Sunday, July 14, 2013


This morning, in trying to widen my thoughts with Scripture, I pulled out a journal that I bought in 1998 by one of my favorite authors/thinkers, Ken Gire: Reflections on Your Life; Discerning God’s Voice in Your Everyday Life. I found this entry on 6/19/2002 where I discussed taking time to sit in wonder at the beauty of nature around me and the love of God. I scolded myself for not making time with God a priority on my schedule.
I am not a scheduled person naturally. I’m one of those free-flowers. My husband spoiled me by letting me raise the kids as a full-time stay-at-home mom. That continued even when they left the house. No alarm, no time clock to punch. I have appointments and responsibilities but basically, I make the schedule. That can be a dangerous thing when it comes to my quiet time with God. You’d think otherwise, but it’s not always so. When the day stretches out before you in an endless open canvas, it can easily be fritted away and before you know it, you’re climbing under the covers and turning off the lamp. Whether you punch a time clock of sorts or fill a to-do list of your own making, the day can fly away without a moment of spiritual fill-up.
At the end of my journaling, I was surprised to find an acronym that seemed pretty creative and helpful. My first thought was Is this original or did I copy it from somewhere? Knowing that I journaled this entry in the woods with only my Bible and journal, I concluded it must be a revelation placed in my pea-brain. At any rate, I thought it was good and maybe I should pass it along. Especially to those flying down a “scheduled highway.”

Part of my entry:

What to do: 
Take more time to apply the brake pedal on my life. 
Slowing down still isn’t enough.

S = still myself
T = take what God offers
O = observe and enjoy
P = pray and connect

“For God is not a God of disorder, but of peace.”   1 Corinthians 14:33

Friday, July 12, 2013

Sweet and Savoring

It’s summertime. The thermometer says 92°. On many days, the humidity is vying to win first place on the misery chart. Today, I opened the door to let the dog out and felt as if I were inhaling soup. Perhaps it’s a sign to work in my cool basement office.

I remember summer nights when I was young. Screened windows were open and fans whirred stirring hot air. (Do people even have screens on their windows today?) When I was a bit older, bedroom windows donned air-conditioners. They’d rattle and shiver and always drip, but they were a luxury we relished when August was in full swing. 

Occasionally, on sultry nights, when dogs barked at bike riders and the crickets were primed for their nightly concert, my parents would surprise us. 

“Climb in the car, kids. Let’s get an ice-cream.” 

Flip-flops (or thongs as we called them then) slapped the driveway as we ran for the back of the station wagon. We’d drive 10 miles to the nearest ice-cream parlor. No thirty-one flavors but perhaps eight. No fancy dipped waffle cones here, just ones labeled sugar or cupcake. We never heard of gelato or sorbet. There weren’t endless bins of toppings, but the teenager behind the counter could sure pile on the syrups and whipped cream and if you were lucky, two cherries. 

We would sit under glaring florescent lights on benches out front with the cold creamy dessert threatening to drip down our arms. Mom would rewrap our cones with endless napkins as we delicately licked the perimeter of the cone. There was an art to eating an ice-cream cone. The drips always determined the method. Some daring eaters would stick the whole top in their mouth and pull it out slowly making a curly cue on top. I tended to be the circle licker. Tilting my head and extending my tongue, I’d twirl the cone round and round smoothing the edges of the ice-cream. Regardless of the method, we savored the treat. I never remember seeing anyone biting and gulping down a cone in record time. What would be the point? Where would the enjoyment lie in that?

Here is my “connect-the-dot” moment. That moment where God provides a memory, an illustration and then connects it for me.
  • How often do I gulp down my time with him? Do I gobble his Word or do I savor it? Do I stop when something strikes me or do I quickly plow ahead feeling a need to finish? Do I feel a nudge that He wants me to explore, but ignore it?
  • Wouldn’t I do better to savor it like I did the cone? What if I take time to linger on a word or phrase that stops me? I could pray using the scripture even reciting it back to him. I could make it just for me. Just in time. It might become a message from God to me that follows me throughout my day. If I were to stop and savor, I might enjoy each moment feeling refreshed and “treated.”  To taste and see that the Lord is good. 
Maybe today I’ll indulge and order a double scoop.

Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him. 
Psalm 34:8