Unsettled spirit - JJ Landis
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Unsettled spirit


There has been an underlying current of unsettledness in my spirit this season.


Mainly I feel like I’m failing at life. My husband says to embrace and enjoy what we’re good at and not focus on everything else. He’s right (as usual). But I think he has more in mind to embrace and enjoy than my two prominent skills: sleeping and eating cookies.


I am constantly attempting to patch up the holes from my early life to make things better for my own family. But it’s a messy repair job, and exhausting, when I rely on my own efforts. I pray my stitches will add quaint character and not appear sloppy and torn.


In my deep down I think I’m failing my kids daily as a mom. There are so many things I haven’t taught them. Yet, I also see brilliant children experiencing God’s grace, as we all do. I am giving them an honest mom who doesn’t pretend to have a clue. Wish I could be more. But I come up short. I do listen. I do kiss and hug (too much). I do tell them they’re fabulous. I let them be individuals. But still, I can make a long list of things I don’t do.


To have a successful blog (success here equaling many readers), a writer is typically told to use bullet points and numbered lists. To make sure there are benefits and takeaways for the reader. Ten Ways to Be Skinny. Five Ways to Be Awesome.


My blog just isn’t ever going to be that. I am such a mess and sort of want the other heartsick souls like me with jumbled thoughts that can never be sorted into lists to read my stuff. I know you who have felt empty and worthless will relate to my rootless swayings. There is freedom with exposing our true selves. And freedom in camaraderie.


So, the big takeaway for the reader today is what I want to learn myself, what I am banging my head against my desk trying and trying to learn. Let it go. Relax. Parent within your personality. Surrender. Don’t be so full of yourself to think that you have such control as to keep the whole world turning. Depression is okay, as long as you acknowledge it and give it to God. He will pick you up. He will be your strength.


Psalm 40:1-3 I waited patiently for the Lord; he turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; he set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand. He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God. Many will see and fear the Lord and put their trust in him.


  • kim erickson
    Posted at 20:15h, 30 December Reply

    JJ, I don’t think that you should write any other way than you have here. I LOVE the way you write. Write your heart out, girl. It’s beautiful and impactful. Thank you for sharing it. It’s a blessing to so many.

    • JJ Landis
      Posted at 08:17h, 31 December Reply

      Thank you so much Kim!

  • Paige Hamilton
    Posted at 21:45h, 27 December Reply

    I can relate, JJ … I’ve been there too. Far too often, I’m afraid.

    Funks are like pits. The deeper the pit, the harder to climb out. The deeper the funk, the harder it is to get un-funked. Ugh.

    I think you summed it all up quite well in your last paragraph and with the Scripture. Give it to God. He’s quite able to handle it all for you.

    Wish I were closer. Maybe we could go grab a cup of coffee … talk writing for a while, talk kids, talk a lot of God and grace and mercy. I bet we’d both feel better afterwards.

    • JJ Landis
      Posted at 15:15h, 28 December Reply

      Paige, I think a chat would be fun. Thanks for reading and “getting it.”

  • Kimberly
    Posted at 20:38h, 27 December Reply

    Oh J.J., it hurts my heart to *read* you feeling this way.

    Perspective – it’s a powerful thing. From yours, you appear to yourself to be failing for the reasons you listed (even if not numbered). From mine, you are such an incredible person – a mother to amazing children, a wife, a spiritual woman, and a witty, vastly readable writer with that rare gift of being able to truly communicate with your audience. You connect.

    Perspective – you know that whole mother/wife thing you’ve got going on? Nada here. And not likely ever. You’ve given your heart and trust to someone; that makes you brave in a way I don’t see possible anymore for myself.

    Remember that the funks move on … funks don’t last. They come, they pee in your Cheerios, disrupt your day/week/month, then things lift and days seem brighter. Remember that even if funks return, they don’t stay. Take those deep belly breaths, listen to some beautiful music, write out your feelings, and know that golden days are to come.

    Or … in those way old other words … hang in there.

    • JJ Landis
      Posted at 21:42h, 27 December Reply

      This is a treasured comment! Funks come, they pee in your Cheerios – Exactly!! Love you and your encouragement and very much enjoy seeing your life on Facebook. Seriously, you make me smile and wish I could hang out with you. Esther would love you too – the way you embrace your inner (outer) geek/nerd. Thanks!!

  • sharon
    Posted at 15:22h, 27 December Reply

    failing is such a subjective thing. And that also meaning success comes in so many forms. Honestly, being sincere, transparent, and realistic are hard to find in people, let alone blogs. I’m not much of a blog reader, but I keep reading your’s because you’ve got your soul sewn into it! Always inspired JJ 🙂

    • JJ Landis
      Posted at 16:53h, 27 December Reply

      Thank you. Love you. Keep reading!

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