I remember the last time my life felt like tabula rasa

    I’ll never forget that day when I walked that route I took everyday from my office to the subway station. I knew that it was the last time I would ever take that route again. I was no longer stuck in a cubicle for 8-10 hours everyday. It felt scary, but I also felt like I was free, like the world was once again full of possibilities.

    That’s exactly what I feel right now, and I’m here, in a coffee shop, grinning like a complete idiot, because I know… I know… Everything’s going to be okay. I’m safe. Life is beautiful.


    She mentioned me in a comment yesterday, tagging me to listen to a Steffany Gretzinger song, called Cece’s Lullaby on Spotify. I, instead, ended up listening to her song, Out of Hiding, for the first time.

    Come out of hiding, you’re safe here with Me,
    There’s no need to cover what I already see,
    You’ve got your reasons, but I hold your peace.
    You’ve been on lockdown, and I hold the key.

    The feeling was tangible. Something inside me broke, or perhaps more appropriately, something was unlocked. This deep hope, this unflinching rage, this fight in me I didn’t even know I had.

    It felt like after everything around me was leveled, I found myself still standing, protected and safe beneath His wings, and after taking a look around me, drinking in the sight of the aftermath, there’s this strange, eerie calm. This resolve. It’s time to rebuild.

    And the great thing about new beginnings is that the only limit is your imagination.

    And oh, as you run,
    What hindered love
    Will only become part of the story.

    There’s comfort in knowing that what Elisabeth Elliot said was true: God’s story never ends in ashes. 


    I can’t explain to you what’s going on within me right now. To be so alone, but for the first time in a long time, not lonely, because I see it. I see Him. In the middle of the starkness of the spaces that surround me, it’s clear that my tabula rasa comes with an army.

    The wilderness is beautiful, because it is meant to direct me to victory, to promise, to provision.

    I don’t know what lies ahead, but I do know that the person who started this journey is not the same person standing before you now.

    The slate has been wiped clean. Everything is possible again. My sad, joyful, thankful, paradoxical heart can hope again.

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    Joanna Alonzo

    Author/Founder at Almond Tree Publications
    Joanna Alonzo is a walking paradox. She is a beautiful, albeit messy, mixture of thought and emotion, expressed in the form of hopefully readable – and relatable – stories. She is a kingdom kid, who looks forward to being a writer and storyteller even when she reaches heaven. She is passionate about the unreached, about those who have yet to know the Love she found in the arms of the Almighty. She is intrigued by the world and its people, who day by day, continue to convince her that God is the greatest Storyteller of all.
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8 Comments on "Tabula Rasa: A Season of Fresh Starts & New Beginnings"

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Oh that song is one of my favourites <3
Also I have been meditating and singing and pondering this verse in Hosea for a few months.
“Therefore I am now going to allure her;
I will lead her into the wilderness
and speak tenderly to her.
There I will give her back her vineyards,
and will make the Valley of Achora (trouble) a door of hope.
There she will respond as in the days of her youth,
as in the day she came up out of Egypt.
“In that day,” declares the Lord,
“you will call me ‘my husband’;
you will no longer call me ‘my master.’
And realising that even though the wilderness is scary, God allures us out there to comfort us and to increase intimacy. I love that the Israelites experienced so much more glory and manifest presence in the wilderness and that Song of Songs say that we will come out of the wilderness leaning on our beloved.
I have a new awe and respect and desire for the wilderness seasons. <3 <3
Also facebook says we have been facebook friends for 6 years…what the heck! 😛

Joanna Alonzo

Know what, other than those passages being my life verse, they were also the ones that led me to really step into this season of just rest and intimacy. To be a Mary and not the Martha. After everything that’s happened in the past few days, I understand why He led me here. Had I went on, all that’s happened would’ve devastated me, and though it is devastating, it’s not enough to really take me out of what I’m supposed to be doing. It’s amazing and difficult at the same time. But He is faithful.

6 years?! Wow! I’m that old… haha! Not so surprised. A lot has happened since my stuck-in-the-office, hang-out-in-tumblr-coz-FB-is-blocked days. I’m grateful I met you, Beck. I truly am. (Plus if I remember correctly, I still owe you $100 for your India trip.)


It’s an amazing paradox and one that I am still trying to grasp but that’s my desire too…more intimacy and I deep trusting of the leading of God and that He knows what He is doing 🙂
Oh I know right- those tumblr days were lifesaving…I miss it in some ways but I’m glad for the changing of seasons and how life moves on. Haha save it and buy me dinner when I eventually, hopefully one day soon come and visit! I know I suck at online communication but I really think we will get along like a house on fire when we finally meet (which is definitely going to happen!)


Plus I really want to go to China/Phillipines/explore the world anyway 😛

Joanna Alonzo

Oh my heart! I can’t wait! It’ll be epic. The idea of us finally crossing paths in person brings my heart so much joy. I feel like I know you so well, that it feels surreal whenever I remember we’ve never even hugged or shook hands or eaten a meal together. The idea of you coming here for a visit is so great. Seriously consider it. Please! We have teams coming next year during the months of April and May, also July. I’d be thrilled if you could come. 🙂


I know, how crazy is that!! I feel the same!! Man we can talk about God, have disney singalongs, adventure together, be in the same room! haha
Well I am hopefully going on a mission trip to India next year with church, maybe I could come home via seeing you! ( i have no idea how that works but surely it would cheaper coming from India then australia) 😛

Joanna Alonzo

Aw man! I really hope it happens, Beck! Usually, when people suggest stuff they think would be fun to do together, I cringe, but I’m so up for all of the things you mentioned! We’re kindred souls, you and me.


haha phew that’s good….so awkward if you were sitting there cringing 😛 We are totally kindred souls <3 I'll keep you posted 😛

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