Empty Spaces

This week, I am channeling my mama and rearranging my house to signal a new beginning. A fresh start.

So, I sold some old stuff. I bought some new stuff. I hauled a nasty loveseat (affectionately nicknamed “the hateseat”) out to the dumpster corral. And I spent a lot of time pushing various pieces of furniture around to different spots.

I was almost happy. And then I saw this.



An empty space where my daughter’s pink and white dollhouse bookshelf used to sit. An empty space would never do.

So I pushed my furniture around a little more. But nothing seemed quite right.

I decided to run out to the store and buy the perfect thing to fill the empty space. But it was pouring. And I was tired from all of that furniture-pushing.

A black bookshelf caught my eye online. But I am cheap. Really, really cheap.

And so that spot stayed empty for a while, the carpet underneath it still matted a little from the weight that it used to bear.

And I realized today that I kind of like it.

It gives my eyes a place to rest. And it reminds me that, for now, what I have is enough.

So many of us are prone to excess, I think.

We don’t like the empty spaces.

So we fill our lives with more. More stuff. More work. More food. More adult beverages. More frenzy. More, more, more.

Once upon a time, I would have told you that we do this because we haven’t let our empty spaces be filled by Jesus.

But, friends, I have let myself be filled by Jesus.

Really and truly. Again and again.

And still there is that empty space in my life where a baby once laughed. There is that empty space where I went about for four years without knowing my own daughter—without being able to hold her or hear her first words. There is that empty space where dreams collide with reality and for a moment (or many) life is just really, really hard.

But, friends, these empty spaces don’t taunt me by telling me that I need more Jesus.

They remind me that I’m human.

They remind me that as frantically as I push furniture around, I only see a tiny piece of the ultimate design.

They remind me that now I see through a glass darkly, but one day I will see face to face—and I am made for that.

They remind me that though I do not know how the story ends, I do know the Author—and I am made for him.

They remind me that less is ok too. That it’s ok to rest.

And they remind me that, for now, what I have is enough.

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