Turning Corners

wpid-img_20140725_081535.jpgTurning Corners

Cancer came
Shadow-lurker
Stalker, thief
Took (euphemism for her thievery)
Hauled away some valuables
Uninsured, gone for good
Precious jewels, antiquities
Time laced in silver threads of
joy
Stories of the disease
Giving too
Hovering
Somewhere
Perhaps,
My eyes will see them
Once again

Around the corners of a rounded globe
Are wars,
beyond mere rumors
Rather, raw, real, raging
Robbing
My ears have heard of hidden
Gifts
Tucked  in the outskirts of the pain
Perhaps
My ears will behold the
Telling,
Once again

Dementia crept in
Beneath the shadows
Into the soul of those I love and loved
Stealing memories by the thousands
Robbing us of stories still not told

But I have held the gifts,
Frail, wrapped in parchment
In my ever-wrinkling hands

Gifts uncovered in the dark
Those revealed by light of day
I’ve held these too,
Too many to tell
Entitled
Redemptive love
Story without end, amen

Waiting captures me
Clothes me
Wraps me in robes of knowing
Assures me to

just

Turn the corner
Once,
Again
Touched by a ghost-like
garment passing by
a holy haunting
Threads of silky hope

Redemption clothes us
On the heels of waiting
Out of  moth-balls
I unwrap
Velvet, violet
Comfort from a garment
The ancient
Robe of holy peace

At last.

 

 

Joining Laura for Playdates at The Wellspring

 

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Bending Into The Blue

oak park tree my fave

bending into the blue

we’re dusted up a bit
after a storm blew through
roughed us up a bit too
the days cracked open like
a meteor fell from the
heavens
akin to the Russian one
the cracks wide
like caverns of crazy
gaping
and then death marched around
this place
in twos again, but it could be three soon
we’re dusted up a bit with
death and sadness

but we bend into the light
till the ground to bury roots
not heads
hold them high
toward the light, it pierces the dark
and melts the frozen sheets of sadness
the calm after the storm
can’t come soon enough
we look for redemption to sing loud soon

we are still dusted up a bit
like we were thrown off a horse at the rodeo
bruised the tender places
like the heart and soul
more than the backside
pain wakes up the sleeping
it rocks and jolts
realigns
cold water on the face wakes up the
ones dozing off into complacency
smacks the sleeping from their slumber

we were banged up a big
surprised by the sting
rocked by the moving currents
blizzard conditions prevailed awhile
bundle up hold on hunker down
when the artic blast comes your way
put the covering on, layers and layers of
the garment he gives
the full armour

but we bend into the blue
the color of strength
IBM chose it for a reason
the meek shall inherit the earth
and these are the days leading up to
more of it, redemption
the robin’s eggs and bluebirds will deliver spring
and songs will awaken the frozen earth
praise has a way of healing the broken
Lord we are ready, the table is set

we are bending into the blue
the color of heaven
we cried to them, the celestial places
loud and long, joined by a chorus of angels
we are certain we heard their harmony
we’re made strong when weak
because heaven heard and hears
our cries
he sees the sparrow and we are seen
bruised, busted, broken, blue in spirit

bend into the blue with me
the color of grace and mercy
there is melting of the pain
when the light comes down and warms our
frozen frigid frosty souls and hearts
out of the blue
the sting of death
has lost its sting
a bit

we are bending
bowing
praising
and singing
together

into the blue

++++++++++++++++++++++++++
joining emily and the imperfect prose community for some words on redemption

The Big Yellow Metaphor

{This post is part of an ongoing series reflecting on  my experiences on a wild and wonderful journey. A big colorful artful adventure, one  from New York to South Carolina as part of a team on The Art Bus Project roadtrip.}

Audrey. And others. They were my teachers.

I just went to summer school. And my classroom was a big yellow school bus.

The bus, my classroom screams loudly the lessons over the din of heavy black tires on I-95. Yells out over hot highway with her yellow zippered lines marking the lessons. Shouts Truth over the swoosh of passing eighteen wheelers in the fast lane and the screech of breaks on near missed turns. Through tolls and toils she lays out the lesson plan to her student held captive within the yellow walls.

My team members on The Art Bus Project, part of the teaching staff. I a student, a sponge soaking in the lessons. Some hard. All good. Life teaches well along the way. In the messy living.

The old, big, gas-guzzling, loud and sometimes hot classroom is a good teacher too.

When God calls us into ministry He is good to change us. And challenge us.And He is wise to teach those he taps . To instruct those whom he woos to come along for the ride. Moving us from Point A to Point B, never leaving us where we were found by Him. Transforming lives with Grace. Mercy moving us along. Increments of Truth and more of Him, measurements of movement.

And He is a gentle teacher. Loving His children and wisely never leaving His rag tag band, His co-laborers, His students of Grace unchanged. He lovingly shapes. He gingerly molds. We show up in a place carrying the now of what we know on our backs like a Patagonian hiker ready for a trek. He adds whats important, filling the pack with more of Him.  The weight of the important strengthens the sojourner’s back. Shoulders stronger, legs less wobbly, back braced for carrying the significant.

