What the Voice in my Head Keeps Saying

Tomorrow we leave Nashville. Cozy Nashville with its rolling hills and skyscrapers hiding amongst the forest and so many new friends. Our stay here has felt much like I imagine base camp feels to mountain climbers – the last stop, the last stretch of almost-level ground, the last nervous smiles, and all the while the mountain rises up in the background, through the clouds.

Just about everywhere we’ve been up to this point has been some familiar place. But tomorrow we head west from Nashville, destined for Memphis. Never been there. Then we go on to New Orleans for Easter weekend. Never been there. Then west through Texas.

* * * * *

Occasionally a foreboding feeling creeps up on me, nags in the periphery of my imagination.

This trip is going to change everything, the voice whispers. You have no idea.

In some ways I feel it already has. I feel like a different person – it’s impossible to meet so many intriguing people, hear so many fascinating stories, see so many different places, without changing.

Yet I can’t quite put my finger on it, the exact ways I have been changed. It’s like a subtle itch under the skin, or growing pains. It’s an ache, an absence, a tremor.

A sigh.

* * * * *

This is the exciting part of Christianity. Waiting for the resurrection. Knowing that any day now, the ground will shudder, a light will shine, and I’ll hear the crushing sound of a massive rock rolling.

The damp smell of a hole in the ground.

And the weight of an unexpected emptiness.

21 Replies to “What the Voice in my Head Keeps Saying”

  1. Love this. Poignant. Feel like most of life is waiting these days, but I like it described as a base camp.

    (And New Orleans and Memphis are lovely. I can’t say the same for Texas, but it grows on me slowly =))

    1. You’d better watch out, Lore. I have a lot of readers in Texas.

      Figuring out how to live in the waiting, how not to let the waiting take over, that’s my goal now.

      1. Ha! Trust me, I have encountered my fair share of Texans proud of Texas, in fact, it seems they all are. And I say awesome for them! It’s a great place, it has been exceedingly kind to me in my time here, but I miss the northeast. I miss it dearly =)

  2. As you know, I identify with this feeling tremendously right now. This week is Spring Break for me as a “lame duck” teacher. I could lay in bed and feel sorry for myself, but I committed to try and spend this week as a trial of sorts for what life would be like if I was working from home as a writer and freelancer. I was able to land some work via Craig’s List. It’s a short term project that involves transferring a manual written in Word over to a PowerPoint presentation. It’s tedious, but I get to be home and not in an office. It also pays well. It’s a start and I’m hoping it leads to other things. I HOPE this week is going to change everything! :)

  3. “. . . the weight of an unexpected emptiness” — that’s what I’ve been feeling so much of lately, and I didn’t have the words for it until now. Thanks, Shawn.

    Now what to do with it (if anything can be done, that is, besides wait).

  4. Though you don’t know what to expect, the God of all creation has not lost sight of you. You, your family and all that’s coming your way in the next weeks is orchestrated by a loving Father who will not let you out of His grasp. You’re being shaped for His purposes, so be confident and expectant. You know the verse, “I know the plans I have for you . . . to bring you a future and a hope.” Can’t wait to hear how that is played out in your life.

  5. Yes, this trip is changing everything, Shawn. There’s no way that it couldn’t and what a gift that is! You might not know how things will play out, only that you’ll come out on the other side better for it.

    In the meantime, I’ll keep following your travels and looking forward to the next time the Smuckers stop through Nashville. We didn’t get nearly enough time to talk!

  6. Shawn, I’m so sorry I didn’t get to meet you at Killer Tribes! Just picked up your ebook and it really has been a fantastic read.

  7. What a beautiful writer you are. Thanks for keeping us posted on your journey. Praying for you guys.

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