jubilee

Exhaustion was setting in.  We had toured so many homes that we stopped counting.  New in town, but with high hopes of settling there to raise a young family, we pressed on, determined to get this right.  Convinced there was a house the LORD had set aside just for us, we were prepared to search until we found it.

When yet another home seemed not quite right, we stood on the front porch as our realtor checked the listings one. more. time.  A look of surprise and hope spread across his face.  He turned to look at a brick house on a corner lot just across the street.  “See that house?  It is not even on the market yet, but they are scheduling a tour for agents tomorrow.  Maybe I can get us in for a sneak peek?”

The specs of the home were unknown to us, but the lot was lovely.  The timing and location seemed too convenient to pass up, so I agreed to take a look.  From the moment we set foot inside the house, I just knew.

The original wide plank floors in beautiful condition, the spacious living room, stunning fireplace, the breezy side porch, the staircase, and the soft, butter-yellow paint on the walls that appeared so dreamy in the late afternoon sun!  I quickly moved from room to room, mentally checking off the list of bedrooms, bathrooms, play and office areas, and even abundant storage in the garage, full basement – and the best of all – a sweet untapped space in a walk-up attic!

A vision for so many spaces in that house began flooding my mind.  My heart started to race.  The sun was sinking fast, but I held out hope that my husband could still make it around the corner from his new office to see this property in daylight.  Eager prayers for confirmation were lifted.  In the core of my being, I just knew… this was HOME!

By the next day, we were under contract!  In a matter of weeks, the initial wave of painting and cleaning was complete and we were settled in a home we would enjoy every single day we were blessed to live there!

We renovated rooms, installed a gorgeous white picket fence, and planted flowers in gardens that circled the entire yard.  That old house was new to us, warm and inviting, mysteriously familiar, and ripe for all our dreams to find a beautiful reality!

This new chapter in a new place felt like setting foot into an old familiar dream we hadn’t known to hope for!

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*   *   *

The journey toward home. The shaping and reshaping of a place until it feels like it was made for us. That place of comfort and belonging where our truest selves can emerge and grow. A place of peace and joy that inspires us to open the door wide, set extra places at the table and welcome others in to make themselves at home there too.

These endeavors capture beauty in so many forms … in the physical space of a sunlit room or a cozy chair or a bustling kitchen, in the natural space of a blooming garden or a patch of green, but also in the faces of the people who treasure and reflect the beauty that touches them.

This is what Christie Purifoy calls “placemaking,” a pattern given to us by our Creator when He first fashioned man, made a home for him, and placed him in a garden.  In her new book, “Placemaker,” Christie welcomes us to journey with her through the many places she has lived, the ways she and her family have shaped (and been shaped by) those places, the joys and sorrows along the way, and the gardens and trees that help tell her story.

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photo credit: @christiepurifoy

Christie has awakened in me a deeper interest in history!  For at its best, placemaking first seeks to know a place, its natural surroundings and its people, the backstory that frames the present.  When we treasure those details and weave them into the history we ourselves bring to a place, a beautiful vision for the future materializes.

Intentional placemaking will cause us to fall in love with each place we live.  I now understand why moving more times than I would care to count has carried with it a grieving process for me.  “Placemaker” has helped me to begin long overdue healing, appropriately acknowledging the loss associated with each place in my own history.

But this journey toward home also brings JOY.  When I truly understand that history builds and adds rather than subtracts, I see it as multiplied beauty rather than loss.  Each new place, each new experience can carry with it a sense of returning.  A rediscovering of old joys in new places, a bringing in of something treasured to shape a new place and make it home.  A realization that seeds have been sown all along the path and there is an enduring and a harvest of the work that has been done.

Just before Christie and her family discovered their home at Maplehurst, a brick farmhouse in southeastern Pennsylvania, a friend shared a dream she had about their new home… with its long tree-lined driveway… where she sensed the trees whispering a single word… “Jubilee.”

Simply stated, the Year of Jubilee for GOD’s people in the Old Testament was a time of celebration, restoration and return.  Debts were canceled.  Slaves were set free.  And property was returned to its original owner, as allotted by GOD when His people first entered the promised land.

I’ve read this book twice.  And both times I’ve stopped and stared at that word, “Jubilee” through brimming tears.

“Why?” I asked myself.  “Why does this strike a deep cord in me?”

