Tag Archive | life

Life begins from the ground up

The past couple of weeks, I’ve been working with a friend on building a bunk bed from pine.  He has been a woodcutter a long time and it has been an amazing journey as we went out to select our trees.  I didn’t know that pines grow straighter in the gulleys. Why?  They’re reaching for the light and so there are less limbs because they must use all their energy to push toward the light.

I learned to use a draw knife to strip away the bark and then watched and waited for the sap to ooze out of the half frozen logs and ran my hands down them to seal them in.  We measured and cut and began to piece the bed together.  Jason was able to share a particular log with me from an Aspen he’d been eyeing for a while. It had mountain lion claw marks running up it and we used it for the upper fascia to cover the long board across.

As we worked, we talked, we laughed and sometimes….we cried.  It’s been two years since Jason’s father died and the saw mill was one he bought for his dad and him to build a house together with a special room for his dad.  Through family battles after his father’s death, his inheritance was stolen from him and there are a few things that remain important to him.  He learned much from his grandfather and father and his desire to create things the old way is one of those gifts.  The bed will take longer than expected as Jason finds inspiration as the bed goes up and the plan gets more customized.

I will treasure the adventures we have taken into the forest, searching for just the right trees, finding hidden surprises as a mama rabbit ran and Jason tried to teach me how to throw his jacket over her and she would freeze.  Alas, she ran too quickly, but I learned much that day.  The scars on the aspens from animals seeking food (supposedly an aspirin-like compound beneath the bark they like) drip with their life-giving blood, the few rose hips, ripe and red, left behind from the scavenging birds and wild animals, and the trees once laden with beautiful leaves of gold now standing white and tall and surrounded by the evergreen pines.  The gift of pine pitch, resin forced into the bottom of a tree when struck by lightning of fire, in an effort to save it’s life-giving source and the wonderful symbolism of the largest organism on the planet all interconnected by one male that clones itself and creates an interwoven web of life that stretches across wide sections of the earth.  The beauty of trees, all standing amongst one another, all reaching for light and all serving a purpose for the world around them as a source of food, medicine, shelter and warmth.

It reminds me that we are all connected to one male, one savior, who we attempt to be like.  We attempt to reach for more light and grow straighter, providing food for the hungry, healing for the sick, shelter for the refugee, and the warmth of a love that is unconditional and extends beyond prayer, embracing another who needs love as we are also embraced by His love like the trees reaching higher toward the light and yet always planted firmly in the ground.  A source of strength, power, simplicity and inspiration.

So tonite, I reflect on those strong trees in our own life that reached for the light, pulling themselves out of the gulleys of darkness and loneliness to serve a greater purpose.  So when my grandson lays down on his ‘big boy” bed one night, I pray he will sense that strength and friendship and love and light that built his bed; all working together to produce something greater in life.

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Dirty Hands

This year Colorado is unusually warm and without it’s blanket of snow.  I am closing down my solarium for the season but a few plants continue to peak out new buds despite the brevity of sun and cooler temperatures in the mountains.  Many containers are now empty, having their dirt emptied and retired to the shelf for next year.  I will never cease to be amazed at how a plant will literally twist itself toward whatever light it can find.

They all reach upward, seeking that source of powerful energy that will ensure a future for them.  I will miss the aroma of fresh earth as I place it around a sprig of green and watch it come forth.  Some are in pots now, bulbs holding an invisible power that will erupt amidst the snow of spring and promise a colorful rainbow of purples, yellows, and pinks with a veil of icy white powder sprinkled over the earth.

So as the time for planting has passed and my solarium seems spacious and yet empty, I will await the promise of new life with each passing day as the nights will grow shorter and the earth will begin to breathe slowly, deeply, until life awakens within her.

Just watching one of those Christmas movies on the Inspiration channel, the Christmas Tree, and the nun says to the man too busy to stop and smell the roses….”Just hug the tree!” He pauses, hugs it and feels something.  She explains it as, God.  And so as I walk amidst this mountainous beauty, I will stop to hug one of my trees and breathe in the essence of life.  Life connected and grounded and strong.  Winter may be approaching, but we can still stop and smell the roses, hug the trees, and take a walk in the snow and breathe in deeply as we feel the warmth of sunshine upon us!

Did We Live Well?

