I'm in the middle of a research paper on a few individuals involved in (victims of, really) the degenerate art movement of the early 20th century - for my art history class, of course. And by "in the middle of," I mean I have at least eleven tabs open on Firefox right now with different articles, biographies, etc.
I get a little overwhelmed when I do research for a paper like this. I'll be reading one article that will link to another one I'd like to read or references someone/something I need to check out so I open another tab with that information, but go back and finish the first article. Then I have to go through the next tab I've opened and that one usually has something else I need to check out...it's a never-ending process. I promise.
Ironically, this is my favorite part. The writing-the-paper part isn't appealing to me. You'd think, with my English major, I'd love the writing part. My adviser pointed out a few semesters ago that I love research because I love history. I love writing because it's an expression. The two cross, but very rarely.
Lately, this overwhelming feeling has taken a different turn - a turn toward complacency and frustration. My spirit is tired. I'm ready to rest. I want to sit at the feet of my Abba and breathe slow, deep, intentional breaths.
Today, I've been overwhelmed in a completely different way. I spent a good amount of time in the Word today - a good hour outside in the sunshine with a beautiful heart. We were quiet and it was so good. I was able to have coffee with another dear friend and have dinner with my church family. Both included a large amount of discussion - what's going on in our lives and how God is moving.
I'm overwhelmed by the blessings in my life. My breath catches when I get a text that says something along the lines of, "How can I pray for you?" or "How's your heart?" These questions are so extravagant to me because I know the people asking them are truly asking to know because they care. It's not something they feel obligated to do or do simply for the latest gossip. It's precious. I can't begin to tell you how difficult it's been to adjust to this crazy new place I'm at where I have a core that truly cares and means what they say. It's crazy to have a core that desires God with such an intensity and prays intentionally for His presence in my life and in all our lives. WILD.
Being overwhelmed isn't always bad. The rough draft of this research paper is due tomorrow, but my professor has presented me with some of the most incredible opportunities to study this further.
God is present and living in every situation I encounter and has a plan. He's HAD a plan. I'm living in it.
My friends aren't going anywhere. God will continually overwhelm me with everything they're learning and how He wants us to learn from each other.
I can't wait to see how He moves. He's planted seeds of inspiration in my heart and a passionate desire to follow hard after Him - even if it means actually writing research papers over and over again. I can't wait to move in Him and continue this crazy dance we're doing.
This song has been stuck in my head tonight. It's by Grace Midtown:
In your hands I find my healing.
What is this love that has redeemed us?
What is this love that's found me?
Love that covers all, has covered all my soul.
I feel myself drowning in Your grace.
You take this broken soul and make it beautiful.
My God, You will never let me go.
You've seated me in heavenly places within a love that never changes.
In all my life, I live for You, alone.