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A Beautiful Life

The world needs more beauty…. And we are a beautiful song, a poem of God

“Beauty has a way of sneaking past defenses and speaking in unique ways.”

Beauty can draw others into Grace,  so as I sat to reflect on the beautiful life song…Life poem, which was my Grandma’s , it was beauty I saw.

It was a sonnet filled with color and Grace. I saw each handwritten card,  the times of dancing to Christmas records in July,  the rides in an old silver Ford for Ice Cream with my little brother,

And I saw God

It was time spent together on bended knee praying for each other and knowing an answer would come.

And I saw God… I saw Love

It was her fond affection for lovely colorful clothing and having the table set just right

And I saw Beauty

It was her desire to learn something new even at the age of 92

And I saw Beauty…Wonder…Grace

It was all the friends she kept close, and her family even closer

And I saw Love…Goodness…Kindness

It was her willingness to forgive seventy times seven, to not hold a grudge, to always believe God would make a way

And I saw Hope

It was times my brother and I would tease her and laugh

And I saw patience

It was her infectious laugher, a laughter I can never forget

And I saw the Laughter of God

It was the times she was knocked down and got right back up again

I saw Faithfulness

It was the oil paintings she painted and the joy she had in those

And I saw Beauty

It was the pot roast potatoes, cottage cheese and pears

And I saw the invitation…come to the table

It was the times I spent listening to stories of living through the Great Depression and saving the money for chicken on Sunday

And I saw perseverance

It was the importance of a Valentines Day card, Christmas or Birthday card even up until this Valentines Day

I saw Grace…I saw Love

It was her firmness, but yet,  the way she still loved

It was all the quotes that keep running through my mind: “Life is strange with it’s twists and turns,” “Praise the Lord from whom all blessings flow,” ” Lean not on your own understanding”

It was the way she anticipated life,  lived it,  an extraordinary bold living to 102

And I saw Goodness… I saw Hope…

It was the fact that even if I was not able to see her for a while we picked up where we left off. She encouraged me…invited and inspired me to live fully in my gifts

I saw Grace

It was how she knew she would never be abandoned or forsaken and how she would quote Romans 8:28 and Philippians 4:19

It was when we would quote Isaiah 41:10 to each other

“Do not fear for I am with you

Do not anxiously look about you for I am your God

I will strengthen you, surely I will help you

Surely I will uphold you with my Righteous right hand”

I saw God…I saw Love

Yes Beauty like this could save the World, I have seen it!

So I hope you see it too, how beauty is here in this world, because when you see it, when you truly see it you have seen God, Who IS Love

I saw my Grandma,  I saw Beauty,  I saw Love himself and the amazing-ness of Life.

I saw, felt and heard the whisper of Grace a tapestry of the colors of Grace and  Love that can never be separated, that never gives up and gathers us into loving embrace and carries us on….into our next adventure

Yes,  Beauty like this could save the World.

*Brian Zahnd`s book,” Beauty Could Save the World” was inspiration for this writing.

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In like Flynn

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I’m in like Flynn, down like Jackson Brown!  Somehow it all came to a  head.  A year of building , not the kind of brute force building but that inner building of strength.  I have always had a fond affection for strength sports, the feel of the cold steel bar gripped tightly in my hands has in some ways given me great satisfaction,  and a tight grip equals a tight core.  So when I literally lost my grip a year ago due to injury I had no idea I was setting out to find and rebuild my “core”.   Traveling through 2000 miles I drug heavy ship chain, sand bags, and a few vintage metal weight plates in the car.  Somehow knowing I could continually work on my outer strength while my inner  seemed to face a breaking point,  anesthetized the ache.

But this is only a small piece, I remember in High School struggling with the fact that really I loved weights I loved strength, but that ‘s not for girls.  So in turn,  it wasn’t something I openly would admit too.  And people have made their comments, suggesting that somehow a strong woman is out  for a good fight.   I have struggled with this image through the years, trying not to fit in any one box.  I love to write, I love flowers, I love to wear pink sometimes and…. I love weights.

