Friday, 28 April 2017

Fence or gate?


Sometimes there are pages that you just love, and this is one of them. Don't know what it is about it, but I'm immensely satisfied with it.

So, fence or gate?

When you come across something that is blocking the way, is it a fence, to keep you in or out?

Or is there a gate in it?

Is it a chance to stand in the place of liminality and pause before pastures new?

Or are you on the edge of something and pushing at the boundaries?


Looking forward to seeing all the wonderful creativity that's been going on this week at Paint Party Friday.





Wednesday, 26 April 2017

A softer heart


A few posts ago I was pondering on the seeds that get planted that we don't notice until the rain comes and the new plant sprouts. One of the things I have noticed in myself is a softening of heart. I am more likely, as I grow older, to err on the side of love than judgement. To see things more as grey than black and white.

And that's a good thing.



Monday, 24 April 2017

I can see clearly now...


Well, I've reached that time of life where my arms will soon be at the point of not being long enough for me to read. So I am now the proud owner of reading glasses. How nice it is to not have to work on the computer at arm's length :) Thankfully that is the only thing wrong with my eyes. They are otherwise in perfect shape.




Friday, 21 April 2017

Leap up


Shrug off conformity and leap into authenticity. Be who you are even if it messes up the neat categories that people want to slot you into.

When I stood back and looked at this page I saw that all the circles were lined up except for one. All there in a neat row. I don't usually do that. So what was that leaping circle trying to tell me?

I remember a time when my husband parked our car in the middle of a car park where there were no markings. There were no other cars in the place when we arrived. When we returned to the car, several other people had arrived, and all the cars were neatly lined up alongside ours. But they didn't have to be! There was plenty of space and no lines marking spaces.

How often do we line up and fulfil the expectations of other people instead of being who we were made to be? As a vicar's wife, it can be easy to let expectations weigh on you. I remember talking with a friend about one interview they went for. All the way through the interview she was asked things like, 'The last vicar's wife played guitar for Sunday School. Will you do that? She played golf every Wednesday with a group of us. Will you do that?' Instead of seeing her as a person bringing her own gifts to the role, they saw a role with a particular shape and wanted to force her into it.

You don't have to line up with everyone else. Leap up and fly!






Wednesday, 19 April 2017

What seeds?


You never know what seeds might have been planted until it rains.

We all have times where it feels like we are just going along in life, day following day, with nothing much happening. But then something does happen, and you find your reaction to it completely different to how it would have been had that thing happened a couple of years ago. Instead of collapsing in a pity party, you find that you are able to shrug something off. Resilience has been planted and now it's bearing fruit.

What has shown up in you when the rain came that surprised you?





Monday, 17 April 2017

Clean lines and unmixed colours


Life isn't all clean lines and unmixed colours. That's what makes it beautiful and precious and in need of love, grace, and mercy.

Colours are very much a question of personal perception. Is this turquoise more blue or green? Is that purple reddish or bluish? Does it really matter? Don't we just accept it as the colour it is?

As much as we might like things to be black or white, most of the time it's shades of grey. Instead of trying to classify each grey as more black or more white, let's make our first reaction to those grey areas the love, grace, and mercy of acceptance. That would make a jolly good start.





Wednesday, 12 April 2017

Inner peace


Carry your peace within. Peaceful surroundings mean nothing if you're in turmoil within. If you're peaceful within, your surroundings don't matter.

There are some people who seem to be calm and peaceful no matter what is going on around them. Yes, they may worry, but it isn't all-consuming. They carry an inner peace.

And there are other people who seem to get riled up at the slightest thing. There is no peace within them and they carry their anxiety into everything. You know who they are. No matter how serene the surroundings, how well things are going, they cannot settle and just enjoy, because they have no peace.

A peaceful heart can carry you through a lot.




Monday, 10 April 2017

Time in the desert


I really didn't set out to make a landscape with this page, but when I put the colours on, it just spoke to me of desert. Even the collage elements in the background looked like rocks.

In some ways I feel like I'm in a desert at the moment. Things are growing, but so so slowly. The ground is hard. The light is shining on me and exposing those things I'd rather not look at and there's very little shade to escape to.

Time in the desert feels hard and long, but it is also the place where there are few distractions and you come to the end of yourself.

And that's when you start to hear, to see, to learn.

Time in the desert always births something.





Friday, 7 April 2017

Clouds


Don't let the clouds obscure what's really there. Behind the clouds is the sky, the sun, at night the stars and the moon. Just because you cannot always see them doesn't mean they aren't there.

Sometimes we let our circumstances cloud how we feel. We forget what is real - that we are loved, that we are seen and heard - and let the cloud become all that we see.

We have to learn to discern what is eternal and what is fleeting, what is important and what will pass.





Wednesday, 5 April 2017

Be yourself


Don't let other people tell you how you should be - be yourself!

It is so easy to think that you 'ought' to be a certain way, think a certain thing, dress in a particular style. But who sets that 'ought'? Where is the pressure coming from?

You were made to be you.

I've been re-reading Present Over Perfect by Shauna Niequist. In one chapter she talks about how, in Job, the snow is told to fall and the rain to hammer down. It does what it is made to do and nothing more is asked of it. And it is the same with us. We are made a particular way and we need to be ourselves to live in the sweet spot.

Be who you were made to be.

Be authentic.

Be yourself, no matter what everyone else is doing. After all, you're not everyone else. You're you.