hemmed

my dear friend,


Much of my past week has been spent in solitude. I (finally) got COVID and that means I didn't leave the house, or my room, all that much.


I was too tired to read much. I didn't go to the store. I didn't eat a whole lot. I did go on a few (short) sunny walks around the neighborhood, sat on the deck with my roommates, watched a lot of TV, and stared at the ceiling for a few good long whiles.


"Yet it is only when we are fenced in that we begin to know the true shape of ourselves and of our lives. What it is we long for. What it is we love. Hemmed in on every side, we begin to understand, I am not enough. Until every limitation and every need becomes a prayer. And every prayer a light revealing the treasure that is always, already ours." -Christie Purifoy, Roots + Sky


My normal approach to being sick is to rage against the captivity of illness. I am a reluctant prisoner of my blankets and my bed, my mind drifting to where I wish I was with an urgency I cannot explain. Even when I was a kid, puking for a week, I would talk about broccoli and mashed potatoes and milk, staring out the windows at the leaves and sky longing to be out under them.

Not this time.


I won't question too hard why this time was different. No spiritual revelations have descended upon me. Just a quiet, confident trust that the Lord knew I needed rest. He didn't feel unusually near, but I knew he wasn't far. I didn't need to feel him to rest in him. Perhaps quiet trust was the gift of this sickness. Not a product of my own reason or endeavor, for I am not enough. Just a sweet and simple gift that I could accept because I didn't try to be more than I am.


"You hem me in, behind and before, and lay your hand upon me." Psalm 139:5


I pray this for you, too, my friend.


with joy,




karly alexandra



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