Something beautiful has occurred in my life however,  like when the sun has just set and meets the ocean for a few moments of indescribable beauty.  Through the growing pains of the last year,  there has been an inner strength birthed.    Planted as a seed it has only been through hard ship, more hard ship, dedication to move forward, and perseverance that I can see it coming out to meet and join my outer strength.  And my daughter whom I have looked at with such poise and grace,  said it straight at me ” Mom that is your beauty.”  And so it is that strength has it’s own beauty, only it is missing something if the core, the” true strength” has not been braided together with it.  I find it not  pushy and conceited but rather it is born through humility and grace.   Weakness is opportunity for strength  born afresh in a life.  And Strength Himself has shown me yet again,  he has heard my heart and grew it stronger.

So I find myself staring down a power lifting meet in two weeks.  For me it is a testimony, not to weigh and measure myself against another, judge and be judged.  But a celebration that “I am enough” who I am in this moment is all that is needed.  A celebration of coming through the breaking process  and letting it do it’s work, because something “new” always comes from that.  You are “Enough” I am “Enough” right where you are in this moment.  So I am all in, in like Flynn

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The Importance of Play!

IMG_20150528_194510There was this little girl full of Grace and I can remember her being all but four years old, and I can remember how it’s not real hard for children to see it in your face. To see strain, worry and stress.  And I remember it perfectly – she trying to invite me to play and I can remember how important it was for these thoughts in my head to be finished,  to be thought through.  Play seemed to take me away from the matter at hand, and this was a serious matter to think though. Then, these little hands they came in close and cupped my face and that voice of Grace –  I remember it still, like a sweet voice in my soul.  ” Mamma your too hard”  And I knew she saw with real eyes, she saw that the most serious matter at hand was play! I’ve never forgotten these words I’m learning, learning to blow the dandelions into the wind, to skip, to swing high and to listen to the voice of children, there is much truth found in them.

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The Passion That Drives Us!

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I missed it!  I wasn’t able to write last week and well….I felt a part of me missing.   I am driven to write,  words,  sentences,  paragraph’s,  stories begin forming on the inside of my head,  waiting to tumble out.  I can’t help it,  I am not even sure I write that well,  but I must.  In fact if I don’t,  there is a part of me I feel… I have lost touch with.  You could say it is a passion of mine.

Passion,  it is what drives us.  It is what we must do in order to be whole.   The definition of Passion in which comes from the Latin verb patoir,  means to suffer and endure.  So,  something that drives and sustains us in the face of yes…  suffering.  If this is the case,  than it is worth the inconvenience.  It is worth giving up some of our comforts to experience the exploration of what we are passion about. To risk and have suffered in the midst of it,  is far better than to not have taken risk at all.

My family and I sold our home,  my husband left a 13 year career,  we packed all we had and headed out for a 2000 mile journey for five months.   We are not sorry a day that we did it.  We were passionately driven to experience more Life.  There were many hardships,  but all of them worth it.

It has all led to further exploration in all of our lives of what drives us,  what is life-giving for us.  The risk even though there was loss was far worth the cost. Passion is worth the cost.  Here I am writing,  a big risk, sharing my photography,  but I am passionate about it.  I won’t be seen or heard by millions but in my little world of influence if I even inspired one brave soul….it has been worth the risk!

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When You Must Dance!

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And there are those times when you simply must dance.  And us four looking foolish dancing right there in the kitchen…we spun the vinyl.  All of the spinning spun the hard stuff right out.  Because sometimes it’s just plain hard, and it’s how we respond in those times that count. In the end the family that dances together stays together!

I hope you dance this weekend friends!!

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Constraint Leads to Creativity

As I looked out my window,  fogged over from the cold,  the ground all covered in snow and ice, I immediately looked to the sky.  Crystal blue… and beautiful.   It all set me to pondering on something I had heard recently,  “Constraint leads to Creativity”. If this is right,  constraint could actually be an invitation to creativity,  depending on how we respond to it.  So naturally I snapped a photo,  this was an invitation to be creative with what I saw.  An invitation to see beauty.

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I could feel the cold of the day and the feeling of constraint that comes with that.  I thought how this can send one about  grumbling, But how  children seeing opportunity are actually making snow hills, and building snow men, seemingly numb to how wet and cold they are. They instead are focused on the opportunity,  the fun,  and creating of adventure.

