{Featured Series}Slices Abroad: beyond my own slice of pie on my own perfect little plate

Lulu-Tree-Prayer-Page

What ever you did to the least  you did it to me.

Whatever you did not do to the least- you did not do to me.

Book of Matthew.Chapter 25.Words of Christ.

I’m part of the prayer team for this Uganda-based lulu tree organization

founded by Emily Wierenga.   {please click to read more}

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   Because my little world is not the whole world.

This is part of a series I am working on.

Scroll down to read more.

HOLD_five minute friday

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We can’t hold much.

Not really.

All this striving and getting and protecting and longing…

I just keep thinking of that line you hear in movies when there is a solemn funeral scene { I don’t think I have ever heard it myself from a pastor}

“ashes to ashes…dust to dust”

Papery smudges that leave a mess on the floor.

We so,so want the

concrete.

Want the

tangible,

the measurable.

When we ourselves, our children, our God are in actuality:

Spirit.

The un-concrete

intangiable

immeasurable.

“Hold on”

I seem to hear,

“To that which can’t be held”

slowness

peace

steady thoughts

willful contentment

a light hearted disposition.

“and you shall posses treasures in heaven where the moth and rust shall not corrupt, nor thieves break in”

Book of Matthew. Sermon on the mount. Words of Christ.

Stop.

Its Friday.

{happy dance}

Linking up with Kate for another exciting installment of Five Minute Friday…coming to a computer near you.

Cheers.

Slices Abroad{a series about my getting over myself} part 3

free will

Today I read in Sarah Young’s Devotional: Jesus Calling this line:

“the gift of free will is an awesome responsibility”

my paraphrase of the lines that proceeded that line:

” focus on pleasing God, so not be blown and scattered by the winds of busy doing and aimless achievement”

My last post in my {getting over myself} series I wrote of knowing I was not going in a good direction…pitching forward down a horrific path more like it…the snowball effect of a little cold ball growing into a sizable mass, spurred on by the kinetic energy of self.

So, there I was.

Depressed, very angry, pretty disappointed, compounded by the guilt of feeling those things that I knew I should not be experiences; both on a moral basis and a logical basis.  Sometimes our feelings are pressing down on us because of the direction we allowed ourselves to trod:

self pity

comparison

judgement

Sometimes these feeling press down on us simply because it materializes the moment we wake up:

the lethargy

the sadness

the tension

the feeling of out of control

One can have these feelings overwhelmingly present while we ourselves, or our situation have nothing to do with it. The distinction between the two were critical for my healing.

Free will is an awesome responsibility.

I, as a child of God could take control of all those inner dialogue thoughts that spun a frenzy of impassioned feelings. Because I, with the promise of Scripture telling me to “take every thought captive in Christ”, could steer my thoughts, this naturally led to the ability to stop my words.

Words of sarcasm

Words of complaining

The F-bomb

The absolutes in my sentences like:

“every time”

“never”

“no matter what”

because these give a fresh blast of oxygen to the flame of hopelessness that is always licking at me when I start to feel depressed and angry and tense.

Ann Voskamp’s Book,One Thousand Gifts again, was the missing piece to the puzzle in my mind as to why, despite all the praying and Bible memorizing I was still getting sucked down in such despair that led to such awful sin.

The combatant to all these loathsome thought processes and verbal throw up of nasty:

Gratitude.

Moment by moment.

Gratitude shrinks self.

Self has not in mind the will of God.

Period.

But that was only half of what was going on.

My buzzing beehive of a mind  that this lady tried to quiet and beat down everyday at age of thirty-years- old with four children aged nine, seven, four, and two.

What about the waking up, as I tried to describe it in words to others, with “what feels like a dark cloud settling right over me, sucking all positive thoughts, enthusiasm, and energy”?

What about the tension that is pulled so tight inside of me, right below the breastbone, that I have to clench my fist in a permanent clawed ball to get through and stay in control over a simple breakfast with my children?

