time

FINDING the rest...

Dear Friends, I haven't really found a clever way to share this bit of news.  Something will probably occur to me right after I click "Post."  :)

In just over two weeks - 24 hours after returning home from our last Christmas concert- Toby and I are taking the kids and heading down to Central America for several months this winter.  That’s right…several months!  Various factors and desires and circumstances converged to lead us to the decision to just do it.  Recent exhaustion and a battle with anxiety have caused us to look forward to this "hard stop" even more.

And to realize that God does indeed lead us in particular directions for reasons we can’t foresee.

We have long hoped to give our children an experience life outside of our American culture, to allow ourselves the chance to do some studying that will enrich our respective works, and to learn the Spanish language (one of our children being from Guatemala makes this extra important to us)

And simply... time to be undivided, reading, praying and seeking wisdom and direction for our life and work.

So when people ask: What will you DO while you're there?...

The answer is NOTHING…and EVERYTHING.  Trading hurriedness and multi-tasking and constant preparing, for a time of exploring and listening, studying and cooking, praying and resting.

And if you're wondering: Are you doing mission work down there?

The answer is No...and...YES.

We're taking a break, but not a vacation in the traditional sense.  It's not a "mission trip," per se, and yet ministry will happen, with us on both the giving and receiving ends.

We are eager and uncertain.  I expect I’ll weep and sleep on the flight - from fatigue and relief from all the hurdles we'll only finish crossing the minute we take our seats.  We may get sick when we get there, simply because we haven't the time to be sick here.  :)

Life is gorgeous and full, and we are so grateful and have no complaints, other than our own failure to manage our time well.  Changes have come without us taking the time to re-sort our priorities.  For the past year we've moved at an unsustainable pace, and a "hard stop" (a phrase I learned from Ann Voskamp) is needed.

So what does this mean for the music?

We are releasing a new album, How Emptiness Sings, in the spring, and will hopefully return from our travels with a clearer picture of how we can continue to share the music while still balancing the other parts of our life well, and not be reduced to panic attacks. :)

While we're away, things will be happening to gear us up for the album release and to allow me to stay in touch with you.  We will be online, and I’ll keep you posted here on the blog.  Should have some amusing stories to pass on!

As Nicole and I prepare to go on the road for a couple of weeks, I realize the next time I post here may be after we get off the plane!

THANK YOU for your encouragement and support and for sharing the music.  Knowing that God uses this flawed work from my seriously flawed hands is what makes it all worthwhile.  He is faithful.

with Love and Joy and Gratitude,

christa

p.s.  I got to participate in a live recording of some unique Advent music with local NC musicians...you can find it here!

living in time...

Great songs are born when they are born.  Great books are read and digested slowly.  The tide of spiritual understanding ebbs and flows to a rhythm we can’t force.  There is a time for working the earth and a time for letting it rest.  Relationships and households require awesome amounts of time and energy.

Email, telephone, doorbell break in and disrupt flow.  Children need, always.  My “lizard brain” (www.sethgodin.com) sabotages my creative efforts.  The mere knowledge that I’m responsible for preparing and recovering from three meals a day can cause panic.

Where is the time, Lord, to do what You ask of me?

My pastor one day says, “God gives us enough time to do the things we are called to do.”

I’m comforted.  I think, maybe the things I manage to get in are in fact, those things I’m called to do.  And the things that never happen – the songs I don’t write – just weren’t meant to be.

One thing I know: I don’t want a rushed life.  I don’t choose to be hurried.  I won’t be a sighing, frowning, huffing person complaining about “the busy-ness.”

At least, I don't want to be...

So I set, and reset, my eyes on things unseen, things invisible, undying and of infinite value—and in that I’m better able to create space for us to live beautifully moment by moment.  I won’t achieve perfection this way, but I hope to walk in peace.

I like that idea – holding eternity in a temporal world.