Church on Sunday

I’m happy for the secluded corner, shady under the crepe myrtles.

How was church yesterday?

Were you moved?

Were your hands lifted high, even if only internally lifted?

Did you sense the spirit through the words of a Spirit filled messenger?

Did you cling to the assurance, God is faithful?

Did you sense the same elsewhere, in the simplicity of small earth underneath big sky?

“The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork.”

‭‭Psalms‬ ‭19:1‬ ‭ESV‬‬

Barefooted and with a whole day to fill, I walk out with the pup watching to be sure he pees.

I plop down on the moist grass, thinking adults don’t sit on the ground in the shade, not usually.

But, what a gift. Because I decided church would be via my laptop, I sat and just sat, no hurry, just wait.

Warm breeze, birds singing, nothing much else.

I said my prayers there.

And left them.

This Monday morning, up early with puppy, my husband pauses groggy with his coffee and turns to ask me, “What you ponderin’?

I answered, “Nothing, just dozing.”

Which wasn’t totally true because I’d been wondering about the word “faithful” and whether that was true of me and whether it was attainable in the way I believed it to be.

Looked it up and confirmed by its definition, “loyal, constant, committed, steadfast” that I’m only faithful sporadically or truthfully just momentarily.

I walked outdoors, the pup and I, saying “Go potty” and standing at a distance to confirm that he pooped.

I waited. Looked up and waited.

The heavens opening up, clouds spread thin like marshmallows melting or foam of tide going out and leaving the fluff of the stirring sea.

I laid down on the grass in the same spot of my prayers, thinking no one my age lies down on the ground to see fully the heavens.

But you do, Lisa Anne you do.

Because you’re the pondering kind and you’re not concerned over being caught being childlike, sitting with your hands resting in your lap to pray or looking up lying down because that’s the only true spectacular view.

Church on Sunday was backyard prayers in pajamas.

Church on Monday was being captivated by heaven and realizing my faithfulness is to such activity as this.

Childlike lingering to ponder unashamed out in the backyard.

Yeah, I’m faithful to such things as this.

Listening for birds, hurrying to see the geese, hoping for intermittent promptings to pray prayers that are not spectacular and yet, flow like sweet supper conversations.

Monday morning findings of just one tiny rose bloom left for you to view.

I am learning, these are the faithful sought after traits God knows are mine and are mine to honor Him.

Be faithful in.

Noticing Him.

Being certain of heaven.

Less performance for God and more contemplation of Him.

More learning of acceptance and less calculative striving for answers.

Because the greatest answer is not a reply that says you’re worthy, we chose you, you’re our selection or show us more!

Maybe I’m only meant for little based on human definition.

For now, little consistently and faithfully is feeling much like much.

Thinking of heaven while still on earth, I’m faithful in this.

“Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful over a little; I will set you over much. Enter into the joy of your master.’”

‭‭Matthew‬ ‭25:21‬ ‭ESV‬‬

Distance Pursuit

The geese were all gathered on the new neighbor’s lawn.

Looking one to another, they sort of sashayed towards the water.

The newly laid squares of sod already thick like a 70’s shag, I watched their heavy bottoms shimmy as if to get their fins loose.

The water was near, the path was no longer tree filled, the pond was just down and behind the new build.

The environment had changed, still they were intent on their annual season of pursuit.

Same with me this morning.

I found an old photo from a seven year ago beach stay, with the quote by Mark Twain.

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did. So throw off the bowlines, Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails.

Thinking about the distance since then.

The space between what caught my attention and inspired my imagining to only beginning and recently tangible taking initiative.

That space is not seven years worth of big, not necessarily but sometimes true.

It is small. Small like making it through the uncertain woods to step gingerly over river soaked rocks to reach the other side.

The side that causes you looking back from whence you’ve stepped across and recalling the overgrowth, the rocky places, the spaces with sounds like sissing snakes underfoot.

You stepped over and you sense the importance.

You’re being distanced from the you you once only imagined being brave enough to pursue,

The landscape has changed.

You pursue it, the brave world of being, seeing, living…

different!

Continue and believe.

