"I count myself one of the number of those who write as they learn and learn as they write." ~St. Augustine

Saturday, July 28, 2018

A Lil' Sentence Does a Whole Lot of Good

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It didn't feel inappropriate or untoward.

It did surprise me, though.  It caught me off guard.

An older man, slightly humped and bald with wisps of grey hair around his ears walked passed me... maybe we was nearing 80 years old?

When we passed on the sidewalk, I smiled at him.  His face immediately lit up---bright and beautiful--- he seemed to grow younger by 20 years.  As he looked up he immediately said, "Well, you are the prettiest thing I have seen today!"

I literally felt the shock of his words and quickly replied, "Thank you, you are very sweet!"  Then we went about our day...  Me moving forward, the gentleman walking the other way.

Our paths crossed for only a moment.

In the first moments after we passed I prayerfully wondered if his comment was inappropriate.  In our current world---which is over-sensual and over-sexualized; with such an emphasis placed on outward appearance---was this wrong for him to say such a thing to a stranger?   I wasn't sure.

But, a few steps further down the road and I could literally feel myself walking taller and with more confidence.  I felt younger, too.  A bit of the child in me seemed touched and maybe even dancing.  The strength and energy in my stride caught my attention.  How had one little sentence brought such a significant subconscious response from my heart, my body... my very being?

It is hard to estimate and count what this little, kind compliment did for my soul.

I kept prayerfully wondering... watching my thoughts with curiosity...  A few steps further down my path, I pondered if this was my ugly-sided vanity rearing it's head.   Could be.  But, this felt different.  This felt purer.  This felt sweet.  Who can know their own heart, truly?  (Jeremiah 17:9)  Only God knows.

As I prayed, though, and walked a few steps further... I had a simple thought:  Words are powerful.

This man crossed my path for one very short moment.  And, his words had power.  They impacted me before I could 'think'.  His words had taken affect before my conscious mind was even aware.  My response to his sentence was something to 'look back on' and wonder about.  His words had a distinctly positive and uplifting impact.   At least, it felt positive.

What might my words do today?  What might I say to my husband, my son or my daughter?  What might I say to my neighbor or the stranger at the store?  Can I use my mouth to bring about blessing!?  Can I lift someone's head and help them to walk just a little bit taller?

It didn't cost that man anything to compliment me.  In fact, I would venture, from the look on his face, that it befitted his soul to offer me that rose.  He moved onward a bit taller, too. 

Lord, use me to bolster and to bless!  Father, help my mouth... all I say...to be used to raise up and to lift.  Fill me with Your Spirit, Your love and Your thoughts about this beautiful world and the beauty that fills each face.  "For out of the same mouths come blessing and cursing, brothers... it should not be!" (James 3:10)

Thursday, July 5, 2018

Wanting to Write Faith

I am so naturally inclined to fix things...

Or.  Should I say I am naturally inclined to try to fix things? Or... even more accurately, I desperately want things to be fixed.  And, by things---I guess I should say people.

Yep.  People.  I want to fix people.  

I am so naturally inclined to want to try to fix people.  Myself, very much included.

A friend recently reminded me that people---any person--- "Is not a problem to be fixed".  People are not a problem.  People are a beautiful, created soul.  Each person I interact with is a unique soul to be loved, heard, seen, and encouraged.   NOT a problem to be fixed. 

Oh how I need to remember this...  

Why do I so want to fix the world, others, and very-especially myself?  

If, indeed, Jesus is the author of faith and the finisher/perfecter of faith (Hebrews 12:2).  Then, at no point in any person's journey, is it for me to try to fix and/ or correct their faith.  I can't create faith---I can't author it.  And, I certainly can't perfect faith.  The job of  the Almighty Author is to write faith and then bring each faith story to completion. 

I just get to read.  I get to love the story... or not.  I get to engage my heart, 'get really into' the book, and open up to what I see in the story being written.

People are as different as any two books!  

My job is to read the "stories" God is writing and bringing along my path...

I can interact with them, engage my heart in the story I am reading.  I can certainly cheer for the Hero of the story, applaud the good I see, and---like any good book--- profoundly long for the lovely outcome and conclusion the Author will bring about!   I can really, really want a happy ending.  

But, plain and simple: I am not the Author of Life.  I am not the Author of faith...mine or yours.  

Am I just talking to myself here?  

Because, I am so naturally inclined to fix things...  

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