Dry. Parched. Empty.
I admit, having a job has sapped me of energy, motivation, creative juices. Some nights I get home and don’t even feel like thinking.
The strange thing is this–I’m trying. I’m still reading. Right now it’s Blame it on the Brain? by Ed Welch and Too Busy Not to Pray by Bill Hybels, and last Saturday, for fun, “The Courtship of Miles Standish” by Henry Wadsworth Longellow, my favorite poet. It’s always the perfect binge read, because it’s a short story, so it only has 8 (or 7?) short staves; it’s non-rhyming poetry, so it’s literately beautiful, but flowy rather than purely rhythmic; and it has the perfect amount of plot, romance, and historic background for my sentimental heart. Anyhow, I digress.
I’m trying. I’m studying [although not as much as I should…]. Biology–gotta CLEP this thing!–and New Testament Greek. I have concepts to digest, information to analyze and synthesize, charts and lists and definitions to review. It’s not necessarily my first pick; my hopes for study this summer was what I like to call ‘the psychology of music,’ or how body, brain, and spirit are involved in responding to and producing music. Still, I like science, especially biology. I like pseudopods and autotrophs and different cardiovascular systems. I enjoy vocabulary and word morphology and verb conjugations.
I’m trying. I have the most consistent spiritual discipline I’ve had in a long time, as far as Bible reading and memorization and prayer are concerned, and I feel close to God in those times I share with him.
But I’m pouring a cup of water onto the Sahara.
I’m reading the thoughts of others, but unable to generate my own.
I’m adding the information to my mental stew, but like oil and water, every time I try to ‘stir it in,’ to integrate it with what’s already there, it won’t mix. It floats back to the surface.
I’m drawing near to God, and I have a greater awareness of his presence in my life (which I wrote about in a previous post). His presence is there, but the spiritual insight isn’t. The fresh observations in the Scriptures, new discoveries about God’s character, they’re missing somehow.
What’s the cause? Maybe it’s the physical tiredness. Maybe the dreary weather. Maybe because it’s mid-June already, and I’m a little down that my summer at home’s already almost half over. And let’s be honest, my frequent bursts of inactivity (there’s a nice contradictory statement for you…) probably don’t help my brain’s state, which is currently the mental equivalent of a sloth.
Whatever it is, I’m tired of it. I want to have a thought again, one that stays. My showers for the past week have been peppered with tantalizing little birds that quickly flit away. Somewhere between shampoo and conditioner they leave me.
Whatever this midsummer’s meh is that’s come over my thinking, I’m not sure where it came from or if it’s leaving any time soon. I don’t know why the thoughts go in and won’t come out. But I know for certain that the stupor won’t leave by me resigning myself to it and giving up.
All I can do is keep reading. Keep studying. Keep seeking. Keep trying.
Because I believe–“Ask, and it will be given to you. Seek, and you will find. Knock, and the door will be opened to you,” (Matthew 7:7). I definitely believe Jesus’ words are a spiritual promise, but I think they’re also a general principle for all of life. It’s one of God’s spiritual principles that he put into physics, too. Every action has an equal and opposite reaction. Every thought put in results in a thought put out. I know this synthesis of Scripture, science, and what I’d like to believe about how my brain operates isn’t perfect–I’m still working on it, but, as I might have mentioned, it’s been pretty dry around here lately.
Maybe you’re in the brain-desert too. Or maybe you’re in a veritable greenhouse, exotic and lush. I guess we’ll just keep on. Keep watering the ground–
eventually something will grow.