How to Fill an Empty Soul

“Are you taking a break? I haven’t seen you on Facebook and instagram lately.”

That is correct.

A few weeks ago I couldn’t take it anymore. I just felt so unsatisfied when I looked at social media posts and how polished everyone’s lives where. They all looked so happy and perfect – while I was busy and alone and imperfect. I scrolled down feeds in search of some sort of meaningful news, but all I got was videos about cats and clickbait headlines.
The more time I spent on social media, the angrier I became and the emptier I felt.

It was time to get out.

The season of Lent provided a perfect time to go offline and see how my view of the world would change (hopefully).

It was quite surprising to see how much I didn’t miss it all. The white noise of cat videos, game invitations, gifs…It was all quiet out of a sudden. Finally, there was some space to listen, to breathe, to learn.

But it was also nice to rediscover some online friends who I’ve really missed during this time, I must admit. They use media very well to open my eyes for beauty and point me to unexpected treasures in the mundane.

The most shocking discovery was to realize how much time I waste on social media. It’s so easy to just pick up the phone when you’re waiting for something or feel bored. I felt almost conditioned to move my fingers towards icons, they were already trained to swipe down, to tap. It seemed impossible to just read a book, to just watch a book, to just ficus. I always needed something else. I was hoping that someone, anything, would care about me and entertain me. Shocking, sobering, eye-opening.

When I stopped looking at my phone for direction, I suddenly had so much time.
Time to really focus on the important things.
Time to intentionally connect with people.
Time to leave the camera behind and truly see beauty.
Time to listen to birds singing.
Time to inhale the smell of spring flowers and new life awakening.

Time to fill my heart again which things that matter and life that restores.

These weeks have definitely been a learning experience. The semicolon is a good symbol for it: I want to put a period – a stop – to wasting time on nonsense distraction – but I also want to connect with God, with people and the real world – focused and intentionally. Even if this means disconnecting online.

Have you ever taken a social media break? What have you learned? I would love to hear your experiences!

My friend Marilyn has written about this topic as well, check out her thoughts here!

Psst: I’ve also been working on some exciting news. Will share more about it next week! Stay tuned! 


Writing for Five Minute Friday today.

What a Table Can Do for Community

In my short twenty-eight years of life I’ve traveled the world quite a bit and spent
some time in different cultures. The best thing about other countries are the people
who invite you into their homes and lives to show you a few of their traditions.
Traditions I can then take back to my own life and introduce others to them.

When I lived in the States a friend invited me to spend Thanksgiving with her family.
I got to experience a whole day of family fun in the mountains, great food and good
conversations. A day to reflect, appreciate and give thanks. It was such a treat and
blessing for me. So I took this tradition back home and introduced my family to it.
Ever since then, they keep asking, “Can you please cook Thanksgiving dinner
again?”

Last Thanksgiving was a little different.

I am sharing my last Thanksgiving experiences on Kristin’s blog Turquoise Table today. Read the rest of the story here.

A Second Look Changes Everything

It’s been five months since I started my teaching job at the new school.
Five months since I got to know 250 young people who I have the privilege of teaching. Through lessons, tests and talks in between I have gotten to know a tiny part of their personality and now have to make lucky guesses on their performance and chances. Often this seems nearly impossible.

Once in a while, my students surprise me.
I laugh or I cry.
I realize I don’t really know them at all.

Last night I attended a concert and a lot of my kids performed. There were great pieces, but I mostly enjoyed the unexpected performances by students who seem invisible in my classes or don’t do so well.

In my weekly classes I can only see so much, all I get is a glimpse.
Last night’s performances helped me to refine the picture I had of them and correct it if necessary. Take them out of the box I had placed them in and allow them to surprise me.

It’s been more than twenty years that I am on this journey with God.
Lots of ups and downs, and sometimes it seems as if life together has become dull. As if I have discovered everything already and there’s nothing new to know.
Sometimes life gets in the way and it seems like I don’t know God at all.

I guess I might have to attend the concert of life to see God perform and surprise me. To allow him to show up in my daily routines and exhaustion, to meet me right here and now.
To overwhelm me once again when my heart has lost its wonder.
To reveal himself in unexpected ways and people.
To help me break free of the boxes that limit my view of him.
To refine and deepen my faith in him.
There is, there has to be, so much more to learn and discover.


Writing for Five Minute Friday today.

Rest in the Middle of Life

“Oh no, I couldn’t possibly. There’s just too much to do.
Work first, pleasure later.
I can rest when I’m done with everything.”

Do these statements sound familiar to you?
These battles inside of you between what your soul longs for and what your busy mind tells you to do?

I had this battle going on this weekend. The first week back at work after Christmas Break was very stressful, and I’m not really looking forward to the next with all the things I have to do.
I really don’t have time to rest.
I never really seem to have time.

I don’t have time.

That’s probably one of the most overused excuse in our society today, and unfortunately we often feel good using it because it makes us sound productive, active and useful.
So we give in to this lie that we can’t possibly rest now.

So how can we get the rest our souls need so desperately?

We make time for it.
And we’ll discover that there is actually more time than we think.

Time to do things for us, not for anyone else’s benefit.
Time to savor and waste on something that replenished our souls.
Time to listen to our breath and that soft voice of the father reminding us of his perfect love and rest.

So, in the middle of life and its busyness I decided to rest today.
I wasted time on the couch with a good book.
I made time to spend with  friends. I savored my breakfast.
I stretched out my empty hands and allowed the father to refill them.

I wasted time and found abundance instead.


Even though I’m two days late, I’m still joining my writing peeps
over at Five Minute Friday.

Where our Cravings Find a Home

Even though I’m not pregnant, I crave a lot of things.
I crave my warm bed when I’m on my way to work early in the morning.
I crave sparkling water after a workout.
I crave a hot meal at the end of a long day.
Yes, I sometimes crave bacon.

10c

If we take a closer look at our lives and our souls, we’ll discover cravings inside all of us. We all long for something.

Continue reading “Where our Cravings Find a Home”

Packed Bags

It’s the last day of October. It’s also the last chapter of Mundane Narratives. One month of people, objects and stories we so often tend to overlook. I hope you had some fun reading along!

The question is what remains at the end of this month.
What are you taking away from this challenge?

Continue reading “Packed Bags”

Stop the Car!

Last week I went on a drive with my mom. She has broken her arm and I visited her for a few days to help out at home and be some company to her.
We went into the city, wandered around the shops and did a pretty good job at window shopping.

The sun began to set as we started our journey back home. We left the city behind us and drove through fields and smaller villages.
The car turned around a corner and then we saw it.

Continue reading “Stop the Car!”