What about when:

the milk spills,

the kindergarten lets out a high squeal of protest because her little sister put her finger in her milk,

the toddler drops the pink rubber spoon globed with yogurt on the floor for the 5th time in two minutes,

and I react like someone just shot a riffle in the air, I jump so, I want to dive for cover so, I curse out loud in a visceral reaction so…over and over again?

What then?

This foreign, completely un-Me feelings and person has no part of anything I have done.

Just the guilt that follows.

Medication.

That was the answer.

What is often deemed as the:

un-Biblical,

lack of faith,

half-ass believer

way to cope,

was in actuality stirring up those things that counter a life in Christ, as I refused to go on medicine for the reasons listed above.

{Literally…they are just above this last sentence if you want to review again, skip the swear word if it bothers you}.

You see my reasons were only in part theological.  The root was all about:

Me.

I did not want to be one of those “desperate housewives” on anti-depressants.

I had spent far, far too many years judging those who used medication to ascend to such a deplorable low myself.

Also, I wanted to figure it all out. This whole God in control yet sin abounds, injustice is still present, and it doesn’t make sense.

“Figuring it all  out” when it comes to how God interacts with humankind is just another type of pride masquerading around as Biblical integrity.   I had stated, several times this phrase:

“Yeah, but what about all those women who lived liked one hundred years ago before anti-depressants, or all those third-world people.  If God uses modern medicine, and it is the only way to cope, then they just get screwed over”?

Seriously, I used this one, like all the time.

The problem with this kind of thinking is that my focus has completely shifted from a personal God who deals individually with His child, according to where His child is, as He has allowed. Grandiose statements about pioneer women of yesteryear or women in Cambodia are smoke and mirrors:

A delusion to convince ourselves that we are so righteous, when confronted with the plight of other suffering woman, so bothered in our tender compassionate spirit that we cannot, like some kind of self-imposed Gandhi, partake of any modern alleviation.

As an added bonus you sound really spiritual and, and I should mention, never has anyone ever been able to counter such an argument to me.

What would you say, mature blogging believer, should someone present such a question to you?

But it didn’t help my children, my husband, the spirit of our home, the guilt.

So, I had to to get over myself and shut my complaining mouth when my picture perfect ideas did not happen. Ideas conscious or unconscious.  The Holy Spirit, by the way, is the only One {if you are not in counseling or have an extremely close honest mate and/or friend}, who can bring to light those unconscious motivations or defaults.

Presently Minded Gratitude was the spear to self.

I had to swallow my self-drummed up cock-eye theology about how medicine that can recalibrate pulses, chemicals, and reactions in the brain is wrong, even though no one excect for those Christian Science people, would ever consider high blood medicine, insulin, or sleep aids as worldly wisdom.

My “slow to comprehend, slow to react” to my struggle with depression was, despite all the spiritual religious talk and genuine beliefs, still about me.

I never, ever was abandoned for my thick headed-ness though.

Not by my husband, not by God, or the comfort of Christ, or the gentle nudges of the Spirit.

Cheers.

let's do this

READY_five minute friday

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Ready for what?

I knew something had to change.

The track I was on:

trying harder not to do things and say things that made me feel crippling guilt

made my husband nervous to come home to see what kind of Leah, what kind of house, he would come home to

made my girls nervous in that “I am watching you out of the corner of my eye to see which mommy you will be this time” way

made the power of prayer and victory in Christ seem like a made up fairly tale told by well meaning but completely out of touch Sunday School teachers

But I knew Christ was real.

I knew I loved my family.

I knew the place I was going, was not supposed to be part of my story.

I was ready to do anything!

And “anything” from an outsider’s point of view; were they to peer in with x-ray glasses and a pen and paper to jot down notes, appeared to be several tangible, practical things:

going on medication

writing a list of gratitudes every day

eating better

speaking out loud my frustrations at stressful tense times less

apologizes quicker

But really, that was not, at the root, what “the friend”, “the comforter” the one Christ prophesied as being “greater than I”  asked me to be ready for:

was I ready to listen?

was I ready to obey?

was I ready to forget all those ideas and ideals of what I, what society, what the church, thought “ought to be” and trust the next step for me?