Go the distance.

“This is the way you should go,” Isaiah‬ ‭30:21‬ ‭NLT‬‬

Linking up with others on Five Minute Friday, prompted by the word, Distant.

Perspective Shifts

What is your filter through which you see?

Two days ago I chastised myself for being selfish.

My quiet time was altered, I longed for a thing I got and when it required so much of me shifting my attention, I got a little hopeless, got a little embarrassed and considered I’m not capable after all.

Then I added to the dilemma, rationalizing my pitiful. It makes me anxious, it feels like attack, I got bitten one time, remember, by a crazy German Shepherd…!

I’m ashamed looking back that I considered my home should not be his.

I’ll not linger here. Let’s just say there was justified shaming and the shaming and the perspectives of those giving it were, well…accurate.

Point taken. No need for further discussion.

It didn’t really hit me until we were alone, the pup and I and over and over my mind verified.

“Selfish, so selfish, so selfish.”

When I told my husband beseeching his understanding…”He won’t even let me read my Bible!”

There was no reply from him other than “Give it time.”

So we bonded that evening, I cleaned up from his accident and then bathed him. (The pup not my hubby😊).

Then a crazy crazy thing happened to say don’t get cocky here, there’s still work to do and patience required.

A blue jay was trapped on our screened in porch. I stood to watch it up high in the corner, turned to get the broom to shoo it to freedom, instead it landed even more trapped behind the grill.

In seconds the puppy pounced!

I freaked out.

I screamed.

This situation grew more intense despite my screaming as the puppy ran through the door and to a private place to finish, to end it.

Crazy how I tried to pry the bird free, pulling nothing from the puppy’s locked jaws but cobalt blue, grey, black feathers.

I was beside myself. There’s a reason my daughter calls me the “crazy bird lady”.

It’s not because of my crazy but my crazy love for birds, my captivating interest in seeing them as if they are my messengers.

The bird was gone, totally gone and in the belly of the pup.

Apparently this is a thing. Google confirmed it.

Although I kept repeating to my husband “He ate a live bird!!!! That can’t be okay.”

It happens. He pooped it out the next day and it was regular, no obvious little bones or feathers.

Thank you, Jesus for that mercy.

So, this perspective thing. I won’t get into too much and thereby add to my shame. My daughter has a newborn. She reminded me about commitment, patience, adjustment.

She also said “Well, you’ve got a huntin’ dog.”

Her husband added in his sweet loving his mother in law in all her exaggerations and crazy ways way…

“Puppies do those things.”

My son’s perspective,

“Dogs will be dogs.”

Okay then.

I’m working through some things I have learned in the last year about the perspective of one who experienced trauma.

Trauma is the reason for so many reactions; but, it can’t become your rationalization for inappropriate behavior.

At the same time it matters. It is a part of my texture, can’t be unwound, unthreaded, “unhappened”.

“My soul continually remembers it and is bowed down within me. But this I call to mind, and therefore I have hope: The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.”

‭‭Lamentations‬ ‭3:20-23‬ ‭ESV‬‬

I’ll clarify:

Puppies nip at body parts because that’s what puppies do. It is play. Puppies do not pounce or bite because they know you’ve been backed into corners and pounced upon by big evil mean dogs who were men.

Our reactions must shift.

My perspective must not default in every situation back to fear, to anxiety to trauma.

More importantly we can’t use our trauma as a scapegoat for unpleasantries about ourselves we’d prefer not to admit.

Like giving up on a commitment or a goal.

Like being afraid when fear makes no sense at all.

Like claiming attack when no one’s against you, you just are still craving rescue.

Still looking in the wrong places to be found.

So, the perspective is shifting. No need to fight anymore. You’re a victor not a victim.

If you’re reading this and thinking that’s ridiculous that she’s comparing trauma to an uncontrollable puppy.

It is ridiculous; but, it’s also real and it’s also changeable when we choose to see from God’s perspective.

The intent of past trauma is to change your perspective of every single soul you encounter from hope to fear.

The enemy longs to keep us tied to fear and sometimes the enemy is deeply embedded.

