The Daily Becomes Joy

The moments….the moments, are fleeting. Those moments that are brief glimpses of joy. Those sweet seconds that might never happen again, because time never stops and the clock keeps ticking. Oh, this flickering joy. The kind that brings a smile to both the mind and the heart. That is why it remains so important to see the moments when they happen…while you are living them, and to be present.

 

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Today the refrigerator thermostat gave out and the food is going warm on a hot summer day. Scramble to keep things chilled. Husband rigged something up to temporarily keep heat at bay. I may as well clean the glass shelves in the refrigerator while we’re at it. Things could always be worse and the shelves needed cleaning anyway.

The farmer across the road and the farmer behind us are baling hay. The tractors roar and the large round bales sit like rural sculptures in the fields, pretty against the green. The view from the kitchen window makes me slow smile, as I continue to wash the shelves.

 

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One load of laundry hums in the dryer and another in the washer. Always more to do. Laundry is never done, only managed. Some days even that is not possible. But, I am happy for it. Clean clothes, such a simple thing, really.

This dog, that I love so much, he is a terrier. He sheds and sheds some more. His white fur is swept up off the floor, small tumbleweeds of fluff. He won’t be with us forever and I will miss his fluff. I pet his head and enjoy his big brown eyes now.

 

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Saturdays. How many are in a lifetime? How many days of dogs licks, and loads of laundry? How many fields full of beauty seen through my kitchen window? And how many times will I open and close my refrigerator door? Nothing life altering…and yet, it is. The simple becomes more, and the daily becomes joy.

Lost In The Wonder

It is late……but, it is still Friday. I can still make my Five Minute Friday post, over at LisaJo’s blog. Today’s writing prompt is LOST.

Five Minute Friday

 

 

Sometimes I find myself lost in the wonder of it all. I’ve been a Jesus follower for 35 years. Three and a half decades. Wow. That thought makes me so incredibly happy! Even though I’ve loved Jesus for many years, I still get lost in the magnificent awe that He loves me too! And He loved me first. I didn’t have to earn His love, there was never anything I did to deserve His love. He just loves me, with an everlasting love. The Creator of the universe LOVES ME. Incredible. It never gets old….not even after all these years.

 

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Finding Spiritual Whitespace

Some books are fun to read during the hot months of summer, those books that are quick, easy, and don’t require much thought. The stories flow fast and furious until they are done. Then the stories melt away, much like an ice cream cone on a hot, sticky day.IMG_1700

The book I’m going to blog about today is most definitely NOT one of those books, not at all. I picked up Finding Spiritual Whitespace, by Bonnie Gray. Then I put it down. I picked it up. I put it down. The tug of war was real. I would read a little bit and have to put it down for awhile. It seemed like I would be happy to do anything else, but read that book. I finally had to read it in small chunks because I required time to process what I was reading, to mull the words over, to think about what the words meant to me personally.

You might be wondering why I was putting myself through this? Why read a book if it is that difficult? The words ripped hard at my heart. Good books are like that. The books that mean something, the books that cause change, are usually not going to be the easiest to read but, they are the most necessary. When an author connects with his/her readers, so much so that they need to highlight and underline the parts that ring true, the parts that scream, the parts that are sometimes so difficult to fit together…..it is then that they know their story has become real to others.

I’ve known Bonnie for about three or four years through her Faith Barista blog. I’ve followed her as she has written this book, I know the struggles she has had watching her life flow out onto paper. She and I are from such different worlds, and yet not. Her writing about her journey to find soul rest is sometimes hard to read because it is so raw. Life was not easy, not for her, not for any of us. We all live in a broken world. So many times our past wraps us up, suffocates who we really are. We insulate ourselves from the words. We pretend that we are fine, because it somehow seems easier that way.

Life is hard and it can hurt, and we have all been there.

Bonnie, in her open and eloquent writing, reminds us that it doesn’t have to be that way. Jesus wants each of us, just as we are. He wants the soul weary, those of us that have journeyed long and hard. Those that have been cut down by words, seared by emotion, scarred by decisions that might have been out of our control…. We can find soul rest in Him, and through Him, and because of Him.

