Hiding Our Humanity, or, How to Miss the Best Days of Our Lives

I am attending a family wedding soon. This is no ordinary wedding, in fact, it is a veritable gala. 😉 It is very easy to get caught up in the nerves of trying to fit in, trying to be whatever it is that I think is expected of me in order to be a presentable human at this event. I struggle with attempting to mold my personality, my core self into the mold that is presented to me.

What to wear? What to say or not say? Will my ankle hold out? All these questions stem from insecurity and from too much navel gazing. Too much thinking about myself.

We are all humans. We are all aging, thank goodness. Aging means we are still blessed enough to still be on this beautiful planet, and still able to praise our beautiful God and Savior Jesus Christ.

I am praying hard to not fall into my old traps of self-consciousness and people pleasing. I just want to be me, the me that blesses and encourages others, that is interested in their lives. I am praying that we will all enjoy each other’s differences and quirks and personalities. That we love all the ways that humans are created, that we stir each other on to more love for our God.

Most of all, I am praying for a lifetime of love and commitment and caring for the two lovebirds tying the knot. I am praying for all of us to surround them with love and excitement as they look forward to celebrating the best days of their lives. Every day. For as many years as God grants them on this earth, and in eternity to come.

Looking up and out, Lisa

The Mist of Mystery

Dalkey, Ireland in the mist

The mist of my knowledge swirls through the mind

The haze of what I do not know blankets the doorways of time

God alone knows all, why do I worry

He will lead me through the mist of His Mysteries

c 2022 Lisa Lyons

“And He made known to us the mystery of His will according to His good pleasure, which He purposed in Christ, to be put into effect when the times will have reached their fulfillment – to bring all things in heaven and on earth together under one head, even Christ.” – Ephesians 1:9-10


“He reveals mysteries from the darkness
And brings the deep darkness into light.” – Job 12:22

“It is He who reveals the profound and hidden things;
He knows what is in the darkness,
And the light dwells with Him.” – Daniel 2:22

I think a lot of anxiety stems from holding on tightly to the outcome of the future. From trying to control what will be. When I let go, really let go, and trust God for the outcome and the meaning of the mysteries, there is an amazing sense of surrender. Of peace.

There are things that I will never understand until I see Christ Jesus face to face, and I am glad of that. I am glad that my God is great and mighty and way past all my human comprehension. He is worthy, holy, amazing. He is God, and I am not.

Praise to Him, Lisa

Look Up, Look Out, Breathe Deep

Life is hitting us all hard these days. Everyone I know is going through some majorly stressful and difficult challenges. Call it escapism, call it avoidance, but I have found something that helps me like nothing else.

I look up. I focus on Christ, the author and perfector of my faith.

I look out. I see the trees, the sky, the animals, the things that He has made.

I breathe deeply, if I can. Sometimes the stress is too much, and I get a pitifully shallow breath, but I refocus on God’s things, and try again. Breathe, and breathe again.

Find the things you love. Clouds, birds, your pet, your best friend, your parents, a delicious cup of tea, a piece of homemade carrot cake. Relish it. Sit in the moment of enjoying it for as long as it takes.

Here is a photograph of a jet-lagged, pain-weary me arriving in Ireland a few years ago. It had been a hard journey, and my ankle was hurting. But my husband stopped the car by the ocean on the side of the road. I got out, and the unmistakable smell of Ireland overtook me. The clean strong wind cleansed all the gunk out. I could breathe. The look you see in those tired eyes is pure joy and relief. Look for your Ireland today, wherever it may be, whatever form it takes. God never leaves you, never forsakes you, ever.

Looking up, looking out, breathing deep.

Blessings, Lisa

Peace

Gleniff Horseshoe, County Sligo, Ireland, 2015.

“When everything seems to be against you, remember that the airplane takes off against the wind, not with it.” – Henry Ford

“A quiet conscience makes one strong.” – Anne Frank

“You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in You.” – Isaiah 26:3

“Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, yet My unfailing love for you will not be shaken nor My covenant of peace be removed,” says the Lord, who has compassion on you. – Isaiah 54:10

A Stone at a Time, or How Not to Plow a Field

My favorite castle in Ireland, Ballycarbery, was built one stone at a time. They did the work. Photo: Ed Lyons, 2009

Worries. Anxiety. Circular thoughts that go nowhere. When these things hit me, I head outside to the garden. Pick the beans, discard the bad leaves, plant fall spinach, kale and carrot seeds. Water. Just doing the work in God’s good earth quiets my mind every time.

As I dig my hands into the dirt, I am thinking of some of my favorite quotes about work.

“You’ll never plow a field by turning it over in your mind.” – Irish proverb

“Castles were built a stone at a time.” – Irish proverb

“Pick the potatoes yourself, Joseph; you ambitious boy.” – Far and Away, film 1992, directed by Ron Howard

So now, instead of snapping and freezing the green beans, which I was going to do, I am writing this. But that’s ok. Work is work, no matter what kind of work it is. It keeps the hands busy, the mind active on positive things.

Which reminds me of another good quote I heard a lot growing up: “Idle hands are the Devil’s playthings.”

The Enemy likes nothing better than for me to be idle, to be aimless, to worry, to fret. It breeds fear and anxiety. It is not good.

So now I will snap the beans. I am grateful. I am feeling productive. God will take care of the rest.

Love to you, Lisa