Are you ready?

Stop.

Linking up with Kate on this Five Minute Friday.

Today’s post with Kate also falls naturally in line with part of a series, that for some reason, that completely defies survival logic, I started to write here, all while homeschool and working and volunteering: Slices Abroad {my series about my getting over myself}

Post 1 of my Many Slices Abroad series is here.

And yes, you figured it out, I am riding on the coattails of the 5minfri popular blog to promote myself: something I get annoyed at when others do.

But the timing and the prompts completely fell in line with what had been swirling around in my head, so despite my hesitation, I posted and linked away. And here we are.

Cheers.

slices abroad_{ a series about my getting over myself} post 1

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The most nagging excuse for my NOT starting a blog, three years ago now,  wait, make that four years ago, was that it seemed so narcissistic.

A constant feed of facebook updates not enough?

Now you need paragraphs to devote to yourself about yourself? Really?

That is what went through my mind, as I debated with myself, a mac on my lap, a glass of wine nearby to give me false confidence.

I went ahead, egged on by my husband, with his full emotional and technical backing.

Why Many Slices for my blog name?

It was a direct result from a conversation I had recently had-first in my mind of course, where all my good conversations start-then with Tim, and likely with a few other females.  I can’t really remember: when you talk to yourself all the time things get hazy in the retrospect of who you actually spoke to or did not.

Anyway.

The name: Many Slices.

I saw my life at thirty years of age as being divided up neatly into little triangle wedged slices.

Like the cheesecakes they sell at Barnes and Noble cafes.

One full beautiful cake, with each perfect wedge making up the whole, but each slice being a different flavor.

Four daughters in seven years-one slice, well better make that two slices as my daughters usually fall neatly into the categories of “big ones” and “little ones”.

A relationship with my husband- one slice

A house,  with a newly enlarged addition.-one slice

My involvement with the local church- one slice

My walk with Christ- one slice

My twenties were a blur of pregnancies, continual throwing up, toddlers, trying to catch up on sleep, laundry,  housework while trying to make my house, never finished with construction projects we did ourselves, look vintage/artsy/pretty. All this with a very limited  amount of extra money to spend on items that would achieve that vintage/artsy/pretty look.

At thirty I cast a look at my twenties, with absolutely no regrets. Could not even think of anything major I would do differently.

I knew enough to appreciate that very few men or woman could say the same.

And yet.

I saw in retrospect one glaring flaw that had nothing to do with

getting married young,

having a big family on one income,

or buying an old home-

I was never satisfied.

To be fair, if you want to have four kids in your twenties you do have to be constantly thinking of the next…

when to get pregnant/not get pregnant?

when will we have three bedroom that are livable?

where will we send them to school?

It is the nature of the beast of family planning.

Being done with our part to “be fruitful and multiply”, my oldest happy in the school down the street, and the babe nearing her first birthday, I was faced with the now what?

The what was Me, of course.

Time for me.

Outlets for me.

My passions.

My talents.

Can now be developed since I devoted much to my twenties to snagging a husband and having children.

That was where, Many Slices The Blog, came in.

Part of me time.

A good thing, truthfully. After all, here I am still. I love writing. Developed an eye and talent for photography.  I dropped facebook and improved my writing, found my voice.  I even made peace with the truth that I am never going to be a big time blogger, because I do not want to be a big time blogger- it would not make me happy.

Life, indeed, did get easier.

I had more me time, developing an identity beyond a baby maker, toddler controller, and house decorator.

This was a good development in my life.  A natural stage of life. Please understand, I never was a martyr, and not being one one.

However, my happiness level did not improve.

I still was not ever satisfied.

My objectives just changed.

Worse of all, all those former goals, i.e. children, I began to resent. I constantly complained.  Had very scary bouts of depression and anger, almost always hovering over the situation of being home with four children all day in a house that was never nice enough.

This is what YOU wanted, Leah!

That is what the guilty voice in my head yelled.

That is what my husband logically pointed out.

This is what The Holy Spirit whispered.