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As I reflect upon this more,  it seems the most inventive times in our history were times where the thinking  was, where there is a will there was a way?  It seems this is  a way of  looking at the possibilities instead of the impossibilities

I have realized that when living with all of life’s   conveniences at hand we can tend to live a little less… creatively.   To not  focus so much on what we do not have at the moment.  To think of what we can do with what we do have,  invites to a more creative way of life, and often times a more satisfied way of living.   I myself am learning to let go slowly of the word “can’t”,  when am faced with what would seem like a mountain of constraint.  When I  hear myself utter these words, I grit my teeth and began to redirect my thinking.  It may look different,  it may have to be done different,  but,  in the end isn’t that what creativity is all about?  I believe we are all given the ability to create, and  In the Creator Himself I see endless creativity.  Just maybe a constraint in  life be just the thing  needed to make way for creativity.  Creativity it seems,  leads to an exploration of life abundant and beauty seen from a different perspective.

I would love to hear how constraint has led to creativity in your life!

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I find in many of my wanderings that there exists “Love notes”  in my every day.  They wait only to be found,  like a hidden treasure.  In celebration of the week of Love – might I  share some of my favorite photographic love notes?  Those moments that captured my soul and I gave way to being captivated.

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Climbing fences

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Running with my daughter,  giggling like a school girl, climbing fences,  and trying not to get caught in the barbed wire – in the moment I realized how good it felt to play like a child again.  How fun it is to fling your arms wide open to wild abandon, let the wind mess up your hair,  go ahead no one is looking!

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Peace

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An early morning capture of all things beautiful!  Being out on the road often prompts my creative eye, and the wonder that surrounds. Living in a colder climate your eye has to be open to seeing beauty in a different way in the winter months.  This is one of my favorite shots so far this winter.

 

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Woven on the Wind

image (5)The evening sky stopped me straight in my tracks.  A Wyoming evening sky.  The land of wide open spaces and rugged wildness.  A land I am from,   woven on the wind. Raised by earthy parents,  that is,  parents who would rather be outside than in.  Carried on their backs in the original backpack carrier,   sure to no longer pass the safety test of our time.  But really,  we loved the daring adventure of it all.

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I remember the old green ford pickup truck,  and Ruby the red vizsla a hyper active dog.  Dusty hiking boots,  and blue bandanna’s tied around our dirt and wind-swept faces.  Water canteens and always a hiking stick.  Exploration was a way of life,  not something for another day,  another time.

IMG_5209370652243~2Looking through the window of my inheritance,  I can see the very fabric of wonder woven into myself.  That desire to explore,  turn over the rocks,  and watch the sky.  The very land here lends itself to a wild ruggedness,  and I realize it has had an imprint on my soul no matter where I go.  And although we often complain of the wind,  it is the wind that causes shifts and change, and that of which I was woven in.

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Glad to meet you!

Yes, hello 2015, I do not believe we have met,  but I am glad to venture in.  With great anticipation I look forward to getting acquainted with you.  I have packed lightly, I so desire to run and be free from unnecessary entanglements and anything that would keep us from progress.  I hope not to miss all of the hidden treasures that may lay ahead of me so I keep my eyes wide open.  I know you will have many unexpected opportunities to bring my way,  and I stand ready to greet them.  I know with great affection you may bring things my way that scare me a bit only to reveal my strength.  I quite like that.  You will challenge me in new ways and dare me to risk, but without risk there is no adventure,  so risk,  I must have. So I welcome you 2015, glad to meet you shall we get started?

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Life’s Pursuit!!

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When I stepped foot back onto this cold winter ground head all in a daze,  Life began to swirl around me in a different sort of way.  If Life,  as Helen Keller says is a “daring adventure or nothing”,  How was I going to live in that daily?  The truth is, I really believe it is.  My adventure lingers on always calling me forth, even while I am back to my stomping grounds.  It is true,  I was on the beach feeling the grit of the sand wear off and smooth down the rough edges of my soul.  I felt the beach breeze run it’s fingers through my hair and loved the mess of it.  But it only begins there.  I take these soul imprints forward with me.  The walks on the beach with my Creator an ever-present tryst in my memory.

