Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Little bliss list

I read on another blog recently ( - check her out!) this idea of a little bliss list each week.  So I started doing it, keeping a list on my iPod, because I almost always have that with me, and turning it into art on Sundays.  Here are some highlights from last week's list...

Recycling crayons for our art/science project.

I. Love. Buttons.

So many pretty colors.  Too bad I don't sew (yet).

I wonder how many places these suitcases have seen...

This spot of sun is one of my favorites in the whole apt.  Always warm

Add to that list:
  • spending an hour browsing in an antique shop just because
  • art inspiration
  • dancing
  • prepping for the kids art project at 9:30am one morning last week
  • reading
  • the sound of kid's laughing (or really anyone for that matter)
  • making pizzas at home with good friends
  • cloudless skies
  • beautiful and wise ladies you meet in life at random but who give you exactly what you need right then (and it wasn't something you went into the store to get)
  • middle schoolers who share their books with you - and attach little notes to each one

Sunday, March 4, 2012

A Company of Angels

Somehow I think I knew. Maybe not outright, but I thought about him more today than I have since we visited. Something simple set me off - the need for sunglasses.

Driving to church this morning, the sun was shining in my window just right. Squinting, I tried to drive without them - I don't like the way they change the color of the world. I want to see it the way it is, unchanged, unaltered, unshaded. But it didn't take long before I realized I needed help.

It reminded me of a conversation with him in February, talking about hospice, about pain. He said that when he was first admitted into the facility to help manage his pain, he was told to push the red button for medicine. Push the red button for no pain. But he'd wait. He'd wait as long as he could, letting the pain mount, before he pushed that button. Then one day it dawned on him - push the button, no pain! Something simple, something he'd already been told, but it just hadn't clicked right. A little pain, a lot of pain, it didn't matter. Push the button and the pain went away. He realized it wasn't about seeing how long you could deal with it, how long you could go before asking for help. It was about receiving help, about the quality of life you could have with no pain.

Then in church today, a song. An email forwarded from my mom updating his condition. It didn't sound good but it didn't sound immediate either. An email of love sent to him and his wife. A comment made with a group of middle schoolers. A mention of our February trip during a phone conversation. A recounting of the day's events to my roommate. A text from my mom, saying tonight or tomorrow most likely he would leave us.

I think I somehow already knew that very soon a great man would part from this world. UE, please know that Fred is thinking of you, loving you from where I am, missing you already. Go magnify the Lord. Do not be afraid. I love you.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Running after You

I know that there is a God shaped hole in me. In my life, in my soul, forever present until I fill it with the only One who can fill it. And it's funny, until Sam and I started doing whatever it is we're doing, I didn't know how to fill it. I didn't know what it meant to be pursued, to accept pursuit, although I knew my God had been pursuing me for sometime now (and continues to do so). But part of me still feels like something is missing. I am taking active steps, pursuing Him in return, and I suppose I shouldn't expect an overnight transformation. Nothing worth having happens overnight (except maybe a baby, haha). I still look to other things to make me feel like a whole person, to make me feel validated - my work, maybe a new degree, this boy I'm dating, see how well I balance all these things?

For the longest time I had stopped looking for someone to share my life with, partly because of disappointment and discontent with the "dating" scene, partly because I already have enough on my plate I couldn't possibly make time for something else. (Also, I recognize that saying I stopped looking "for the longest time" at age 25 really isn't all that long. But, in my defense, the last boy I seriously dated was 5 years ago - that's a long time, right?) Then Sam was seemingly dropped in my life. And while our relationship thus far has been, at times, very far from fairy tale, it has also shown me a lot about what it means to trust another person and God. Embarking in a long distance courtship means I have to take what he says at face value; I have to trust him and his word. And he has to do the same with me.

It works the same with God. I have to take him at His word and trust Him, not just in the areas that are comfortable for me, but in all areas. And it's hard. And it's a choice - every day - to deny the things the world tries tells me about who I should be and how life should be. And slowly, very slowly, I'm working on this long distance courtship with my Savior.