I am choosing to share this hilariously bad photograph of myself standing in an abandoned church during a downpour in Cong, Ireland. Why? Because I think a lot of us are feeling like this lately. Fed up, wet, miserable, sick of whatever it is we are going through at the time. And my lovely husband thankfully caught one of those moments on camera. 🙂
This is the same day, the same me, just about 10 minutes later.
Amazingly, the day had turned around. I was in a warm, dry cafe with the smell of fresh bread and soup wafting from the kitchen. We had just seen the John Wayne and Maureen O’Hara Quiet Man statue on our way into the cafe. And I was glad we were there, in Ireland, in the rain.
We sometimes just need to wait a few moments, or a few days, or a few months. Just give it time. This too shall pass.
Sometimes I feel just like this tree. Stoic and strong. But I begin to wonder if the tree could think, if he would sometimes feel blah, uninspired, boring in his sameness. But then just when you think the tree doesn’t change, it begins. The green leaves turn yellow, orange, red, brown. The wind moves the branches to and fro, changing the silhouette on the horizon. The tree is inspired, inspiring, moving, changing, new.
When I don’t feel like writing, it is usually because I feel blah, uninspired, the same old Lisa, the same old day. But God is always doing something new in me. Even if I am unaware sometimes, he is making me slowly into the image of His Son. My leaves are turning, the Spirit wind is blowing me in different directions.
Sometimes just doing something, even if I don’t feel like it, is a good thing. I feel better since I wrote this, and I’m not even sure why. I guess I’m just reminding myself that God is always at work, things are not as static as I feel they are, and that moving into action can keep me propelled in that direction.
“Be careful, or your hearts will be weighed down with dissipation, drunkenness and the anxieties of life, and that day will close on you unexpectedly like a trap. For it will come upon all those who live on the face of the whole earth. Be always on the watch, and pray that you may be able to escape all that is about to happen, and that you may be able to stand before the Son of Man.” – Jesus, Luke 21:34-36
I am praying, not as much as I should, please have mercy on me, Lord Jesus.
I am watching, not as much as I should, please have mercy on me Lord Jesus.
“Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” – Lamentations 3:23
Turning my eyes away from this world and onto God is hard, yet becoming increasingly easy. I don’t want to see the things that try their best to bring terror to my heart through the news reel. I want to focus on my family’s faces, feel their hugs, hear their voices. Enjoy quiet times together in the family room. I want to read Jesus’ words, because he always knows just what to say and how to say it. I want to focus on the things to come, the things of God, the things of heaven, the things that matter.
Double Top mountain in the Blue Ridge Mountains lies very close to our home. It stands there as a protective and reassuring figure of strength and resilience. The mountain looms large, beautiful, sometimes foreboding.
But yesterday, my daughter and I were driving in a neighboring county and saw the Blue Ridge mountains, stretching out in a long chain, ringing around our county and beyond. Absolutely beautiful, and altogether different.
There is beauty in the things we see close up and personal, things we touch and see and hear and interact with daily.
There is also beauty in things we step back from and try to see from a different and more remote perspective.
As I negotiate, try to rationalize, and grapple with the constant turbulent emotions of 2020, I realize that God used those mountains yesterday to remind me to step back. To try and see things, as best I can in this finite and limited body, with a more eternal perspective. This is not my permanent home. Someday very soon I believe, we will see Him as He is. We will be in a place where all is made new, made right. I am trying this morning to fix my eyes on Jesus, the best thing in this life that I can ever see.