That is, until we get brave and sick of fear.

I am almost 8000 words into the book God has formed in me about my past trauma(s).

I have finished the proposal and it just waits now for editing.

The original idea was an expose’ of trauma and all the ones who I felt needed reminding in case they needed to remember what kept them from saving me back then.

Sigh, what an undeserving unnecessary story.

That’s not the idea now.

It’s honest and it’s a perspective that calls me out in the horror of it all and more a tribute to the “Jesus in them” despite of it all.

It’s not a shocking story, more a settlement of my story and the redemption and hope waiting us all.

Charlie the pup lies beside me all curled up.

Shortly, I’ll head to my desk to pray and then edit. He will curl up in the corner next to my feet and he’ll be with me.

With me as I change my perspective of victim of trauma to brave child of God and optimistic survivor.

Trauma is a mercy reference.

Oh, and hey…

Happy Independence Day!

Been Walking a While

I’m cleaning up my desktop and trashing some things I’ve written, keeping a sweet little fiction piece based on my grandparents’ relationship because it was fun and silly and although it wasn’t a winning piece to the publisher, it felt like a win for me…stepping into new places, having a light touch with words. This piece was a submission for a “Chicken Soup” book about running, not selected; but, not to be wasted. Oh and for those of you who know the meaning of “The Colors of my Bible”…I gave that three hours this morning and added almost 3000 words. God is not finished with my story.

Hope you enjoy, here’s a piece I called “Freedom Feet”.

     Last week it was damp and cold, forty-eight degrees in South Carolina. I watched the wind amongst the pines made shadows of subtle gray. I was taking a day off, a “mental health” day. I layered, one shirt over another, tucked tight into thick leggings. I was creating resistance, a shield from bitter air. I donned the winter cap the color of my hair and noticed how unattractive it was on me, even a tad bit tragic. No matter, the weather app said rain was coming, less than twenty or so minutes away. I told myself to go, must go, you must do the thing that nourishes your soul. I head out to find it is not so bad at all. The neighborhood is quiet, it’s a Tuesday after all and it is cold for Carolina.

     I made my way with wisdom in ears, with song, with sparrows and blue jays bursting from barren branches to say to me it seemed, “Come on, come on!” and so I continued. The rain had not begun. I rounded the corner, avoiding the places where the roots decided to burst through the pavement, and I was driven on by the notion of how far I had come considering where I had begun.

     The very first time I ran without giving up and giving in, I ran with my stubborn daughter very early in the morning.  We were up and out while the others were sleeping. We were determined and intentional. She was merciless. She told me I could not give up. I had to go on. She tracked our time on her phone, yelling at me when I told her I could not go on. So, I ran my first mile next to the ocean on the South Georgia shore. While it was an accomplishment, it was months before I would try again, I was hanging on to the me of before. 

     The me that ran a punishing path, to erase excess in calculated calories, to keep what I could in control. Running was restitution and justification, a mad method in my life of control. Almost forty years later, I am brave.  I am challenged by the chance try again to not tell myself no. I am committed to believing in so many possibilities I never thought could be so.

     It is so much more now than a shameful competition with self. It is an at your own pace and in your own way exercise in confidence, surrendering control. A few months ago, I decided to run again. Because it was personal, I sought solitude in my gradual adding of more distance.  I was careful to stay hidden in my attempts. I was slow and hoping not to draw attention, my stride would shift from long and safely situated jog to a bounce in my steps, a slight intensity in my go. I ran stretches on the trail obscured from kitchen windows. I worried over my weight, aware of the bulkiness of my gait. I ran as if it was a secret, something I wanted no one to know, because it was just for me, a cherished gift.

     I ran in the rain when the day ended without positive resolution and my shoulders were sunken over by the load. I ran to escape, I ran to unravel my day. I threw my hand up in a wave as neighbors passed on their stroll. I kept to the side of the road, my chest out my legs establishing a pattern and pace. I continued. I continued on. I ran with song, I ran with wisdom or I ran with no sound at all.  I became captivated by the sky, called it “noticing God”.

I was caught by surprise and a sweet recollection last week.

