shifting sand

I've been thinking about riverbeds lately.

And how, over a span of time, the rushing water cuts itself a unique course. In flood seasons, the water may overflow the banks, and once the flood recedes, the river's path is likely different than it was before. Maybe slightly. Maybe drastically. But even one rock overturned makes the river flow differently.


I've been thinking about suffering lately too.

And how it carves and scrapes and plows through the riverbed of our lives, ultimately changing our course and our current. The changes—sometimes slight, sometimes drastic—lie far below the surface of what others can see, leaving us more different inside than our exterior lives will ever show.


The entire path of our lives is transformed by the ever-changing current of our experiences. No matter how hard we may fight it, we are changed by what happens to us. But as Maya Angelou so beautifully said, we can "refuse to be reduced by it." And we can refuse to be defined by it.


Dry riverbeds don't change. It's only the violent, rushing water that has the power to shift and shape an entire river. I cling to that visual reminder that the pain, heartache, and discomfort stand as proof of life.


What I've learned from the shifting sand of my own riverbed is this: Embrace the shaping. Don't fight the current. Give yourself grace for the new normal.

And trust that the divine finger isn't finished carving the course yet.

{photo credit}