Sky Writing Stories

This is my space, the place my feet take heavy steps now, more slow, less driven. This arena of sky all around me. I’m known, she keeps walking. The neighbors don’t interrupt only nod. I keep walking under God’s massive and ever fascinating sky. I take photos with a not up to date phone. I continue to chronicle my notice of God. Birds all in a cluster. Oddly, one, only one, a lonely goose flew over. I wondered why.

I noticed the birds all together and then separate. I wondered if the ones on the borders of the wide expanse were afraid they might lose the others.

I wondered if birds are that way. If they compare their flights to the flight of another.

Then I said to myself.

“You don’t notice the way you did before, don’t write quite as often about emotion stirred by evening walk, birds or feathers or the breeze that brushed your cheeks.”

Perhaps, there’s a lull or a rest or better yet.

Yes, better yet. You’ve grown.

The story that you’re writing now is not nearly as melancholy.

Not heavy. Not as hard to hear I’m hoping.

It’s more melody.

Harmonious.

Still honest. Maybe just busy with the grandbaby and too tired to notice feathers…

No, not that at all. Maybe your soul has settled. Either way. It is good. You’re still writing. You thought of a new title just last night.

One that includes remembrance.

You know you’ll continue either way.

Continue and believe.

Still. That’s the sermon to self that guides you.

Continue and believe.

Let it Shine

I am now listening to the shrill song of what I believe is a baby cardinal. I read somewhere that it is a high pitched cry.

I imagine the bird being the baby of the mama and daddy red birds that greeted me through the morning kitchen window.

The grass there is green already.

So pretty, their red wings against it. They have returned and their legacy of flying by to cause thoughts of others will continue in the little bird up high crying now.

Yesterday, I couldn’t calm the baby. We sang every song in our regular rocking slow cantata.

She was in rhythm with me, a sweet low sort of melodic hum.

She listened as I sang “Deep and Wide” on repeat and the one I’d never sang before.

“This little light of mine. I’m gonna let it shine. Hide it under a bushel, no. I’m gonna let it shine.”

Today I hurriedly read about the beginning of the ministry of Jesus. The way he was tempted when starving, the way he was rejected because people who knew His parents didn’t think His miracles could be true.

He continued though. He continued and history records those who saw Him as human and then Savior.

History records for the benefit of me, of us. Storytellers and those rescued.

History and present. Firsthand phenomenally personal and compelling because of His love, His Spirit, our steadfast and settled believing He is Jesus.

“And reports about him went out into every place in the surrounding region.”
‭‭Luke‬ ‭4:37‬ ‭ESV‬‬

Believing and continuing.

Let it shine. Your personal essay, a report of Jesus.

Day Fulls

I miss random writing. I do.

I store up stories for later like today my granddaughter sitting at my feet, letting her play in the dirt she dug up, cool and moist from recent rain.

That was beautiful. Her little pink ruffled butt in the ground sprouting open for new Spring grass.

She held up her tiny hand and offered me dirt and I held it. I watched her return to the work of discovering.

But, painting, I’ve been painting.

I’m satisfied with this one, the middle of three “girls”, a commissioned triptych.

More stories to come.

Surely Goodness

I’m standing in the kitchen and thinking go snap another picture.

Instead I settle on the view, a room filled with tall windows and panorama, a telephone doesn’t suffice, for the glory and purpose of me saying to me.

You are here.

“He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters. He restores my soul. He leads me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; you anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever.”
‭‭Psalms‬ ‭23:2-6‬ ‭ESV‬‬

You get to experience this time.

This place. This grace.

This momentary hand of God that tells you, stop rushing. Stop trying to capture any more clearly than what I’m revealing gradually. The sunrise in the country with clouds sweeping up to the places you can’t see.

But you know are there.

Eternity is possible for those who believe. Life is more than earth and heaven more beautiful than we can conceive.

Stand still. Let that heart of yours rest easy. Now, the baby is rising. Open wide eyes and smile and exploration of every single crevice of her sweet life and pretty place.

Ready yourself! Life is worth discovering! You get to be an observer!

Now the grand sky has changed to pink. The window above the plant, the cookbook, the big letter of their last name offers me peace.

