The Sweetness of Marinating



The past six months have been crammed full of chaos.

I hurt someone I care about deeply, because I couldn’t be what he needed me to be. My parked car was shot at and now the wind whistles through the hole in my windshield. I was fired from my job at the café where I loved so many people. And this week I dropped a ladder on my house and broke a window.

I ought to be having a meltdown right about now. My sister will attest that there have been bad days where I have used fun phrases about fans and fecal matter. But I’m pretty sure I’m doing okay right now.

In February I waltzed past my 29th birthday. For the first time in a long time I didn’t feel like I needed to be more than I am. I didn’t need to think about who I am going to be. I just spent the day being it.

Maybe that’s it. Maybe I’m finding my sweet spot—where the world isn’t sunny and bright all the time, but at least I can see that it will be again.

Maybe it’s that even amid the chaos, I’m not rushing forward. I think I’m just … marinating.

I’m soaking in a whole lot of grace and generosity and also heartache and distress. I have no idea what this sweet, salty brine will produce in my life, but at worst, more fodder for my memoir, right?

In my marinating, I am calm. And that calm scares me just a little. If you know me, then you know I am not calm. I am wired and high-strung. I have no fewer than six projects at one time and have packed my schedule down to 15-minute increments. I talk fast, I move fast, I drive fast.

I’m still that high-strung, ambitious woman filling my schedule with too many projects for the hours allotted. I’m still working two jobs and building a house and starting a business. But I’m also learning the way of rest.

I am drenched in peace.

Maybe this is what “peace that surpasses understanding” really feels like.


Sarah Joslyn
I’m more likely to answer to Sars than Sarah. That’s because years ago my brothers started calling me Sars and, as the name implies, it was infectious. I’m a self-proclaimed writer-photographer-Jesuslover-painter-adventurer-foodie. I have a near obsession with ending injustice and I’m a sucker for a good cause. I blog about life and building a tiny house at
Sarah Joslyn
Sarah Joslyn

Latest posts by Sarah Joslyn (see all)

Sarah Joslyn


  1. I, too, am rarely calm, so your post is an inspiration to me as we all walk through the variety of craziness life throws at our heads. 🙂 I love the imagery of “drenched in peace.” That may be my new prayer! 😉

  2. This article was really fun, and chaotic. That contrasting with the marinating makes this a really, really fun piece. I think of meat simmering in a soothing wine and spice, becoming really delicious when I think of marinating. LOL.

  3. Lindsey Smallwood says:

    “Learning a way of rest.” So good. Thanks for writing.

  4. I love this metaphor of marinating! Thanks for a great new way to look at life’s calm-before-the-storm (or maybe calm-during-the-storm) moments.

  5. Oh to be drenched in peace! I don’t think the secret of being content can ever be learned in situations without contention. Grace to you as you learn calm in the storm!

  6. Oh my goodness friend, sweet, salty brines produce the tenderest of souls! I think that you have found how to slip into your center–that often elusive yet beautiful place of peace–while all around you the storm rages. I’m sure all that crazy wants to pull you back into the fray but you just keep remembering where it is that you feel most at home. And, please, keep on marinating. The world will be so much better for the flavor you bring to it.

    • Sarah Joslyn Sarah Joslyn says:

      Holly, how is it that you find the tiniest if my clever words and spin golden prose out of it? You are magic. And I love you.

  7. Claire De Boer cjdeboer says:

    I’m right there with you my friend — more fodder for memoir 😉

  8. pastordt says:

    Lovely, Sarah. Hard, but lovely. Life is such a crazy mix of beautiful and hard, and learning to marinate, as you have so beautifully imaged it, is a huge part of maturing well. Kudos.

  9. Michael Phillips says:

    I do not think you can be a healthy human being until you have seen that we are in a world of encroaching darkness. But I don’t believe you can be a healthy follower of Jesus without also seeing yourself and a few others as lights in that darkness. Bullet holes are darkness. Broken windows are darkish. Being fired is bleak. But even in writing this so beautifully, you have opened a window for more light to come in. Thank you.

  10. Are you sure you’re only 29? At the risk of sounding like the ancient of days, I’m afraid that you have far surpassed my own level of peace saturation in the third decade. However, I, too, am living my way toward the “peace that passes understanding” of which you speak, and I’m very thankful, today, to read about the work of God in your high-strung, amazing self.

    • Sarah Joslyn Sarah Joslyn says:

      O, Michele, I’m hanging on to this peace and writing it out right now because I suspect it is fleeting. I can’t image my high-strung self will be this calm for long so I’m learning as much as I can while I marinate and hoping I resurface knowing how to get back here sometimes.

  11. I agree with Bev… may HIs peace and grace continue to carry you. Much, much love xoxo

  12. Bev Murrill says:

    The peace that passes all understanding means you … have to give up your right to understand. That’s the tough bit, ain’t it, Sars!

    Love that you don’t let anyone stop you. You are a hero par excellence~

    • Sarah Joslyn Sarah Joslyn says:

      I have long since given up my right to understand. I will make myself crazy trying to understand. I can make meaning from all sorts of places in my life, but I still really, really don’t understand. 🙂

  13. O Sarah,

    Peace is my word for this year, so to say that I understand the need and desire for it would be an understatement.

    I’m truly very sorry for the trials you’ve experienced. Really shocking. (My goodness, your car got shot at??!) May Christ surprise you with His grace and mercy. May this year’s end be more peaceful for you than its beginning.

    • Sarah Joslyn Sarah Joslyn says:

      Mmmmmm. I’m going to carry that with me, Ganise. Peace is a squirly thing to grasp and I’m hanging to her hard right now.


  1. […] Originally posted at SheLoves Magazine. […]

Speak Your Mind