He, the Spirit, was the only one who would followed it up with another bit of truth on the days I would listen: “you know that which you are upset about is not what you are complaining about, and what you are saying right now,  you know is not true”.

But I could not stop the cycle, not for long bouts, anyways. No matter how many affirming quotes or Bible verses I tacked around the house.  When everything went “according to plan” I was happy. Happy that the image in my mind was now playing out in reality, in life.  A measurable accomplishment.

Even if it was let’s say:

It’s a crisp October afternoon and all the girls have on cute wool coats and knit hats, the back maple is its perfect color of burnt orange and Tim is helping rake and take pictures and afterwards there is cider and donuts in the kitchen.

That was success.

That = Leah.Happy.For.Now.

Beyond the pintrest/country living orchestrated moments my other more personal-thirty-year-old-goals were not happening with the relative ease of my getting married,getting pregnant, buying a house, putting on an addition proved to be {not “easy” in that the process was easy, but easy in that when I decided “yeah this is what I want…it happened}.

I felt horribly guilty for my unhappiness.

And horribly frustrated that I was still tethered to home and daughters so much, which started the guilt train up again.

A hazy image of a woman of a different nationality, wearing  a bright colored but shabby dress, sitting on a stoop in a slum; half naked scabby children playing in the dirt next to her, with no food, or clean water, or health care, plagued me. I would vow to not complain or be unreasonably anger anymore. I could not even recall with clarity what is was most of the time that had me so upset; provoked another Mommy melt down.

Then Isabelle would sneak into my sewing room and get marker all over my fabric laying next to my sewing machine that I was supposed to be finishing up for a new seasonal table runner for Thanksgiving… and I would lose control, again.

Marred fabric became evidence of how “hideous” my life was.

“I never”

“You always”

“Every freakin time”

Would be how all my sentences would begin in a bark and a sneer.

Really, I was mad at myself for zoning out on the computer instead of keeping an eye her, and even more frustrated that this new project was not done yet.

My life became that marred piece of fabric, frayed edges and all.

Then, I began to hear about a book called One Thousand Gifts.

And while there really is no such thing as a book “that changed my life” what happened to me was the absolute right testimony, communicated in the exact right way, at the best possible moment of time, for me.

I did not see it coming,

I just knew I had to change my course.

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WHISPER_five minute friday

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It’s a paradox:

How it is The Whisper-

not even spoken, more like stirred in the heart like concentric circles on still waters, ebbing further out and out till the slight ripples quietly disrupt another shore,

that achieve long-lasting results.

More than loud mouth guilt,

wagging tongues of ill news,

or my self-talk of pitched plans to improve myself.

Or course it takes “the waters” being quiet in first place to notice the ripples;

otherwise it can easily be overlooked, purposely duped, or stubbornly denied as just a flutter of wind, a slash of something inconsequential, an unsavory surface of some rotten fish or slimy lake weed.

But my stubborn adherence to stillness {not all stubbornness is bad}

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day after busy day, week after tiring week, year after speedy year,

has produced not a glittering resume,

spectacular achieving children I can brag about on facebook,

a magazine cover house,

or fat checking account.

It has produced “those who have ears to hear” and “eyes to see”.

To hear “the joyful sound”

and see “the least”.

I was not even planning to blog today,or much at all for quite the while. Homeschooling started Wednesday and I am working now too.

I simply wanted to remove my “sticky” post that sits used to sit atop of this blog that linked to my homeschool blog.

I never post about homeschooling. There are so many out there with practical advise, and quite frankly I really don’t even consider myself a traditional follower of home schooling.  Our story in homeschooling is nothing more than a step onto swirling, dangerous, foolish waters in response to a whisper…

just for a season.

So a blog all about homeschooling seemed superfluous.

This removing of my “slice of homeschool” blog, got my mind going and my finger typing and before I knew it, I was setting up, not another blog, but deciding to do for the first time a series on my blog. All about, as it turns out so “coincidentally”, about hearing that whisper a few years ago that asked the question what if Jesus is really going to do what He said He would do in Matthew 25?

