If you didn't see my previous post about my approach to June, you'd want to check it out because I'm going in that direction for the remainder of the month. Today's post was inspired by a conversation with an acquaintance yesterday. During our conversation, he asked me how my day was, and before I knew it, I said, "It was fine; I eased into it."
Immediately after answering, I paused. Have you ever had that happen to you? Where you say something before you realize it, only to discover that your words carry an unexpected weight? When I said "ease," it was like I triggered something. Now I'm not saying this is a prophetic word or anything, bbuuttt it felt right.
the state of being comfortable: such as
freedom from pain or discomfort
freedom from care
freedom from labor or difficulty
freedom from embarrassment or constraint
an easy fit
to free from something that pains, disquiets, or burdens
to make less painful
to lessen the pressure or tension of especially by slackening, lifting, or shifting
to maneuver gently or carefully
to moderate or reduce especially in amount or intensity
to make less difficult
to put the helm of (a ship) alee
to let (a helm or rudder) come back a little after having been put hard over
Ease (intransitive verb):
to give freedom or relief
to move or pass slowly or easily —often used with a directional word (such as over or up)
to become less intense, vigorous, or engaged : become moderate usually used with up or off
to apply less pressure usually used with up or off
to act in a less harsh manner —usually used with up or off
I listed all of these definitions of ease because there is a pattern here.
The pattern is the absence of struggle.
Looking back over my life, I can pinpoint long, painful seasons of struggle. But, if I'm honest, those seasons have also done a lot of damage. Sometimes, my heart is harder than it should be. Sometimes, I can be bullheaded and dogmatic because I don't want to lose. Sometimes, there's a stained casing around my body because I've had to armor up more times than I'd like to admit.
In the words of Langston Hughes, "Life for me ain't been no crystal stair." In fact, I haven't had many stairs in my life that I didn't have to build as I was climbing, which is why I've always been able to make a way out of no way. Of course, people see this as admirable, and it is, but it comes at a price. A very high price.
The highest price that I'm realizing now that I'm paying is unlearning how to operate in dis-ease. When you've grown accustomed to dis-ease and always made lemonade from lemons, it's easy to get stuck there. To get stuck in the cycle of work, work, work. While we should all put in sweat equity, I wonder if our toiling in dis-ease leads to physical disease.
Lately, the line of demarcation separating my prosperity and soul has become more defined. On the outside, I'm very prosperous (check the receipts), but something deep down alerted me that I'm not as prosperous as I should be. This doesn't mean that I need to achieve something else. Bbbuuttt, this means my soul isn't prospering because it's not in good health.
Beloved, I pray that in every way you may succeed and prosper and be in good health [physically], just as [I know] your soul prospers [spiritually]. (3 John 1:2 AMP)
Long seasons of delay will do that to you.
Unrelenting disappointment leaves you heartsick, but a sudden good break can turn life around. (Proverbs 13:12 MSG)
Long seasons of delay and disappointment will make your heart sick. It will snatch the breath out of your lungs. It will crush your hopes and dreams. Because sometimes, if we are honest, it's easier not to hope. Faith is for the present, and hope is for the future. So how do you make it to the future if your present slowly kills you and says you like it?
(I don't have the answer)
Back to ease.
Since I'm self-aware and long ago realized that I can't achieve my way over trauma, I've decided to take a step back and breathe. Because, if I'm 1000% honest, obeying God has been traumatic for me. I know, I know, I encourage you to obey all the time because it's the best thing for you, but obeying God doesn't come without a price.
You. Are. Going. To. Pay.
And, the price He charges is high.
Back to ease.
I've been on the frontlines for myself and everyone I know for quite some time now. I've been drafted into wars that weren't mine. I've been helping others survive their bad decisions. I've been there.
But this month, I'm focusing on being there for me.
Ease is a tenant of the soft life that I'm pursuing in June.
I'm focusing on what's before me, and on allowing God to build me up.
I'm not fighting this month.
I'm not in my bag.
I'm not rushing.
I'm not competing.
I'm resting, reflecting, and getting to know the me on this level. I'm drawing into myself to assess what I need.
The funny thing is that I used to think that was selfish until I realized that I'm not God and neither are you.
Take care of yourself this month.
Allow God to take care of you.
May ease embrace you.