Friday, May 29, 2015

Hard Stuff, Mosaics, {and Where I've Been Found}

The week has been hard. 
The Psalmist counted up enemies and exclaimed, "oh Lord how many have risen against me…"

I have counted up the hard things of this week with the same exclamation but without a cave to hide in.

That has been okay. 

I have not needed a cave for hiding. I have not needed to hide at all. 
I have needed to be found. 

National news has flooded with it; more secret things being made public {as will all secret things one day be made}, but in this story, the home of my story has been hit, memories unleashed, and wounds scraped up and raw once again.

I read in my newsfeed of a friend whose son has burns on his legs.
She has had to learn the hard process of dressing his wounds; reopening and cleansing that they might be freshly bandaged.
It is what must be done for his healing.

This is what must be done in my soul;
for my healing.
It hurts. 
He is tender. 

There has been other hard in this week.
A watching and yearning together with my dear beautiful wonderful man.
Seeing his faith stretch and pull strong. Feeling my own in tandem with his. 

Sometimes even the most clear and anticipated of horizons can stretch on into the place of fuzzy wonder and seeming- impossibility.
The corners where our rigorous investment meet up with our openhanded trust in a sovereign God.
These corners can hold deep pockets of longing and desire.

When a door stands before us, we can see our heavenly father's hand upon the knob, and we wait… 
Does he intend to open it to us? 
Or does his steadfast faithfulness require it's close?

We wait to see... 
And sometimes the wait hurts.
Sometimes it all hurts and it's all for the healing. 
{ever feel this, dear reader?}

To be at once both painfully shattered and perfectly found. 
A soul mosaic. 

In the beautiful introductions to summer weather, iced tea and sunny walks – 
I have been found.

In the faces, sticky and tan, of my people-
I have been found.

In the early-morning places of his word – trutting alongside the Psalmist-
I have been found. 

In the sharing of closest words, tears, laughter, and all the makings of love with my Steve-
I have been found.

In voices of wisdom and understanding – voices which validate and speak redemption-
I have been found.

In the friend, with her own desperate hard, who took my heart on a hard morning and helped me sift it for a re-bandaging in hope-
I have been found.

There has never been a moment, or thought, in which He has not known exactly where to find me; 
all of my zillion shattered pieces so rugged and dirty; captured for a mosaic of His goodness!!! 

And this is where the hard stuff gets treasured up.... In the being found! 

Listen to this song. 
Find Him finding you in it's message of hope! 

Happy Mosaic Weekend

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Summer's First Savory Sips::{a recipe}

It's here with all of it's newly-arrived awkward fits and bursts. 
Warm breezes, sweat-inducing sun rays, and bold rain showers. 
Although the calendar has not yet officially proclaimed it, the full leafy trees and fast growing lawns induce my belief that Summer must be welcomed. 

I've been celebrating with a daily refresher in my tall straw tumbler; a perfect pairing of healthy flavor and some slow moments in the afternoon before post-school busyness begins. 

To make: 

-Brew a favorite tea bag in 12oz of boiling water. {I really favor Good Earth's Mango brew, but today needed the caffeine from a favorite black tea.}

-Add a handful {fistful} of fresh berries WITH the hot water. This allows them to soak and soften; releasing their flavors. 
Allow this to brew extra long as you will be adding to ice later.

-Fill your tumbler 3/4 full with ice cubes. {remember to use glass or stainless steel if adding an EO!}

-Drop 2-3 drops of an EO. {think about pairing your citrus oils with your berry choice. {ie blueberry/lemon or raspberry/wild orange etc}. 

-Finally discard the tea bag and pour brewed tea and berries over ice. 

-Let your drink chill for a few moments and enjoy! 

This recipe can be made in the morning then refrigerated for a quick grab later in the day.

Also consider multiplying by 4 or 6 and fill a spouted jug with refreshment for the whole family on a hot Summer day. 
Great for kids and friends on the deck or patio! 


Saturday, May 9, 2015

Mother's Day::to the one it hurts:: {beauty in the rocks}

To the one who hurts on this day!

My heart is full for you; full of love, 
full of esteem, 
full of deep deep gratefulness!

I know you're hurting, 
remembering ---wondering...

It's arrived on advertisements in your mail, screamed from the television, played itself out between your pandora songs.
This vicious reminder that scrapes up against your wounds.

It looks at you from your calendar, sounds on the lips of your co-workers and friends, rides the waves of pinterest and facebook posts right into the aching, freshly opened chasms of your soul...

Mother's Day.

This day of pictures posted, flowers received, and grand greetings in the hallways of church...

It must feel so very daunting and painful, and does anyone really see and know?
Do the ones who do know look the other way or offer awkwardly empty assurances?
Do you wonder if by next year....?
Do you recall wondering that a year ago?

I am so very sorry, dear friend...

I have a mother who loves me and continues to move towards me.
I  have children; three littles in arm, and two in heaven.
Hear me speak this -
there are whole canyons of pain in your world that I have little experience with
and small ability to imagine, 
but I do see you.
I have experienced YOU!

I know that this day hurts you. 
I want you to know that, and there is something else I want you to know too.

I celebrate YOU - yes you - as the sweet, beautiful, mothering woman that you are!

Mothering was created by God.
Mother's Day was not.

The design to mother was given by God to a woman
before a baby ever breathed air upon this earth.

A child does not make a woman a mother.
The woman, through her mothering, makes the child her's.

Mothering is something we learn to chose,
not something we achieve biologically...

When you carry life-giving hope, tend the helpless,
correct the erring, and instruct the naive...

When you feed the hungry, heal hurts, hold the crying, and calm another's fears....

When you pray soul-deep-groaning prayers for another...

When you speak of your deep longing to see all of your life-laid-down-service culminate in the matured and prepared independance of those you have loved....

This is the real mothering.
This is the noble glory business...tending to what is young while gently led by The Shepherd.
He sees you there, faithfully working your skills into the reflection of His image,
and He delights over you!
I can just hear His heart say,
"There she is, my child, recreating her faith, hope, and love into the lives of others.
Pouring out her heart and soul for their good.
Through her sacrifice, in a thousand unseen ways, my life flows through her.
Exactly what I was getting at with, 
'be fruitful and multiply'."

So for you, my friend whose arms remain empty; the phone silent; the nursery still waiting...

For you, my friend, who remembers on this day littles that warmed your womb but never drew breath...

For you, my friend, whose mother was wonderful and is now gone.

For you, my friend, whose dreams of babies stretch far beyond the horizon of your singleness...

For you, my friend, whose child is close but with a heart hard and far...

For you, my friend, whose mother chose to abandon you, or attack you, or ignore you...

For you, my friend, who aches and longs and remembers and wonders on this day...

...on this day

HOLD onto your hope.
SEE the loves all around you.
DRAW them tight and give life.
KNOW His deep pleasure over you!

Lean into the bold and messy business of mothering others from the soul...
of receiving comfort and nurture from those who mother well when your's does not.

The forces that pull you hard with longing come from the One who meets you with the blessings you crave because mothering is His design,  
and He always blesses His design.

May you know on this Mother's Day, and every day, a beautiful purpose and arching-upward comfort.

To the one who hurts on this day, 
see and taste His glory in you-
Like bright soft beauty growing up between hard rocks.

I celebrate YOU, amazing mothering women!