Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Day 322 Christmas Series - The Challenged

December 1, 2015
Day 322

Darkness surrounds the Christmas season. Lights are enhanced because of dark nights, dark rooms. The lightning of most of my holiday memories are dark. This is not bad or good, just stating the obvious. It is December, the month with the shortest day, the nights are dark. The silver christmas tree, in the corner, slowly circling with silver foil draped over the branches and highlighted with red and green christmas lights was a tree I liked and didn't like all at the same time. But Grandma Esther, she loved it all the time. It was clean, crisp, and in style and those three adjectives placed it on her favored list.

Esther was a small framed little woman as high as she was wide, stocky little lady with stocky little legs. She wore heels past the safety point of any elderly woman, beyond the obvious reasons to put them back in the closet. To be in style, that was top of her priority list. Every christmas you could depend on the never changing nature or character of the crisp, clean and in style christmas decorations. The elves, the hanging ball that moved and played a christmas tune, the nativity scene, the silver christmas tree, the glass candy dish and the hummels, all a part of the show. But not in excess - for that would not be classy.

I was not the child who could enjoy these objects completely without a fair share of contemplation. There was something melancholy about these decorations. The Christmas Red and Christmas Green were two colors that lured and irritated me all at the same time. Without a blazing fire in the background they simply lacked something. The little brain of this little girl never stopped. Only later in life did I discover my preferences, what I wanted to be surrounded by, and they were not red and green, at least for a while.

Esther and Boots had neighbors who lived in their former farm house. I will never forget one Christmas when they came for a "christmas" visit. It felt like my first horror show. We were all sitting in a circle ready for visitors. But No one warned me. No one had ever explained to me anything about special needs. NO ONE. The little girl wobbling into the room was obviously not right. Later in life she would be wheel bound but today she walked and headed right for me. She not only had problems with walking but she was mentally challenged as well.

She looked so different from other girls. She was scary with those thick eyebrows scanning from one side of her head to the other, drool hanging from her lips and her arms in a dinosaur fashion. She was making a slow bee line towards me and I was trapped, frozen. The pure fear that ran through my body was the beginning of fear at Grandma's house, nothing I had ever experienced in my five years.

Her arm reached out to the top of my head. WHAT WAS SHE DOING?!!!

My brain was racing. It was the curlers, she was going for my stupid curlers. My mom took great pride in my little crop of fine textured hair. She was either using Dippity-Do or plastic curlers to make my small amount of brunette hair do what she wanted it to do. Today, it was curlers. I HATE CURLERS! And the pull and small tug from each stupid circular pointy plastic hurt ten times more as this girl tugged on them. This felt like a slow motion movie, a very bad dream. It was haunting, and yet funny sad all at the same time.

I turned my head, and crawled into my father's arms, I couldn't look. The adults were chuckling, completely unaware of what I needed; just a warning and now a simple explanation of special needs. For all I knew I was hallucinating or someone had let in a monster. I simply did not know. I was embarrassed. But I was also mad, very mad at myself. For I knew she was human and I was being rude.  I would learn her name was Donna.

From that point on going to my grandparents became a fearful thing. I would have nightmares and my grandmother would hop in bed with me as I would call out to her in the middle of the night. This was no small feat, it left me with very little sleeping room.  That single moment, lasting all of five minutes, when she reached out for my curlers, was enough to make years of torment. I wrestled for many years with my fear of Donna.

But God in His mercy had me face this fear and as the years passed I too passed many moments with Donna and her single mother and brother. Donna's walking stopped, she was trapped in a wheelchair and her mother had a lifetime of diapers. Their Christmases were lonely and hard. I would come to know how many quiet, lonely moments, were spent in the their old drafty farmhouse, just the three of them. For many this season is a blur while watching others head fully into nostalgia. They long for beautiful nostalgia. But for them it all adds up to work, aloneness, and work.

Monday, November 30, 2015

Day 321 Introduction:Christmas Series

November 30, 2015
Day 321

The restaurant was dark, candles were on the tables. My memory is sketchy of the details but not the emotions. It was during the holidays and I was melancholy as I felt a sense of things to come. I was a prophetic little girl though I knew not then what it meant. I could identify the feelings but had no one to navigate me towards a spiritual understanding of the gifts God had placed in my life.

