I Am So Very Sorry

ms georgia

That when it rained it poured
Perfect love casts out fear, I fear
My sin hurt you
Are loved
More than you know
How very much I want you to heal
The broken places in your life
Is filled with hurt
Breaks your heart and mine as well
Let us drown in grace and seek forgiveness
Is the gift that Christ offers me and you
Are forgiven
Am I
Love
Is  patient and kind, forgive
Me, I
Love you
Are perfectly and wonderfully made
By God
Knows I am sorry
I hurt your
Heart
Breaks
Mercy
Breaks
The chains
Bind an unforgiving heart.

Joining Laura Boggess at The Wellspring

Peace

blue lelandHoist your sail
Raise your white flag
Launch your boat, your small craft
Warning, the seas are rough
And sail away
Into a sea of deep
Blue deep
Breathe
In the air of healing grace
And drift away from the land of the raging wars

Drop anchor
Land on an island
Of He is Peace
Inhabited by the olive-branched dove
Sleep by the light of the waning moon
Wax not poetic
Let go of
Words laced with sarcasm,
Speak not biting bits of sharp edged words
And bury your hatchet deep in the sand
Pick up your brother’s hand
And walk to the edge of the salty
Shore, step into the
Sea of healing
Water, wash
Mercy
Over us
All
Lord have mercy
God reign mercy.

And sleep in heavenly peace
Dream long of a place where the banner over all
Flies high, Love
Lives strong
The greatest of these
Grabs hold of tongues and hearts

And wake in a world of
Living in His love
By the light of new dawn, new day
Pale, twinkling stars set high
Set in the heavens by Him
God and Father of all

And wake to a symphony blowing
Waving notes of peace
Gently, washing onto
The sands of time
It is
For
Us to live a life of peace
No banging, blaring, discourse or hate

But Mankind
Men and Women
Who know His love
To love and live
In

Peace
May it reign.
joy boat leland
++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Heading off for a brief writing sabbatical. Very brief.
Enjoy this one day. It is a gift.

In Which I Quote The Apostle Paul and Anne Lamott

March really did come in like a lion. We felt the wind blow through our family, shaking us up. Waking us up. And the wind burns and the wind deposits a chill in the bones of man.

spencers wreck

And the greatest of these is Love.

Trust steadily in God, hope unswervingly, love extravagantly. And the best of the three is love

1 Corinthians:13 – The Message

And sometimes prayers are best reduced to “Help,Thanks,Wow” as Anne Lamott suggests in her new book about prayer.
spencers wreck 2

The best of the three is love. Really.

I know this in a newer and newer way. I have known it. But there must be many definitions of “know” like the Greek has four definitions of love. This knowing takes on a richer covering of understanding. Like the tapestry has more colorful threads. And the weaving is more exquisite and intricate. This tapestry of knowing love.

March 1 knocked us around a bit. And then on March 4th it knocked us around a little more. Sweet daughter was driving when a blue hand crank smashed her windshield as she was motoring down the highway. At highway speeds. And minutes after or before, trauma blurs time, I fell down the stairs and we were really shaken up. The green and purple and blue running around my flesh was an outward sign.

But days after the highway shake up, we are still numb in our rejoicing. That the greatest of these is love. And that God protected our child.

But the hands and feet of Jesus were at work in our suffering. And the body of Christ was loving us through all of our pain. And we prayed a variation of “Help, Thanks, Wow” as Anne Lamott writes in her book on prayer because sometimes these are the true cries of the heart.

We look at the blue metal hand crank and we say “wow”. And we look at the impact on the windshield on the passengers side where there was no passenger that day. Wow, truly. Because we hear the mechanic when he says how close this was to going all the way through.

But we are even more amazed at the friendship that erupted on the scene of the accident. Our friends who came and loved our daughter. The father, mother, and child, a trio of angels ready to love our family in a difficult time. And we say “thanks”.

Our hearts are ready for the lamb part of March. The lion part is still growling and roaring a bit. But God…is growing our faith and showing us Love through His body. The body of Christ.

As I fell down the stairs and wept and shook, I was helped by two godly men. My husband and his accountability partner and best friend. And I wept at the trauma that appeared to be coming in rapid succession. The kind that leaves you shaking and asking and what’s next.

But what’s next is more Love. Because love wrapped around our pain. It bound our wounds and eased our suffering. March 1st left us shaking a bit. We had to pull together and move forward from unexpected change. And love together, The Patient One and I. We processed a big change in our lives under the mantra of we are moving forward.

But forward was paved by love to the left and love to the right. We were hemmed in by it.

Without the pain, without the trauma, without the shaking up in our lives we would have missed this action verb breaking through into our lives.

God allowed us the privilege of seeing Love cover us up. Friends blanketed us with words of encouragement, refocused our pain, and checked on us with words, written and spoken.

angel

I read the words of a blogger friend to The Patient One. And his response was “keep banging away.” We do feel like this, often, we writer/bloggers. That we are just banging it out.