Am I, and much of the Western Church, in Christ’s eyes, a bunch a goats when we are called to be sheep?

It’s called: Slices Abroad.

The posts will probably not be at all methodical or regular.

Linking up today for another installment of Kate’s  Five Minute Friday.

Cheers.

old hat

 

old hat

Back To School: A Well Worn Hat In A Comfortable Setting

 Today was back to school for the house of women.

It feels strange, but in a good way.

Yesterday it was strange too, but in that little niggle of: this isn’t right, what is going on?, way.

All day yesterday  I kept stopping, suddenly pulling myself up, wondering:

“How can tomorrow be school”?

“Where is the end of my rope, fraying surely and loudly in a disgusting house”?

Where are the daughter nerves?

I was not ever around for the night before the big day, but at work till 9:30pm.

How weird is it to write that!

It made me sad, but apparently no one else had a problem with it.

Coming home to daughters in bed, and Tim asleep to The Office going on his iphone, I did the homeschool mom thing and went into our homeschool room to get our weekly schedule finalized and organize which books we are going to use when.

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Then going to bed I did the once-in-a-great-while-i-get-crafty-usually-out-of-guilt, thing

and hand-sewed a polka-a-dot name tag with embroidery thread in bed, as the clock crept closer and closer to midnight, on my daughters’ identical $1 lunch totes we got at Old Navy. {I refused to buy “the real” lunch sacks that cost about 12 bucks a piece, after spending close to 50 bucks on two children’s backpacks…no matter how much they complained…this was my compromise since they called bringing a brown paper bag “scummy”}.

Let’s be clear:

my guilt induced midnight embroidery session was not over the cheap lunch totes, but rather not being there to tuck them in and chat in bed on the night before back to school.

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6:30 am came much too early and I was back in the saddle again:

desperate for coffee before I had to pack lunches

underwear,

first day dresses,

new shoes,

and

“wash the peanut butter off your face”

and

“yes, you have to get dressed and brush your teeth even though you’re staying home” conversations

shouted a room away while I warm up my coffee for the second time in the microwave.

I walk daughter number three to the elementary school five blocks down the street.

She held my hand the whole time, even in the hallways, even in the classroom with classmates getting an eyeful, and my heart swelled.

I drove the babe across town to her first day of Kindergarten which felt like an old hat with her being in all day pre-k last year since she missed the kindergarten cut off by days.

No tears, no extra long emotional hugs, no worries, not even nostalgia to be honest.

June felt like days ago not months, and my kids like school.

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Back in the saddle again with year two of homeschooling for my “big girls”, now in 7th and 6hth grade, and I am as relaxed as an un-schooled hippy mama on weed.

They ate and picked up breakfast and tried to be sneaky and get another episode of Once Upon A Time in while I was gone depositing their little sisters.

We walked into our homeschool room barefoot.

 

 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA We discussed the year.

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We talked about and wrote down school year goals.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

We prayed.

We did Math and History and did some stretching and dancing to One Republic.

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A far, far cry from last year when on the second of school, I put my head down on the glossy table and choked out:

“I don’t know what I am doing, I should of never done this”.

None of those feeling or angst or worry.

Comfortable and easy; an old hat.

Not that every day will be that, by any means.

I will have melt downs and wish my big girls were in school too some days, shouting things I immediately regret.

We will sleep in again, miss the bus again. lose the parent permission slip again, and have no bread left to make sandwiches again.

But today was not one of those days.

Today we just did our thing, going to school…all three different establishments, like it was no big deal…an old hat.

And being able to do that, is a big deal, for which I am as thankful as I am shocked.

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Cheers.

 

Vague

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I keep getting robbed.

No bandit, weapon, or police report necessary.

It is a sneaky ugly thief that lies seemingly dormant in my mind, like some swamp monster from a grainy old B-movie:

it’s ridiculous, you see it coming from a mile away, and yet you get sucked into its trap of murky water of vague assaults on my character, my perception of others could-be perceptions

I told you it was vague.