We show up ill-prepared. He refines the red clay of the soul on the spinning potter’s wheel.

And He uses His people in a beautiful way. There is no circumstance on the journey that He has not known. There are no combinations of facts or missing pieces which leave Him caught off guard or suprised.

So when I say yes and I show up He tilts the lense and sharpens the perspective. Divine fingers wipe the fog, remove the smudge on the window to the world. And over the shoulder on the looking back, He speaks. In the ear of the rewinding mind, He teachess.

And He takes one little, two little , three little travellers and more and binds them together over the bumps, through the wrong turns, past the monuments, through the dark tunnels, past the missed stops, and onward  on the road of learning.

The one about Him. And the one about us. And the one about the others along the way. The ones with the hurt and the pain. The ones with no one to listen and no one to care.

The weary woman on the way home, eyes blurred from hours in the office. The mom with a whispering heart, bruised by circumstances. The tender recovering soul who in her young life as a mother to two is now a widow and hurting. But aren’t we all.  And who doesn’t.

The eager child with the can of spray paint, eager to find a place to write and express. His name,his identity on the black asphalt, on the sides of the yellow walls. He teaches to listen and look for signs. They have a voice. They want to speak. They want to shout.

They all have a story to tell.

And we would do well to listen.

And we would be more like Him if we did.

{Counting gifts today with Ann over at A Holy Experience dot com. And linking up here at the Extraordinary Ordinary and here with Michelle and also with these two ladies here and here}

* the gift, possibly a first and a last, but hoping not, a mission trip with my daughter

*watching her serve, use her gifts and leave childish ways behind….way behind

*watching my daughter grow more and more into the woman God has purposed her to be

*meeting a freight container full of new friends this week, well I am prone to hyperbole

*seeing new places, exploring new corners, falling in love with the art of discovery all over again.

*regaining my sense of adventure and inquiry

* Asking and accepting the privilege to pray for two women, God grant me faithfulness to pray faithfully and diligently for their circumstances

*Eight new puppies in my world

*Watching my son care for the furry babies and seeing how nurturing He truly is

*getting  a text from my son at camp that he is homesick.  An unexplainable gift.

*counting down the days until we trek up to our beloved mountain home, where memory lives, and story waits to tell us more of the past, the present, and lend hope to the future

* new inspiration from new twitter folks, a welcome surprise. Reading tweet after tweet of words pointing toward the Father


Two Bloggers, Two Salads, and A Two Hour Lunch (This is Grace)

This is Grace.

I know a woman who walks out grace, with grace.  Shelly Miller of Redemption’s Beauty a beautiful blog which I follow.

And you will read more of her beautiful story there.

But this is a story of her grace shown toward me, a new blogger.

We sit in a booth and we swirl words around.  And  thoughts go off into places of shared passion.  Sentences spiral around salad about being women and mothers and bloggers.

She laughs a contagious laugh.  It springs up from way down and lands in the between  us.  Warm covering the time like down comforter, snugging in for a two hour stay. She and her story delight. How she came to write in a most unexpected way.  Her story of hearing story because she invites story to come out and play and feel free  She invites and the sharing begins.

Her eyes twinkle with joy as we sip from our straws like girls at the pharmacy counter after school all cherry coke and faux leather swirly seat. And I soak in the wonder that is her life’s story of teaching herself about life. Of digging deep into a thing and come up with the knowing.

We laugh about carving out time and finding balance in our lives.  And she answers some questions and leads me to places she knows I want to go, with words about words.

She is a picture for this blogger/woman/mother/wife of beautiful redemption and of taking a daily step, in brave faith. With faith so bold and strong. Of perservering much and living abundantly. I can tell you many of Shelly’s beautiful stories of redemption.  They are beautiful but they are hers. And she tells them with a striking loveliness and tenderness each time she writes.

We lose track of time a bit and startle when we see the hour.  The time that was spent.  Grace is like this.  It invests in others.  It grants patience and gives out. It explains simple things to beginners who stumble on their way.  It answers promptly and plainly and calmly.  It doesn’t judge the knowledge gaps or hold on greedy to self.  It shares what it knows and embraces a fresh start, a new beginning. This is Redemption’s Beauty.

Grace takes us to a moment that is simple and sweet and covered in community.

Givers give selflessly and abundantly.

Givers of time, of grace, of encouragement.

They place self on the shelf extending a hand out and down and to those who need a word.  Or two.

And you know we discussed grammar and typo’s and sentence structure and books.  Oh yes, the book “The Element of Style” was in the mix. As was “Writing Down The Bones.”

But this two hour lunch was a thank you with a giving woman who has much to give.

And she has much to say about redemption.

Because I sat with Grace and looked Grace in her glistening green eyes, I know even more about redemption today.

And blessed am I to share with you a story of embracing, encouraging and extending the gifts we have and the gifts we’ve been given.

And to pass on the encouragement to you to use your gifts to bless others in family, in friendship and in community.

Thank you Shelly for sharing yours and blessing others.