Rediscovered

Piano
It’s funny how pieces of life point to the greater whole, the core of the story. When life is swirling around you, through you, you don’t always see the central plot. You miss the forest for the trees. But somedays, you look at the trees and suddenly see a mighty forest.

Cello and piano. These two instruments have been the recent metaphor of my life, pointing to the greater story. Five years ago I took up cello, poured hours and energy and money into something I so desperately wanted to do, wanted to be. The cello voice captured in air a sound that mirrored my heart. Aching, haunting, longing, beauty. But when my fingers met the strings, the haunting wasn’t lovely- it was ugly. And frustrating. And painful. And disappointing. And too much like life.

For the next five years, I wrestled the desired result with reality and decided it just wasn’t worth it. While a gutting decision to make, the day I chose to sell my cello was the day I felt I could breathe again- and be me. Not an image of me I had concocted.

And then there is the piano.

Touching piano ivory feels like home to me. Even sharp notes and sour keys make me smile. I can’t explain it, but it just feels right. Six years of childhood lessons, two cross-country moves, decades later- it all comes back in seconds. There is no pressure to perfect- just joy and play. And an old friend rediscovered.

And so it is with God and me. He has always been the piano, but for years I made Him the cello. Something perfect, demanding, other worldly. So beautiful and ethereal- but which I could never reach. And in truth, God is all these things. But He never expected me to be them. He knows I am thoroughly flawed. That’s why He came to save me. It just took me twenty-five years to understand.

God is not my baggage. He is my piano: my joy, my delight, my childhood love restored. When I fumble and trip over keys, He just laughs and smiles and says, “No worries. We get to start over and play that part at the beginning again, the part we like so well.” What a rediscovery- this Love, this Friend. And the best bit is knowing that He will be my life’s companion to the very end.

April

Outside my window, the world is covered with night of the lulling-est kind.
A steady rain drips from the sky, pittering the sidewalks, pattering the rooftops.
I step outside to soak up the night while it soaks me up.

Smoke from the chimney next door tinges the air with the sweetest gift- the scent of fall- of burning wood on a cool, dark night. How odd in spring- while trees are laced with new green leaves. But what a kiss of beauty.

To stand in this night, my face lifted to the sky.
To be alive, to be a part of all this bittersweet beauty-
the passing of time, the comfort of seasons- what joy.

Pure unadulterated joy in spring.

Spring Tree

Light in a Window

Home

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In blue twilight you walk,
The cold seeping in.

Walking forever,
Each moment the sky darker.

Quickening your step,
Searching for sanctuary.
For solace.
For something.

Only hill after hill greet you.
Each one steeper.
Lonelier.
Colder than the last.

You climb.
You crawl.
You cave.

On the ground.
Feet too heavy to go on.
Too dark to see anyone.
Are your eyes open or closed?
You can’t tell.
Snow falls down,
Covers your face.
It’s over.

And then.
Then.

You see it- the golden glow:
Light in a window.

Light in your window.

Home.

The Best Day

Mountains
Reflection and I have been hanging out lately. After a glorious but whirlwind summer, I find myself with questions. Questions on eternity, my life’s purpose, time, and what makes a fruitful life. The exercise of writing out your fantasy best day was suggested, as a way to articulate desires and values and what’s most important. I gave it a go.

My best day is less flash and glam that I thought it’d be. When I really thought about my best day, I was surprised at how ordinary it is, how attainable it is, how often elements of it already show up in my life. Here’s a peek:

– Wake up rested but early, in quiet.
– Be alone and have amazing quiet time with God, enveloped in His love, secure in Him and His plans for me and for eternity.
– Stretch.
– Drink a yummy green smoothie while reading a book.
– Write outdoors overlooking a stunning mountain view, in quiet. Maybe Mark Isham music is playing in the background.
Then the rest of the family wakes up and we snuggle before eating a yummy breakfast together.
– Head out on an adventure together- Josh and I have deep conversations the whole drive. We see a castle, an ancient battle site, or glorious mountain pass. 

– We meet Jesus for lunch (in the flesh). 🙂 
– He comes with us for the rest of the afternoon, as we adventure some more and revel in this world’s wonder. 
– I find a quiet moment to sit under a tree, or overlook a mountain valley, or consider a singing sparrow. I pull out my leather journal and write a quick page on the glory of our world, the lessons God has hidden in it for us to find, how everything ties back to our Father. I dog-ear the page as a reminder to share it with the artists & silence and solitude groups I lead back home. And to chew over how it might fit in the chapter I am currently writing.
– Even the best day comes to an end. After a delicious meal, we head slowly back home, winding through the mountains. We get home, tuck our girls all cozy into bed, and Josh and I head out doors to gaze at the silent stars in wonder. The still night air enfolds us while we talk about Jesus some more, our day, life, adventure. (Jesus stayed at the restaurant to visit with some friends He hadn’t seen in a while. 🙂 )
– Sleep sweet

Looking over my notes, themes become very apparent. Quiet, rest, peace and health (spirit, soul, and body), Jesus, thinking/alone time, the people I love most, outdoors/nature/beauty, adventure/travel, and observing lessons God has hidden in this world and then sharing them with others (I now see that I need so much quiet and alone time because His voice can be still and it takes intention to listen!). This exercise is so helpful because it helps me to see what all the parts are that make my life whole. And it explains while I feel like I am running on empty or despairing when these elements aren’t making up my days.

Fascinating. 🙂

I’d love for you to write down your best day and share what you discover. I think you’ll find it a very helpful exercise!

Love, e

Swallow

Swallow

“For while we are in this tent, we groan and are burdened, because we do not wish to be unclothed but to be clothed instead with our heavenly dwelling, so that what is mortal may be swallowed up by life.” (New International Version, 2 Corinthians 5:4)

*     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *

I see You when I shut my eyes. Life most clear with eyes closed tight.

How often this world steals my gaze, steals my heart.
Like dominoes following, worries tumble down.
Burdens like boulders.
Crushing me.

When all I need is You.

The sorrow, the sadness, the haze-

of busy,
empty,
not enough

of ache,
fear,
all alone

When all I need is You.

You are my King.
You are my Hero.
You are the One who saves the day.
My very food and drink.

I’m starving for You, Jesus.

All I need is You.

Swallow me as I drink deep.