Back in May, a woman I’ll call Robin emailed me and asked, “Are you going to do another 40 Days of Faith?”
I didn’t know how to answer.
Just to be clear, I don’t receive stacks of emails asking for my continued contribution to the online world. I haven’t really been a writer for a long time. I’m a housewife. I work part time at Home Depot. We’re adopting two children. It’s all very mundane, albeit shot through with some things we never saw coming.
A bit of backstory…
Last winter I grew so incredibly tired of NOT writing. At the same time I discovered that I COULD NOT CARE LESS about achieving the perfect dining room decor. I closed my computer, cancelled my subscription to Traditional Home magazine, and told Steve, “I need a job.”
“We have all these house projects,” he laughed. “Maybe you should work at Home Depot for the discount?” He was joking. I knew this.
And yet in the days that followed, as I thought about various places I could work, I kept thinking, Whenever I go to Home Depot, the employees seem happy, and most of them know what they’re talking about. This appealed to me. So I applied (even though it turns out there’s no employee discount). I had a blast, learned all about tile installation, and lost five pounds without even trying. (This is a SERIOUSLY physical job). I was getting paid to work out, and to help people solve straightforward problems. It was splendid. I even felt myself wondering again about writing…
Then we found the kids. The ones we were going to adopt. I’d been SURE the process we started last summer would take forever. But our home study was approved in early March, and we met the kids for the first time a month later. That’s pretty speedy, as these things go.
We call them The Cherubs. They are marvelous, amazing people and are upending our world in the best fun ways. So now I’m on leave from Home Depot, learning on the fly how to be a Mom. (And even though I’d love to tell you a thousand tales of Cherubic Glee, unless you & I are related…or close enough friends that we’d show up without question to clean each others’ bathrooms if the other one needed that sort of help… I can’t. Right now we’re in this private incubator-ish phase. It’s hard to describe, but it’s a gift.)
So this was the backdrop when I received Robin’s email asking if I’d do another 40 Days of Faith. I wanted to. I felt like I had some faith to share. And yet when I tried to come up with a plan or a theme, there was nothing there. So I waited. And waited. Then yesterday I realized: I don’t really believe in 40 Days of Faith anymore. Don’t get me wrong: I love the focus of things like this, how they build friendships and inspire you to go big towards God in an intentional way. I’m a sprinter, both by personality and body type. But the past few years have taught me that this faith thing? It’s a marathon. We’re required to muster up a billion or so days of faith. There are no quick roads. Sure, we get the occasional booster blast, almost like in a video game, where something happens so quickly it makes your head spin. But really it’s just days, stacked up one after the other, where we do our level best to connect with God and respond to what He says. Turn here. Call that person. Take that job. Adopt these kids. My constant prayer is that my pile will amount to more than the sum of its parts.
So no 40 Days of Faith, at least right now. I’m starting instead at A Billion Days of Faith. Tomorrow will be A Billion Days of Faith, Minus One. And so on. It feels exciting, but in the most mundane way. I like that combination.