I’ve had a lot to grieve lately, but also much to celebrate.  After the death of my beloved, I have no regrets and no words unsaid, only dreams we hoped to live. We lived as I must continue to live the life I still have, not just because Rick would want it that way, but because God has given me a life to live, and Rick was part of that life– the most wonderful part of it! Meeting my Creator (no, I’m not going to preach) I must remember that the life I now have is because His Son chose to offer me life and the opportunity to know my Creator as He wanted me to know him.  He continues to reveal Himself to me in so many ways.  I will post on some of those ways soon.

In life, today, we have many ways of meeting people online based on what we have in common or what we don’t have in common, and sometimes when we are just surfing the web looking  for something interesting, but we end up meeting others enduring the same trials or celebrating the same significant events in life.  I have been privileged to meet many online in the last few weeks that have inspired, touched, and encouraged me to continue to be strong.  Yesterday, I talked with my best friend and realized just how hard I’ve been on myself the last 7 weeks since Rick’s death.  I wasn’t giving myself time to heal, to grieve, to celebrate the love he gave me.

So today, I give you a quote I found on one of those inspirational quote sites,

“It is foolish and wrong to mourn the men who died.Rather we should thank God that such men lived.
-George S. Patton, Jr.

I thank God every time I remember this beloved, special, loving man in my life.  This kind of person doesn’t come along often in life.  He knew his purpose, he fulfilled it joyfully and he left when it was completed.  Now, it is up to me to demonstrate how this beloved’s life made a difference in the world, if only for me. I am  left here to finish my own tasks with the same attitude and run the race set before me, knowing those who have run the race before me stand as witnesses, encouraging me that I can do it; I can make a difference because I was created to do so.

I will not grieve as those who have no hope but live knowing he will rise again, and I will join him once again.  Until then, I live as an example of a woman who was loved, cherished, and perfected by one who laid down his life daily because he loved me as did the One who laid down His life without being asked, without expecting recognition but hoping to give something enduring in a world that seems so ready to dispose of that which is not like itself. So today remember someone, even if they are departed, that made a difference in your life and let me hear from you.  Witness of their love, spirit, and heart to others and hold on to a part of them and thereby make a difference in someone’s life.

Life is precious and temporary here, but love is enduring and always abiding in the hearts of those who make it important and love abides because we love one another.

  And because we love,  our God, who is love…..

LIVES!

 

 

Find Me

lost-word-art

“Beloved,” she whispered, as the moon began its arch in the night sky. “Are you there?, Can you see me?” I still feel you here with me. I sprayed the pillow with your cologne and for a moment, I remembered and I got lost in the joy you created in me.

“Papa, find me and take me to the arms of one who loved me like no other”. “I miss him, I miss his soul, his words, his heart like the desert misses rain.” She muffles the cries so no one will hear.

This journey has been so long and so full of pain and loneliness. And yet, even as I say it, I know One took the journey long ago and still walks that lonely path today. We look as ordinary as He did and so they pass us by. No one has ears to hear the screaming inside, “Please, find me”. “Love me like He does.” I look day and night and see only fleeting glimpses of a love I can no longer embrace and it leaves not only my arms but my heart so very empty.

You knew, didn’t you? The pain of loneliness and that it was and is,..not good. So you made, mankind. And, you also, were robbed by an enemy you knew. Dreams, hopes, desires…shattered. You found a way to restore and resurrect love again but endured the agony of knowing that light would again be extinguished. How long those days must have seemed. How long the ones I walk thru also seem.

I know joy will return one morning, but grief is there every morning I do not see his face, feel his touch or hear his voice. Perhaps, his prayer is the same as mine…”find me”!

So I seek Your Face as I once did long ago and look for special gifts of love in your Word. I try to remember the joy I first felt when I met you and when you brought us together. I know there is an ember still desiring to burn in my spirit but it feels so dark. So as I curl up in this bed and pray for sleep to overtake me so that my mind can rest from its constant remembering, Receive my soul that I may break the barriers of time that hold me here. Let me see my beloved and feel his kiss, look into his eyes one more time, and then help me to run this race until it is finished.

And then, let me enter the arms of the one who proved to me that one can be a vessel of such beauty and love that it can fill the empty, dark, pain-filled places of my past and truly bring beauty from the ashes. Precious brother and beloved, come find your bride. I wait only for you and you alone.

