Becoming Chris Kamalski

"There's a Writer outside ourselves, plotting a better story for us" ~Don Miller

Tag: Rest.

No Leisure To Eat.

Such a provocative invitation from Jesus.

I live in a fairly steady experience of anxiety in these days, a combination of moving forward to a life overseas in South Africa for this next season, the hard realities of fundraising in a lingering recession, and the sense that I am on a precipice leading towards a new sort of life, a life greatly desired, yet feared as well. Anxiety is defined as “a feeling of worry, nervousness, or unease, typically about an imminent event or something with an uncertain outcome,” which nails squarely on the head the reality of my life right now.

I am not uncertain of whether I am to return to South Africa, or whether God has called me there for at least this next transitional season of several years. But what about all the things I don’t know, like: When will I be fully supported? Will my needs be met in time? What will this next season be like relationally? How will I be developed as a leader? Am I really moving to the other side of the world, ‘for good’ in a sense? And a million other stray fragments similar to this.

I have a growing understanding that anxiety is largely a mental battle of vague, nagging thoughts, and often resides in the realm of non-reality. ‘What if?‘ is the question that imprisons the mind, shutting down the heart, in this state. That is why the call of Jesus to not worry about tomorrow (see Matthew 6) is so provocative, as well as His invitation to come away for rest in a season where His followers were described as having ‘no leisure to eat!’

Frankly, I want to continue worrying. I want to shove food down my throat while frantically attempting to finish seven different things at once. In some twisted, pathological way, I feed off of this sense of worry, finding some sense of a self, albeit a false one.  I am aware of, yet scared of, the whispered invitation of Jesus to open up my real self to Him today.  This involves Jesus being with me in my anxiety, not veiling it in some religious fog. What a profoundly unsettling, yet beautiful, invitation.

On Holiday.

Holiday (From dictionary.com):

–noun

1. a day fixed by law or custom on which ordinary business is suspended in commemoration of some event or in honor of some person.
2. any day of exemption from work (distinguished from working day ).
3. a time or period of exemption from any requirement, duty, assessment, etc.: New businesses may be granted a one-year tax holiday.
4. a religious feast day; holy day, esp. any of several usually commemorative holy days observed in Judaism.
5. Sometimes, holidays. Chiefly British. a period of cessation from work or one of recreation; vacation.
6. an unintentional gap left on a plated, coated, or painted surface.

–verb (used without object)

9. Chiefly British. to vacation: to holiday at the seaside.

Origin:
bef. 950; ME; OE hāligdæg. See holy, day
I am writing this post of brevity from the lovely confines of Big Blue Backpackers (Google them), a fine hostel in the Greenpoint neighborhood of Capetown, South Africa.  Busi, Colletta, and I flew down late this afternoon, chasing a breathtaking sunset to enjoy our first off-week holiday, as we have remarkably completed the Orientation, Listening, and Submerging Learning Postures (which means that we are almost 40% done with our Apprenticeship year!?!?).  Tomorrow, Adrienne and her boyfriend Ryan join us, as well as Curtis who comes in from a 26-hour(!) train ride.  We’ll spend the next 5 days here until early Thursday morning, in which case most Apprentices head home, and I take our rented Corsa for a road trip along the famous Garden Route of South Africa (specifically, the coastal Indian Ocean region between Mossel Bay and Storms River Mouth in Tsitsikamma National Park).  I’ll be less than 100KM from Jeffrey’s Bay, the world-famous right-point tube made famous by WCT surfers the world over.  I’ll spend 4 days by myself hiking, driving, meandering along the coast, and that’s right: BODYBOARDING!
I could not be more excited.
I desperately need a holiday.  From intensive coaching training this past week almost all day Monday-Thursday, to truly submerging into culture and ministry in the local township of Soshanguve and with my growing friendships at Third Place (a highly creative Afrikaner church in Pretoria East at which I am teaching monthly experiences in spiritual formation/disciplines), to offering spiritual direction in group settings to local hospice care workers out in the township, to a few other emerging opportunities to care for the souls of new friends here….
….I.AM.WORN.OUT.

I need: refreshment, solitude, fun, lightness, novels, bodyboarding, tube rides, nature, new environments, and simply REST.
Please pray for these next 9 days….I am eager to return refreshed, renewed, and ready to dive into the second third of our year submerging into live in Pretoria, South Africa!
Much to report and catch you up on regarding our first 1/3 of this year upon my return….some lovely goodies are coming your way!