Have a wonderful weekend everyone!
After finishing up “Close to Home” last winter, I slowed down a bit with the writing in order to try and catch my breath. About two months ago, however, I started getting the itch to dive again into another big project – an itch I tried and tried to convince myself would be crazy to scratch at the moment (I don’t exactly have a lot of free time on my hands). “I will wait,” I prayed, “wait for some kind of direction.”
So out of nowhere – I mean, literally, like a bolt from the sky – I was struck last week with an inspiration that finally felt right. And now,oh boy, I have officially taken on a whole new existance, one probably best compared to pregnancy what with all of these emotions and symptoms (excitement, terror, hunger, nausea) commandeering my mind and body. Having more of an understanding this time of the risks involved in throwing yourself into a birth process, I tell you candidly that I am proceeding here with a great deal of fear and trembling. Already, our dinners have been simplified, my keys have been misplaced repeatedly (thanks for letting me borrow your car, Paige, to take Mary to pre-school), and my kids have started asking again, “Mama, who are you talking to?” as I work aloud my jumbled thoughts into clear lines and paragraphs while folding the laundry. Ah, if only the evenings were longer (or if I could subsist on but five hours of sleep)!
I’ve no idea where all this is heading or what the final outcome will be. For now, I’m just trying to show up every day in faith at my computer, to ignore the taunting doubts floating ominously around my head, whispering, “you can’t do this.”
I read the following poem yesterday and it really struck a chord with me. For more great poetry picks click HERE, as always!
Lament of the Maker
What wonders I’ve performed, with leaping mind,
imagining the fruit while eyeing the seed,
conjuring what’s ahead while still behind,
savoring praises for the undone deed.
I have esteemed my skill so highly that
I stroll through mansions I have yet to build
and, like the seigneur or the plutocrat,
reap harvests from rich fields I have not tilled.
But when I face the drudgery of art,
bright mirrors where misunderstandings lurk,
my faltering strength just when the need is great,
I faint before the task—or rashly start,
push through to make an end, survey my work,
and smile—how fine, how small, how light in weight!
Jan SchreiberRead More
O.K., ya'll, after Wednesday's creek mishap and yesterday's window fiasco (the fiasco in which my youngest son pressed his back up against our living room picture window while trying to push the couch in front of it forward, thus shattering the glass – without cutting himself…whew! – and nearly giving his poor mother a heart attack), I am relieved to say we are back on track and no worse for the wear. Elijah's legs have thawed, the gaping hole in our wall has been covered up with plastic (classy!), and the "Glass Doctor" will be calling this afternoon with an estimate on a brand new window. For the time being, all fires have been snuffed out.
It's funny, isn't it? How those potential scenarios we lose sleep over rarely ever come to fruition – how most of the time, life throws us curve balls we never saw coming, would never have even thought to try and prepare for. Weeks like this one remind me to let go (Be Gone, you late night worries, you unyielding personal agendas!) and be eternally minded. Because in the l-o-o-o-n-g run those unexpected trials and interruptions, how we respond to them, how we either trust or not trust that Christ is in them, are what will, ultimately, either strip us of our burdensome passions or leave us blind and bitter.
Thank you so much to Emily and Jennifer (both remarkable photographers, by the way) for the Kreativ Blogger Award! Thank you to any and everyone who reads this blog, and encourages me, makes me laugh, feel less alone, through your comments and own on-line reflections!
So yesterday, the temperature peaked at a balmy 38 degrees. We took advantage of the relative warmth by piling on our scarves and hats and taking a walk to Coffee Creek Park. I hadn’t realized how stale the breath was in my lungs until I heartily inhaled the invigoratingly fresh air, which felt like a cold shot of adrenaline to my restless and sluggish body. What a fantastic mood we were in, taking our good old time meandering down the sidewalk, stomping on snow mounds, using our outside voices. When we finally arrived at our destination, my children marveled at the way winter had transformed the playground, the trail, and the wooden bridge, now nearly covered in chunks of snow. The boys, who had brought along hockey sticks, started chipping away at the cloudy sheet of ice smoothed over the creek like a delicate layer of powdered sugar frosting on a cake. We watched transfixed as the frozen slabs cracked, detached, then floated lazily past us. “Look, mama, I hit it!” said little Mary, her arm still raised from lobbing a snowball toward her moving target. For a full fifteen minutes, that scene involving the kids and me being all explorative and appreciative of God’s creation, was the very definition of, “idyllic.”
In the blink of eye, however (as it so often goes), our sense of tranquility was swiftly shattered. My oldest son began shrieking, due to the fact that somehow or another he’d ended up taking a wrong step (putting too much faith in the durability of the ice), which landed him waist high in that old dirty, frigid creek water (um…YIKES!); thus our excursion was wrapped up pronto. We literally fled home to get Elijah out of those wet clothes and hooked up stat to an IV of hot chocolate.
Here’s hoping today is far less exciting! : )
Let's see, there's Silence, The Power and the Glory, Crime and Punishment, The Great Divorce, just to name a few – all books that not only blew me away with their brilliance but shook my soul awake with their raw and unforgettable illustrations of repentance and forgiveness. These transforming experiences I've had via literature reveal again and again and again to me the salvific potential of the written word. I like writers who aren't afraid to tell it like it is, who don't shy away from the messiness of life and love – the "grace and violence" of humanity. They remind me to never ever assume I've figured out the mysteriousness and pervasiveness of God's mercy. I want this: to spark a fire of hope and resolve in another the way I've been prodded repeatedly from out of a spiritual stupor by men and women brave enough to neither water down nor sugar coat the Truth. That art can transcend our base frailty, that any of us can act as a beacon despite (because of?) our utter lack of confidence in ourselves, is a wonder.
And Then There Is That Incredible Moment,
when you realize what you're reading,
what's being revealed to you, how it is not
what you expected, what you thought
you were reading, where you thought you were heading.
Then there is that incredible knowing
that surges up in you, speeding
your heart; and you swear you will keep on reading,
keep on writing until you find another not going
where you thought—and until you have taken
someone on that ride, so that they take in
their breath, so that they let out their
sigh, so that they will swear
they will not rest until they too
have taken someone the way they were taken by you.
- Kate Light
I took the above photo (I'm wide awake: 72 of 365) first thing yesterday morning.
Read other poetry HERE.