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I am now looking at the beautiful patterns,  the art work the frost displays on my door and my adventure takes on a new face.  We we are made for worthy pursuits, knowing that there is a deep sense of meaning to all that life brings.  And I can not stop the pursuit of living life’s adventures when the weather changes.   I have also changed with it,  and living in that change and out of it presents a new experience all together, a “soul” adventure.    So I unpack my recent adventure and I wear it in a new way,  because parts of it are needed for the next one –  and really,  we are not made to sit around and wait for life to happen.  We were made to explore a worthy pursuit. What’s your’s? I’d love to hear.

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Happy New Year Adventures My Friends!

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An Adventurous Life!

Coming to the completion of a 4000 mile long journey with visits to 14 cities, I find words from Sir Ernest Shackleton inspiring.  Here is a small snippet of my collected thoughts as inspired by Mr. Shackleton.  May our adventures never end.  All of life is adventure.  Sometimes it requires us to step out, other times it is right in front of us waiting to be grasped, either way don’t miss it.

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The memories of which we are rich, we grasped with open hand at glory.  At times, questioned and wrestled with doubt.  We grew bigger in the bigness of it all.  We saw God in grand amazement, experienced nature, heard it’s voice, and were taken in by such complexities.  We, we have seen the nakedness of our own souls and are the better off for it.

~ bryden wilson

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Unexpected Opportunity

Unexpected opportunity

Unexpected opportunity

This photo,  yes this one here inserted right into my post, taken while driving on a rainy highway.  It was well….completely unexpected.  Any seasoned photographer will tell you,  it is taboo to take pictures out of a car window while driving let alone while it is raining.   A professional amateur that I am I saw opportunity. I love this photo. I love the way it  turned out to not be what I expected and yet better than I expected.

I know life is full of the unexpected,  and adventure right on its heels.  And Opportunity I find is good friends with the unexpected.   When it is opportunity you embrace,  you can expect the unexpected.  Let this unexpected be opportunity,  yes opportunity that may lead to a perspective shift. And a perspective shift will embrace the unexpected.

Right smack dab where I find myself my life adventure rich with opportunity. Opportunity that has brought its friend the unexpected. And now I enter a perspective shift.  I must say this indeed is life, Life to the full.  Might that our opportunities make way for the unexpected and the unexpected for new perspective, and that we never put a period at the end.  That we never put a period at the end because friend,  there is so much more. We have only just begun instead how about a comma?

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The Light of Hope

The candle was lit,   you know the one that represents Hope.  The first candle of advent.  And there was light,   a light of Hope flickering for all to see.  Yes,  a candle that must be lit,   a way for us to see,  to really see that light it does pierce the darkness.  And Hope,   yes it comes into those dark places,  those torn places the broken, the battered places.  They become open places,  open places for the light to enter in.  And Hope, no longer becomes a word that just passes through my lips. Hope is a person.  Hope brings light and exposes the bitter broken places that need healing.

Hope, Hope has never left. Yes we are never left without Hope.  So we light the candle, we light the first candle of advent so we can see,  yes truly see that Hope is here and the light always prevails.

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It’s What You Do With Change That Counts

 

Thanksgiving?  Yeah,  I am not even sure of how my family and I will be spending Thanksgiving?  We are in the midst of major life change and the thing is….if you don’t lean into it,  you fight it.  From what I have found if you fight it,  then you begin to live in the past or a future in which may or may not be what you have imagined.    But, if you lean into change, yeah, it “feels” different,  but it can be opportunity in disguise.   Opportunity to  look on what you do have,  to look with new eyes.  Opportunity to grow…do something different.   And me,  I pass by the holiday displays in the stores and the shopping in full swing,  and this year I am looking with new eyes.  Although I will miss a traditional family gathering,  I lean into the change.  I want to grow with this.  It is tempting to think or dwell on what I don’t have,   but I want to exchange  that list of “don’t have’s”  for new opportunity.   The change,   I feel it.  I tremble at times,  but it is what I do with this that counts. I open my hands and let go of the “don’t have’s”  and lean hard into the opportunity inviting me in.    Speaking of counting, there are always good things,  blessings to be counted.  But you can count on change,  it will come.  When it does,  dare to lean into it.   Let it be an opportunity in your life.  Opportunity in disguise.  We can all stop counting what we don’t have and start counting what we do have.   Opportunity opens up and invites us in.