Because I have spent years nursing an intensifying hunger to return home.  To the northern hills.  And yet the stronger pull on my heart has been in the opposite direction – to follow where the LORD has led and placed us – hundreds of miles away in tropical south Florida.

So how do I reconcile the truth of Jubilee?  And this beautiful thing called placemaking?  In a place I never imagined I’d find myself, a place I still struggle to call “home?”  Christie brings it all into focus in the final pages of her book…

We find our truest home in and with the One who created us, who first placed us in a garden, who agonized in a garden and stepped bravely forward to secure a forever Home for us with Him.

Until we make our final return to that place where we were first imagined, every bend in our path can be a step of return.  Home on earth is wherever He places us, welcomes us to make ourselves at home, draws us closer to His heart, allows our truest selves to emerge and grow, and inspires us to open the door wide to welcome others in to make themselves at home there too.

*   *   *

For over a decade, We have lived far away from that little brick house on the corner lot with its beautiful white picket fence surrounding a favorite saucer magnolia tree bursting with petal pink blossoms.  Stories and pictures of that place still bring a warm, enveloping smile to my heart!

In that place I embraced my new life as a mom.  It was within those walls that I surrendered my heart to the LORD, receiving His call to move south, wherever He would lead us.  Our story of His stronger pull to the home He had planned for us here began in that beautiful living room with wide-plank floors.

I have thought for a while that the first floor of our current home needs an update.  Maybe, just maybe, I need to return to a little bit of my own history, and allow favorite touches from the past to transform the present… shaping it until it feels like it was made for us!

Maybe, we can save our pennies to replace bland white tile floors with ceramic that looks more like wide planks of wood, and paint our walls soft, butter yellow, like the filtered afternoon sunlight spilling from the breezy side porch of that brick house in the northern hills.

There is a sweet and honored place for all of our story… past, present, and future!  A place that fills our days with comfort, beauty … and peace.

Return to the LORD your GOD, for He is gracious and compassionate,

abounding in loving kindness.   Joel 2:13

 So that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith, that you,

being rooted and grounded in love…  Ephesians 3:17

 

 peaceful place

#weareplacemakers  #jubilee  #return  #home  #ourtruestHome  #homeiswhereHeleadsus  #purposelyplaced  #wherepeacecangrow  #extraplacesatthetable  #pastmeetspresent  #beautythatstillsus

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invited to create

Our festive Christmas morning had drifted into a sunny, sleepy afternoon and I found myself alone in the living room, soaking in the gift of these two books.

One is packed with stunning artwork and rich devotional truth (with space to add my own ponderings!).   The other is stacked with crisp pages, a clean slate inviting all that the LORD will write on my heart and move my hand to pen.

I whispered a prayer that it would be a response of worship that is uniquely my own – His redeemed creature creating to touch the heart of the Creator!

I treasured those quiet moments, lost in the wonder of what might emerge from another year on this journey, in this growing hunger to know more of His heart!

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*    *    *

I started this year with this crisp, clean (and lushishly pretty lavender floral!!!) journal, wondering what the LORD might write on my heart and move my hand to create on its pages???

It took me longer than I thought to brave the pen to page, to christen that white expanse, so desperately wanting what appeared to live up to those Christmas Day dreams.

Thanks to a sweet but powerful nudge from an online writing workshop, the spine is now cracked open, pages scribbled on, and the beginnings of an outline for a new project taking shape.

I am reminding myself to invite Him into this work, ask Him what He thinks about it?  To trust Him to shape it as He desires … to grow the hunger in me (and anyone who reads it!) for more of HIM!

#giftsthatcultivate  #invitationtocreate  #touchHisheart  #wonder  #whatwillemerge  #createdtocreate  #Heiseveryreasontocelebrate  #adoreHIM  #crisppagesmeanttobechristened  #bebrave  #asHeleads  #trustingJESUS  #juststart  #newproject  #restinHIMwhileIwrite

special touches

The sewing machine hummed as I carefully guided the pretty floral fabric under the needle.  In much less time than I imagined, a handful of perky little pouches were constructed.  Was I crazy to expend the extra time and energy to create a pouch to go inside another pouch?  Maybe, but I so wanted these little gifts to match the table setting.

A few days later I puttered away the quiet evening hours, taking my time to arrange each place for our morning brunch the next day – a small gathering of some extra special ladies in my life, who also happen to be willing to indulge my love of a good tea party (coffee works too!).

