Friday, September 22, 2017

If I Had Everything in Order

If I had everything in order 

 a pair of misplaced shoes laying in the morning light  would never be seen.  And what a sad thought that seems to me to be.


If all was in order, there'd be no muck boots sitting by the door.

If I kept up with all of my chores there'd be no wild morning glories taking over the chair on the front porch and climbing madly up the post.




    





And if all were in order and I had painted the picket fence when it was time to do so, I would miss the slowly darkening wood through all of its aging stages and the final thrill most intensely felt because I had waited so very long to finally accomplish it! 


If I waited till all was in order and when I was finally a more reasonable girl, there wouldn't be a new puppy tugging on my shoe strings this morning and pouncing like a panther on prey around here. And we wouldn't be laughing so much nor burying our faces in soft brown fur.   



And there wouldn't be photos like this to share.


If all was in order I wouldn't still be awake too late tonight and no thinking and typing into the night time would be mine.  If all was in order, I might not feel like me. :) 


Saturday, August 26, 2017

What if I Dreamed on a Saturday?



What if I dreamed dreams that were implanted long ago in me?  What if I forsook the desires clinging on from earthy lands and let my eyes turn full toward the germination of seeds planted in me by the Unseen Hand, at an unseen time of me.  What if the GREAT FARMER began to gain His full harvest out of me?  What would that look like in these days of mine?





What would that look like on long, salt and pepper hair, soft worn hands, muck boots and turned up jeans? Would there be goats and garden greens, puppies and prophecy?  Would there be me and singing and holding each other's hearts for our whole life long? Would I leave the farm and come home again and again?  Would my paths see glory and God's love spread around like those seeds out there behind the wooden fence in the rows?  His dreams for us can look like our lives lived out in His will.  I think it can.

What if I took a long determined draw from the well of God's desire for my life and accepted no other?  What is it?  Where is it?  What song does it play when needle falls to vinyl, spinning black and fast?  Is it a shoutin' song, love song, or ballad?  I think it has a rhythm for happy dancing.





What if I've seen it for some time and I only needed to believe anew?




Gaze long and hard, dear girl. Gaze deep and with assurance.  There is much there in this deep, dark well of wooing for you, girl. Deep, rich, cool and crisp in your mouth.  No fear of swallowing this draw down.  No worries in this sweet wondering.   

What if nothing could stop the plans He had for me all along this way of life?  What if nothing could prevail against a Father's wishes for His girl? For His boy, for His people?  What if we all slipped into the flow of it now?  Why not now? Why not Saturday in late summer?

Then morning would be sweet to meet, sweet as it is and meeting me with new purpose.  Then daytime would see me marching through with sure and steady steps into unknown lands--even the unknown! -maybe even across the street.  Sometimes not leaving this chair, I will go far to "heart places" with Him that change everything in my everyday.  And when He holds out His dear hand to me again and again, I would not ask many questions as I do now.  I would not ask Him, "Why me?" or "Are you sure?" or "Am I qualified?" No, I would grab on with a sure grip and swing high.

He won't let go, I know.  I know.  I know.  :)  





Monday, August 14, 2017

A Letter to Myself and "To Whom it May Concern"

(A note on where we are before we know HIM)

I think You stand and stare….like I stood in Waterloo, my old home town, like a ghost of Christmas past…no one knew me,  no one seemed to be able to see me there in her streets, ME, the daughter of that bustling town. They walked by, drove by, carried on conversation beside me, but they could not see me there and I did not know them. If they could have seen me they would have exclaimed at my arrival!  They would have grabbed me up and hugged me and we would have reminisced of all of the times I had there, combing the streets on foot and wheels. We would talk of how I was one of them, and how we share history together.

 You stand amidst Your people, Your things. Your imagination is all sprawled out around us and we, like dumb beasts, like a haggard old woman in a movie, we just pilfer through, picking up random things, stepping on Your tiny enchanted worlds under our feet, we trample over scores of wisdom and story, we touch worlds of wonder with our hands, smell aromas from another land and never move through to the wonder--to YOU.  

