Expectation, Reality, and the Grey in between.

That “grey” of course, being earl grey.

For that is what I am drinking. After a cup-and-a-half of coffee, seeing my parents off for their trip, and telling my wife good-bye for her first day at a new job, I am sitting on a couch in my boyhood home, sipping the grey as autumn leaves fall within view out the front room window. It’s just me, a cup of tea, and the wonderful silence. The honest silence.

I love the silence. There was a time I didn’t. At one point in my life I needed the noise, the din and hum  that kept me the quiet, for the quiet is void without distraction where one must meet the still, soft voice.

As a Christian, I believe in the Holy Spirit, the imbued seal of God on the hearts of Christ’s followers, who speaks when they will listen, oftentimes in the silence. I realize others have a very different experience–they hear the nothing, a reinforcement of emptiness, an affirmation of being dust on a cosmic carpet. For some that brings peace, for others, anxiety. I lament for both, for I wish they experienced what I do–that soft, quiet voice of the Holy Spirit speaking into the soul.

The reason that his presence is so pertinent today is because I am at a crossroads where the voice is most needed. My expectation of how I would feel when my wife left for work is finally meeting reality. The collision was imminent; now it is fulfilled. Frankly, I expected this morning to be hard. I was prepared to feel like a derelict, to let all the jests of my “doing nothing” cut to my heart and wound me accordingly. I was ready to sit in the silence and weep, to feel like a failure whose faith was misplaced.

However, I experienced none of this. I have peace that transcends the cares of the world and a reminder of Christ’s words in the gospels not to worry. I have been full of anticipation for the days to come and a sense of tranquility over the days thus far. I have a Holy Spirit sense of being where I need to be, at a place where a dark expectation exists but the Lord flips it onto its head for his glory.

I am not one for prophecy but the following may qualify. I am assured that someday, maybe two months from now, maybe two years, someone will have a copy of my novel–the one on which I’ll work this morning after this is posted. How that person acquired it I do not know, but I know that he or she will read it; and they, too, will have a moment in the silence not unlike the one I had this morning. In that moment, the text will prove useful–how I don’t know, to what degree I’m unsure; but a reader will by changed by the grace and power of the Holy Spirit, through my mediocre words set against a white backdrop. That’s why I set out to write it my novel in the first place, and that endgame is coming. That expectation will become reality; and for that reason, today’s expectation didn’t.

Thank you again so much for reading and for joining me on this journey. I hope that these thoughts and ideas encourage you, and that you, too, find time in the silence.