I feel like Rip Van Winkle. I spend what feels like a day collecting my head after six travel weekends in two months, I come out of my inner recollection, and wait, what? Three weeks have passed! Oh dear, I assure you, I haven't meant to neglect you. I am elated to say that now, all conferences are accomplished, all speeches given, all business travels done. Home safe, by God's good grace. This begins a new season for me. I am home in body for a good long while and I cannot tell you what a relief that is. But I am also home in mind. Home, staid, in thought. And that is something I haven't been for a long time. Wendell Berry talks a lot about the idea of assent in his books; it's a term that has come to me often in the past weeks. Assent is, I think, a gentle acquiescence, an unconditional acceptance of circumstances, of the hand dealt to you just as it is. I am such a restless dreamer that I spend most of my time doing anything but assenting to my life. Recently though, as I contemplated a move to a new city, wondered what to do with my life (sometimes I think I will feel this when I am 80), feeling again the restive pressure to go out, find life, accomplish something, I was cut short by God's terse whisper to me to, as you all know from my recent post, "rest."
Part of what I have found that to mean is to settle down here in my mountains. Get home to this place I live, and actually claim it as mine. I am settling in here, renewing the rhythms of home life, church, the channels of friendship that run through the ground of my life here. This is not exactly easy to me; I enjoy the peace one second and the next, wonder when the next adventure will come. I'm waiting on prayers to be answered, needs to be met. But I am doing it from an less-demanding state of soul, and definitely one of body. I'm setting out roots again, and that's a lovely feeling.
I hope it means that the rhythms of dawn and sunset and regular quiet times and afternoon walks will get me into a good cadence of writing. You can finally look for some regular posts here again.
Just to confuse you, I am changing this blog around again. Now, once the dust settles and everything gets normal again, I promise you will find this to be good news. The exciting bit is that I am contemplating a book centering on the themes pervading this blog (including several I have in my head and will write about soon!) and want this to be purely a blog. Pilgrim's Inn will soon appear as a tab/page at the top of Thoroughly Alive. I am still quite excited about the whole idea of Pilgrim's Inn- I want it to be a virtual gathering place. I'm reserving a separate URL for it, and am crafting an image-driven site, full of pictures, a hushed atmosphere, more of a place to look, see, brood, think. The talking will continue on Thoroughly Alive. The dreaming will soon begin at Pilgrim's Inn.
So. Today I am going to work for another two good hours, then sit calmly in my red chair and think deep thoughts, then wander about the mountains for as the twilight floods in, and I might even go to bed on time for once. Home life is rather grand.
Have a grand day yourselves.