channel or duct. We can actually channel the goodness of JESUS into the lives of others and into the lives that need Him most!
Examine your life. Embrace your journey. Perhaps you'll find that you have been called to make some changes as well. When you know JESUS there's no need to fear major changes because GOD has been orchestrating time ever since HE created it.
All of us are on our own individual paths. These individual paths are still unwinding...we don't know where they will end but we can embrace our journeys and even enjoy them as we trust the ONE who created them all.
Happy Passage Pilgrims!
Much Love & Light to you!