Sunday Selah

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Phew, I am so grateful to be writing that title … well, for writing at all this week. It’s been a rough few weeks… I had to sneak out the back door to a quite corner at Panera just to write this short post. Literally. It felt a lot like leaving a stranger-anxiety-ridden toddler at the church nursery, except my children are much older than that, and I wasn’t leaving them in strange surroundings.

Some days are sunny and 95, while others are blustery and 45. It’s ok. I am a firm believer that if we didn’t have rough days we’d never fully appreciate the pristine ones.

Can I just tell you, that I came across a post this past week by Crystal Stine that brought it all back. All of this writing journey came flooding back with waves of gratefulness and wonder lapping the shores of today.  In this beautiful post she talked about how feelings of finality and discouragement can come AFTER a dream is realized. I can sort of relate, in that I left college with a dream of helping just one family out of the cycle of abuse. God opened amazing doors and guided me into a beautiful place in the realm of social work and child protection.  And after a few fast-flying years, it was over. Over.

I wandered a bit. I began searching for “me”, I felt lost in the midst of motherhood, also a dream I wanted, and got. So now what. Was God done with me? Was this all I was going to do, to be? These questions of doubt coupled with some broken places within me and began building walls, isolating and suffocating walls.

I began wondering if He was done with me.

And then this story of my awakening happened. It shook me to the core!

So hang on friends. Like Crystal says,

“If you’re just starting to ask God what His dream is for your life – have hope. If you’re in the thick of it and wondering if you’re going to mess it all up – have hope. If God has seen you through to the end and your God-sized dream is now a God-sized reality – have hope.

He’s not done.”

Read Crystal’s post: “Have Hope” over at God Sized Dreams.

Happy Sunday Friends! I pray your week is full of dreamy moments! Cheers to new weeks that start afresh!!

Ready {Five Minute Friday}

Five Minute Friday

How do you know when you are ready to take the next step?  Here you are, savoring the view of your dream from across the room.  It looks nice and neat, pretty even.  From this distance you can’t see any flaws, not a single struggle, it is very attractive!

So you venture over and begin to converse with your dream, about your dream, around your dream. Everything is daisies and roses.  You smile, laugh even, you are connect ing and feeling quite comfortable… so does that mean you are ready to actually engage in relationship with your dream?

The next logical step is doing something not overtly committal, or overwhelming. You know, take your dream out of the fantasy setting and actually engage with it, one on one. This is much more vulnerable… but not yet committal. Again, you are met with pure joy and utter satisfaction. Everything is clicking and going smoothly. It feels like a perfect fit. You are definitely ready for the next step, longer interactions perhaps a in a variety of different settings.  There may be hiccups and a few bumps but overall you find yourself content, overcome now and then with feelings of completeness.

This phase can last F.O.R.E.V.E.R. Of course to the outside world this dream is definitely a part of you and it is meaningful. It is still vulnerable, absolutely fun and often very satisfying – but it is not committal. You have an exit sign at every turn still.

So how do you know when you are READY to commit to that dream God has placed in your heart? How do you know “this is for real” and it is worth the investment of a solid, bold, and profound YES? I am not talking about the “I am in a monogamous relationship” kinda commitment. I am talking full-fledged covenant. You know, the kind that requires financial investment, serious risk and your entire-vulnerable and authentic heart.

How do you know?  What are the for-sure signs of being “ready”?

Photo by Chris Jeavons

You don’t.  There are none.  This final step in the pursuit of your calling, your dreams is an all out choice.  It is a leap of faith, with your eyes wide open.  This choice may come whether you feel ready or not.  But you must know – the only way to truly embrace this level of committment with your dream is to go forward knowing there are no more exits.  Once you leap you cannot retreat.

Whatever you dream of, whether it be pouring into a full-fledged ministry, opening your own business, singing, drawing, building, writing (grin) – go for it, commit heart and soul.   The beauty of raw passion and authentic talent will not disappoint!  The only thing you have to lose is regret.

 

This post is part of a flash mob of writers who gather every Friday to celebrate creativity in words!       

Come check us out over at Kate Moutang’s place!  All are welcome!

Sunday Selah

Crisp air greets your nose as you step over the threshold onto the decked planks. The fragrance of pine dances on the breeze as you pull your sweater in tight. The waves of the wind echo through the needles far above your head … and your soul opens wide.
Follow the shade until it kisses the sun and feel the warmth of morning.  Nestle into chair by smoldering embers.  Wrapped in blankets with the stillness only the forest can bring, peace will surround you. If you are patient, even the elk will wander past your gaze in pure grandeur.

Let the heavens rejoice, let the earth be glad; let the sea resound, and all that is in it.
Let the fields be jubilant, and everything in them; let all the trees of the forest sing for joy.”
Psalm 96:11-12

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Whisper {Five Minute Friday}

It echoes through the crisp night air, subtly at first, then swirling around you in a dance. In a breath it dissipates. In the distance there is a rustling of leaves, a melody of fluttering. As you pause in the delicate moonlight, the trees bend and sway, bend and sway. It is as if the day has come to sigh a gentle utterance of tranquility. Just as you begin to settle, a brisk flurry scuttles by unrushed; it teases and jukes. The leaves again hum and the grasses sweep.

This moment utters ever so slightly words of wonder, of love, of grace. It captivates soul and awes the mind.

It is a whisper.

If you are burdened with hustle or laden with obligations it will pass right by. If you don’t stop, it won’t start. This moment, this whisper, will drift beyond wonder into the forgotten dark. In it lies a treasure of honest freedom and you don’t want to miss it.

Step out, risk the exposure, let the current caress.   The tenderness of glory leans into you at first and then the undertone of love whispers truth in your ear. Listen close, sometimes His words are dances of whispers, subtle surroundings of Holy breaths.

Take them in.

Evening breeze by chikache

Happy Friday to you!  This short post is part of Five Minute Friday – an amazingly fun group of writers who gather ever week to write for 5 minutes flat on the same word.  It makes me giggle with glee (yes, I fully admit to being a word nerd).  I have to confess I played for a solid 30 minutes in my thesaurus over this word today!  It was perfect fun!!!  Any and all writers are welcome – here is your invitation!  And for you readers, please come over here and see what other writers have done on this word!!  (I’m clapping with excitement… please just smile and bear with me)

~Brandi

 

Sunday Selah

The clouds linger a bit, easing in the sunshine.  There is a gentle breeze keeping the air crisp.  It is perfect for our Sunday morning, holding us close.  I have missed them, their giggles and cuddles, their smiles and detailed dreamy chatter.

School is back in session and having them gone all day may afford me time to “get things done” but truly having them snuggle a bit in the early morning or linger longer at the table fills me more than the accomplished to do list.

I am learning to be really present with my smalls.  In our world of hustle and check lists its easy to get caught in the cycle of fix and satisfy.  Instead I want to be here with them, dreaming and savoring.

Aliza Latta at (in)courage reminded me of my role in the lives of those around me – it’s not to save or fix but instead to love.

May your Sunday be full of savory moments of love.

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