Oh NYC, how I’ve missed you!
I came in for a shoot this morning, which finished early. Placing me smack dab in midtown in the afternoon; right before the mad dash of suits leave the office for the day and clog the streets with over polished dress shoes and designer menswear.
It’s was one of those New York spring days that you dream about when you’re snowed-in in February. Warm in the sun, with just the right amount of breeze to keep it comfortable.
And so I walked.
Took it all in. The different people. The smells. The various languages I heard bellowing from the storefronts. I was back.
There’s a way that New York makes you feel so small. Minuscule, looking up at the sky scrapers soaring one higher than the next, as though competing to pierce the sky. Meanwhile you’re just triumphant if you don’t get run over by foot traffic.
And yet, in the same breath, the city fills your sails and offers the possibility for greatness. For the realization of dreams. You can be anything or anyone you want to be here.
And as I was walking, I began to realize, that God has really been working on my heart in that last department: of who I want to be.
Because the truth is, over the last four months, helping my mom has been shaping me into who I want to be. Who God wants me to be.
I’ve discovered parts of my spirit that I didn’t really know existed. Things like, patience. Things like, flexibility. Things like, taking the back seat. Things that New York couldn’t teach me. Sure, New York taught me other things – like determination, perseverance, independence, confidence, scrappiness. Things that have forever positively changed who I am.
But this time at home is refining those things. Polishing them. Adding to them.
And I can tell. I can tell in how I am present, walking down the street. Literally stopping to smell the roses. Acknowledging a fellow pedestrian with a smile. Being filled with gratitude for the horns and the dog walkers and even the scaffolding. I mean, I even smiled at the GreenPeace sidewalk solicitors!! It’s as though the NY grittiness had been sanded away these past four months, revealing the tender heart once more.
He will take a season of strife and pain, and transform you through it. Day One is much different than Day 90, because each day, God equips you with what you need going forward for that day. It doesn’t necessarily get easier, it just gets different. A good different.
Before my mom’s stoke, my greatest fear was that I would lose one of my parents before it was “time.” You know? And I’m even getting choked up just thinking about it. But the thought of not having one of them in my life was enough to bring me to my knees.
Living through this past season, I’ve had to face that – a fraction of it, sure – but every day, just waking up and saying, Lord, get me through today. Lord, help me to not fear the present. Help me to not fear the future. Help me to appreciate the small details of the now. The things I do have. The gifts that are in front of me, that are given to me by You. Lord, get me through today.
And He did.
He got me through it by transforming me.
And it’s just so interesting to experience the reverberations of that transformation, here, in the city that first set my heart free.
It’s just…interesting to be here with a transformed heart, being free.
Sometimes all we need is a little space to get a big perspective.
God’s funny like that.
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