I will live because of the life you gave me here. I will go where He calls and I will look for you everyday upon the mountain when the sun rises and when it sets and in my dreams, I will love you as you always loved me, wholeheartedly.

You taught me beloved the meaning of love by laying down your life and being so eager to fill me and express the words of love from our Father to me. You became the vessel that enabled me to hear all the love Yeshua desired to speak into me. I promised I would never leave you and so I shall fulfill that promise. And on the day you rise up first, come find me, beloved and call out my Name and I shall be one with you forever as we were promised. I will go our Father does, looking for the one lost sheep who is broken, afraid, and hurting and cradle them in His love and rejoice that He brought us together and if only once, one ordinary man loved one ordinary woman with an extraordinary love from above and it was and is and will be….VERY GOOD! xoxoxo

Who Am I?

I was just reading, The Better Man Project, writing called, You Open the Door and It’s You. It was a great perspective, but it left me wondering. What if you open the door and you don’t know who you are? The only time I can recall a similar feeling is the day of my divorce. The judge asked me if I wanted to take my maiden name back and I said yes, but underneath a part of me asked, “Who is that?” The girl I had once been was definitely not the one I was now. Pain had changed me and I hid a part of myself beneath the one people thought they saw. Humor and talkativeness was how I hid my nervousness and pain. Haven’t you ever done that? I’d had many humiliating moments in which I felt compelled to hide my embarrassment by making fun of myself. I found myself always on the outside with others who were too fragile, too afraid, too weak to push back or in. We were the misfits in society. Young in age and yet aged in spirit from the many trials we faced on a daily basis.

I am not unfamiliar with being on the outside. It seems I’m always looking in from the outside. I recently lost my best friend and soul mate and I am finding it challenging to remember who I am? I’ve always been a fighter, so I don’t go down easily and I have always been able to find my way back up, except this time.

I’ve tried reading excerpts from other blogs on those who’ve lost someone close to them and the almost endless grief and loss they feel and did find myself feeling guilty because my situation wasn’t as overwhelming as theirs. I wasn’t left with 3 children and widowed young and needing to work to meet bills.

There are so many things left unfinished. So many visions, dreams, revelations that are now scrambled like a jigsaw puzzle, and just as I get to the last corner, I already realize that a piece is missing.

Grief overwhelms me like the ground opened up under me and I’m flying downhill on a carpet of moving sand that flows like water to the ravine below. We were never married, but in spirit we were joined and the night I held him when he died is still so heavy on my heart. We had waited a lifetime to find one like ourselves. We so love our Father and raced toward any endeavor that might bring Him glory, but true love had always escaped us.

When you’re young, it’s easy to think you’re in love when someone enters your life and you’re no longer alone. Both of us came from divorced families. We were both 12 when the marriages of our parents ended and our mothers went to work, often for days without coming home. The unfortunate past of an absent parent wreaks havoc on particular children who are left to feel responsible for situations, they are unprepared for and left to handle alone. It leaves you with a fear that everyone you love will leave and unfortunately for us, everyone did leave at some time in our lives.

Some of us in the world are hidden beneath what appears to be a charismatic personality that we wear like a cloak of invisibility. We are seen as strong, but the real truth is that no one ever allows a ‘superman’ to be weak. We are dependable, steadfast, loving, kind, passionate, and with an inability to give up on anything or anyone. So later in life, when we meet someone so much like ourselves, we do what we’ve always done…we love, we are responsible, we persevere and we wait. My waiting ended in one way the day he died. I have hope what God began, He will also complete.

So tonight, my heart remains broken, confused and paralyzed in some part of it that made me who I am. The contagious energy I once possessed has become a bare flicker in the darkness I feel trapped in. I know my family struggles to watch me in such an empty place and most days I can keep going, but the quietness covers a moan that threatens to wail within me. How do I live now without that which gave me life? I will never find another like this beautiful one who made life so fun, so challenging and so, alive!.

Every morning is a reminder that I must force myself to rise up, do what is required of me and hope that maybe I can resurrect and salvage some of the best parts of myself that I gave to this one. So many memories at every turn, every aroma, every meal or piece of clothing reminds me.

