Syriac Catholic Church in Old DamascusA week ago right now we were nearing the Chicago airport in what ended up being 13 hours on the Turkish airline flight 005 from Istanbul. I was so ready to get off that plane and get into the States! Our time in Damascus was w-o-n-d-e-r-f-u-l, but since it had to end I was ready to be in my house! The flight from Chicago to Raleigh was delayed, but that actually worked out well since our flight from Turkey was late. However instead of getting home around 9, it was more like 10:30. Yeah, yeah just an hour and a half difference, no biggie, however we were running on fumes after having been awake and/or trying to sleep on a plane or in an airport since too long to remember. We missed a night of sleep because our flight left Damascus at 4:05 AM and we got dropped off at the airport around 1:45. So anyway.... we are back in North Carolina.
And I have been so melancholic ever since.
It seems like for so many weeks I was physically, mentally, spiritually and even emotionally preparing for this crazy trip to Damascus and then, of course, we experienced 2 weeks from home which were great -- flight and airport times excluded. So now I'm just kind of at a loss. It's kind of like the post-Christmas letdown only I never get that though I know many do. Actually just yesterday I was at the newly-remodeled local McDonald's with my nephew and was reading an article from a local church's monthly newsletter. It really struck a chord and is the reason I looked for "sunbeams" pictures. Here are two paragraphs from this article that made me pause.
Gifts and events can't fill the soul.
God gives us such things to enjoy. They are expressions of His generosity as well as ours, but gifts and celebrations themselves are not designed to satisfy. They're designed to point us to the Giver. Gifts are like sunbeams. We are not meant to love sunbeams but the Sun.
Putting our hope in gifts will leave us empty.
Many people live their lives looking for the right sunbeam to make them happy. But if we depend on anything in the world to satisfy our soul's deepest desire, it will eventually leave us with that post-Christmas soul-ache. We will ask, "Is that all?" because we know deep down that's not all there is. We are designed to treasure a Person, not His things.
So maybe I have this melancholy, this sadness and sense of purposelessness because I have been busy chasing sunbeams and trying to satisfy my life with fleeting things when I should have been basking in the sun. I mean, the presence of the Son.
Hmmmm, anyway, that's what's up with me right now.
Enjoy several pictures of our trip here. Samer was so kind to post them yesterday. You can see me in 3 different mosques. I have on that covering thing that I loved so much! :-P