And really…the creator,   He holds it all together,   He’s not going to  leave me, you, us,  so we can all breathe even though we tremble, and lean into change.

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Leave a Place Better Than You Found it!

While growing up there was a saying that my family had.  ” When you leave a place,  leave it better than you found it.”  This meant that if we stayed at someone’s home or,  even a hotel room,  we made a conscious effort to show our respect by leaving things clean.  We would tidy up a bit extra,  sweep a floor etc.   This is something I try to carry out in my life even today.  The thing is….we are leaving our imprint every where we go. The work of our own hands creates,  express, and has the ability to produce life for others.  Even when I am folding laundry,  I am praying that something as simple as folded laundry leaves an imprint of care and is felt by my family.   Words we speak,  conversations we engage in,  the place we stay,  we have impact.   We are by design,  able to bring *Life* into any place we go.  The utterances from our lips,  our attitudes,  and our actions, truly we curse or we bless.

I want to remember this.  I want to grow in this.  I want to enjoy and receive someone else’s efforts in their labors, something as simple as the grocery store clerk.  I want to leave her well….in a better place than I found her.  With my words, or my smile I can speak life, I can leave* Life*,  I can leave * Love*.    And just maybe I should throw a quarter in the hat for the street musician?   I know it takes practice and some days we just don’t feel “it”.  But,  just the act of smiling effects our own soul when we feel blue,  so it might just be worth it,  even if I’m not feeling it.  I might just need to head out the door and smile,  and leave my own Soul at times in a better place than I found it.

 

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Ode to The Coffee Shop!

Ahhh, the coffee shop.  I need to give a shout out… an ode if you will,   to one of my places of home.   It’s not just the coffee. It’s stories being told,  ideas exchanged,  the friend who just needed to…talk. It’s the art on the walls, the aroma of comfort that bids me to breathe deep, to sit, to be,  even if for a moment.  But more than that, its music the musician sharing his or her art… their song.  It’s a place to explore a new sound.  And this all in one place.  A good great place indeed.  The weary, the tired come searching for liquid gold to fill their souls. The job seekers eagerly sending out resume’s, the student earphones in,  tuned into the beat of his own drum. The brew is poured out in a medley of ways, and the people come and go and the stories are told, and the music is played, and art is shared.  I am inspired by such a place where a kaleidoscope of life is played out.  The coffee shop!!

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Learning to live ouside of my box!

The shepherd, if we are willing desires to lead us into the green pastures…the wide open spaces.  This,  is not safe to us.  I have realized on this journey how many boxes I have put myself in and lived out of.  Truly not living freely as I have the opportunity to.  I have had certain expectations of what things need to look like and yet when they don’t, I have grieved.   When I lay those down, and allow myself to be in the moment wide open to what the creator is doing around me,  a whole new scene opens up.  He is always at work creating and unfolding life around us.  There are no boxes.  We in our desire to keep things organized begin to create boxes to fit life into so that it is predictable,  safe.  At the very moment we begin to do this, we are not living in the wide open spaces,  the green pastures.  This very thing seems to leave us feeling exposed.

As one loved, I want to live in the green pastures where I can breathe deeply,  laugh,  run,  and feel the ground beneath my feet.    I must be willing to not dictate what this should look like, or where this will take me.  There is a bigger picture here,  of new faces we will meet,  new experiences we will enjoy with the work of our hands,  where what seemed ordinary,  becomes the extraordinary.  Where what I thought was truly living becomes redefined into “truly living”.  Where my interactions with people are not defined by the box I have put them in, or myself, but defined  by love.  Where I am inviting them into green pastures as well.  Enough of the boxes.  This I know won’t happen over night,  it is a process,  but I have taken the hand of the shepherd and we are walking away from the boxes.