My daughter, pregnant and weary shared a photo of herself and her dog. They had gone walking down back roads and trails to a creek. She gave credit to her mama in her caption, thanking me for instilling in her the love of walking.

I smiled.

I remember our walks, how they served an important purpose. We’d venture around the long way; the roads were still soft dirt and clay. Every afternoon we’d walk to the place called the “run-around”, a creek that went from the river to my granddaddy’s pond. We walked together, my daughter and I and later her baby brother perched sweetly on my shoulders, his little feet bouncing as we went. My daughter ran slightly ahead to throw dirt clods in the water, and we’d linger to throw a stick in one side and then hurry to see it float out the other. We did this with regularity. It was our thing. My children didn’t realize it was therapeutic, that I was weary and worried and that our walks filled the times of waiting for their father’s unpredictable arrival back home every day. Walking was a way to unravel, seems it has become the same for them, walking or running, finding places to filter worry, make space for good.

     My feet have found their rhythm, finally. Walking is my mind’s healing practice. My thoughts have given up their defeatist battle, my determination is winning.  Not so long ago, I walked in seclusion, avoiding the cul-de -sacs. I imagined the neighbors’ notice and wondering, what on earth is she thinking, isn’t she way too fat, too old?  Now I am at peace with my barely changed body because of my much stronger soul. 

The afternoon turned just now and just in time from dismal grey to bright sunshine. The pine branches have changed to a luminous green, and I know if I go now, I’ll beat the sun going down. There will be just enough time. The gravel on the trail is black from two days of rain. In the distance just before the curve I see a couple. The music in my ears is a song about strength, courage and hope, an anchor. I consider chatting then decide to keep it brief, go on. They smile and I pause, notice her bright smile and happy pink sweater. I decide she’s hoping to beckon an early Spring. He smiles in his funny charming way and we all agree how happy we are for the sun. They continue on their way and so do I.

Editing chapters for “The Colors of my Bible”

      I continue on towards the place my feet, my thoughts and prayers are taking me. It is just up ahead. My walking, a pursuit of the assurance of my soul’s freedom, my body’s ability, and my mind’s peaceful resilience. Walking is medication, it awakens good things in us, changes our entire body chemistry. The world around us is an invitation awaiting our response, an invitation to walk and to continue and to believe. Continue and believe.

Friday with Sun and Pup

I saw the early sun thinking it’s been awhile.

Not since morning stepping out the back door with “Colton Dixon” aka “big brown lab” aka “Colt 45” were my everyday thing.

Back in the day. Now he’s a big shot Charleston dog!

I have a puppy as of yesterday.

I named him Charlie but it seems he looks more like a cool name than that, I might call him “Char”.

Char like charcoal, short for Charlie, kinda hip, kinda retro funky.

So far not so bad as far as training.

He knows me and knows his my voice calling his name.

The Pup

I know him, beginning to anyway, not speaking to soon…

We’re getting into a pattern, play, pee outdoors, poop as well, play, crate time, pee outdoors…

Simple things, simple changes.

Simple Friday mornings now and all the others with early sun and puppy.

Shall be about the same hopefully ’cause there’s something good about sameness, morning sun and puppy breath.

See A Little Listening

I told myself feelings are not facts and I do believe it.

Add that little saying to all the others, Lisa Anne, over time your happy heart will override your frenzied mind.

Will cushion the knowing that’s gonna grow you, will soften the edges of you, will be a plump pillow for your head at day’s end, sweet rest for the soul.

I listen to a whole lot of stuff when I’m walking, wisdom and or lyrical voices.

I’m particular with my listening, not my favorite thing to learn from tones that are “chipper”.

Cut out the pretty words. I crave what I already know, just need a voice confirming on a firmer note.

I’m down to just a few now, podcasts that are good fits for me.

Yesterday, I silenced my phone.

I paused the voice that was the same as so many with a similar exhortation.

I already knew. I already know.

I’ve got extra blank space now. I’m not sure I’ve ever had so much room in my thoughts for things to grow.

I’m challenged to accept the void of activity. I resist the not knowing what may be next or not come at all.

