It’s quiet outside now. She lets down the black shades and twists them shut, but keeps the window cracked open so she can hear. She flicks on the light above the stove, and starts cooking. First, it’s beef chili, with lots of cumin. While she’s cooking the meat and onions, she starts a pot of water for boiling strips of cotton. Once boiled, she will make them into test strips for her dyeing experiment. This time, she’s using blueberries, and hoping the color will turn out to be a beautiful, strong blue. She settles down to stirring pots, sipping on wine, watching Friends, and checking her phone.
Life’s been wild. If it is not enough to have a crazy virus seeping through your land, closing businesses and churches and keeping you from the people you love most, there is the terror of murder and rioting and wild men and women. If not that, then there is the burden of your own soul, watching all of this mess and wondering where you stand in it, and if you ought to be standing or if you should be apologizing for even being alive. If not that, then there is the news of so called “Christians” abandoning the faith. Why? There were too many unanswered questions, they say. Too many doubts. I just can’t reconcile the God of the Bible with the evil in the world, they say. At least they’re honest. You sit, wherever you are, biting your nails (if you still have nails left) and wondering what is the next shock the world will experience. What is the next evil that will come?
Continue reading “Blind Men & Wayward Children”
I am on page 99 of 216 of the little, rough-edged book with the purple words, white roses and a butterfly on the front. The minute I picked it up and started reading, I thought I had found a kindred spirit, and yet, 2 months later, the poor kindred spirit still likes largely untouched beneath a stack of equally untouched books.
“Who are the placemakers?” says the book. “They are often the ones who look like fools. They follow extravagant and impractical dreams. While the world races past on smooth concrete, they patiently tend soil with a yearly application of chopped leaves and the clearings from the henhouse. They plant trees they will never live to see full-grown. They know the names and the histories of the antique roses. Who are the placemakers? They are the ones who gaze out over emptiness and, sometimes through tears, see shimmering possibility.” [Christine Purifoy]
Continue reading “Pies & Placemaking”
It’s another day of pulling up Google Maps and calculating 29 minutes to Grandma’s little apartment, buzzing the intercom and creeping upstairs, finding the key and tiptoeing inside to the grayish apartment building, just before the sun finds the cracks in the shades and golden light comes peaking in.
She has so much to praise about. She read last week, Will the dust praise you? Will it tell of your faithfulness? No, it is the living, breathing moving lungs that praise. And yet, so often she doesn’t. She wishes, more than anything, that she could feel God more than she does. That she would feel Him, know His love, love His people, love His will and His word and everything He is. She wishes she could praise Him more fully without being so distracted and without checking her phone so much or mentally planning her to-do list.
Continue reading “Praise & Broken Bones”
She sits on the floor of her grandmother’s apartment building, looking out at the grayish sky, the wilting orange flower blossoms and the shadows all around her. Four vases full of yellow, red, pink, purple and orange flowers crowd the small living room; remnants of mother’s day and of two weeks of sleeping and sitting and sometimes talking. Grandma is dying and everyone knows it, yet she is a determined little woman and thus, no one talks about it.
Continue reading “Drooping Flowers & Psalm 23”
She sits by the window and watches the little people go by, and the wind rustles the linen curtains. Some little child zooms by on his scooter and an old man does not zoom, but walks slowly with his erratic step. The sky is just starting to turn color. It is lavender, pastel blue, and rose pink, but the clouds have grown and she knows the sky will threaten rain eventually. What a beautiful evening. What a good God.
Continue reading “Lavender Skies & God Sees”
In April, her mornings began to look like this:
Continue reading “Just April”
It was the 1st anniversary of the death of her friend’s father, and she couldn’t put into words what she wanted to say. The text she started now felt flat and dry and wholly inadequate. She was tempted to take up her bible and insert a profound and prolific verse she had scraped up, last minute, to wield in a highly spiritual fashion, complete with the words, “I will be praying for God’s comfort for you.” She did that sometimes, and while she always meant it, today she stopped and thought first. She thought about what it would be like to reach a 1-year milestone of losing someone you loved so dearly. The Bible always has words; how to use them was always the question.
Continue reading “Only a Brownie-Cutter & Not a King”
These are the days that inspire her to write.
She spent her morning in the shadow of the sun; spent her afternoon feeling its gaze and spent her evening watching it go down. Everything bathed in the light now suddenly curling back into its folds of gray dusk.
It would be too easy to spend her whole life like this – sitting on the couch, barefoot with cello and piano music singing in her ear. There is a cold salad on the seat next to her and her notebook lies open – the words bubble out: “garden and daffodils. Tulips and frying pans. Speak well and speak softly. You cannot take the whisper of your life back. It is a yellowed tulip-browned with age and weather. Dream deeply. Dream of heaven often.”
Continue reading “Barefeet & Saturdays”
She hasn’t written for over three months, but here she is. It’s 10:59pm and she should be in bed. She always gets to bed by 9:30am. Gets up at 5:50am, sometimes 5:20am. It’s good for her. She likes it, most days at least.
Continue reading “Potato Chips & Singing”
it’s been a month of wild happenings and gray skies and too many hours of staring at the same white screen.
it’s been a month of morning workouts and nighttime rituals of tea and books and curling up in a blanket next to a not-fire (because there is no fireplace, hence the not-fire).
it’s been a year. well, it’s a new year.
Continue reading “Freeways & Late Nights”