Today I woke up and I wasn’t all alone in a green room in the middle of the tropics. I didn’t weep my way through breakfast, get wrecked by a kind note from a friend, or feel the earth shake beneath me for 34 seconds at a 7.2 magnitude. I didn’t run outside and feel cajoled by my landlady to hold onto a palm tree while the ground moved. I didn’t cry and wander the neighborhood feeling queasy and unsettled. I didn’t feel aftershocks every 20 minutes.

Nope. Today I woke up in my cozy little room in Memphis. I did wake from a somewhat scary dream, but I woke up in a house filled with life and joy and peace, with friends and hope and Presence. I woke up to coffee brewed in a machine, and cereal with cold milk for breakfast, and electricity. I woke up chilly (without the air conditioner), snuggled under a duvet.

I woke up full of HOPE, which was a much different emotion than I felt last October 15.

It’s been a year since everything changed. Well, maybe not everything, but everything in my life was shaken. Foundations were challenged. Hope dissolved for a long time.

That earthquake and its 4000 aftershocks scared me. It triggered severe anxiety and depression. The combination of that natural disaster combined with everything else led me down a really dark, really hard, really lonely path for far too long.

But then I look at life today. It’s only been 12 days in Memphis. But I really like it. I am really thankful I am here. Today I told someone I am really thankful for the convoluted year I had that broke me enough to let me choose this, because it is real and it is good and it has that REAL GOOD Father/Son/Spirit in it all. And I meant it.

This summer in Spain, one of my teachers asked, “What question is God asking you?” And I knew instantly: He’s asking if I will trust Him enough to try again. To risk again.

Today I am really glad I do and I did.


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