I have been touched by Bonnie’s courage to be real, to tell it like it is. One of my favorite parts of her  book is found on page 89. “This journey of joy is a recovery of the joy-wounded us. And Jesus is the one who can take our hand and guide us through this terrain. He can give us the rest of joy. We can sample how joy feels for our souls. Joy is organic. It changes through different seasons. So let’s give ourselves permission to try new things. See how they fit.” 

The first time I read that I realized I was holding my breath, and then the air leaked out slowly, and I thought to myself, “Yes! Yes! Yes!”.

Friends, are you longing for rest, but don’t know how it is even possible in your fast paced, stressed out life?  Take some time to find your whitespace. “It’s the space on a page left unmarked. Untouched. Whitespace makes art beautiful. It gives the eye a place to rest. Just like beautiful art, our souls need balance and beauty.” (p.20)

Finding Spiritual Whitespace

 

It Is Frustrating To Say The Least

I didn’t post yesterday, and today I just can’t seem to pull two thoughts together.

I have all these interesting ideas swirling around inside my head, but nothing that I seem to be able to type into words.

I want to write out the ideas, tell the stories, but they are jammed up. I sit down to blog, and the screen glows white, empty. Blank.

It is frustrating to say the least.

Sometimes the best I can do, is to make it through the day.

File my thoughts, mull them over, and try again tomorrow.

Can anyone else relate?

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Good For The Soul

The sky was shades of morning blue, all the way to the horizon, with not a cloud in sight. I could already feel the heat and humidity in the air, but the strong breeze blowing from the west helped it to not feel so oppressive. The sun shone brightly over the tops of the trees in the distance, its warm rays already bouncing off the metal barn roof in blinding spectrums of light. The collie joined me on my trek to the chicken coop. He knows he isn’t allowed inside, so he watched instead, gave a few sniffs, and wandered on down the yard. After feeding the hungry chickens I made sure to lock the door so they got no surprise visitors to their humble abode. Now, it was off to the barn to let the horse outside into the pasture. She made me smile with her fly mask on. Her attire reminded me of an equine version of a Halloween costume. Even though her eyes and ears are covered, I know she is watching me. Better to wear a mask then to have to deal with those pesky nuisance flies!

On the way back to the house I notice I have an entire entourage following behind me. It is an early morning farm parade… Me, the collie, the neighbor’s dog, and two out of our three outside cats, followed along behind me. I laughed out loud. The sound carried and bounced off the side of the barn, echoing back across the yard. Laughter. It truly is good for the soul.

 

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Today I am thankful for:

*blue sky

*pets…lots of pets

*laughter

*good food in the crock pot

*watching TV with my husband

*tall, lanky son

*daughter who wears her ball cap

*front porch flowers that explode in colors of purple and pink

*movie with friends

*ice cold water

*flip flops and rolled up jeans

*summertime music

*reading a good book and napping in the hammock

Catch And Release

Every Friday we spend 5 minutes writing.

The prompt this week is RELEASE.  

Don’t over think it,  just write! 

Five Minute Friday

 

 

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When I first saw the word release I thought of the phrase “catch and release”.

Sometimes I  have to catch the memories from my past, and then release them.

Release them to God, and just let them go.

When I say, “I can’t forgive myself”, in essence what I am really saying is, “I’m unforgivable”.

But, Christ says I am forgiven.

In Him I am a new creation.

 

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! 2 Corinthians 5:17 NIV

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Rest Deeply

 Today’s Thursday 6/19/14 writing prompt:  share a special Bible verse currently touching your heart with rest and comfort?
Faith Barista

 

My favorite Bible verse has always been Luke 1:37.

“For with God nothing will be impossible.”  How could that not be a comforting verse?

The God of the universe, who loves me,  who wants me to know Him…for Him, nothing is impossible.

Not on my worst days, not on my best days, no matter what I am going through, nothing is too difficult for God.

He is a very present help in time of trouble. (Psalm 46:1)

I can rest deeply in that knowledge.

Could there be a better place to rest than in the shadow of The Almighty? The One who makes me feel safe and protected.

There are a lot of places that I could be in this whole wide world……but, none that is as comforting as being with Him.
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