‘Tis the Season — A Deeper Story (Church)

It’s my turn to write for A Deeper Story again, this month on the church channel. Stepping into Advent for some particular reasons this year. . .



Where did the words go? I can’t seem to find them just now, though I’ve looked high and low. Not a one on my personal blog these days – nothin’. And not many tumbling around in this head of mine, either. Just a whole lotta empty space up there, coupled with a vague sense of unease.


I am seldom without words. Ask anyone who knows me — I can talk with the best of ‘em — and I usually have a lot of ideas punching each other to come to the front of the line. But these days, it’s very quiet in my head. Very. I’m not entirely sure what that’s all about, but I am paying attention. And I am wondering . . .


And then I remember a particular word, one I first learned about 30 years ago from a friend who was new to me at the time. It’s a word I should have known, I suppose, as I’ve always considered myself to be a connoisseur, and a collector of interesting compilations of letters, which taken together constitute what we call words. [Just try to come up with a synonym for that . . . well . . . for that word word, okay?]


This particular one is simple, and it’s connected to the agricultural life. Which may be why I did not know it — I know zilch about farming, so I thank God for Ann Voskamp and Jennifer Lee who are teaching me about the beauties and difficulties of this life on a daily basis.


Here it is, along with its Oxford Dictionary definition:

            fallow: (Of farmland) plowed and harrowed but left unsown for a period in order to restore its fertility as part of a crop rotation or to avoid surplus production.

F A L L O W — What a great word! An important word, one that we overlook to our peril, ignore to our destruction. Why? Because we all need it. Regularly. Human beings need fallow seasons in life, just as fields need times when they go unseeded. I believe we all experience those times when we find ourselves . . . empty. And that’s where I’ve been in recent days. So, I began to wonder: why not learn to embrace this time rather than fear it? Why not recognize that sometimes what I need most to do is to rest and replenish; to let the soil of my heart and mind experience a little bit of quiet, maybe some gentle tilling, and a lot of wide open space. Because if I do that, I give permission for the sun to revive, the rain to cleanse, and time to season. . . 

Please click here to read the rest of this essay . . .

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  1. I think God sometimes empties us out for a spell. It’s like this morning in my prayer time. No words came at all, I was staring into space and a funny phrase came into my mind. It used to play in a blurb after certain TV shows, “Sit Ubu Sit.” Sometimes you just have to sit still and not do anything. God was telling me just to sit. And I did. Sounds like you are feeling the same way. I love this! It reminds me of how the Israelites used to let their fields remain unplanted every 7 years to allow the earth to do whatever it’s supposed to do. Keep on keepin on!

  2. Good evening. Ok, so G. and I talked about what you wrote here and he said that word is how he has felt. it surely is how I have felt. And in a place where I am sitting with the unknowing and releasing myself from fixing or figuring it out. It’s not by accident, I am sure, this season of Advent of waiting seems more real to me this year. We have No. Idea about anything. I hear you and thank you for writing about this.