“Am I overcome by routine, perfunctory prayers, the ordinariness of life, by daily duties done over and over again? I trundle off to the desert to reexamine the direction of my life.”

Souvenirs of Solitude ~ Brennan Manning

Months now, I have been longing for something.

Something, I could not quite define. Put my finger on it. An empty space beckoning within.

I dreamed of traveling dusty roads from years past. Dirt, black and sandy. The scent of sweet onions blowing across humid winds.

A quaint cottage at the beach. Sitting on the front porch. White rocking chairs. Footprints in the sand. Lola, our furry friend frolicking at water’s edge. My hand, squeezed warm and tight by my man. The roar of ocean in my ear. Waves, lapping at my feet.

I had begun to gaze longingly at far away cabins complete with fireplace, LLBean blankets, flickering candles, tucked far away in the mountains. Blanketed in snow. Isolated from noise.

Familiar. Something familiar.

The words, they sift through my longings.

Quiet. Solitude. Reflection. Rest. Calling me loud. Pounding on the door of my soul.

Three years have come and gone since illness slammed me into a chair. Quieting my busy, doing ways.

Through good doctoring, medication, and good management, I had gained back some illusion of control.

Somehow, I had found myself the busy doer. Again.

Keeping the illusion of control will tear a body up. Shred the soul. Wear you thin. Exhaust you.

“Exhausted, we don’t know what we want. Exhaustion makes us hungry.” ~Beth Moore

I was exhausted. Thrust back in a wilderness place. Leading me to a quieter space.

Therefore, behold, I will allure her, and bring her into the wilderness, and speak tenderly to her. Hosea 2:14~ESV

As I sat with the words of Brennan Manning, I began to see the need for this place.

I was being allured by the Bridegroom, himself. To seek nourishment.

Once again, being tenderly ministered to in the middle of another tumultuous storm.

The illusion of control stripped from tightly clenched hands.

It wasn’t the solitude of a mountain cabin, a cottage on the beach, or even a road trip to places of the past, I was longing for.

It was nourishment. Nourishment for the garden of my soul. Weeding to be done.

To dance in the wilderness with The One who had called me here. The One, who had taken me out of the busy doing. Placed me in this season.

“We need to find God and he cannot be found in noise and restlessness.

God is a friend of silence. See how nature~trees, flowers, grass~grow in silence. See the stars, the moon, the sun, how they move in silence…. 

…The more we receive in silent prayer, the more we can give in our active life.

We need silence to be able to touch souls.” 

~Mother Teresa of Calcutta

Restlessness grows in the busyness. Places deep, long to be filled in the noise.

The thing I needed, the thing I was longing for, that alluded me…to scoop my hands down deep into the well of Living Water.

Filling the empty places as I dance across this place of wilderness.

Graced by God

Tammy Mashburn