It was sweet to remember my own Mom teaching us how to set a table, and in many not-so-intentional ways, instilling in us the beauty of special touches – those extra little items like cloth napkins and fresh flowers, a little favor to take home, a hand written card – all expressing without words “you mean so much to me and it is a joy to put in the effort to make you feel honored and spoiled here.”

And it struck me with a widening smile… my mom taught me to be a “placemaker!” – making a welcoming space for others, creating a time and place to honor friendship, to pause and rejoice in GOD’s goodness together!

For those who might also enjoy a good tea party, I say, “pull out the good china, set the table, boil the kettle (or brew a fresh pot of coffee), and welcome some dear ones to join you!” ~ it will make you smile!

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#agoodteaparty  #coffeeworkstoo  #weareplacemakers  #outoftheordinarypodcast  #maketheordinaryextraordinary  #taketimetogather  #lingeratthetable  #rejoiceinGODsgoodness  #specialtouches  #thanksMom

beauty that stills us

I am beyond thrilled to be part of the launch team for a beautiful new book, “Placemaker,” by Christie Purifoy, releasing March 12!

Language that captures my heart and gives me a fresh love of our home and delight in cultivating this space for His glory and our blessing… as well as for those we have the privilege of welcoming through our doors!

More to come as I devour these pages… but for now, this quote lifts my eyes to see and my heart to give praise to the GOD of this magnificent creation, the very first Placemaker, who inspires us to be placemakers in His footsteps…

“The hand that compels us to stop and stare at something as insignificant as a beautiful tree in flower might be the hand of GOD! … rarely do we know what is at stake when beauty surprises us into stillness and we pause to listen to creation’s song!”

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*   *   *

As I continue to read this treasure, I enjoyed these hymn lyrics in Choice Gleanings…

“Heaven above is softer blue, earth around is sweeter green!

Something lives in every hue Christless eyes have never seen;

birds with gladder songs o’erflow, flowers with deeper beauties shine,

since I know, as now I know, I am His, and He is mine.”

G. Robinson

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and immediately thought of Christie’s words (and garden pictures)…

“unlike forests, gardens grow on a human scale… they are a place of encounter with the GOD who draws near… in a garden, we find Christ, who is our peace.”

*   *   *

After savoring it until a bit embarrassed that I have allowed the release date for this precious book to draw so close, I have now completed my second read through its pages… and my computer stands ready to help me collect and refine my reflections into a review for this blog!

I immediately fell in love with this book and thought it would be the easiest review I will ever endeavor to write… BUT, now I hold the realization that there is SO much I love about this book that it will actually be quite a task to (quickly!) narrow down to my most favorite take-aways to share!

I am praying for Christie and her team in these final days before the release.  I also pray that the LORD will give me words to do it justice and to encourage others to receive the gift of this book!

It is published by Zondervan and available for pre-order TODAY!!!

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#weareplacemakers  #beautythatstillsus  #cultivateglory  #welcomeothersin   #ahometobeshared  #pausetonotice  #lookUP  #givepraisetotheCreator  #createbeautythatreflectsHis  #spacewherepeacecangrow  #spaceforgrace  #encountertheGODwhodrawsnear  #HeisourPEACE  #softerblue  #sweetergreen  #flowerswithbeautyshine  #gardensandtrees  #IamHIS  #honorHIM  #whenthepastmeetsthepresent  #returning

ponder anew

Leaning against a large boulder near the water’s edge, he pulled me in close.  I sunk into his full embrace.  The breeze tossed my hair across his face, but he didn’t move.  The gentle lapping of the surf was so soothing.  The little sandpipers flitting from rock to rock around us were fun to watch.  But for us it was precious stillness.  Peace.  REST.

I had a flashback to late afternoons on the bayside beach in Ocean City, NJ.  The sun sinking, the shadows stretching across the sand.  Mom and Dad happily extending their hours of fishing.  And me… sleepy from a full day of sun and sand and surf.  Those were the best times to curl up on a blanket and doze off in the breeze.  A kid-sized power nap!  Utter REST.

That moment with him by the rocks felt just like that.

It was his only chance to breathe, and REST, in the middle of a hard-fought season.  A wearying stretch of time, in every sense of the word, for both of us!  In just a few days, he would close the door of his office of seven years for the last time, having put in long hours and late nights in these final days to finish well, with integrity and honor.

A new chapter was just around the corner.  A new job opportunity.  A fresh start.  The long prayed-for chance to shift gears, to embrace a new challenge.

