follow the signs.

A hawk breaks across the sky with a powerful swoop. He is very sure of himself. I am not a hawk and I will never be that certain - Madeleine L'Engle

I sit in a hotel room, overlooking a valley in south Texas, all sun and pasture and river. We left on Sunday in an attempt to gain some quiet after a week that put us through the ringer in more ways than one but the thoughts are still clamoring for attention. So I'm up, working (and writing) through the questions, while he sleeps. 

Over the past few months, I've taken on the name of story-coach. I like this name. It fits. It was a decision brought on by the fire-in-bones I often experience when God is whispering just DO it already and I my heart starts beating faster because really, God? Now?

If I've learned anything it's that nothing ever makes sense at the beginning. It's usually in the messy middle, when debris is around you and you're staring at both the past and the future, and suddenly Clarity enters the room. A welcome visitor, since you've been begging for her to show since the initial jump.

This past week, Clarity showed. 

This year is about risk and God bringing me to a place where I take notice of the dreams He's placed in my heart. And I've realized something -  I still struggle with the naming.

If you want to see me freeze, ask me to make a decision about something. Even if it's something simple, say dinner, I will close up shop and stutter through my words. You'll see me shake and blush and somewhere along the way, I'll probably turn it toward you. What would you like?  It's so much easier going along with other people's preferences. But ask me about something serious, like dreams, and I go silent.

Just a few days ago, we sat across from each other over dinner and he asked me, "well - what do you want to do? What are your dreams?"

I opened my mouth and smiled in order to keep the tears at bay. "I don't know," I said and I felt ridiculous. Who can't name what she wants to do with her life?! But not matter how I tried, the words didn't come. 

I couldn't name them.

I still can't. 

I'm getting better at recognizing the hints. The quickening of my breath, the tears rushing to my eyes, the overwhelmed feeling of yes-ness that wells up inside. 

And I'm following those signs back home. 

Posted on March 12, 2013 .