No doubt any artist’s manager would advise against making the following post public…and I myself have hesitated. But, as one who has processed a lot of life with you, the readers, I am compelled to share this part of the journey…
I confess I am in a peculiar place. I’ll try my best to articulate without being dramatic.
In the moment, I don’t have real clarity about what my next steps are in ministry. It’s “March” already and I still don’t have my marching orders! Have you ever been there? Have you ever felt like you’re in limbo? My Dictionary app defines it as a state of uncertainty. Not to be confused with another kind of limbo…a dance or contest that involves bending over backwards and passing under a horizontal pole lowered slightly for each successive pass. I know, silly girl. Give me a Dictionary and I go a little nuts.
Back to processing though. I’ve got a good batch of new songs, but I’m not feeling ready for another album just yet. And, strangely, I don’t have much of a Spring calendar. I think, in part, because my focus has been elsewhere, getting married and establishing a new normal. Nor do I have a hit single which can generate demand for bookings, keeping me busy and focused. Still, I am grateful to the near 800 radio stations and outlets playing “Be My Sabbath” from No Longer My Own. That’s no small thing in today’s ever changing Christian music industry.
But, can I just say I’ve been delighting in my husband? That’s the bearded fellow to the left. He super loves me, has mad skills, works hard every day, and wants to be a good provider. That’s not to say I don’t want to continue in the work God has called me to…sharing God’s message of Hope and Healing through song, speech, and the written word. I just wonder if maybe God is allowing me to take my man pants off, so to speak, to enjoy being cared for and enjoy feeling like a woman for a minute, ya know?
I’ve said many times what a Good Husband Jesus has been. That hasn’t changed. But, being single does have its challenges. Sometimes you feel like everything depends on you. As a believer, you know it doesn’t, but it can feel that way. And it’s been awfully nice to be a team together with Steven whom I have affectionately named Carpenter Husband. Not only have I resurrected my old overalls to help him on a kitchen job, but I’ve learned what a crescent wrench is and the importance of having magnetized drill bits handy. All of that while remaining delicate and lovely, of course. As lovely as one can be in pigtails and overalls. Notice there’s no photo!
Nonetheless, sorting through books the other day I found an old bio from my teen years. Perhaps a first attempt at a mission statement. Back in high school, before I had recorded my first album, I had written several piano instrumentals. Little known fact, I even unofficially “opened” for Uncle Phil a time or two. You can hear a hint of one of those early musical offerings called “Overture to Freedom”, which became the prelude to “Freedom Calling” from 1997’s release, What Matters Most. Though the photo is difficult to decipher, basically, I state my purpose as a young pianist…to share inspiring music with others, to let my light so shine before men, that they’ll praise my Father in heaven, etc. It blessed me to find this. Especially during this time of introspection.
I’ve heard it said, if you’re not sure of God’s marching orders…
Keep doing what He told you before, until He tells you something different.
Makes sense. And I’ve encouraged others with this very sentiment.
So, while I’m in this not-sure-what-I’m-supposed-to-be-doing space, maybe I’ll finish that song I was working on about pruning. Or reach out to a few churches who have hosted me in the past and see if they’re ready to have me back. Maybe I’ll read and journal and read some more. And maybe I’ll pray. Or, rather, keep praying and waiting on the Lord. How I do so want to be a good steward of my gifts while marching forward for Him. With all the certainty He can spare.
In the meantime, in this limbo place, I will trust He’s still holding me. Though He now shares holding duties with Carpenter Husband. And maybe I’ll just enjoy that for a minute and try not to be anxious about tomorrow. And be thankful. Ever so thankful for today.
What’s next for Cheri Keaggy? What comes after album No. 9? I have no earthly idea. And in my most faith-filled days I’m O.K. with that.
As long as Heaven knows.
Thanks again for letting me share so honestly. I truly appreciate your faithful friendship through the years. And welcome any insight or encouragement you may have.
Here’s to processing out loud (for better or for worse!)…
I say to myself, “The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait for Him.” The Lord is good to those whose hope is in Him, to the one who seeks Him; it is good to wait quietly for the salvation of the Lord. (Lamentations 3:24-26)