• Azia

"He went out and departed to a solitary place; and there He prayed"

This world is so, so very loud. And when sound chokes out a space, my anxiety skyrockets, my fight or flight response comes online, and I get super snappy as I try to find safety away from the noise. I am recognizing that social media was a very noisy place for me, one that was creating anxiety in my life in a way that I wasn't even aware of. It's funny how stepping back brings clarity.

I was reading The Book of Mark this morning,

"Now in the morning, having risen a long while before daylight, He [Jesus] went out and departed to a solitary place; and there He prayed" (Mark 1:35)

I loved the reminder that even God needed time away to reflect and pray. I've been doing my best to anchor into the voice of the Holy Spirit as He speaks. I feel like His voice keeps getting louder and clearer with each passing day. It sometimes feels like I've been in this constant state of allowance, eagerly moving through new phases of understanding as I let Him strip me of behaviors and habits that no longer serve me. This period of pulling back, socially, for lack of a better explanation, has been food for my soul.

I have been very humbled and feeling deeply loved, as my departure from social media had many friends and family members emailing, calling and texting. I wasn't expecting that. I didn't realize how many of us used those platforms to feel connected and in the know regarding one another's lives. It's shown me just how bad I am at regular communication with more than a handful of people. There are only so many hours in the day and as someone who does need a lot of alone time to recharge, I do find it difficult to have meaningful conversations (especially via phone call) with pretty much everyone. I'm not quite sure how to remedy that at the moment. Just being patient and trying my best. I've felt guilt as I've declined meet ups, but I have been extremely busy with VBS at my church, raising these kiddos and putting in serious work (fulfilling work!) into our home and garden. Time has been flying. Literally I have no idea where it goes. So, thank you, everyone in my life, who still loves me despite my crazy schedule at the moment. Thank you for your patience with me. Thank you for your grace.

I've also received a few messages from people I do not know in the flesh, sending me well wishes and telling me they miss my posts and words online because they were a comfort, or informative, or, what deeply touched me- lead to them repairing their relationship with God (!!!!!!) It feels shocking to me. I really wasn't comprehending the small impact I could make, especially regarding sharing my faith and the gospel, through my tiny platform. When we think of influencers, we think of the people with hundreds of thousands to millions of followers, constantly trying to sell us things. But I am coming to understand that even a platform as small as mine, can impact people. Even if the algorithm has control over who is exposed to what... sometimes, the unpopular thing can break through.

So, while I am in period of introspection, prayer and refinement, I do know at some point, I will probably return to Instagram. I completely deleted my private page, where I shared photos of my kiddos with friends and family, and I will not be creating a space like that again. I will be keeping my kids' faces offline. But, when it comes to writing about God and sharing the homesteading/homemaker/s l o w life, I am sensing that God will reveal a way for me exist online without the anxiety and noise that it can accompany for me. Until that is fully revealed, I'll be hanging back, heart in The Word, hands in the dirt, body serving the church. I'm in no rush to return.

Here are a few photos of what I've been up to recently:

It is VBS (Vacation Bible School) at my church this week and our theme centers around reminding the kids that they were made with Intention by God. I spent a lot of time making decorations for inside the building with a bunch of other folks, to make it look like a giant Art Studio, as well as building these upcycled musical walls for outside when kids are hanging out before and after VBS. It was such a fun process.

I've also been in my garden a lot and foraging around our small homestead. Here are a couple baskets:

I have quite a few tinctures going and this past Saturday, I tinctured some goldenrod and prickly lettuce:

There's going to be a lot of herbal medicines this winter, which makes me happy. I am looking forward to the back end of August and beginning of September, as the harvest from our garden will be at its peak and I'll be canning like a madwoman.

The simple, quiet life, man, it's just everything. I feel beyond blessed and joyful.

I hope you, who are reading this, are finding peace, too, in the chaos. And, please, even though I'm not online right now, never hesitate to reach out. Especially if you need prayer. I'm always here.



Musings of a hopeful & Healing Feminine