Finding your Flow

My college professor used to talk about a term called “flow.” She explained about how in rock climbing you find your “sweet spot” or the moment where you think you’re going to break, and you find the strength to keep going and you feel the rush of adrenaline. She talked about finding your “flow” where all the little pieces come together and you are able to climb and block out all the other worries or fears you might have in your head. I found I have a similar experience when topping cheesecakes at work. Somedays the topping is lumpy and my hands are unsteady. It’s a chore. Other days, I find my “flow” the cream is at the right temperature, and the decorating wheel that my cheesecake rest upon seems like an extension of my arm. Heck yes! The cheesecakes are even, smooth, and beautiful. I can’t hear the bakers stacking cake pans in the back, or the door ringing up front. I’m in perfect and complete uninterrupted flow.

What happens when your flow is interrupted? All your worries and fears are all in front of you demanding to be paid attention. You’re at the top of the rock wall and your muscles seize up and you realize just how high you really are. And how far you could come down. You realize just how far you can fall, just right as you’re about to reach your goal. Your final destination and prize. Flow meets panic. Panic leads to discouragement. It’s always darkest before the dawn. In the devotional I’m reading right now, one of the author’s bluntly states this phenomena:

“Have you ever noticed that people are often the most tempted to quit right before a breakthrough? I believe this happens because there is an evil one who desperately wants to keep you from experiencing God’s best for you.” Amanda Jass, In the Wait. 

This summer, I’m saying “Yes” to perseverance. To strength. To not quitting. It’s not quite as glamorous as rock climbing, creating beautiful desserts, or moving to a different place. In fact, most people don’t really acknowledge faithfulness until you’ve finished the race, am I right? It has to be tested over time. You have to finish what you started. The two year anniversary of my Mom’s death hit me like a tidal wave. The brunt force of grief swept me up and took me out to sea. But I swam. I put each arm in front of me and pulled back against the water. It doesn’t seem fair to get discouraged and attacked during times when you need strength and comfort the most. When you can’t see what goodness might be around the corner. It’s too hard. This isn’t a fight I have chosen, but I hope to have the strength to finish.

I find comfort in a Jesus who preached from a boat in the water (Mathew 13:1). His audience saw him talking to them in midst of the sea, which to them represented chaos. God’s voice came through the fear and the chaos of their time. God’s voice comes through the static and the waves, and says “Come to me.”

Matthew 11:28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”

Let’s be real, my own strength has some serious limitations. I put my bowl in the dishwasher last night and Jesse was like “Why didn’t you put the spoon in there too?” and in my tired brain, I was like “It was. Just. Too. Much.” Oh dear. I’m in desperate need of a God who embraces the burdened. The weak. The ones struggling with melting whip cream.

Who or what helps you push through the last milestone before the celebration? Who or what gives you a final push right before the breakthrough?

Perseverance gives us the ability to “flow,” to feel like our tasks and the goals before us are a sweet choreographed dance that we learned a long time ago. Strength tells you to not let that wobbly cheesecake wheel get you down forever. That your identity is not formed in how well you top a cheesecake. I’m saying yes to strength, to perseverance, and to God never, ever quitting on me.

 

 

 

p.s. This is the first installment of this summer’s theme “Summer of Yes!” You can read my last blog for more info about my heart behind it. I have started assembling (yeah, like superheroes) a team of several writer/adventurers who will contribute guest posts in July and August.

 

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