Some thoughts for Harvey helpers

Twelve years ago, I stood in the Astrodome for the first time and began a long weekend of attempting to care.

I wrote and published my first article after that weekend.  I’m a little embarrassed by the words I wrote then, but I still remember what I felt when I typed those words.  I remember how it felt to walk in, adrenalin pumping, ready and eager to help, so desperate to do something and so sure I could.

I learned a few things that weekend, but I learned a lot more in the years after.

Houston, my heart.

I don’t know where I’m from. 

It’s a Third Culture Kid thing.  When someone asks you “where you’re from?” your brain doesn’t know how to compute, how to answer that question.

My friends tease me – I change my answer based on moods. Am I English? American? Texan?  Who do I cheer for at the Olympics?  I’m the classic turn coat.  And it’s a real thing.  The conflict inside. The not knowing where you’re from.

But today, it is clear to me by the tears I can’t stop crying that at least a large chunk of who I am is from Houston.

Words from the wilderness: Giving Up

I wrote these words on a dark day.  I wasn’t thinking of you when I wrote it.  I was just writing.  I didn’t need to share. I wasn’t trying to be saved and I wasn’t looking for comfort. I was just trying to find words to wrap around reality. 

I know there are those of you who church ‘won’t work’ tomorrow. Cause they’ll talk about a Gospel and a God who offers to save you from the dark and you will wonder why that doesn’t work in real life.  Why dark still comes so swiftly and silently with all its suffocating strength if He is who He says He is.  

Lent 30-33: making space

There are emotions that don’t require any space in order to be expressed or experienced.  Fear, for example. You don’t need anyone to back up for you to experience that emotion.  Anxiety too.  You can have people pressing in all sides, life tugging on your sleeve and anxiety is totally at home.

But there are other emotions that need a little space in order to emerge: grief, true joy, intimacy. Honestly, most of the deeper emotions don’t come when you call. They like to have a little room to breathe before they will surface.  They need space.

Space on the calendar.