Being, Not Doing – How Un-American

I awake from yet another nap, hazy-eyed and curious if my body is feeling any better. Sometimes my body feels so separate from “me” that I have to check on it as if it is its own entity. It won’t co-operate and doesn’t feel integrated with the “me” that is my soul.

I lie still and check my breathing, my headache or lack thereof, and I check to see how my a-fib is doing. I’m still here, so I think. I think about how I used to do so much. I think about how I used to think my significance and my hope for leaving even a small legacy of some sort was all in the doing. Doing a lot. Doing a lot all the time. Helping women. Traveling around the world, etc. Well, I need a deeper, more certain reason for my hope, my place where I feel loved and where I place my significance. As a follower of Jesus, I explore this in new ways. Since coming to Him, I’ve known, truly, He loves me with mercy and grace, but I need to believe it better, deeper.

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These days, I’m “being.” I recently took a little downturn, went back on my oxygen, and began napping all the time. The fevers came along for the ride. And although I am writing this while propped up, I’d say I’m more being than doing. I could stop typing at any moment and lie back down again and totally just be. I ate a bowl of soup today for lunch, and I had to take a two hour nap after that effort.

I wanted to write because I’ve been thinking about my worth in just being. Hour after hour, lying in bed, I am being, not doing. As an American doer, that’s a hard pill to swallow. In the same way, I think in an American way; I have to do something to earn God’s love and care. However, the Bible makes me think counterintuitively, counter Americanly, and states that God loved me way before I loved Him, and His love is all a free gift or grace…But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved— and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, …Ephesians 2:4-9  There it is – not my own DOING. Sigh. Lean into it. Rest in it.

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I’ll try to continue writing in the days ahead….I do have a new idea for a storying art project based on hope and being with our God. That would be “doing” which I am currently not doing. (Smile.) Tomorrow, I have a meeting with my new doctor in Seattle. I am looking forward to what she might suggest.

5 thoughts on “Being, Not Doing – How Un-American

  1. You are so ‘on point’..His point;that He loves you (us) as much when you are ‘napping’ as when you are painting,or writing or sharing Stories with women all over His World…what a ‘treasure’ you are,my friend.You represent well His ‘legacy of love’…and isn’t that what truly counts?…”and the greatest of these is…Love.”

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  2. You are such an inspiration To me and so many Marcia. His strength radiates from your weakness. Such a legacy of His love and courage you leave in your wake. You are loved beyond measure just because…God is love….Gods blessings and prayers dear one as you just “Be”. Love Jane

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  3. Marcia,
    What a joy to see your post in my inbox! Thank you for using some of your precious energy to speak Truth to me. I usually fall into the “Martha” role…staying busy and finding my worth in serving others and accomplishing. I needed to hear your wisdom tonight…to remember it has nothing to do with me…it is all Christ and what He did for me. You phrased it all so perfectly (so non-American…I had never thought of it that way). I will be reading this post over and over.
    I pray for you and your new doctor visit tomorrow.
    Blessings,
    Paula

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