Freedom in Being-Off-The-Grid

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Who says you can’t still climb trees and get scraped up knees, even a grown woman? WHO EVEN SAYS? I felt God implore me to take a risk, to do something a bit silly and child-like, to trust Him. Almost like Ryan Gosling in the movie The Notebook, urging Rachel McAdams’ character to “get her ass in the water”. She was scared, timid even, starting the jump, yet changing her mind and planting her feet firmly on dry land in a stubborn, sheepish way. But his love got her to take the risk. And it was worth it.

I channeled my inner Anne of Green Gables and checked the tree for bee-hives and wasp nests first, but it didn’t even cross mind to check for ants. At least they were the black ones–and not those spicy red ones that can literally destroy your life in two seconds. {p.s.-I was wearing a dress. My very most favorite dress from Anthropologie. That now has a gaping hole in it. But also, let’s collect more moments, and not things, amiright? And learn to sew.}

I probably broke all of the rules of the peaceful and serene property my dad and his girlfriend rented out for the holiday in a small town just 35 minutes north. #sorrynotsorry. Okay, maybe a little sorry. I still didn’t play music by the pool or swing from a vine like Jane in the Jungle into the mossy green moat like I wanted to.

 

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I did, however, plop down on my pull-out sofa bed in the perfect little carriage-house they rented, which was totally separate from the main house of the historic inn built circa 1907 by a local doctor who moved to the area for its healing mineral springs. I did eat all of the quiche {prepared by the french owner, also a fellow missionary} and soak up all of the sun in the sky {that’s saying a lot for my very pale self}, and I most certainly laid in a hammock beneath the pines for hours with my current read, “Own Your Life”. Speaking of The Notebook {Nicholas Sparks, just stop with all of the tears, okay?}, I took a very similar paddle boat ride {alone, not with Ryan, but I never liked that guy much anyway…}, and saw some huge fish, an old Ice-House from “back in the day” where the people used to keep their iced things and root vegetables under-ground, as I re-taught myself the art of using ors, of steering backward and hoping for the best.

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Have you ever done that? Felt like you were steering backward, rowing and rowing and hardly going? That’s what the last year has felt like to me. But I think I’m finally able to turn my head around and look in the direction I need to go. And have you even been up a creek without a paddle, figuratively…or even literally? Thankfully I had two paddles that were attached to the boat, otherwise we all know how this boat-ride would’ve ended: a very Anne of Green Gables situation indeed.

It was only 24 hours, but it was just the right amount of time, the perfect get-a-way where I had hardly any cell phone service–where I was forced to really hang out with my people, uninterrupted, to spend some quality time with my dad, to remember how he’s quite the grizzly bear {give the large Canadian man some smoked salmon and a pool of water and he is CONTENT.} And for the record, he had to help me out of the tree on his shoulders, because I couldn’t “bear” the jump. *wink*

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But of course, all-too-soon, I returned home to the typical chaos of the holiday. People running around preparing food, trying to figure out which fire-works display we would go see in the city, making sure the 4 year old niece got her afternoon nap in, all while the dog sheepishly hid beneath anything she could get under to avoid the loud “BOOM!”s coming from the sky.

But that is life. You have to take the chaos with the serene, the fast-paced with the stoic. I guess it’s all a balance, and I’m learning how to navigate that. Learning how to steer, to turn around in my boat and face what lies ahead.

Life is all about finding our freedom, and relishing in it. And while I’m so grateful for the beautiful freedoms of the country we are blessed to live in, and all of the people who have fought for our freedoms here, I can’t implore each of us enough to just get our ass in the river. Or in the tree.

Trust Him again. Or for the first time. He has good things in store for you, and freedom in Him is like nothing we’ve ever seen or known.

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{My dad and I before my departure. He loves ‘Merica…}

So what about you? What did you do this holiday weekend? Were popsicles involved? Sparklers, even? I can’t wait to hear stories and see photos!

{Coming Soon: My best packing tips + tricks for a long weekend get-a-way. And I promise you’ll be able to subscribe and receive automatic updates very soon, too. Praise God for technology that I’m still learning how to use.  *wink*}