The color of love and peace.

I look down, look away and well, I could go on forever.

I’ll stop lest I start telling you about the birds, the trees, the wide open field shifting from brown to green.

The geese that are communicating.

Wherever you are today, I hope something captures your attention, something you can’t really capture, only believe.

Bible as Memoir

It occurred to me just now as I decided I love the Book of James, the gospels are essentially memoir, perspectives provided of what the writers knew and know of Jesus.

Hmmm, just like us. Our life stories left in piles of journals thought to be too personal for the perusal of others. Lord knows my journals tell all kinds of stories, my life stories. Some admittedly hard to reread, the coming to terms with life events, questions, agonizing hashing out of major decisions.

Thankfully, truly really, those days are over; they’re over because I finally learned to filter my days through the lens of redemption, not regret.

Still authentic, still honest but more gentle, more wise.

This is why the Book of James is calling my name. James, the brother of Jesus wasn’t quite sure of the truth of Him until He saw for himself the death, the resurrection. It became real then and the Book that bears the name of James is worth reading and reading again.

“Consider it a sheer gift, friends, when tests and challenges come at you from all sides. You know that under pressure, your faith-life is forced into the open and shows its true colors. So don’t try to get out of anything prematurely. Let it do its work so you become mature and well-developed, not deficient in any way.”
‭‭James‬ ‭1:2-4‬ ‭MSG‬‬

I love this so much, my faith life being forced into the open showing I’ve endured some struggle and I’ve kept on believing.

Life is just that, continuous belief and knowing that faith is our preserver, our kind companion, our rescue in every storm.

The display of our many colors.

What’s your life looking like today? It’s cold and rainy outside my window. My house has me home alone and quiet. I’ll take my time reading, a half hour maybe and read the Book of James. Remembering, at one time it was believed he was uncertain.

RememberIng in words I especially love that he knew enduring, believing and not doubting wasn’t a given. Still, James reminds us that this is the way to sacred and true living.

We all stumble in many ways. We all get beat up and tossed around in life’s storms. (James 3:-4)

But, we hold on tight to what we believe is ours for the asking in faith.

We continue and believe. Our colors are beginning to show.

I’m linking up with others at Five Minute Friday here: https://fiveminutefriday.com/2020/01/30/fmf-writing-prompt-link-up-life-guest-post-by-heather-gerwing/

Where You Are

All my days are in you, God.

This thought, my waking one on a free Friday morning.

The Bible says we’re worth more than sparrows and that God knows the number of hairs on our heads.

Still, I find myself wanting to keep it all under control, worry over what I need to do to become what I’m not yet.

A trio of black crows gathered out by the woodpile on Thursday.

I pointed them out to my granddaughter, acknowledging their being so close, not flying above us anymore.

We talk about the birds as we watch from the windows cold to the touch of our hands.

Foggy mornings cold to southern girls like us, cooped up and positioned for curiosity.

We had three days like that.

Then the sun came.

I woke this morning thinking about the sovereignty of God, of peace and of that being a relief.

About realizing that every moment holds peace if we accept that in every circumstance, every craziness or every seemingly unfair lull in meaningful activity, God is in it with us.

Be at peace.

What a relief to accept every single moment as God’s orchestration.

Either of needed rest or of unexpected yet longed for relief.

I’ve often found myself on the edge of a forlorn cliff deciding to sit and be at peace or to jump for relief, either running from my anxiety or demanding evidence of God knowing me, finding me worth knowing.

Truth is found over and over in the quiet place. His Spirit is relief.

Yesterday, I was escorted back home from the winding roads bordered by overgrown splendid trees, bright moss clinging to clay ditches and a wide sky with soft brushstrokes of clouds like meringue.

I noticed the birds.

I decided they were the ones from Tuesday.

A trio of hawks led me back to the main road and I held up my phone thinking this is for you from God.

Saying good, see you’re seeing me, Lisa.

I wanted to remember the threesome, the hawks swooping and swaying above me as I turned from my third grandma day back home to paint.

I am learning to live aware of all my moments.

To live peacefully, momentarily.