Black and white is how I see things. Though, over the years, I have learned to react in gray. Gray helps keep people around in life. The black and white gets too severe, too much. But gray, the combination of black and white, is kind.

In the restaurant, during the festive holiday season, it was a little boy who made me sad, very sad. His little face was surrounded by blond hair cut closely to his head with his little professor glasses. He, so full of life, adventure, curiosity, oh his dear little heart, made me sad. But I did not know why, Christmas was just around the corner. I should be happy, we had been window shopping, this was a "special" time. Upon reflexion, this was one of my early prophetic moments, seeing into the future and seeing sadness.

I began to look at the other people in the restaurant, how were they? What were they feeling? Why wasn't everyone smiling? Why was my heart sad? Maybe it was because I felt like I could actually hear their hearts. And they were loud.

Even then the world was not my home, I yearned for something else. I was amazed at how everyone was always trying to make light of everything. Why were we trying to make festive an event that should bring knees to the ground in worship. These thoughts were too big for a little girl, I was sometimes reminded of that.

Christmas is a season I have had to reckon with. We have had quite the relationship. I want to share with you my heart, my journey. I share it not for you to learn, there is no ulterior motive behind this. I share it because I want to. Because the polarized mixed emotions have begun to stir up inside of me. The lights, the trees in the window are like waves that either I can ride or be plummeted by into the ocean floor.

The universe maker has helped me ride waves such as these, high as the Empire State Building. These waves are always meant for surfing. He has shown me how to have fun, how to be festive despite and among the melancholy. He has helped this Ecclesiastes gal to let go and not be so serious.

But I see you. I see the pain. I hear your heart. You too are thrust about. You too have the choice to surf or crash. We both are uneasy with this time of the year. We know that to share our melancholy feelings with others doesn't seem fitting. To mourn, to share pain, well, it just feels so scroogish.  And we hate to admit it, but, Scrooge is kinda our favorite character. But we are not keen on being the Debbie Downers. But it kinda seems like we are cheating on someone by not being honest. So, as you know, we are kind of a mess.

So, I will be sharing my Christmas journey. Don't even bother nestling by an open fire or attempt to make hot chocolate. In fact, this might be the only post of my Christmas series you may want to read. I completely understand.

However, I know who will be reading these posts. You! You and I make light of NOTHING. We think. And we think a lot. And most times, we think far too much for anyone to want to stick around when they sense we are about to get "Deep" on them. Their eyes glaze and do a bit of a spin but stop before they think we've noticed. Ya gotta know, us pathetic thinkers, who can't even enjoy a holiday, we miss nothing. We saw your eyes roll. Ours were rolling with yours. We get as frustrated with ourselves as you with us.

These posts might be a walk on the melancholy side, but they will never lose sight of the Sanity Maintainer, the Festivity Planner, the Hope Maker, the Tree Provider, and the Gift Giver! He navigates me through everything. I have often caught Him giggling at me, out right belly laughing. He helps me throw off my seriousness. My head goes back and I let out a deep belly laugh also.

I am so eternally grateful to have been snagged, grabbed, hoisted up and over into the Light Kingdom- the Electric Factory, at age five!  It is my home. It is my rest. But it has always made times like this even more difficult for me to "just relax" and enjoy.

Read the December posts and ride the wave with me. You'll want Him as your surfing guide also. If you know someone else who is like us, share the posts. We love company.

Sunday, November 29, 2015

320 Weekend

November 29, 2015
Day 320

What a fabulous weekend.
I can not keep awake to reflect upon all the lovely times.
So, I shall slumber.
And shall slumber well.

Good night, dear ones

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Day 319 Jungle of Tangled Mess

November 28, 2015
Day 319

Trust in Him 

with all your heart 



An understanding of situations 

is less important 

than a complete trust in Him. 

There is illumination 

for our feet 

but we must continually 

look to Jesus 

for the next step. 

This is a minute by minute 


We must be in the Word 

asking Jesus for directions. 

We must desire 

the Light, 


allows in the Light.

The vines intertwine with their woody arms locking and linking in a gnarled mess, 

they darken the way.

How will one get through? 


Confession is our machete.

1John1, I John 2, Ps. 119:105, Prov.3:5, James 2:2-8, John 1

Friday, November 27, 2015

Day 317 Reflective Response to Pete Steeger's Song: If I Had a Hammer

November 28, 2015
Day 318

If I had a hammer,
I'd hammer in the morning
I'd hammer in the evening,
All over the land.