We exhaled that day on the beach, lingering in that embrace.  We breathed in peace and whispered back gratefulness!  A long-anticipated day was a threshold away and we were soaking in this pause before stepping boldly forward.

“I want to remember this day,” I said softly.  He held me a little tighter and nodded.

. . .

A study about King David this week drew my attention to his habit of praise.  In victory or in defeat, the words from David’s heart seemed to start and end in praise – to the LORD, the Almighty, the One who had always been with him, the One who had chosen him, the One who defended and provided and guided and orchestrated so many details for David.

Sing praises to GOD and to His Name!

His Name is the LORD – rejoice in His presence!

The GOD of Israel gives power and strength to His people.

Psalm 68:4, 35

. . .

I will sing of the tender mercies of the LORD forever!  …

for the LORD has said, “I will love him and be kind to him forever;

My covenant with him will never end… I will never stop loving him, nor let My promise to him fail.”

Psalm 89:1, 28, 33

As I finished the questions for our group discussion, I simply jotted down the title to an all-time favorite hymn: “Praise to the LORD, the Almighty!”

My mind drifted to our moment of quiet gratefulness at the beach.  And to a second flashback, much more recent than childhood fishing days.

Just days before our wedding, we visited the arboretum where our professional photography would take place.  We wandered the grounds, looking for favorite spots.  My mom, with camera in hand, was eager to snap a few pictures, capturing our excitement (and even a little silliness) while no one else was around.

One of my favorite pictures from that day was almost identical to our moment by the rocks at the beach.  He was leaning against a stone wall and pulled me in close.  In the chill of that October day in Pennsylvania, it was so cozy to lean in against him, surrounded by his warm, strong embrace.

I felt safe.  In a place of utter peace and REST.  Our long-anticipated wedding day was a threshold away and we were soaking in the pause before stepping boldly forward.

We breathed in happiness and whispered back gratefulness.

Our wedding day was quiet, deeply meaningful, yet bursting with JOY.

We exited the chapel as our guests sang “Praise to the LORD, the Almighty!”  Twenty years later, our theme is the same!  But so precious to realize how these words ring truer and deeper today than they did then:

Praise to the LORD, the Almighty, the King of creation!

O my soul, praise Him, for He is thy health and salvation!

All ye who hear, now to His temple draw near,

Praise Him in glad adoration.

Praise to the LORD who o’er all things so wondrously reigneth,

Shelters thee under His wings, yea, so gently sustaineth!

Hast thou not seen how thy desires e’er have been

Granted in what He ordaineth?

Praise to the LORD, who doth prosper thy work and defend thee,

Surely His goodness and mercy here daily attend thee.

Ponder anew what the Almighty can do,

If with His love He befriend thee.

Praise to the LORD, O let all that is in me adore Him!

All that has life and breath, come now with praises before Him.

Let the Amen sound from His people again,

Gladly for aye, we adore Him.

[Joachim Neander, 1650-1680, Tr. by Catherine Winkworth, 1829-1878]

. . .

As we turn the page into this new chapter, we REST in the LORD’s faithful and gracious hand in and through it all.  We praise Him!  We thank Him!  May all that is in us adore Him!

Twenty years later, what a gift to “ponder anew all the Almighty can do, when with His love He befriends us!”

We look forward again (and still) to all He has planned for us … together.

Leaning on our Rock, both of us surrounded by HIS embrace, there is no place of greater REST and peace. 

in His arms

He will say to Me, “You are my Father, my GOD, and the Rock of my salvation.”  Psalm 89:26

. . .

#HeisourRock  #Hisembrace  #RESTandPEACE  #letallthatisinmeadoreHIM  #ponderanew  #whattheAlmightycando  #withHisloveHebefriendsus  #catchingourbreath  #newchapter  #lookingforward  #HOPEandJOY  #together  #happyheartsmonth  #sweetFebruary  #liftourPRAISEtoGOD

 

purposely placed

Wow.  How perfect!  I smiled at the exactness of the Father’s plan in placing this new release from Revell Books in my hands.

After months of questions and wrestling homesickness and prayers for direction, it became abundantly clear that the answer I hoped for wasn’t coming.  Because the LORD had already given His direction… seven years ago!

It wasn’t time to move back “home.”

It was long past time for me to embrace where He had already placed us!  To make the conscious choice to call this place HOME.

