A Soul Rediscovered

I sat at my best friend’s dining room table in her cool container house in Port au Prince, Haiti. We reflected on life and transition and the seasons each of us have been in since I left Haiti in December, 2017, and as she prepares to leave Haiti after 4 years.

I found these words coming out of my mouth, referring to the last 1.5 years of my life: “I will never regret this season of my life.”

I took time after leaving Haiti to piece my life back together in a new way, a way that better reflected my values and different view of myself, the world, and God.

I took a sabbatical, interned with a missionary care organization, volunteered, explored my interests, and developed a new way of how I decided to do things -- getting in touch with my heart again.

I second-guessed myself all along the way, invalidating myself with the common arguments:

What am I doing with my life?

It’s time to get a ‘full-time job’ again, etc.

Luckily, I had wise voices encouraging me to rest, seek, learn about me and my desires, the desires of God in me. Those can tend to get buried under a host of things, even when doing ministry. But what could be more important than the soul? Those inner desires, hopes, and dreams that make up who I am and inform the values I live by and decisions I make.

From the outside:

  • My bank account has not grown

  • I do not own a new car

  • I don’t live in a fancy house

  • I haven’t advanced my physical therapy career

From the inside:

  • I’ve never been happier with who I am, never more at peace in my own skin

  • I feel much more integrated between my internal and external life.

  • My life is a natural outpouring of who I am as an imperfectly beautiful human.

  • I don’t have to hustle for worth, perfection, or other people’s approval.

  • I get to show up, be seen, and be loved, starting with love and acceptance of myself.

I will never regret the time I’ve taken to rest, heal, explore, invest in relationships, and decide that my own soul is a priority.

I hope and know and pray that it has prepared me for whatever is yet to come in this next season of life.

Photo credit: Lauren Neal.  www.laurenneal.com

Photo credit: Lauren Neal. www.laurenneal.com