To remember the things God is saying about His will being found by me.

Be where you are.

Notice God there.

I saw that the grass my daughter picked from the pond had faded and told her I loved it more, the softer color.

She paused, maybe she saw it.

Peace as a centerpiece.

The will of God is found when we accept ourselves in the places He places us, changes us.

When we give fully to every calling, each one of value.

Not anxious over what is unfinished or not even begun yet.

Be where you are.

Life and peace, this is your life and this will be your finding peace.

Life and peace.

Singing “Deep and Wide” to an eight month old and watching her eyes, seeing her awareness of love, her noticing God.

Allowing this captivating exchange.

Treasuring it.

Standing in front of the easel, taking time to nourish this calling. Creating from a closeness with my Creator, not worried over whether someone will want it.

God’s work through your hands, think of it this way and be sweetly, simply amazed to be an artist.

Writing without seeking acceptance, writing your one and only story.

Writing for those God knows need your words. Don’t consider that small, never see that as a small calling.

Listening to my husband who loves lyrics like not passing this way again. He’s so subtle. Aging is a melody, it is best done together.

Be what God has shown me to be for my adult children, available and unrelenting in my belief and God’s in them.

There’s no need for analysis or expert advice.

Keep being their mama!

There’s a peace here, it’s a heart and mind decision, sacred in relationship.

Be who God knows you’re on the cusp of becoming and look for His assurance, not others’.

Be who you are.

Relieved in that acceptance and aligned with the one who made you.

Soar.

See, you are loved.

“So here I am in the place of worship, eyes open, drinking in your strength and glory. In your generous love I am really living at last! My lips brim praises like fountains. I bless you every time I take a breath; My arms wave like banners of praise to you.”

‭‭Psalm‬ ‭63:2-4‬ ‭MSG‬‬

What a gift, I decided.

Relief.

You, where you are.

Continue and believe.

Knowing Birds

I should become educated on birds and their differences.

Birds I decide are hawks because I think of my daddy are usually buzzards.

My husband or daughter will tell me and I’ll cling to the hawk story because I like it better.

Still, they interest me. I notice.

I am fascinated by what looks like freedom to go and to be and to live with beautiful ease.

Three birds in the distance careening in a weave.

They were funneled through the foggy sky.

Flying together for me to see and then dipping down in the valley behind the tall pines for a minute then showing themselves again.

Then, the sound, the “ca-caw” told me they were crows which I only recently learned are different than the raven.

The raven, a little more special I have learned.

Still, I watched and I wondered where are they going, are these even the same three birds as before?

Then the fog began to let blue and sunlight through and three birds played, the same or maybe another trio danced a waltz of synchronicity just for me.

“The wind blows to the south and goes around to the north; around and around goes the wind, and on its circuits the wind returns. All streams run to the sea, but the sea is not full; to the place where the streams flow, there they flow again. All things are full of weariness; a man cannot utter it; the eye is not satisfied with seeing, nor the ear filled with hearing.”

‭‭Ecclesiastes‬ ‭1:6-8‬ ‭ESV‬‬

And I didn’t wonder as much as before where they’d been

Or how they chose to go where they go or how they know anything at all.

About flying, about existing with no worry.

They just know.

They just know

whether I know anything for sure at all.

Like chasing after the wind or trying to measure the depth of the ocean with my toes.

Like trying to stroke the ebony feather of a beautiful bird, a crow.

Not a hawk, an eagle or raven.

But splendid in the sky, fantastic just for me and my stories all my own.

Like Solomon, I’m convinced it’s all complexity and it’s all worth ponder.

Brave and beautiful and curiously compelling.

Life and knowing.

Like a bird.

Knowing as they go.

Some things are worth knowing only a little or really nothing at all.

Like flying in the fog, it surely must be just knowing all is well, the wide sky is wider than they know.

“For in much wisdom is much vexation, and he who increases knowledge increases sorrow.”

‭‭Ecclesiastes‬ ‭1:18‬ ‭ESV‬‬

Tomorrow I’ll consider the raven, the sparrow, the birds playing in the wintry shrubs.

And I’ll be satisfied in knowing the so little I know.