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Starting Now

Because you have to start right where you are.  I realized it was not an option for me anymore to use the phrase, “if I had this __________ (fill in the blank could be a skill,  or specific training),  then, oh yes, then I could really get going.  Just as fast as I was dreaming about all the things I would do if I only had________, I heard it loud and clear.  Albeit it was in a gentle way, No.  No more saying that.  At this moment you have what you need right where you are at.  The Creator spoke and I had to admit I needed those words.

Sometimes some us think we need a little more before we even get started,  and pretty soon,  well… we never get started.  So I sat down with blank page and in my mind I could see the running picture of different abilities, or skills I have acquired over the years just from living.   Actually I will admit it was a beautiful collage of life and adjustments and the tools I had learned to use in those times,  and quite possibly they might be useful for someone else.  And you have them too.  We tend to look “out there” and not often do we stop to take hold of,   and appreciate what we have to offer another right where we are.  As we go through the different circumstances of life we have the opportunity to explore and adopt new abilities and  new habits breathing Life into where we are.    When it comes to Home,   I feel pretty skilled,  but what do yo do with that when you have been living in others homes or motel rooms etc,  etc. for some time.?  You bring it right where you are,  with what you have on hand.  I ask God to open my eyes right where I am at and show me what I have on hand to bring life, and home right where  I am at.  If He is infinite,  He is infinitely creative,   and that means He has a lot of idea’s to share with me.  And…. He does.

So how about it?  Let’s live fully right where we are.  Let’s take notice of what we might have overlooked, we may see something completely different.  And just maybe we have something to offer another right where we are now, without further training.

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In all honesty…

I love the start of a new month.  Turning the page on the calendar a fresh 30 days to enter into something new.   But in bare bones honesty,  I am also aware of what it is like to be in a place where your new 30 days, looks more like a long road ahead.  Where making it through one hour or even a whole day is an accomplishment.   I want to real, and honest.  I myself have experienced the depths of such things,  but I have also experienced entering into LIFE, peace,  joy, and hope, when everything around you would suggest otherwise.

For those of you who have been faithfully followed the last 31 days, you should know.  I have been living out of a suit case for four months, not had a permanent dwelling in that time, lived in motel rooms for multiple days,  cooked meals for my family in those motel rooms, and I have written this blog in the midst of it all. (at times in the car from my phone.)  I say all of this least you think I have some pie in the sky idea about life being all rosy.  Life is real and doubt can knock at the door,  and emotions are real and they are messy,  and that is okay.  We are not trying to live perfect lives.  We are learning to live lives as His creations.  Learning to live lives whereby our strength comes from something beyond ourselves.  We are learning to live lives where,  even though we tremble,  Jesus takes us by the hands and walks us through it all,  from the outside,  and from His living presence on the inside.  We are learning to live out of the reality of who we are,  not what our circumstances at times may try to tell us we are.  Our Creator is big and truly nothing is impossible to Him.  But more than anything He is relational.  We are learning to walk in relationship.  We are learning to walk out of our true reality.  Loved one’s in whom He will never leave or forsake.  We all need our vision expanded because….he is always showing us, and inviting us into a new perspective a new way to see and experience life.

I am excited for November.  So I start this first day of the month with open hands ready to receive from Father the next adventure.  Ready to learn more about Him ready to receive,  more of what He wants to show me about himself,  and maybe some fresh perspective?  Care to join?

 

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To be set free…

Let’s face it.  The lies we believe about ourselves have a way of tripping us up like a child whose shoelaces are untied.  It is when we begin to feel as though there are giants around us and we are ourselves the grasshoppers.   Have you ever entertained the lie,  ” I am not enough.”   that seems to follow on the heels of God is not enough.   If we are honest with ourselves we are entertaining that lie the minute we believe everything around us is bigger and closing in on us.  Fear and anxiety,  close in and pretty soon it seems as though Father – God is no where in sight.

 We need our Father who is our protector to bring His sword of truth to any lies we are believing.  We need Him to shine His light in our souls,  come into the darkness of the lie and exchange it for His truth.  We need set free from the lies that can trip us up.   As we begin to round out our 31 days of Prayer and Prose, let’s come to Him boldly and ask are there any lies we are believing right now.  Father,  bring your sword of truth to our souls,  and liberate us from any lies we might be believing.  Will you join me, and lets fly free.

