Thursday, September 4, 2014

Soul Famine

I should have seen it coming.
This need to write, to emote, to express.
I've been here before.
Where creative famine dwells.
Where I am soul thirsty for the kind of life given in the process of creation.
Yes, I should have seen it coming.

My schedule has burst at the seams.
My calendar filled with responsibilities and the needs of others.
Family. Children. Church. Home Education. Sermons.
So full, but not fulfilling.
At least not for the part of me made for creating.
Sure, there is a creative process in what I do in my marriage or in parenting.
There is creative energy expended in leading others into the presence of Jesus.
Creative juices must flow to craft words to preach week in and week out.

But life's duties have a way of absorbing the joy.
The joy offered when we create simply for the sake of creating.
It is that joy, the creation simply for creation's sake, that I have missed.

And when my soul is starved of creation - 
the process that birthed me and into which I was birthed,
the process that connects me to the heart of the One who formed me from dust,
when I find my soul malnourished,
it's then that I fight hardest for peace
because I have failed to be all I was created for.
I feel small and insignificant.
You see, I was created to create.
To join in a divine process.
And I need it.
Like air.
Or water.

I need time and space and places meant for me to color a canvas
but with the paint of words.
I need time and space and places meant for me to offer my art
for no other reason than it feeds me.
No matter what another might say.
No matter if another is touched or moved.

I need time and space and places I can stare at a blank screen of white 
and delight to string words together in Helvetica font
because it moves me 
it nourishes me, 
it oxygenates me,
it inspires me.

And so, that is one of the reasons I began this blog.
To set aside a place to create.
But I have been busy.
And I have been left wanting.

And with gratitude, I've returned to this place.
Not to garner accolades
but so that my soul might live again.
Deep soul breaths.
For my sake.

Whoever you are. Wherever you are. 
I pray you, too, will find time and space and places to create. 
Whatever that might look like.
For your sake.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Five Minute Friday: Tell (& Show)

Linking up with Five Minute Friday today.

Today's Prompt: Tell


You'd think that the telling would lead to answers.
But the telling that I desire inquires and ponders.

Tell me why a parent delights in giving to their children.
Tell me why pride stonewalls forgiveness.
Tell me why fear can debilitate.
Tell me why a blue sky and cottonball clouds inspire.
Tell me why elation and weariness can coexist in the same body.
Tell me why living on purpose is elusive.
Tell me why urgency conquers importance.
Tell me why ancient words long-preserved still lead to transformation.
Tell me why hope is hard found but easily lost.
Tell me how God imagined the giraffe and the blue-bellied roller.
Tell me why the Olympics generates goosebumps. 
Tell me who loves like Christ - full of mercy and void of bias.
Tell me when those I love will no longer suffer.
Tell me who I am

The telling proves my dependence, my lack.
My "tell mes" clear space for the Unseen to show up.
And telling turns divine.
Jesus tells by showing...over and over again.
Showing Himself. Revealing Himself.
I ask for the telling. He allows for the showing.


Friday, June 13, 2014

Five Minute Friday: Messenger

Lately the only writing I seem to be doing here is for FMF.
I'll take what I can get.
This weekly community has provided a place to discipline myself to write at least once every week. 
Even if my other days are filled with other tasks, there is but a brief moment at week's end to come here
and write
and exhale.
Fo that, I am thankful.

Today's prompt: Messenger


The pink peonies 
were ballerinas
dancing to the flow of the wind.

The tall stalks of grass, 
ready to go to seed,
were trumpets
heralding the pulse of the air.

The green birch leaves 
clinging to white branches
were acrobats 
that floated on the currents of the breeze.

I could have missed it, 
blinded my own busyness and care.
You are not visible after all.

Today’s grace was taking notice
of the messengers along my way
that prove Your presence
by synchronizing to Your breath.

Today, Father, 
creation testified to You.
Though invisible You are yet seen;
manifest in their inevitable response to Your movement. 


