In the past weeks I've been sitting with friends, clients, books, and my own internal ponderings. Many I have been with have been weary from activity and unsatisfied with daily routine. There is such pressure to do, to conform, to participate, and at the end of it all, there is such longing for more that fights its way to the forefront. Usually, longing brings about more busyness, because longing is so very hard to bear.
My own current journey had lead me to be very aware of how much I desire relationship, and how adept I am at keeping people from knowing my heart. As I've faced my own longing, I am left with deep loneliness. In my ambivalence I welcome the loneliness, because for the first time in my life I'm not trying to flee from it through temporary aloes, but I also hate my awareness and experience of it. Loneliness hurts! Yet, this has brought to the place where I'm aware that I have the choice to move towards people and relationships or to spew thoughts of blame and contempt as to why people aren't pursuing me. Only one of those choices is acceptable.
Additionally, I've been reading through the Bible chronologically, which means I'm currently in Chronicles and Kings, which is full of stories of murder, deceit, war, envy, hatred, disobedience, selfishness, and don't forget genealogy. Many chapters end with a prompt that if I should desire to know more, that I can find it in the Book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Israel. Thank you, I've had enough. There are a few kings that weren't evil and grotesquely disobedient, but still they failed to remove the totems to the false gods, and this is their noted offense, not only because it was a black mark against them, but because it meant that the hearts of the people were not set upon God.
This jarred me this morning, because it made me remember what God wants, what he's wanted all the way back in the garden. He wants relationship with his people; He wants their hearts. My longings are there for such a lovely reason, to allure me to God. Busyness, television, alcohol, pornography, work, etc. all deadened our longing for what we were made for and for what we can have: deep, meaningful relationship where we can be vulnerable, weak, needy, messy, adored, doted on, cherished, known . . . . Today I am thankful for loneliness, because my loneliness is actually longing, and my longing does not have to go unmet.