I love to travel. I love seeing new places and I love experiencing new things.

I grew up in the same town all of my life until I left for college. Once I left for college, though, I didn’t stay in the same place for more than a year or two before moving on.

I have never liked the idea of settling down. It seems boring, too safe.

The reality, though? It is not safe at all. 

It is the staying, the investing, that is dangerous.

It is dangerous to stop in one place for a long time. Relationships have more of a chance to implode. Neighbors have a better idea of who you really are. Friends might reject you because they have more time to see deep inside of your heart.

I’d rather keep moving on.

I have tried to fool my own heart, convincing myself that my wanderlust is due to my love of excitement, due to my desire to not live life in safety.

That, however, is a lie. It is a lie that I have lived with for a long time.

It is because I love the safety of shallow, the security of anonymity, that I don’t remain in one place for long.

Now? I’ve been in the same house for almost five years, and in the same town for seven.

 I’m learning. I’m learning how to be vulnerable and how to help hold others accountable. I’m learning what community, long term community, really looks like.

I’m learning how to stay.

7 thoughts on “Stay

  1. Wise words, Elizabeth. I never thought about it like that before. It is hard to really get involved in people’s lives in a deep way.

  2. Wow. What a powerful thought. Tyler and I have moved so often that I tend to not try super hard to make friends. I mean, I make friends, but if it doesn’t work out, eh, we’ll be gone soon anyway. Real community? Real church? That’s a huge investment.

    • I am also discovering that the temptation to keep things surface-y doesn’t completely go away with the settling down. Since we live in a big college town, it is all too easy to say “Eh, they’ll probably be gone again in a few years. No need to invest in that relationship too heavily.”

  3. Elizabeth,
    Really? Shallow and superficial? I don’t see it.

    I think you are seeing yourself with new eyes.

    I wonder if these new eyes are causing you to view a previous version of yourself through the maturity of your current self?

    There weren’t many people who challenged me at Harding and you definitely did. Blessings, Sister.

    • Thank you, friend.

      Perhaps “shallow” and “superficial” are too harsh. It is definitely both easier and safer, though, to keep people at arm’s length. It takes a lot of work to create a deep, vulnerable relationship with someone, and it is a very risky business to trust your heart to someone else. I have learned, though, (and am still learning!) that not letting people fully into my life is not nearly as fulfilling…not at all how God created us to live!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.