I walked bored with others’ knowledge and I saw the geese behind their mama all swimming in a row.

But, first I heard them, the rhyme and rhythm of their following along.

I paused then walked on.

I turned the steep sharp corner carefully and hearing a rattling engine moved to the far edge of the high grass.

I was prepared; but, not to be startled, an old van, a bearded tank top man and a head down in the darkness passenger in his midst.

“I’m walking.” I answered when he asked if I needed a ride and then added, “I walk everyday.” wishing I hadn’t added that and hoping he didn’t hear.

He drove away.

I approached the place where the Labrador loved to sit and I heard the croak of a frog off someplace and I remembered the creek of my childhood and those simple and yet complex days.

We walked every day. We took off to our simple shady quiet place.

I turned towards home and saw the bright blooms of summer, found the hidden key, let myself in and then double locked the door.

Later, I told the neighbor, I’ll be walking a new way, find cut throughs through yards. She said okay, suggested I leave one ear without music.

I told my husband.

He listened and agreed on new ways to get to the cul de sacs, the neighborhood and finally the trail I love.

I mentally made a plan.

I expected to be afraid in my sleep, awakened by the encounter of the ones in the old tagless used and beat up van.

But I wasn’t.

I considered the possible intent of the man and I am responding accordingly, not afraid,

Just informed.

I’m changing, I’m listening. I’m learning.

Feelings do not write your stories.

Listen more to what you are seeing now.

Your story was written so very long ago by the one who knows you now and then and in all the days to come.

“O Lord, you have examined my heart and know everything about me. You know when I sit down or stand up. You know my thoughts even when I’m far away. You see me when I travel and when I rest at home. You know everything I do.”

‭‭Psalms‬ ‭139:1-3‬ ‭NLT‬‬

Notice the one who takes unending notice of you.

You, who God made fearfully and wonderfully well.

“Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too great for me to understand!”

‭‭Psalms‬ ‭139:6‬ ‭NLT‬‬

Ask for Awe

I’m prone to exploration of words and their meaning. I read a word and wonder,

Do I really understand this?

I read the word “awe” in a devotional about asking God for what we need.

I proceeded to search and found to be awed means to have an experience that creates a reverential fear, amazement or a word that sounds pretty to me, “wonderment”.

An observation or encounter that prompts the sound, “Ah…”.

As if awe, the experience has a sound all its own.

On Friday as I dressed for dinner with friends and dabbed a scent on my wrist, I told my husband, “I need a lighter scent.”

Then added, “You’re fortunate, you know. Most women don’t go without these kind of things.”

He grunted and added his comparable going without things like boats and such.

I made a list of things that do matter but don’t. Better clothes, better hair, new paint on our dated walls.

A dog.

Less belly fat, better teeth, more art seen and sold, the courage to finish the book, the assurance that my children are okay.

Things on the periphery of my life, details of my days.

God pulled me close, caused me to ask to be closer.

I cried then prayed.

To acknowledge, I want a God experience, an occurrence with the Holy Spirit.

This morning, I asked for awe.

I asked God to show me His glory, like Moses who turned to the bush in the desert to be met by God in reply.

Moses who then told Joshua, keep telling the people to follow, to seek the Lord, to seek to be awed.

“the Lord make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you; the Lord lift up his countenance upon you and give you peace.”

‭‭Numbers‬ ‭6:25-26‬ ‭ESV‬‬

To have their countenance changed by grander things than food and water, to be aware of God.

Maybe discontent builds desire.

Maybe grander prayers bring my awareness of the grandeur of God.

I believe it to be so.

Lord, I want to be awed by your glory. I want to be drawn to notice you and to turn, my attention captured until I linger, I turn to see you longer enough to see myself through you.

Lord, show me your glory. I ask to be awed.

Because of mercy, Amen.

The hydrangeas are bluer this year. The blooms are so abundant that my house and my daughter’s are decorated by them.

The ground must be different this year somehow, the soil’s season somehow rich and new.

May I be new as well, may my soil hardened by hardship become more broken and opened to nutrition from you.

May my life yield awesome beauty, healed and healthy because of you.

