Monday, May 18, 2015

Week's Review

Best of the week:

Not many weeks start with flowers on the kitchen counter, gifts, texts and phones calls throughout the day, but this one did. Mother's Day slam dunked into a fest of fun and goodwill. HH* and I enjoyed surprising his folks by showing up in the pew at their church and taking them out for lunch.  The day threatened to dump out rain showers, but no billowing gray clouds were going to keep us from bicycling to the local ice cream stand where HH treated me to my favorite coconut almond crunch sundae.  Thankfully, the weather cooperated. Calls from kids and calls to moms kept the ring tones jangling and the iPhone messaging center buzzing.

I'm thankful for the privilege of being a mom to wonderful kids and thankful for the women who have mothered me. While my mother is no longer here to honor in person, I often recall the good things she planted in my life. --knowledge and understanding about my heavenly Father, introduction to a relationship with Him, daily practices of worship, love for His Word, disciplines of hard work, perseverance in spite of weaknesses, unbroken connection to friends and family...and more.  My Dad gave her Bible to me recently, and I'm getting to see her heart up close and personal as I decipher the scribbles in the margins and find few pages unmarked with some underline or emphasis. No earthly inheritance compares to the legacy of faith and honor handed down from the generations that came before us.

I didn't always appreciate these gifts because I couldn't see past their outer wrappings or understand their value. But Time and Perspective are kind friends who patiently keep tenderizing my heart with grace, humility and charitable judgment.

Not the best of the week:

I found myself feeling insecure in my relationship with HH.  One incident that occurred brought hurt and my emotions refused to be assuaged. A few chats together to air things out and sweet talking our way back to closeness brought rest and comfort.  How quickly he and I can slide into our default modes of independence when demands of schedule and activities leave less time for togetherness. Knowing we need to be more intentional about relating in those times and actually doing it is the challenge. Energy is low and need for solo time is high. Expressing simple gestures of tenderness or using one of the many means of quick communication to make a connection goes a long way. We'll keep working on that while being deeply grateful for the gift of marriage.

*HH= Handsome Husband

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Contrasts to Live In

What was a mug with a broken off handle doing in the cupboard of the break room at work? Kitchen vessels and utensils were haphazardly grouped together on all the shelves, but pathetic as they were no others were so acutely crippled. Not only did it’s chipped off stump give me pause, but I had to smile at the juxtaposition of it’s message only inches from the ceramic break off.  “Healing the world peace by peace”. My first thoughts were proverbial-“Physician, heal thyself!”  But who of us that desires to be healers of peace are perfectly whole? Aren’t we rather pieces of our own story that need a Puzzle Builder to fit us into a picture that can be recognized and appreciated?  I submit to your work, Healer.

Weary from a week of activity that bulged with meetings, appointments and commitments I drove away from my in-laws’ house.  Their son and I had taken them a meal and shared some love and life into their quiet, slow-moving surroundings. My course meandered through The Villas each one dressed like her neighbor; like the popular classmates who frequent the same clothing boutique. Near the entrance to the neighborhood, the park area held playground tikes and elders working in the community garden patch.  In spite of my haste to get to the next function I spied four humps near the edge of the garden close together and pointed upwards.  A second glance found the bodies they belonged to lying flat on the ground, hands casually behind their heads.  Only children and elderly take time to view the heavens like that, I thought, remembering childhood days of lying just that way and imagining shapes in the clouds.  I set that image against my busyness and realized peace and quiet was only a choice away.  Help me bend my knees and lie on the green pastures you provide, Shepherd.

Two women begin a Bible Study together.  One a young mom surrounded by diapers, super heroes, kindergarten drawings and raspberry kisses, and the other managing college library student workers and data, fixing copier jams and processing periodicals.  One holds a baby while reading the study book, while the other holds a steaming cup of coffee as she begins the morning reading in her favorite chair. It might not work for the stay-at-home mom, mostly one-handed, to type out thoughts on a Facebook Group; perhaps phone conversations will be the best way to share the insights they are both reaping from the study. Contrasting worlds will make for interesting interchanges of study applications! Thank you for the riches in your Word and special women to share them with!

Thank you for  life’s contrasts to love and learn from, Father. I am so thankful you made people to pass  through stages and ages. For variety and surprises and eyes, ears and emotions to enjoy them. You are good!