Holding Patterns

Those times in life when unforeseen circumstances force us to circle without a place to land. 

When we can’t seem to move past the moment.

When our energy drains away so we have nothing left to lift us out of the doldrums

When life severs our serenity.

Tragedy. Loss. Illness. Disillusionment. Disappointment. Failure

Everyone’s list reads a little differently, but the effects are the same:

Lack of motivation. Lack of inspiration. Feelings of purposelessness.

Eventually, we have to land when what little fuel’s left is gone, but nothing seems more dreadful than having the potential to fly but not the ability to do so.

Holding Patterns

Does God initiate them? Are they the result of choices we’ve made? Or just because we live in a broken world? Perhaps, at times, a combination?

I don’t have the answers, but I do know they are times of cleansing; times that flush out our true motivations for doing what we do. Times when we realize how desperate we are to feel important, useful, purposeful because we can’t be any of those things anymore.

I’m currently in a holding pattern. 

Retirement wipes away previous purposes as an educator.

A death in the family plunges into dark waters of grief.

The latest school shooting causes soul anguish.

A bout with Covid drains away energy.

The only piece of art I envision is one I hope will help the grieving to heal; and yet I can’t seem to conquer the creation phase where I construct the future painting in digital form. 

Nothing seems to work. Nothing looks quite right. So, I struggle with adding and removing elements in hopes I can land it. But instead, I circle this artwork with what little inspiration I have left quickly draining away. 

Holding Patterns

They happen to us writers, and we call it “writer’s block.”

They happen to us artists, and we view them much the same.

But truth be told, holding patterns happen to us all. 

Today, I’m wondering whether the only way through is to surrender to the uncomfortable landing. To let ourselves grieve and weep and empathize with those whose suffering is far greater than we could ever imagine. 

To stop fighting the feelings but sit in them. To resist wrestling with those nagging questions that torment:

When will I feel better?

When will a sense of purpose return?

When will I find something worthy of my time?

Who did God create me to be?

What has God called me to do, to creaate?

When will the world be a safer place for our children?

All my former answers to these questions feel like the metallic taste in my mouth that’s distorting my ability to “Taste and see that the Lord is good.” 

So, I sit. Plane of purpose grounded, until God’s grace fills my tank once again. 

Because the one thing I am certain of is, “Blessed is the one who takes refuge in Him.”

He is worthy of my trust while in this… 

Holding Pattern!

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