So, there I stood at the mailbox, having ripped into the package right then and there.  Staring at this new title… “Love Where You Live: How to Live Sent in the Place You Call Home” by Shauna Pilgreen.

Ummm… yes!  Please help me!  If we really heard Him correctly seven years ago and this is the home He has called us to for the foreseeable future, I need any insight I can get that will warm my heart to this place.  [No offense intended, dear south FL, I just never really wanted to live this far from the northern hills.  Please understand!]

And I was curious to hear her thoughts about “living sent.”  This is a new concept for me, and I was eager to learn more!

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*  *  *

Well, here’s the long and short of it…

I dove into this book with selfish intentions – to help my own heart find a happier place!  And I’ve turned the last page realizing that the real takeaway is not about me at all.

It is about lifting my eyes to see everyone else who is also living in this place, and longing for them to know JESUS.  It is about finding any and every possible way to make genuine connections that help me share the love and truth of who GOD is and the good news He offers!

I am not stuck here.  I have been purposely placed here. 

Choose to stay, she implores.  Consciously decide to settle in, get to know my city, walk the streets next to others who live and work and play and worship here.  Get to know them.  Listen to their stories.  Welcome them into my own.

Remember He sees me here, she reminds.  Far from anything familiar or comfortable, JESUS sees me!  He sees each one around me too.  He wants to use me to help others know that they are seen and noticed and loved beyond belief!  [Maybe He has placed me far from “home” on purpose, so my deep longing for connection and “family” will urge me to reach out – and welcome others in!]

Look for JESUS here, she says.  See others through His eyes.  Extend His love and grace and kindness, no matter what.  There are people here who need JESUS – desperately.  And He chose to send me here.  How has He created and molded me in such a way to be able to reach those who need Him?  Do I trust Him enough to be brave – to just be the “me” He has been growing and trust it helps them get to know Him?

Trust the challenges, she urges.   They are often the very way He lifts our eyes to find Him and His purposes… and they also give us stories to share and experiences through which to connect with others.  Let others see my need of Him – and the ways He makes Himself real to me again and again as He meets those needs.

Start small, she advises, but start!  There is a LOT of work to do.  A LOT of needs.  Ask Him to lead me to one person who needs His love and His truth today.  Don’t underestimate the kindness of a smile, a helping hand, a reliable resource, an encouraging word, faithful support.

Live sent, she echoes again and again.  Purposely placed.  Embrace each new day, asking Him to show me what new path to explore, or which well-worn routine to retrace, trusting that each encounter is working toward a greater story.

*  *  *

We are all part of a greater story, graciously unfolding since the beginning of time.  A story of Creator GOD who loves us and longs to be reunited with us in a deepening, intensely personal relationship.  He sent His Son to be our Savior.  He sends His redeemed children to share His love and His truth so others can come to know and love Him too.

This morning, as I take a long walk along the same sidewalks I have covered many times over seven years, as I wander out later today to run errands at the same businesses and interact with the same sweet people I see each week, maybe I will see it all differently.

Maybe this time I will pause to ask Him, “why was I purposely placed exactly here, exactly now?  What have You given me to share with them?  What next chapter in their story might I have the joy of watching as it unfolds?”

I kinda can’t wait!

live sent 2

What a shift! … from heartsick and longing for another place to genuinely excited to be part of a greater story.

His story!

Right here!

*  *  *

If your heart is aching for a shift, a fresh sense of wonder about the place you have called home for decades or just days, you may find the help and hope you need from  “Love Where You Live: How to Live Sent in the Place You Call Home,” by Shauna Pilgreen, published by Revell Books.

*  *  *

#lovewhereyoulive  #choosetostay  #notstuck  #purposelyplaced  #Iamsendingyou  #LOVEasIhavelovedyou  #trustingJESUS  #othersneedJESUS  #lookforHimhere  #Heseesmehere  #Hehasapurposeformehere  #HOMEiswhereHeleadsme  #startsmall  #trustthechallenges  #livesent  #shaunapilgreen  #RevellReads  #bookreview

 

 

 

 

emerging… slowly

The dawning of a new day, a new year…

December was a slow shifting into a season of rejoicing in His coming, of savoring treasured moments and fresh glimpses of our Savior.  I was thankful for the pace He prompted, allowing me to enter January much less exhausted than other years.

