Last night, I sat down to write in my prayer journal before bed. I was almost driven to this practice because the power had gone out, and I was home alone without a car (it’s in the shop). Sometimes God works to make us take what we need I suppose.

As I opened my journal, I saw it had been exactly two months since I had written there. Two months ago . . . I have never been a daily journal-writer, so this wasn’t unusual – but still, I hadn’t written there for two months.

Then, today, when I woke naturally at 6am and knew Dave was starting his new job today, I took this as a note that I needed to get back to my job – my writing, the job for which I quit the paying, high-stress job I had. So I got back to my practice – feed the cats, make coffee, meditate, read, and then write. When I opened my morning journal (does anyone else keep multiple journals?) I saw that here, too, it had been two month since I had written. Eight weeks away from words.

I feel like I have to find the path of language again. That may seem unusual since I have been teaching writing all summer, but it’s very different to explain how to do something and to do it yourself. I feel like I am walking through a lush green forest with ferns all around me. The walk is gorgeous but unfocused, as it sometimes needs to be, as it has needed to be for me these last two months.

Yet, I know I need a path, and I know that I need to lay this path for myself. Images come to mind – a giant steamroller pressing down pavement, a slate walkway evened out with sand – but today, I choose to think of laying my path with pebbles. Some of the pebbles will come from streams – all neutral toned and smooth with the memory of water. Some of them will come from glass – blown slick with heat. Some will be shells discovered in the grains of sand on the beach. Some will be sea glass strewn among those shells – cloudy with the wash of salt water. But they all will be mine, laid out carefully in this winding forest of life.

The process of building a path of pebbles is slow, especially when each pebble must find its way to me and then out of my mouth full of stones. But this path, this slow and glorious path of tiny things – as tiny as words – is mine, given to me by a Creator and a life that is no one else’s. This path deserves my time, and I am so glad to be back to it.

In honor of this return of mine, I want to give a book away. This book has been a great guide for me these past few months. I hope you will enjoy it, too. See my review here for a more full description of the book.

Cover of The Mysterious Life of the HeartThe Mysterious Life of the Heart: Writing from The Sun about Passion, Longing, and Love.

If you’d like to be entered into this giveaway, just leave a comment here. If you blog and link to this post, I”ll give you another entry, and the same goes if you Twitter or Facebook about it. Just let me know what you do, and I”ll get you entered. I’ll announce the winner on Friday.