(never trust me with a hammer...and don't let me use the Bible as one)

I'd hammer out danger
I'd hammer out a warning
I'd hammer out love between my brothers and my sisters
All over this land

(at certain times this could look really ugly, really bad, really messy...never trust me with a hammer...nothing would be left)

If I had a bell
I'd ring it in the morning,
I'd ring it in the evening,
All over this land

(To hear my clanging bell would make you yearn to walk past a Salvation army bucket.) 

I'd ring out danger
I'd ring out a warning
I'd ring out love between my brothers and my sisters
All over this land

(You would beg for Chinese water torture....trust me. you. don't. want. me. to. have. a. bell.)

If I had a song
I'd sing it in the morning
I'd sing it in the evening,
All over this land

(Those listening, in unison, would say - SHUT UP...and it might be duct tape you need...yeah, it's duct tape)

I'd sing out danger
I'd sing out a warning
I'd sing out love between my brothers and my sisters
All over this land

(Screamo bands would seem like a walk in a Sunday School park. When I'm ticked, don't mess.)

Well I got a hammer,
And I got a bell,
And I got a song, to sing all over this land.

(RUN! Don't stick around for this!)

It's the hammer of justice,
It's the bell of freedom,
It's the song about Love between my brothers and my sisters
All over this land

(The tools are His. My prayer - that He directs me. That I only do what I see Him do. That I hammer where He wants me to hammer. That I ring the bell where He wants me to ring. And that I always sing a song of love. I am His vessel - not his weapon of destruction.)

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Day 316 Come Dine With Me

November 26, 2015
Day 316

Those whom I love, I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest and repent. Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me. Revelation 3:19

The meal maker, daily,  invites us to a thanksgiving meal. He stands at the door, waiting. The One who loves us fully, waits. He is ready to come in and eat with me and I with Him, typical trinity fashion; a beautiful weave, in and through and through and in, but He waits.

He waits for us to say, "I need you. I am empty. I can not do this. I am wrong. You are right. I need you. Will you forgive me."

On a dime.

His voice, "Here I am, for you!" His knock, "I forgive, you." His call, "Let's eat a thanksgiving meal, together."  

Our repentance expresses gratitude, thankfulness to our lover. His deep sacrificial, painful love was for the knock on the door. Only you can open.

He is the only One who takes time, to guide, rebuke and discipline us. He is our educator, leading and guiding us to bend and mold to His truth teachings, His ways. His ways always spell L - O - V - E.

So be earnest and repent. Open the door, thank Him by repenting and enjoy the thanksgiving meal. He is the only who has exactly what you need all the time at every moment. He is the only one who stands at the door and knocks. He will come in and eat with you.

Thank you 328-350

Thank you 328-350

328. Thank you for hospitals and the professionalism that puts you at ease during a scare.
329. Thank you for taking good care of Robyn on Sunday when she discovered she had Placenta previa.
330. Thank you for Tom Tom and his need and his dearness and his love for you despite the black cloud he is surrounded by.
331. Thank you for the Saunders' family and their willingness to gather together when things are difficult.
332. Thank you for the way the Saunders have shown me faithfulness through the storm.
333. Thank you for the opportunity of knowing RJ's father, Tom. He is so beautiful and wonderful.
334. Thank you for showing me more insights regarding the Trinity.
335. Thank you for bringing me into the Trinity.
336. Thank you for helping me to see your Holy Spirit on a new level.
337. Thank you for the rich time spent with Dani C. in Baltimore on Tuesday.
338. Thank you for Dani and her desire to grow in a deeper relationship with you.
339. Thank you for Emily S. and her keen insight and wisdom. She is a treasure.
340. Thank you for bringing Emily and Ryan S. together in a beautiful way.
341. Thank you for Ryan and his commitment to excellence.
342. Thank you for Emily's affinity to correct word usage.
343. Thank you for Emily's heart for the church despite the messiness.
344. Thank you for the time Dani and I spent with Emily and Ryan and the seeds that were sown.
345. Thank you for the ebb and flow in this family.
346. Thank you for my husband whom I enjoy.
347. Thank you for my family.
348. Thank you for bringing Terri L. through the surgery.
349. Thank you for her men in her life.
350. Thank you for navigating the health professionals to the cancer.