You stand like the Ghost of Christmas past, and we don't see You.  We are flat-lining in Your presence, and in a world utterly bursting with Your life. 
We pinch our own feeding tubes, stay far from "living waters", close the breeze out of our own windows, as we choose our own erotic views that stimulate for a breath and execute our capture in the next.

Wake up, flatl-iners! Let's wake up from our eternal sleep. Unpinch our life line, stop erasing the precious letters of our names from the book of life!  Hear the trumpet calling, carried along summer breezes, and on our ocean beaches, funneled through our ever waking hours, a kingdom calls to us.  A residence reaches for us.  Our Maker stands on our streets and moons over the ever moving, ever evading, loves of His life, us
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Titus 3:3  Be truly humble toward everyone because there was a time when we, too, were foolish, rebellious, and deceived—we were slaves to sensual cravings and pleasures; and we spent our lives being spiteful, envious, hated by many, and hating one another. 

But then something happened: God our Savior and His overpowering love and kindness for humankind entered our world; He came to save us. It’s not that we earned it by doing good works or righteous deeds; He came because He is merciful. He brought us out of our old ways of living to a new beginning through the washing of regeneration; and He made us completely new through the Holy Spirit, who was poured out in abundance through Jesus the Anointed, our Savior. All of this happened so that through His grace we would be accepted into God’s covenant family and appointed to be His heirs, full of the hope that comes from knowing you have eternal life. This is a faithful statement of what we believe.


Sunday, July 23, 2017

Oh, Sunday! Held in the Rows of an American Church Today.



Oh, Sunday! Ready. Set. Gather with the saints wearing jeans, capris, leggings and such.  I saw saints with sparkling white teeth smiling at me and I heard the tickling sounds of laughter inside a big ole brick house called an American church today.  I felt the feelings of family and I knew I belonged.

Then, in long soft rows of loved ones, I listened to their sturdy voices rising, snugging me in tight with gathering glory, swaddled safe within sounds of songs swelling, and us gatherers grounding our hearts together in the sacred Sunday morning time. My voice rang out with the singing ones, the loving ones with the eyes full of HIM!  I held hands, hugged friends, kissed soft lady faces, gave high fives, and learned new things--  new things from old places, like an ancient “living” word in a big book with a big binding that binds us all together still.


We are always finding what seems new in the old.  Yes, I am, too. And we confide to a feeling of being yet “young inside” the weathered skin with new, soft wrinkles—young because in this place all remember to open wide as a child. I glance back now, in the night, in my soft bed on the little farm and see myself strong in the mix of it all-- even me, even now.   Yes, even me!  And are we all a little dazzled by the idea of belonging?  Sunday is coming again in pursuit of the prize!  -- a gathering church that knows how to hold one another and then how to hold the world.   

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Don't Look Back Too Long


Ever open an album, a box, a disc or a memory stick and find the photos of that mysterious thing called "times past"?   I opened the old oak cabinet this week with the 6 memory sticks in it.  I picked up the box on the piano full of the prints of moments from many yesterdays. When the stick is plugged into this laptop my memories are flung up onto this white screen, transporting me helplessly back to another time in my life.  It feels a bit like, "Hang on my heart!  Hear we go!"

We built this farm with little children around our feet.  Goats and chickens, Basset hounds and rabbits, ponies, donkeys, guinea foul and guinea pigs are memorialized along with the four tiny faces of my little ones.  I wanted something special for my special loves--those 4 little roosters ranking 1st in our hearts.  We gave the gift of growing them strong and kind around a family of fur and feather-bearing friends.  I wanted to share with them a part of who I am and what calls to the inside of my heart as well.  And often that is a large brown goose, an emblazoned red sunset,  or a jersey cow.

Over the years, which is really another way to say, "During the season that time shifts into warp speed",  I saw our 4 little oak trees spread out around this place, growing in body, mind and spirit until, at once, somewhere in the warp, they were looking at me from grown up eyes  and telling tales of their own dreams and plans.  The roosters still crow here and the goats call to me from the field when I arrive home, or walk out on the porch, but the sounds carry across a farm that is in a fevered flux. 