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It started on a rainy Saturday morning.

The romantic, kid-free, you have your day wide open, kind of rainy Saturday morning.

And then it was robbed.

Spirited away by that swamp monster in my mind.

It made its first blow in the backyard:

Mud, hundreds of walnut shards littered and staining everything I don’t want to be stained, our summer-long pool project not quite finished {lumber, tools, extension cords, paint rollers bleeding out its crusty paint in a dirty pool in the grass}. This despite we have sweated nearly every weekend this summer trying to finish it. And then of course there was the poop and hay and bloated rabbit pellets; a bag-full destroyed and spilling out caused by hard rain and errant squirrels.

Filling water bottles for seven rabbits I can’t stop looking around at my surroundings.

My eye can’t rest in all this saturated brown.

Gulping, I feel it.

The beast growls and stretches its long claws lazy, just waiting, I eventually sink down to him quite well without him having to do anything but wait.

My breathing actually gets shallow, the muscles in my face tighten, I am aware of this, where it leads, but proceed further down nonetheless.

The first thought, an arrow shot out of the bushes, finds its mark:

“we look so poor”

and continues,

“this is what F#$&ING trailer parks look like!”

Then the scale gets tipped.

All those understandable irritations of:

destroyed wasted rabbit food,

the ugliness of mud and walnut shells covering everything,

and the frustrations of projects that always cost more and takes longer than expected

morphs, pivots in my mind, just enough for the shift to happen:

the swamp monster has me

“what are we doing wrong in our lives”

“I would be so embarrassed if someone could see this backyard right now”

“its just stupid to try to have hobbies, life is work and I am married to this house and clearly I can’t keep my shit together”

This conversation spills into the kitchen where an unsuspecting husband last saw his wife seven minutes ago completely happy, and now is in a furious, negative mood.

Thankfully, I have a husband who will continue to talk and poke and challenge.

Thankfully, God is faithful to those who diligently seek Him and I have learned over years and years of repeat sinkings to force myself to think true thoughts.

We talk in the kitchen, quiet in that strange childless way about many things.

One subject that comes up is how possessions which we pursue to increase the quality and enjoyment of our lives, in actuality seem to create more stress and lack of enjoyment that comes from REST, because whatever you strive to get, it must be maintained. Maintained just a notch above what it currently is, and out of your means and/or ability.

New bathroom?

Why didn’t you upgrade your ancient shower too? {i think it was installed in the 70s!}

Beautiful wrap around deck?

Wouldn’t that new line of deck furniture at Lowes look so much better than the used mis-matched stuff your mom gave you?

Your garden is finally filling in?

Don’t you think just a few more mature perennials and some edging would make it really stand out?

Your daughter has a real talent?

Why aren’t you signing her up for additional lessons? After all in a decade it could mean a scholarship.

Then the train of comparisons, usually of people you really don’t spend all that much time in their homes to really know what their lives actually look like, begins.

It’s out and out sabotage.

Rainy Saturdays mornings.

Homes we love.

Pastimes we enjoy.

People we like.

Children we tolerate {that was a joke}.

Their simple enjoyments are lost, and if the attack is prolonged long enough, without counter attack, loses its blessing.

And that is tragic.

Suddenly the minimalist approach of Buddhism was a lot of merit in my mind.

If I was not convinced that Jesus Christ was the Son of God and alive, and they changed their stance on not drinking I would probably convert { i already have the yoga mat}.

But I don’t convert.

I talk it out.

I pray those same prayers again to that risen Lord who is never surprised and nearer than we think.

I admit that yesterday was a really stressful day and stress has a way showing up the next day, I have not got good sleep lately, have been eating too much crap this week, and getting my period soon, and that it is okay.

I make a spinach fruit smoothie instead a handful of Ghirardelli Chocolate Chips and more coffee.

I buy new boots and cute socks on sale.

I write it here.

Because I know I am not alone in my battle against the swamp monster and everyone knows monsters can’t stand the hard light of truth.

Cheers.

