Shadowfeet

It seems unnatural to go dark when everyone, including me, has a platform.

What a weird time in the world, right?

(And let us all note the irony, considering I am here, right now, standing on a platform talking about something.)

I get overwhelmed by American Christianity pretty easily. Actually, it’s the Christianity of women like me, who have blogs like this, bigger followings than mine, and countless books on bookshelves. I’m willing to bow out before I even attempt to join their ranks.

It’s a lot to take in. There’s an abundance of testimonies out there and advice and “preaching to myself” happening that I can’t ingest all of it. And most of it is worthy and good. I’m not knocking the value of it or the women writing it. I’m just wondering what we’re all doing, really, after we’re done preaching.

I noticed it in myself. I would look for valuable, incredible things to share on Instagram and share it like manna from heaven. But that was often it. That was where I began and ended. I was a Christian woman who preached a whole lot but surely wasn’t interested in walking in it outside of my little squares.

When my classes started this fall, I knew I couldn’t use too much energy there. I have only so much energy before I’m worn out, and I didn’t want to use it in a public place. I knew the privacy of my ministry and my home would suffer. I knew that my soul would suffer, and I would become void of passion. So I went dark. I stopped writing on this blog. I quit posting about how God was working. I wanted to keep it private so I wasn’t performing for anyone.

Can I mention to you how freeing it was?

I was driving recently and talking to God about things, and I mentioned to Him how I was overwhelmed by the phenomenon of being a vulnerable Christian woman who has monumental things to say before an audience. I told Him I wasn’t sure I could do that. I wasn’t confident that I could preach. I asked Him what He wanted from me instead.

It’s really too much of a burden to believe we’re responsible for the inspiration and encouragement of others. Our shoulders weren’t made for it. And we aren’t equipped to sustain it on our own.

I told Him I wanted to be faithful, and He told me to get in His shadow.

It made sense. Like a lightbulb illuminated above my head. He said, “You want to make a difference in the world? Draw so close to me that they can’t even see you. Get in my shadow. Disappear so it’s not about you. All they’ll see is Me.”

Manna.

Everything can fall into place when we aren’t the point, you know what I mean? Like I said, it’s too great a burden to bear. It’s too much to be everything and more to a people who don’t really want me anyways. They want God, even if they don’t know it yet.

I have this week off from writing three papers a week, so I might show up here more than normal. But it’s only because I have a little more brain space and energy to spend here. I’m sure I’ll disappear again once things pick back up, and life returns to a busier pace.

Hopefully you won’t see me anyways. Hopefully you’ll see Him instead.

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