Everything is changing here.  My heart radiates thank yous as I walk on the grassy lawn that leads to all the delights of home. And if a farm could hear me, I would say to my Four Oaks, "Thank you for what you've done for me.  You've held me kind and tight when I came outside to grieve over a loss or a big problem.  You thrilled and awed 4 little ones, and gave them adventures with snakes and woods and fields to run in until they weren't little any more. With your tall trees you've delivered squirrels and beauty, shade and swings and climbing things.   In the gardens we've heard poetry and God.  We've plucked and eaten from vines and bright blue skies. You  wake me up with a fresh sound every morning, proving that what is new to me is also ancient and true. You helped to raise my four little oaks trees, for which you earned your dear name, Four Oaks Farm, and I am forever grateful to you, little farm.  I remember the day I prayed to have you and the way you sit sweet and fresh amid this big world, by the gravel road,  in a river valley.   Thank you that most of the tears I have ever cried on this place have come from a well of happiness." 


But, I won't look back too long today.  I must stop myself soon, for looking back can slow the heart for forward things and forward is the only place that hope grows green and lush on a farm like this.  And growing is what a farm is for, after all.

Forward ho.
 


Rhonda





Saturday, January 28, 2017

Let's Fly!

Out to the south of this soft, brown cabin and across the wet-weather creek, the breeze shuffles over my sleeping garden plot.  Coming inside, it wandered round the wires of the wobbly fence, picking up wood chips and old mulching hay as it passes by,  tossing a few bits 'round in it's happy, laughing wisps. The geese call out in the mid morning air, a quartet of sounds, making this place full of dimension and warmth, in frosty January.

The nation is in a spinning wind of disagreement and accusation since the inauguration and before. Friends turn against friends, fiery words are passed around, everyone seems to feel smarter and more knowing than the other. With the push of a button we stop listening to one another, stop seeing one another as we reach for some peace and agreement to sooth the concern in our hearts. Turmoil reaches long, dark arms to draw us all into this simmering, sickening cauldron of disagreement.

On this small plot of a farm, behind the high hill to the east and under this peaceful, blue January sky, the spinning could be felt just the same...if one moved towards the whipping wind, if one engages in a match of mental "strength" or clever, intellectual reasoning bent to show the decided "stupidity of the other side".  One could.  Anyone can. Somehow in the fuzzy morning grace that appears every day like magical morning dew, I was arrested with an easy invitation;  "Look away", the thought seemed to offer, "Turn a blind eye"... such an easy, breezy proposition. "Remember how it was to fly?"  Then I partook of the remembering, of lifting up like in the old days, like in a childhood dream.  I remembered that all I needed was to think it and up, up and away from the lower lands I could go.  And then I wondered when the invitation to fly was ever pulled back or away?  Maybe we only have forgotten it was there.

And since I was kindly invited, I thought I would go up today into the air and I thought I would let my thoughts rise up and fly into the higher place where the droplets of love and kind thoughts are formed, until so many drops are buoyantly, "bouncingly" waiting in the sky that their heavy little bodies, all at once, must fall free like rain onto those below who need it most.  We have all been below before, and have needed the rain, too. And who can be to blame?  Staying in the dry lower lands of grown up reasoning is hard work, wearying work, for sure.

So what fun for me that I'm inviting you, too, since I heard there was unlimited space  and no one who can fly is restricted from coming along!  I heard that we could soar like eagles, and not get tired! A Saturday for soaring.  What a pleasant surprise. Isaiah 40:31





Thursday, January 26, 2017

Confidence

This is my confidence;  I am Yours and You are mine.  This my place to live-- in the weight of the divine.♥

You train my heart in this place of weighty belonging.  You train my heart to be daughterly, a King's daughter, the King's girl.

You lend Your power and presence to show me what is mine. You award me with love and kindness.  You possess me in complete freedom, this perfect paradox.  Your liberty illumines my night and stands bright in my days.

You shower me in joyfulness.  You tend me as your special garden.  You breath close to my face so that I feel Your nearness, not just know it. 

You lead me out in peace and surety.  You give me Your name.  You call me Your own.  You call me Your own;  Daughter. 

Saturday, December 31, 2016

Comfort and Kingdoms

Of one kingdom we reach out for comfort and it enslaves us.....in the Kind Kingdom,"comfort" reaches out for us and frees us.

May freedom ring in this new year!

Love to all,

Rhonda