Friday, June 6, 2014

To Paul (FMF: Hands)

Linking up here and dedicating this post to my husband on this, our 16th anniversary.


Today I took your hand.
Not an extraordinary occurrence as we make moments to touch this way often.

Our hands have held through courtship, 
dating as college sweethearts and choirmates
through changes in majors and growth in personhood.

Our hands held still for pictures following our wedding
as the camera captured the glimmer of our newly donned rings in the sunlight
streaming through the Park Place stained glass.
That was 16 years ago today.
All veils of white and tuxes of black.
A lifetime stretched out before us.
And we met the future with hands clasped tightly.

Our hands held through the inception of ministry
and growing pains of marriage
as we worked our way through preferences that stemmed from our origin and nurture.

Our hands held the hands of others - 
while they mourned the coming of death to one they loved.
while teenagers bowed their hearts before Jesus.

Our hands wove tight as an emergency C-section
ushered our first born into the world,
wrinkly and fresh and red.

Our hands have held little hands 
that feared ants
built forts
smeared paint
and climbed high.

Our hands have held more love than imaginable, more life then deserved, more hope then expected.

This anniversary, while holding your hand, I also stand with a hand wide open for all yet to be grasped, caught, molded by us.

Friday, May 30, 2014

Five Minute Friday: Nothing

Linking up here
Five minutes.
Whatever comes to mind.
Spilled out here.

Today's prompt: Nothing


My failures flank my mind like a retaining wall
ready to keep out Your words.
It’s all I can see some days.
The impatience this momma showed at childhood foibles.
The anger this wife spewed toward a husband.
The lack of compassion this beggar extends to those less fortunate.
The resentment harbored in this pastor’s heart for faith-siblings.
The mistakes of my youth that snare and trap me.
The defeats of the soul that echo in the chambers of my heart.

How is it I escape them?
The sins that paralyze me
and let fear win.
The dark places I worry will lead You
to turn, 
walk away, 
desert and abandon me.
The transgressions that taunt.
The debts that claim they are more powerful
than payment rendered.
Untruths that use guerilla tactics to ambush my confidence.

What sin is too far-reaching?
What choices will send You retreating?
What can keep You from me?

And I hear You whisper, 
a single word,
barely audible
above the screaming fortress of the lies, 



Friday, April 25, 2014

Five Minute Friday: Friend

Linking up with Five Minute Friday.

Today's word: Friend


Today dawned rainy and cool.
A far cry from the sunny, beautiful Easter that began the week.
But today is my soul's companion
because Friday is Sabbath.
A day to break;
to part with the cares of responsibility
and set my sight on rest.
A day to take time to be.
Not rushed or hurried.

I slept in.
Hubby cooked the usual Sabbath breakfast of pancakes for the kids.
I read, and prayed, and thought.
Then I napped.
I scratched the back of my 5 year-old,
and snuggled close with my 6 six-year old
while a show played on the tv screen.

So much of life feels like it's for the taking of me.
Piece by piece.
I fall into bed at night and wonder what I actually accomplished.
This day of sabbath reminds me no accomplishments
exist apart from relationship.

And so I commit 
to forging connection
the rest of the week
sprouting from the abiding with 
my truest Friend.
The One who meets me faithfully every Friday
even when I've forgotten Him all my other days.


Friday, April 18, 2014

Good Friday: How Did We Get Here?

It’s Friday. And I can’t help but wonder how it is that we got here to the events of Calvary? 

How is it that the baby whose arrival was heralded by angelic choirs is now a man hanging on perpendicular pieces of wood?

How did the toddler who was worshiped by wise men from afar wind up beaten and rejected? 

How did the 12-year-old boy about to become man confound the teachers of the law yet on this day find himself mocked and condemned by the religious leaders? 

How is it the God-man who calmed storms, raised the dead, and made 5 loaves and 2 fish enough is now bound by nails at his hands and his feet and is suffocating to death?

It’s Friday. And I can't help but wonder how it is that we wound up here at a cross?