Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Missing the blessings

Recently I observed someone miss an opportunity to bless... It was one of those mundane things we do in life, the person was attending to taking care of those in their immediate sphere, their vision narrowed by the strain of living in a broken world... And they passed right over one who was probably blended into the background, and they missed a blessing! They missed seeing the joy of being noticed, they missed seeing the unconditional love waiting to be spent, they missed a healing moment!
Don't we all do that? Don't we all have moments, or seasons of missed opportunities? I know I do! Especially when I am so distracted by my own narrow vision, my own pain, and I am trying to just survive.
Last week I was immersed in family time... 27 other people and we all wanted to connect... It's not really practical you know? Oh we had slivers of time, but it's never enough! I learned a lot from the children, who I loved to observe!
I watched a child blossom, she had felt lonely in the midst of cousins and siblings. It was the right season however for another her age to 'pal' up... And they became a unit! some children thrived on time alone, some just needed to be part of the crowd. Each family had their 'pecking order' and it was amusing to watch it play out as these four family units came together. Most always there was a fair sense of play, some give and take.
Occasionally one could see the younger in one family try to assert dominance over smaller or younger children in the extended family unit.. But this too was short lived and easily corrected. There was some really God ordained moments...like when a younger cousin taught some older cousins new tricks on the trapeze bars! The sense of importance of being recognized as having something worthwhile to share! The opportunity to assist, encourage and bless! Watching children take risks to do something they have never done.. Like slide down the pole to the lower level of the pirate ship, as their cousins encouraged their participation!
One morning as I sought a place to quietly have my cup of tea, I had a shadow... One of the younger grandchildren just wanted to be with me... Not to talk, not to make me notice them, just wanted to be in my presence... So whether I was at the breakfast bar, the table or the sitting room , I was not alone...a huge smile always greeted me! And oh how it BLESSED ME, How like that we should be with God? Just longing to be in His presence!!? Not asking for recognition, not looking for a blessing, just living under the shadow of Him!?
Over the past few months, I have seen watched grandchildren extend love to my generation of relatives they had never met or seldom seen... And I have watched the faces of us who have lived,loved and who are properly secure in who we are at our age...I have watched our faces melt with tenderness, and dropped masks as we are embraced by little arms who welcome us into their world... We are unconditionally loved..we didn't earn it... And just by being who we are, right now, right here...we are loved and accepted!

Matt 18:3 and he said unto them 'I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you shall not enter the kingdom of heaven'

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Uniquely and wonderfully made

For the past few years we have spent our winters visiting one of our children who lived in the DFW area. Though the weather was not always balmy we really enjoyed spending time with them, without worrying about the freezing sub zero weather. That little family has since moved to colder parts of NY state, so this year we chose to spend a couple of months in Florida, renting a house with old friends.

The house is in a residential area, mostly single family homes, away from those big condos and hotels, and a quarter of a mile from the beach.

So daily (or almost daily) I walk along the sandy coastline, and inevitably see many of those things one would expect to see along the Atlantic coast.

I am amazed that daily walks along the same shore can have such different sights. The birds are always there- certainly the sea gulls.

.. But such different kinds, some they typical sea gull gray and white... Others with almost black and white polka dots along their back and tail feathers and some really new ones to us.
Black skimmers (the one on the left)

Pelicans waiting for their free meals

And even an egret

All these birds, so similar but none exactly the same, and I am awed ..what a wonderful God we have that makes each one a unique creature.
We have a lot of grandchildren, and since my friend wanted to collect shells, I too decided to start collecting some for mine. If I thought looking at the birds reminded me how God made each a unique creature, I was (and am) overwhelmed by looking at the shells...

Each one so so different from its neighbor... White ones, brown ones, blue one, black ones,

some with burgundy, others almost yellow, tan ones, ivory ones, grey ones, some two toned, three toned ( I guess God made the first ombré!) some with the lines of the curves going from hinge to end, and some with the lines following the curves of the shell,

little ones, big ones... None perfectly shaped, but each of them perfect unto themselves. Unless a shell was attached to its other side it is almost impossible to find the one that originally was made for that other side. There was a few shells that had collected their own collection of shells over the years.

Shells barely out of the nest resting on a star fish that was in the process of growing a new leg/arm.

And one shell that obviously had some breach over time and God had made it able to grow repetitiously on top of itself to cover that breach, but because of sand, those layers looked like shells on top of each other...

All of this reminds me how much God loves us to make us so unique...special...no other can take our place...others might try but they will never be who WE are.