Saturday, August 31, 2013

The Weekend Brew: Be Still and Know

May your weekend include times of stillness and the utter lack of striving. 

May you allow Him to be the God that He promises He is.

And that He will take care of all that you need.

{this photo was taken of me on Sullivan's Island, SC in July. I dearly love being by the ocean.}

Linking up with The Weekend Brew with other encouraging folks!

Eight Things I Learned in August

Well, at the end of my What I Learned in June post I said I was going to do one in July. I didn't. I had great intentions. That doesn't mean I didn't learn anything in July. I did. Maybe I'll tell you about it sometime. Anyway, here are eight things I learned in August.

1. August marks the month that I lose all steam to keep my porch flowers green and thriving. I don't know what it is, but all the internal hooplah that hits me in May, has gone and seeped out this time of the summer. Futility sets in and my thoughts go something like, "fall is on the way and they're going to die anyway, so what's the use?" I know, lame.

2. Orange Leaf moved in down the street. I like going there too much. I discovered Cotton Candy flavored yogurt yesterday. And, even though I wouldn't get it every time, I am actually quite impressed how much like the real thing it actually tastes. I had the thought that it was quite miraculous that I could eat something that tasted like cotton candy that was somewhat healthy for me. Well, at least healthier than real cotton candy. Humor me, please.

3. With two young adults living with us for awhile, we've discovered that our Endangered Species chocolate bar disappears much faster. I set a limit (which I thought was rather generous) of two squares of chocolate per day, per person. I had to. That chocolate bar is about $4.00. We can't go broke buying chocolate. (and we don't want to give it up, either.)

4.  My daughter gave the first season of Duck Dynasty to my husband for his birthday. Since we don't have cable, neither one of us had seen it before. (This might be a shock to some of you.) I've decided that other than Uncle Si, the show isn't that appealing to me. Especially the unexpected scenes of blowing snakes' heads off in the swamp, chopping up frogs and chopping up fish. I know I'm weird, but this is too PG-13 for me.

5. On Facebook I happened across a video clip of the space shuttle launch. This is not new information, but this particular one had enhanced sound by Skywalker Sound. I have a Star Wars addicted household, so this video drew me in. I was not disappointed. In fact, I was thinking I was pretty cool when I got to show this video off to my two young adult sons. Not sure if they thought I was cool or not, but I felt cool. Here's the video clip. Watch it. Especially with a big sub woofer. 

6.  I heard Henry Cloud speak at the Willow Creek Leadership Summit. One of the big take aways from his talk is that the brain needs three things for survival. 1) oxygen 2) glucose and 3) connection. I kind of knew that, but hadn't heard it in quite this way before, that the brain needs connection. Not just the heart, but the brain. This explains a lot.

7. I could easily become addicted to Sonic Cherry Slushes.

8. Best quote I read in August (and there were many great ones): "Be so full of faith that you run into hell with a water pistol." by Joseph Prince. Yep, that's the kind of faith I want and need!

What have you learned this month? I'd love to hear from you!

linking up again with Emily at Chatting at the Sky Join in or stop by to see what other people are learning! It's actually quite a hoot, if not a bit enlightening and fun!

Friday, August 30, 2013

A Subtle Shift

Today, I'm linking up with a community of writers at Lisa Jo Baker's blog for Five Minute Friday. The prompt is "worship", and we are to write for just five minutes straight. From the heart. No need to be perfect, just sharing our hearts through words.  Won't you join in?

It took me well into my adult years to realize that worship wasn’t something only synonymous with a church service.

I grew up going to “worship”. No blame intended, but it seems that in my circles, many Christians refer to a church service as "worship". I think that is true, yes. But, in the past few years (and yes, it has taken that long), I’ve finally begun to realize (I’m a slow learner sometimes) that worship is so much more.

In fact, it raises mostly questions within me.

Couldn’t worship just be a subtle shift between focusing on me and my desires to focusing on what God desires?

Noticing the pollen on the wing of a butterfly, or geese flying over the pond at dusk?

The ducks that come in for a safe and smooth landing on the same pond, and the swallows that dart around gathering food for their young?

Worship is so. much. more. than church.

Worship is my attitude toward myself, God and others.

Worship links me to the God in me, the Holy Spirit.

My attention is the only thing standing in the way between worship of self and worship of God.

Oh, Heavenly Father, I turn my attention to You. I am attentive to all You have made and all You have done. And All that You are.

I worship You.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Notes on a compass with no needle

I'm standing in an open expanse, holding a compass with no needle. 

Who carries a compass with no needle?


Carrying a compass with no needle leads to circle-making in the sand. 
Round and round I go with no direction, no aim. 


Being tossed around by each wave that washes up to shore.
Where is my rudder? Where is my true north? 

Walking in the wind and sand, I look back to see that my footprints are being filled in as I walk.
There's no turning back, because there will be NO. WAY.

I look forward, still holding that useless compass with no needle. The sand swirling around my ankles. 
Where do I turn? 
What direction do I take?

I'm left with this empty compass in my hand. This useless instrument meant for guidance, but now just a burden to carry. 

To carry me to what? I do not know.

I want to be walking. But, to where?
I want to be going. Forward. Forward.

But with no destination in sight, I'm paralyzed in my own footprints. 

Palm outstretched, it only holds the needle-less compass. No more holding the promise of a dream fulfilled. But, holding the emptiness of a dream possibly swept away.

If I let go of it altogether, where will I be?

The weight may be lifted, but then the dream is really gone, and may not ever return.

Am I okay with that?

Am I okay with the fact that the dream may change, and I may never dream it in the same way again?

Will I be content with just Him? 

Friday, August 23, 2013

Just what it means

Today, I'm linking up with a community of writers at Lisa Jo Baker's blog for Five Minute Friday. The prompt is "last", and we are to write for just five minutes straight. From the heart. No need to be perfect, just sharing our hearts through words.  Won't you join in?


I saw what you did last night. I saw the way you rang the doorbell in that special way when you stopped over unannounced.

I love when you do that.

I saw the way you came through the door and threw your arms around me and gave me a big hug. Oh, how my mom heart relishes that! {I hope you don't read this!}

I saw the way you came through the door and said to your dad and your brother, "Hey, want to throw the frisbee around?" Then, came the three minute search for the sister's frisbee.

I noticed, as you tossed frisbee with your dad and younger brother, how you subtly encouraged/challenged your younger brother in his elusive job search.

I'm so proud of you. I'm proud of the man you have become and I'm so proud you're my son. It hasn't always been easy. You would say that too.

But, now, as you are in mid-twenties {how?} and living only a couple miles from us....and you love to stop warms my heart more than you know.

As darkness came near last night and it was too dim to see the frisbee, you crouched on the driveway to talk a little more. It's hard for you to leave a good conversation. I see that, too.

And when your sister saw you eating that fresh tomato from our garden just like it was an apple? Her words were priceless and just what I'd been thinking. 

She said, "I keep thinking, would you have been eating that tomato when you were seventeen?"

And, we all laughed at that together. 
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