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CHANGE_five minute friday

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It’s just too big.

cumbersome with grief

heavy with despair,

edges razor-sharp, cutting efficiently into tender tissue.

The state of our world:

even this blind culture, with its shallow callous tide of nonsense that fades as fast as the early grass, is taking note, striking a somber tune.

And The Church?

What has her response been?

I am no authority, nor have I done exhaustive research, but in the pinprick of space I take up, and interact with, and the feeling I sense in prayer is this:

The Bride of Christ getting ready:

Praying and fasting.

Such hope.

Because nothing changes really.

The ancient enemy is thrashing and destroying as from the beginning, he is just revealing his hand instead of quiet tearing in the over-looked shadows.

God is in His heaven, His invisible throne and hand stretched out, as it has been from the beginning.

Christ is still over Jerusalem crying out for us the come, so He can cover us like a hen covers her chicks when the killing of innocents has become the standard.

And the Spirit that goes to and fro is searching, searching to gather up the prayers of the saints, drawing them up like the thirsty gather water when it finally rains, to pour them into heaven.  He fills up the bowls in the Holy of Holies to then pour them back down on a broken, bleeding out, and yes dying of thirst, world.

It has been like that since the advent of the Church.

I cannot fathom the why?

Not really, though I can spout off the theologically correct answer.

We Westerners have had the luxury of philosophical ruminations and discussions and arguing long enough:

the rest of our brethren has had to actually live out the faith, not just talk about it, because their lives depend on it.

What is the variable in all this heaven and hell clashing together?

Us.

We change.

We are going forward or going backward.

Never still, never at a content platitude, not really.

Forward motion always needs the banner of Christ; like the emblazoned red cross in the first crusades.

We can change our stance as this terrible, ancient battle, that all of a sudden seems too real, too overwhelming, too numbing, to do anything.

Take up your armor O Church and pray and weep and fast and see what Your God will do.

Satan has shown his hand, O Father God won’t You reveal Your outstretched hand that is from everlasting to everlasting because You change not,

The world is watching.

Linking up with Kate from her Heading Home blog for Five Minute Friday who has done an amazing job taking over Lisa Jo Baker’s job of corralling all us crazy, weepy, bloggers together each week.  we click out on laptops {sometimes in bed at 5am because you can’t sleep, like me right now} on PCs while the kids run around and destroy the kitchen like animals, or on smart phones in a few stolen moments at work. Where ever, or however this space is littered with women {and I think sometimes a few dudes} who have a heart for their Savior and the written word.

Cheers.

 

The Fade of Summer {in shadows}

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Yesterday was August 15th.

What is it about August 15th?

That smack in the middle red-flagged pin marking the last month of Summer.

It’s a bold salutation of:

“Hello. Are you ready for Fall?”

The weather is not improving matters for those of us who prefer to stay in a state of denial about the summer of 2014 closing its door.

Cool mornings with lingering fog well into 9am

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Days that only see a high of 68, even when the sun is out all day.

I have been putting on sweatpants and fuzzy socks at night.

Yesterday I had the inexplicable urge to:

put some stew in the crock pot

buy some Sam Adams Oktoberfeast beer

and watch football.

Ordering home school curriculum on the British Middle Ages and buying #2 pencils, Crayola twistable crayons and Clorox wipes in large quantities all but sealed the deal.

Another summer has come,

unleashed itself in a furry of:

a pool free from craigslist

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scores of baby bunnies,

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books of course!

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celebrating the un-real milestone of being married now for 14 years

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and just to shake things up for everyone,

my going back to work part-time.

It all adds up to a summer that slipped away in a whirlwind.

No matter how we try to hold on

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With such busyness posting has been few and far between.

However,

I need, need to constantly have creative soft pockets in my day.

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Otherwise, I am a wind-up machine of monotonous tasks day after day.

There have been pictures.

I could write so many posts on all my pictures, but don’t have the time, gumption.

Shadow Shot Sunday 2 offers a quick easily assessable platform  {click to link yourself or just look}

to share just snap shots of those soft creative pockets here on bloglandia, and for me that is nice…

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Cheers