But if I can bang out love, words of love, manifestations of love and God’s grace then bang away I will.

Though I wish there were a more poetic expression of writing than banging. But I bang like a loud cymbal or a drum if I am not writing and speaking of love.

So today I swim in the ocean of Paul’s beautiful words, again. And again. And every wedding and every occasion I can dive back into to this beautiful truth, I will.

When you have soaked in love and bathed in love and basked in love, you want to give it.

These days leading up to the cross, to the Lamb of God, I want to bang out love and point to the amazing love of Christ on the Cross.

Oh I am ready for the Lamb days of March. But I am grateful for what the roaring lion showed us too. And I want to pray “thanks” to a God who loves us so much it is sometimes unfathomable. Often incomprehensible.

And “thanks” to those precious friends who love us when we are hurting and scoop us up when we fall down. Broken, bruised, banged up but loved.

The best of the three is love. Truly.

Joining Jennifer today for #tellhisstory, Ann and Emily for Imperfect Prose

imperfectprose

On The Platform – A Reflective – Part Two

Its election day and there are storms brewing and God.

And God is unchanged.

We rolled down the east coast back in June on a mission trip.

And saw and lived New York, Brooklyn.

Down in her belly, for some hours. We are marked and changed.

A day can jump all over a soul who has no hope. Who wears fatigue like a worn out flannel shirt, with holes and missing buttons.

The day can drag you down as you stare and stand on a subway platform, weary worn out.

The eyes tell almost all you need to know. You know those hollow weary orbs.

I asked her if she’d play the game, designed to bring some joy. Her body spent, she sat. I sat. We sat. For minutes lives merged in the belly of a city. On the platform.

If you stop and take a minute and look ’em in the eyes, and tell them a little of your story and invite them to play, well things begin to happen.

We came to bring some joy to the subway with our scrabble game, all taped up on the subway tiles. Some Christ Hope. The ministry of presence presents itself selfless, as a gift.

But the giver is the receiver and the giver drowns in blessings, down in the bottom of a dirty city, white pants worn, standing out like neon in a dark dank place.

We entered in and invited in and stood for hours, rats ran by, and smiles beamed bright.

People told their stories, to us. To strangers.

We were the strangers in a city needing soft and gentle. Hungry for the words, taped up on the tiles.

There is a world of hurt and a hurting world. And people really want a minute of your time, to play, even if its scrabble taped up on the walls.

People don’t have strangers care, enough.

And we don’t play enough. The letters in the basket, taped up on the wall, the group effort, the spirit of community.

Taking the love of Christ, down, down, down, and to to to.

There was one woman, I am haunted by her story. And her face and her eyes and her hurt. You can stand on the platform and smile and care and you can be a receptacle of pain. I watched as others poured out love into a hurting soul.

I merged with my own past on that platform. I see myself now, haunted by the lonely subway rides and waits, alone. It was 1980 something and I lived in the City. There are enough lonely stares to fill a Milky Way, little twinkling eyes, dim and grim.

You can bring a salty boat load of joy to a sea of hurt all the way from Charleston, South Carolina and dump it right there.

On the platform.

And on a day when winds blow through the nation and a N’or Easter simmers off the coast, and New York is in a world of pain, you can spread your salty joy, your Christ-love, your Christ-hope right smack dab where you are.

You don’t need duct tape or painters tape and cut out letters and a very clever puzzle, though it is a beautiful tool. A joy magnet.

The salty tears, and salty Mercy work to salve a wound.

You can stand in line, you might today, to vote.

And you can stand in awe of what Jesus’ love does when it meets someone in their world of hurt.

Look ’em in the eyes and put on your listening ears. Your Mercy ears. Your sweet compassion, an eagerness to know, their story.

Wear it to the polls, and wear it on your sleeve, and wipe a tear with Hope.

You can find a hurting soul in the line at The Pig or Trader Joe’s or Walmart I am sure.

Brooklyn has her fair share now, and she did in June too.

There was a man who wore 500 tatooes for a shirt and he was mad. He was madder than mad. At this world and at this life and wore his pain like a badge. But Margaret smiled her smile and stayed in love, in the conversation.

Love stays. It doesn’t leave. Love presses in, in gentleness.

He swore he wouldn’t play the game. But a mind can change and love can soften. And he did.

And his story leaked out like an old Chevy leaking oil, right there on that platform.

Margaret wiped it up with a Mercy rag.

My insides wept and maybe my outsides too when we left Brooklyn.

They haunt me, those faces. Maybe I’ll find a hurting soul in line to vote and ask him if he wants to play. Or maybe I’ll just smile and look into his eyes.

It is sad we tell our kids to watch out for strangers. We do. We must.

Strangers are the ones who seem to hurt the most.

If you have any interest at all in Part One, it is here. Or you can read yesterday’s post, which will accomplish the same thing. Bless you for being here on this journey. Wishing you a boatload of grace today.

Linking with Heather.