I continue because of those who need me. My grand kids, my children, my mother. They need me to continue to be what I have been thus far…an anchor. Unfortunately, that same anchor is attempting to drown me in its wake. So I pray again tonight,”Help me to remember, Help me to forget, help me to know he expects better because he knew me better than any one else did.” But just as that wave lands on the shore of my soul, another voice enters in, “Let me go home, please. Remember me and take me soon.” I try to believe what others tell me when they say it’ll get easier, but you will never forget. Easier? Life is never easy.

I miss you, beloved. I long to hear your laughter, your encouragement, your zest for life and the expectation that it will be fulfilled. Where is my beloved? Bring my heart back to me for half of it is gone. Who will be for me? Who will hear my prayers? Papa, can you hear me? Papa, do you see me? I know that I must stand as we always stood. Pure hearts can seek a higher love.

The Challenge: Divine Intimacy

THE INTIMACY OF LOVE

 

LOVE… It seems that mankind’s unending pursuit is to find fragments of love. 

It is written about in the musings of star-crossed lovers, ill-fated for love that will burn its candle too quickly; of temporary one-night stands, or a vengeful broken-heart; songs are composed that define it as “Crazy-Love,” “First Love,” or “Endless Love,” and describe a wide spectrum of substitutions for love that encompass infatuation, passion, obsession, rejection, fascination and gratification.   It does seem that love’s definition is dependent on the experience of the one being asked to define it.  So we continue to publish books, articles and screenplays in attempts to describe it, educated men and women on TV or radio programs discuss it, we make movies trying to explain or exploit it, we distinguish special days of the year trying to force ourselves to share it…but we never truly experience the fullness of what love can be and should be between man and woman. 

Our unending pursuit should not be the rudiments of love but the fullness of love or intimacy.

If the truth be known the majority of women in this world are never truly fulfilled physically or spiritually.  In their ignorance and complacency, they have accepted the measure of mediocrity of love most men can offer them.  They have been convinced that being the object of lust is their role in the world.  In  the servitude of childbearing, cleaning and cooking, they accept the mundane existence of “taking care of their man.”  They have accepted a married life that is less romantic as years go by.  They have accepted lovemaking and sexual union that is measured in minutes instead of hours or days.  And with no one to encourage, edify or perfect them, they perpetuate through the raising of their children, both male and female, the same pathetic love relationship they have been made to accept by the cruel dominance and authority of cultural traditions.  Of course, some women would deny this is the truth for them, they would publicly proclaim that they know and experience the fullness of love from their men, but in the private moments of their consciousness, they know it is true, even for them.  Even more tragic are women who know it is true and yet feel unable to do anything about it in their relationships.

What about man?  If most men would be truthful, they would admit that they believe women are not their equal.  That woman is somehow or in some way inferior to man.  Of course, man has a great need for love but has been persuaded in his thinking that love is fulfilled primarily in the sexual union with woman. But intimate love can never be based on mutual physical gratification. Intimate love between man and woman is first and foremost a spiritual experience. Most men do not have a clue as to what fulfills or satisfies a woman because they have not themselves experienced the full measure and dimension of a true and pure love. Nor do they know how or where to obtain it. You can never give what you have never received. How many times in counseling have I heard women tell me that their men never talk to them in lovemaking or look into their eyes. Such men know little of intimacy.  Men think of love in particular moments of time when they purchase gifts or complete a checklist of chores meant to satisfy the requests of their women.  These men know little of love.  Intimacy requires not particular moments of time but every moment of time. Most men would say that is absurd, but it is essentially their selfish, self-centered attitude trying to justify preserving time for their hobbies, sports or interests which they have no desire to share with their women.  Many men would say they express their love in providing for the material needs of their women, but this is a mistake.  Material substance can never substitute forever for the intimate, romantic and spiritual needs of a woman.  On the other hand, there are men who would fulfill the need for intimate love within a woman, if they could find a woman who would receive it.

So is it hopeless?  Are men and women destined to never experience the fullness of intimate love throughout their lives?  Are we doomed to experience fragmented moments of love through our years together, but viewing only a mere shadow of what is available from our Creator? No.  There is a way.  The Creator has provided a way.  But it does require man and woman to both admit to their own inadequacies and then seek revelation to correct it.  It is possible to perfect love.  It is possible for both men and women to be completely fulfilled in their experience of love.  This book is written to help show the way to the fullness of love.  It is written to help restore Intimacy between man and woman.  Intimacy is what women yearn for, what men desperately need, and the purpose for which God created us all.