“Sow for yourselves righteousness; reap steadfast love; break up your fallow ground, for it is the time to seek the Lord, that he may come and rain righteousness upon you.”

‭‭Hosea‬ ‭10:12‬ ‭ESV‬‬

Happy Sunday, ya’ll!

God is everywhere. Don’t forget to notice.

Secrets and Growth and Peace

I believe God is pleased that we think of Him, ponder, consider His ways.

“Does not wisdom call out? Does not understanding raise her voice?”

‭‭Proverbs‬ ‭8:1‬ ‭NIV‬‬

That’s just another example of His grace.

I believe God sees our gradual growth and celebrates rather than pontificates over why on earth has it taken her so long to arrive here, why can’t she stay in this place?

I believe God is simply happy to see our return, our return to believing that He knows.

I’m certain that morning is the most optimum time for gentle instruction.

I’ve not a clue as to why I woke up this morning with the question to myself.

How are you waking, with regret or redemption?

Why, oh why must I wake with such deep considerations?

Or maybe we all do, just keep them to ourselves.

Makes good sense, your brain filters your thoughts all through the night, transfers them to the place where the finished and important product, a lesson is delivered.

Voila’! Here you go! This message is just for you! God

Are you smiling now, imagining God saying “Voila'”?

Me too.

I think sometimes I think the oddest things and then realize there is always a reason.

A secret waiting to be revealed.

To be researched, to be determined what it is exactly God wants me to know, to hold on to as my own.

Wants me to u-turn, don’t go back that way, you were progressing, see now…stay here.

Be at peace.

“For God is not a God of confusion but of peace.

‭‭1 Corinthians‬ ‭14:33‬ ‭ ESV

Someone called this morning by accident. Her Bluetooth dialed the wrong Lisa. I knew her voice, thought Lord have mercy, did I call her and forget I did?!

But, I hadn’t and she reminded me of our relationship which led to me telling her what I’m doing now, hoping to use my grant writing skills to work with causes I believe in.

And that led to her telling me she had “chills” now because of an idea she has to strengthen the cause she is over.

We talked about it further and even longer about our faith, about how God wakes us to new opportunities every day and how none of them are accidents.

I considered her truth.

She considered mine as I shared with her my waking thought, regret or redemption, which will you choose to frame your day?

She said “Oh, that’s wise.” “Thanks”, I said and thought, thank you God for this confirmation of my next steps and direction.

Of letting some things go unattended to give my energy to what is new, even unseen, sort of brewing.

So, what is this state of mind and heart called “spiritual maturity”?

It is waking with regret less often in light of your redemption.

It is waking with the clear and attainable path towards peace.

It is recalling the stuff you felt God telling you to do afraid even if there’s fear in the room because there’s a reason you don’t know that God wants you to go, to be something He sees as necessary for others in the room.

He has us go places we don’t understand.

It is being attentive to a nudge that becomes a lengthy pause because you are still enough to become more wise, to receive either good or disappointing clarity so that your peace is not stolen and so that you grow.

That’s redemption, my friend.

Understanding what it is that is the taker of and opposing force of your peace.

Spiritual maturity is a splendid and secretly personal gift.

It is a fervent fire inside kept alive by your yearning to learn more, know more of God.

It is an acknowledgment of better days, contented minds, and restful nights because of your redemptive choice to forgo regret.

It is knowing you are still growing. It is glimpses of the secret place, the view of you through God’s eyes.

Smile.

It is not always easy, nor is it difficult at all.

The secret for me, intentional choosing which thoughts I allow to write scary, hurtful and impossible to understand stories.

“For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace.”

‭‭Romans‬ ‭8:6‬ ‭ESV‬‬

To set my mind on the awakening things of my mornings.

Lord, help me to stay quiet enough to know which way to stay my thoughts and which way my words and work should go. Because of your redemptive mercy towards me, Amen

Promised Plans

I’m writing prompted by FMF and the word “promise”.

Not originally thinking of Jeremiah, I was reading from the Book of John, Thomas the one called the doubter asking why should we believe in a place we don’t know.

