Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Where have you been hiding, Michelle?

I thought I should jot a note for anyone who might wander here...  I have been going through a very hard season of pressing pretty much since August of 2015.  Maybe even before that.  April of 2015?   I feel like at some point every year, I find myself saying, man, this has been a rough year!

I had declared at the end of 2015 that 2016 was going to be ridiculously amazing! 

I am ever the believer in good and hope.  

It has been hit after hit since January.  I don't even have time to recover from one life upheaval before the next sets in. 

But ya know what has been amazing? 

NONE of it has taken me out.  

None of it has sidelined me.  And I've kept moving forward all the while.  And though I haven't been here, I have been finding all sorts of beautiful opportunities to minister to and encourage others in so many mediums.  

Turns out, This Encouragement Project is a lot bigger than I had guessed. Figures.  God's big. What He calls me to is gonna be big, too.  And thus, the prep season for moving into it... Has been big. 

What's really cool though is that all while I'm being pressed, and the junk is getting cleaned out, I'm being refined... I'm getting chances all over the place to leave a mark.  Impact this world for good. For love.  For hope.  And yes, the mental health aspect of the ministry is starting to come out in ways I never expected. 

My work with NAMI Virginia continues.  I still occasionally work on graphic design for Outside In Ministries.  But beyond that, I am putting my own personal message out there.  Sometimes online.  Sometimes in handwritten notes to single people to remind them they're valued.   

I remain stymied In one relationship as to how to proceed - that with my dad.  It's so broken, I'm just letting it be.  There's nothing else I can do for it right now but give it space to breathe and hope at some point, healing will come.  Grace will be infused in my heart where such wreckage remains for now.  

I have been writing poetry. I have been creating art. I have been tending to my soul and graciously God has allowed me to tend to the souls of others.  I will continue to be faithful: where He leads, I'll follow.  To that end, I've no idea how active or how large a part this blog will play or even what format the posts may evolve to take... Or how their nature may shift in response to this outgrowth of what I once thought was a very centered and straightforward mission. 

So if you miss me, look out into the fields... I'm out there, sowing seeds of hope and grace, mercy and light.  Wave to me, but don't take it personally if I don't get to wave back.  There's so much tending and planting to be done.   There are so many who need to be encouraged, lifted up, reminded they matter, they are seen... They are not just loved, but cherished!  

I imagine this is the best calling I could have asked for, perfectly suited for me after all I have lived and continue to go through... I am ever so grateful for the chance to walk unabashedly in my truth, scattering bits of joy and peace along behind me wherever I go.  

I may not be back for a while, but I wish you love for your soul.  The kind of love that sets you free and makes you whole.  I invite you to read my other writings while I'm away. Until next time, I'll be out in the field... It's a long job ahead of me, perhaps even an endless one.  I can certainly imagine it will well keep me busy until He brings me home. ❤️

God bless.  Be good and kind to one another in my absence. 
-K. Michelle Payne

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