Friday, August 26, 2011

Capturing the Moment

With a click of my camera, I capture the blessings of the simple.
Warm baths.


Sun casting shadows, and sunflowers.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Releasing to Receive

Welcoming the morning still dark, my son leans in and gives a head butt, an expression of love. He is off to band camp and I am off to preparing a birthday dinner. 
Heaping pile of chicken spaghetti with a side of garlic bread. Double decker vanilla cake patched together with layers of chocolate icing. My daughter decorates with banners, blowers, and poppers. Silliness, joy and laughter fill the room. Living in the spirit of contentment. Gifts are given but the real gift is each other. I look around the room studying each face freeze framing the beauty of the ever changing. I take pictures and they laugh at me, but I never want to forget true beauty and simple joy of time with each other. To live simply is to not live in expectation but to be joy-filled. It's the fullness of simple. 
It's easy to freely give thanks and count my joy gifts in moments of laughter. But as quickly as laughter comes and goes, so does the attitude of joy.
It's 6:30 in the morning. Son frustrated because he can't find his shoes, accidently breaks a three foot vase on the porch. I hear the crashing sound of pottery to tile. "This is not a good way to start the day.” I mutter under by breath. My hand tightens in clenched stress. Rejoice in the Lord always-- Philippians 4:4.  If I have no joy, it is because that is what I choose. Giving thanks is an action where the feeling of joy always begins. So if in my frustration I give thanks, I open the tight fisted hand to receive.
Son apologizes for breaking the vase.
"It's okay”, I say. "I never liked that vase anyway."

 Naming my joys continues.
51. Cake
52. Another birthday
53. Releasing clenched hands to receive.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Soul Gazer

What is the cure for a bemoaning attitude? A thankful eye. How I look at life determines how I live.
On the back porch with dogs at feet, my studly Golden Retriever spots a squirrel running along the fence. Jumping to his feet, he runs as fast as his legs will allow, barking his fiercest bark. The squirrel only slows long enough to give him the hope that he can catch it. It's a tease, dangling squirrel tail, twitching. Goldie paces with eye on the prize just out of reach, missing the real joy of the chase.  
I'm not so different than my goldie. Isn't my day the chase? Always having my eye on that which is just out of reach, missing the joy of the moment.
To see but never perceive, eyes dull, missing the gift in the day. Isaiah says healing begins when we see with our eyes. (Is. 6:10) Soul gazer, the inner eye. Moses saw Him who was invisible and he persevered. That's faith, seeing with the soul. I want to see with the eyes of my soul instead of the eyes of my flesh, to view life from a heavenly perspective instead of earthly perspective. Being a soul gazer is to see deeply.

My joy list continues.
37. Porch fan blowing hot August air.
38. Goldie acting youthful.
39. Rocker on porch.

Thursday, August 4, 2011


It is a rare occasion these days to have both my children in the backseat of the car.  Daughter asleep with music in ear, while Son plays a video game. My eyes, glance out the passenger window.  Rolling hills, runaway sunflowers. Vacations. No one enjoys them more than me.
Early morning in the hill country, I swing in the front yard and praise God. Bible open. Canyon Lake in front of me. Doves calling their mates. And I give thanks. In everything give thanks. Jesus did it often. The fishes and loaves. It makes what I have enough. Giving thanks stops time in the moment.
Watching the birds chase each other, I’m making time stand still. The morning quiet is stirred as a deer with a bite out of her ear comes close to me. I give thanks and the moment lingers. And God gives these moments and the more I see, time pauses. So I slow down, I want to taste life. Not someone else’s life but the life I have been given. In my breathing in and breathing out, praying thanksgiving. I pray for God to fill me with His desires in my heart and make them mine. Prayer releases me from the limits of time and into the unlimited time of eternity.
I snap the camera to take a picture of the blue-green water, to pause this moment. But the picture will never capture the beauty either of this time or this lake.
My joy list continues.
    26. Deer coming up to me as I sip my coffee.
    27.  Son skipping rocks on the water.