Jesus replied essentially, because you know me and thus you know my Father, God,

and you can be certain.

I don’t really think Thomas doubted as much as he was just intrigued. Heaven and God are intriguing, after all.

So much to know!

Believing, according to Jesus was all they needed to know.

“Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me.”

‭‭John‬ ‭14:1‬ ‭ESV‬‬

I flipped to Jeremiah on my way to the day’s Psalm and started touching up and coloring in a place I’d been before.

I added the female form in the other margin and I found the familiar words about plan and purpose.

Then I found the promise.

The unwaveringly certain promise.

I will always find God.

There’s not a promise more significant.

I look for God in confusing times, I wait and clarity comes.

I look for God, seek Him by interrupting my day to kneel down to pray.

Momentarily or much later, I find Him.

My circumstances change.

Here’s the promise.

We are seen by a God who loves us. He waits to be found again and again.

“You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you, declares the Lord…”

‭‭Jeremiah‬ ‭29:13-14‬ ‭ESV‬‬

Linking up with others here: https://fiveminutefriday.com/2019/05/16/fmf-writing-prompt-link-up-promise/

Continuously Believe

I’m in between assignments, never had this much time on my hands.

I have, perhaps never been so quiet, so quiet I can almost hear God’s plans.

At least more than even before, though not fully I am sure.

The spaces in my mind occupied by busy and angst are uncomfortably new.

I must fill them with something, I thought, then waited and in tiny incremental steps, did one thing knowing God will do the next.

God is always working behind the scenes.

3:45 in the afternoon yesterday and I’m found with time to fill.

I sat poolside with a book and my husband until I’d had enough and three hours still until I’d need to get ready.

I’m goin’ for a walk, I told him and struck out like I do.

Happened upon a feather and I kept it although it was grey, not white or blue, oddly it was habitual, my picking it up, not my typical “totem discovered” enthused.

My music skipped annoyingly so I walked without a beat, a solitary robin above me, lifting in a rollercoaster rhythm through the trees.

I found the camera icon and flipped my phone around only to break the cycle, the fat robin never came back into view.

As if it say, that was just for you, no documenting our time together for others required.

Okay. I see.

This morning I remembered last night’s silent prayer.

Driving home later than usual, I’m in the passenger seat and we’ve been with people and chatter and both agreed upon what my husband calls a “conversational hiatus”.

Big semi-trucks are parked in their resting places in both directions of the interstate.

Their big red lights are dim like a soft sleepy glow. He comments, they’re required to pull over, somehow their stopping to rest is kept track of.

Oh.

I lean back, close my eyes and pause.

I pray remembering the bold request earlier today and then later a subtle satisfaction that the outcome will be okay either way and what I want and asked to come sooner than later might never come at all.

I settled it with God and myself then, okay.

Another person came to mind, someone I’ve no real attachment to, only aware of the seemingly futile reply to her prayers.

Someone I love hurts for someone she loves.

I prayed in a “Why not?” way for them, asking God to intervene, intervene in a way they’ve yet to see, a way that will seal the deal for an end to their anxiety.

For real I prayed, long and it seemed ridiculously up front, for real evidence of stability.

Prayer is a response to a nudge from God, so much more than seeking results or answers.

Prayer, the kind where it seems you’re sleeping, pausing, resting, prayer that comes because you notice God with you.

With you, a peaceful presence.

Pray more I tell myself now. More often, more spontaneously, more aware of God’s nearness and when someone comes to mind.

That’s a prompt, an invitation to conversate with our loving Sovereign God.

Pause to mention the person God brought to mind, ask God to see others more than He sees you.

The bluebirds don’t linger although they come close.

The tiny sparrows perch on the rusty barbed fence. I approach and they dart on their way.

The place that grows the flowers from a newly rain soaked ground is littered with egg of baby blue.

A new bird is learning to fly, leaving behind evidence for me.

For you.

To pray sans ceremony or setting, to pray and be changed and to pray for change to come true and be seen.

To pray continuously.

Continue and believe.

“pray continually,”

‭‭1 Thessalonians‬ ‭5:17‬ ‭NIV