Could it be that my “tucked away” year positioned my heart closer to His and further from anything “usual?”  Yes, please!  May my “usual” grow closer and closer to the heart of GOD and may “tucked away” be more than just a year or a season, but a sweet retreat … often.

I sense a turning of the page as we enter this new year.  My early morning walks remind me to LOOK UP.  The rising sun draws my heart, nudging it to long for His thoughts about the months ahead.

As early sun rays stretched further and further through the tree branches one morning, a new word echoed… E M E R G I N G.

Is He preparing me to step bravely from this “tucked away” place with Him?  What might that look like?  What new assignments might He have for me?  If I’m honest, I’ve gotten quite comfortable in my little bubble with Him.  Stepping out seems a bit daunting and uncertain.

He knows I have questions, so He says, “ask Me.”

“Call to Me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things that you do not know.”  Jeremiah 33:3

Turning the page can be both thrilling and unnerving.  Sadly, change can undo me – in a heartbeat!  And these verses in Daily Light flashed me back to the last change I didn’t weather well – our move to south FL seven years ago.  It was a very difficult transition – the swirl of emotions, the fog of uncertainty, the challenge of everything unfamiliar.  But in the midst of the struggle to find solid ground in our new home, these same Words steadied me:

“Come to Me, all who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest.  Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me…”  Matthew 11:28-29

I was in a gentle yoke with Him!  He offered to carry the lion-share of the weight.  But also, in that place, I would be close enough to hear His voice, watch His movements, learn His ways.  He would patiently wait for me, but we would only be able to move forward when I was brave enough to take the next step.  To trust Him enough to settle in and ask Him where to get to work – to see His plans start to unfold.

Seven years later, I can say that SO much work has been done!  Most of it has been in my own heart.  The hunger for His Word has grown, as necessary as breathing.  The longing to know His heart has deepened, and I ask Him to still me again and again so I can hear His voice – in true, 2-way dialogue.  It is precious!

But just as I begin to find surer footing next to His, our little world is “on the move” again.

This time we are not updating our mailing address.  But change is happening!  My husband is starting a new job, braving a new schedule.  My high-schoolers are spreading their wings and becoming more independent.  My roles are shifting and more than ever before, I am asking Him – “what are Your plans for this new chapter?  For them?  For me?”

“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”  Jeremiah 29:11

As each of them finds their own new way, could He have something in mind just for me?  I am still a wife and a mom.  Some things will stay the same – be faithful, be available, speak His truth, pray earnestly, serve in love.  But my days may begin to look very different.  I can’t begin to imagine it, really…

Knowing He is the One orchestrating all things brings great comfort and confidence.  But the unknown can still throw me.  Even as my heart skips a beat with eager anticipation, I can just as easily shrink back, second guess, cling to the known and familiar.

And so, He reminds me again… “come to Me, be yoked with Me… let Me teach you… I am gentle… My yoke is easy, the burden I give you is light… you will find rest for your soul.”

Stepping out of this “tucked away” place, He is still with me.  I choose His yoke – again – intentionally choosing nearness to Him.  The lessons will continue, so I will keep learning.  And He is so gentle.  The burdens He calls me to bear will be easy and light when He shows me how to manage them.  The new opportunities will be more exciting than anxious when all of Him infuses all of me to meet them.  Even stepping out, it will still be at His pace.  My soul will continue to find rest and stillness by His side.

*  *  *

slow emerging

All of this dawning on that stunning morning, a new day in a new year…

light breaking through the trees, sending a soft blush into the sky, the ducks silently gliding across the pond, and my favorite little turtles lifting their heads just above the surface of the water to welcome the sun…

and this word of encouragement from His heart to mine… “emerging can be slow, just like the slow shifting into My season last month, just like those little turtles… bravely stretching toward the light, emerging from their shells.  Take My hand, I never ask you to do this alone.  Just like a turtle’s shell, your Shelter will always go with you, always surround you… rest in My love for it is true and unchanging.  I will teach you and show you the way.”

“Show me the right path, O LORD, point out the road for me to follow.  Lead me by Your truth and teach me.  For You are the GOD of my salvation.  All day long I put my hope in You.”  Psalm 25:4-5

#newday  #newyear  #newword  #tuckedaway  #emerging  #chooseMe  #learnfromMe  #Mywayisgentle  #Iwillshowyoutheway  #trustingJESUS  #Hewillalwaysbewithme  #couragetostepout  #likeaturtle  #emergingcanbeslow