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Rest + Pause = Strength

This is day 17 from the series of 31 days of Prayer and Pros

For True Strength!

Three little words right there, slung straight at my face.  Rest – Pause – Strength!  Oh yeah,  there are those days when you muster up strength to push through. That kind of strength that you could purchase at the local discount store.  It’s the kind that leaves you dry when it’s over and wanting for more.  It is the kind of strength that leaves your focus on the list and the task to be accomplished,  and forgets about relationship,  the lovely blue sky, and the fact that there is even food on the table.  At it’s best it’s,  weak. A false strength inviting independence.  Really…who has time to stop,  to pause,  to rest.  If I rest nothing will get done.

 Lean in and listen dear one,   Rest and pause  are the womb for true strength to be birthed forth.  There we are nourished,  we are stabilized, We remember who we are and who’s we are.  When I must lean into Him who I am knit together with I am connecting with my source of life. I am strengthened in my weakness.  When I pause and give thanks for even the smallest of things, I find in my gaze back to Him a strength flexing its muscles within.  Because dear Child we were made to be co-dependent.  Co-dependent upon him   Yes it is true Rest + Pause =Strength.   I know we get it backwards some days,  but will you come rest a while with me?  And in your pause might I suggest you repeat a short breath prayer?  “Abba I belong to you”

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When a mom watches heart-break and disappointment she picks up the pen and begins to write, the writing of my words seem to do a work all of their own. I let them soothe the ache and breathe life upon my mothering heart.

Dear girls listen in…..

It is written ” Yet those who wait…” those who wait… who are embraced by the very divine dance of the trinity,  yes those, us,  you,  all. we will gain new strength.  I saw it there your broken and disappointment and I felt it for you. I wanted to pick up the broken pieces and hold them for you. Dear girls know that holding on to the broken only keeps the broken holding on.  It is when we open our hands and give from the broken places healing comes in, and strength is gained a beautiful strength.

Yet those who wait, may not live in castles and have the finest of clothes but are clothed with dignity and. Not because they deny the brokenness but because they gave from it.  And fear will try to knock you down fear, will try to bully you. ” Did you really think you could succeed?” It will fling in your face. Yet those who wait will run, run right through. Because those who wait learn the way to handle fear is to go straight through and on the other side , you,  will walk, you will walk and not faint, Yet those who wait…

And  waiting is a braiding ,a braiding of the divine in you,  living through you.  So my girls lean in,  wait, because in waiting there is life.  And give from your broken places and keep your hands open, clinched fists choke, choke  out life. The holding onto sorrow and fear will choke your very life away.  Know that what has been woven into you,  can never be taken away. Give your gift lay it down from there and only from there will it multiply.  What you give away multiplies.

So sorrow and disappointment will not have the last say because it is love, yes love that will lead the way. And yet those who wait…

 

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The kid gets it

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My girl whose name means Beloved, gets it,  she is learning to walk in her namesake.  At times as a mother you wonder and you watch,  you wait, you hope, because you know you didn’t always walk out the Grace you meant to. And sometimes it took you longer to forgive than you realized,  and you too are still growing in it all, but hope that She gets glimpses of it. That she gets glimpses of what life is really meant for.

And on Christmas night she choose Love. She has learned that to let go with what you are holding in your hand that one $20 bill that could buy a little gas to get to school, or coffee, or new music.  Because she has met the giver of all gifts, met Him in her own heart. And she has learned there is always an abundance. When you give what you have been holding tightly, when you loosen your grip, the grip you have on your own soul,  your heart increases and makes room for more, more of Him…more of love. For more giving and receiving. And she gave words, wrote them down, scribbled them on a napkin. Words that might echo, there is hope, Love is here, Love is FOR you!

I am learning too, being challenged, stretched to make room.  And once again I am taking notes from a child.

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When I walked out of the door of my office today two little kids with shovels clearing away what was left from yesterday’s snow, stood. Bundled up head to toe in snow suits shoveling as best as two young children know how.

Until recently I have allowed my high opinion of myself to not take too kindly to the wanderings about of these two.  Why aren’t they in school?  Why are they running around all over the building?  I am trying to run a business here.

That’s when I had to stop. I had to stop and realize that maybe just maybe there was opportunity here. And maybe opportunity to share love to share life, doesn’t always look like the client that walks through the door, maybe it is the annoying kid knocking at your door for the 100th time. Maybe opportunity is and quite possibly could be dressed in rags, or in this case snow suits.  I stopped dead in my tracks. Really what is important here? I decided to share what I had received with them.  More important than me bringing home an extra buck was two kids knowing that they were appreciated, noticed, that what they were doing mattered. No,  money doesn’t buy love but it seemed an important gesture, and sharing what you have received from another goes even further if you turn around and do the same.

It is sometimes those that annoy you the most who are giving you the greatest opportunity to live free from your own demands on life. Opportunity to love, to risk, to accept and to embrace grace where love know’s no boundaries.

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Sit!

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If ever there was a time to sit and contemplate,  to breathe in my existance, and to exhale and let go of all else, the time seemed now.

Under the tree with leaves all golden and the glory of light all around.

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In season

InstaSize_2015_8 _ 278273There is something calming about the fall air,  It’s as if it’s okay to sigh,  settle in a bit.  It is a new season.  A season of harvest,  and our lives are much the same,  we journey through season’s.  But how often do we allow ourselves to be in the season we are in before we are looking ahead to what is next?  Each season has a purpose,  a reason.  Fall leads into winter and time of rest for nature.   We too need the season we are in,  it is what will lead to the fruit new growth and exploration.   But you can not have one without the other first.  It is okay to remain in this season.  There are new discoveries  made,  there are purposes  are fulfilled.  Be where you are enjoy the season, enjoy the moment.  Allow yourself to let go of last season and it’s comforts and bravely enter into what this time may offer.

I look all around and all is new for me.  I shake a bit and stumble  but I desire to move with the rhythm of life. To laugh at the days ahead and grow old gracefully,  to see the color in each day and to know adventure is not in the destination but in each and every moment of life. A new season awaits.

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Foolishness!!

“Give me the young man who has brains enough to make a fool of himself” ~ Robert Louis Stevenson

It is in “foolishness” that I found myself truly alive.  It was in what others looked at and labeled senseless,  that I began to understand a greater meaning to my life.  It was in risk that I began to understand that if I risk nothing,  I risk everything.

I hope that we might all enter into a bit of foolishness.  If foolishness is found in daring to believe in something bigger,  in daring to believe there is more,  and pushing forward even when you can’t see it, than be foolish.   If foolishness is risking to love even when it is not received, be foolish.  If foolishness is daring to journey into the grief of another if only to bear the load for a time,  be foolish.  If foolishness is taking courage when all circumstances say take cover,  flee, save yourself,  be foolish.  If foolishness is laying down your own comforts only to comfort another,  be foolish.  If foolishness is believing in and standing for beauty in the midst of what may appear otherwise,  be foolish.

If foolishness is a willingness to admit when you are wrong,  be foolish and be willing to receive truth. If foolishness is forgiving when it’s hardest,  be foolish.  If foolishness is found in those who are willing to walk the narrow way,  to be brave of heart, to not stumble on their own pride, and to let Love lead the way,  let me be among those counted as foolish.

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She has done what not many have.

She has seen the day  her 100th year of life and almost 101.  I seat myself beside her. If you have lived this long,  you may have some wisdom to impart. Their is noise all around.  I lean in and listen hard. I lean to hear her now faint voice giving way to a whisper. These words have become more important than ever now.  They must be chosen carefully. They may become lost in the clamor all around. There isn’t time for all words, but those that do fall must impart life. And listening must become intentional. Intentional because,  these words will fade into the background if not caught and held.  I must lean in,  listen to what that soft whisper may impart. There’s life for my soul. I want to receive it

Whether it was said or somehow worked its way into my heart. I was reminded.  There is one who does not yell above the crowd and can be heard in gentlest of wind.  You must give your ear,  lean in their are words meant just for your very own Soul. Because only the best words, are these worth leaning for,  only the best words are heard not in the noise but the absence of it!