Wednesday, February 24, 2010

It was for freedom that we are set free... no longer subject to a yoke of slavery.




I don't even have to label this picture for most of you to know what this is.

The picture is ingrained in our psyche.

The solace after the very presence of Evil has passed by.

I was there- day after mind bending day. Holding my two year old with a white knuckle thankful grip.













I am partial to this picture... it includes my baby brother and other kids who survived Columbine.
















This was how most of the world saw the events unfold.







This is how my brother saw them.









Fast forward to yesterday.







(Deer Creek Middle School... Jefferson County Colorado.)




The same neighborhood ten years later: these kids are running for their lives.

From him.



I am not here to pound my fists or demand why.
I know why.
I am not going to blame jocks , or rock bands or even really vile video games...certainly not the teachers and law enforcement who give their days away serving others.

This grown man , as well as Dylan and Eric all have a very powerful attribute...free will.

We have one too. We can ban guns and games and jocks and music but we can not stop the fact that we all have the power to choose.



Blaming and questing for answers or solutions will not yield fruit.
We did that after Columbine and yet 3 miles down the road in probably the most highly aware and trained neighborhood and community in the world it happened, again.
Thankfully not to the same degree... With much thanks to him-

Because of his free will he chose to protect life and take no thought for his safety. He just chose to do the right thing.






But I can tell you from first hand experience, the damage to the families and students here was equally horrific and life altering.







( parents of middle school students at Deer Creek.)


The horrible reality that evil can hurt, injure, terrorize or yes -even kill you- or worse your child...exists.



Now what?


Back to this.

The children who were violated, assaulted, threatened- who watched friends and a beloved teacher die are not pointing at others or clinching their fists in agony... they are innocently outstretching their little hands to the One who knows why.
The One who gave them the choice to demand justice- or give thanks in spite of circumstances.

My prayer for the children and parents of Deer Creek Middle School is that they will rush to remember what made the world take notice... 10 years ago. Grace that was palpable.


This is the real lesson from Columbine.
Innocence is a quality decision. We are not the sum total of what happens to us.

We have the freedom to magnify all that is good, lovely and pure at all times.
I believe these kids knew that praise was the most powerful weapon they had against the evil that had tried to destroy them.

I know ( trust me) they had struggles and pain since then. I also believe that this reflexive response is the truest picture of child like trust and the most healing choice we can make.
The kids knew that they were free.

And ultimately so are we.





My heart and prayers to- first the injured, Reagen and Matt. Then to the parents, friends, school officials, extended families, and community at large.

I offer a special peace to Mr. Eastwoods family, I am sorry.

Thank you to the brave individuals who acted so fast ... and Dr. Benke...you are a hero whether he got the second shot off or not. Thank you.


Sunday, February 21, 2010

rest...





I have been taking it easy.

Really.


I am realizing that I don't really ever rest.

Do you do that?


I am trying to just .. re-collect -refresh- regroup.


Today at least... i will enjoy my time home.
Crafting and painting.


How about you... can you stop and rest?

Happy Sunday!

Friday, February 19, 2010

back to identity pt. 1



I will try to be succinct... so know that I know- there is a lot to be said about this but I am intentional in the brevity because my purpose is to provoke thought and raise my own awareness more than it is to be exhaustive on any given subject.
One thought I am having about my true identity is to be clear about what it is NOT.



I know this intellectually but I am wanting to be sure that under the surface I am solid in this truth.



That being...



I am not the sum total of my experiences.

Meaning - what has or has not happened to me.



I am not the sum total of my accomplishments. They are isolated moments in time, both victories and failures. ( Thank God.)



I am not the sum total of my intellectual understanding - my emotional state - or my mental well being. This can change with my waste line... or if my shoes are too tight, my blood sugar level and even changing weather patterns.



I am not what any given group or individual defines me as...for they are only seeing through dimly lit glass...



I am aware when I see others wearing a mask defined by any of these variables... or a good blend of them.




A mask is meant to shield -or- project an image that is not authentic or based on reality. It is based on a desired perception. When I observe this on someone I am reminded tocheck myself...am I being "naked and unashamed?" or am I "working at it?"
I believe with all my heart that we are intended to be living free in who we were created -and our challenge is to not let circumstances/events/ individuals have too large of say in who we are-really.
They are all treasures themselves but not meant to be defining our hearts. They are only meant to be fleeting blessings like light on a lake, beautiful but elusive. Or like a fog that is evident and then gone.

What I think is shaping up here is the only true part of our identity is that which is eternal not temporal...

hmmmmm.

Happy day.



Thursday, February 18, 2010

Happy Birthday Baby


Favorite little girl pic of Sophie!














Christmas 2005 - Interested in American Girl Dolls.







November 2009- Her interests are clear...







-Always Daddy's girl.







This morning on the way to school! No brooding teenager here- just a delight!
Okay... Where in the world did thirteen years go? poof!
I was just marveling at her dads huge hand enveloping her body as he slept holding on to her...
Helping her look for "Dora" the worlds ugliest red bear with fuchsia hearts ( that glow in the dark...) the one and only toy that had to go everywhere with us... but of course.
Gold fish and tippy cups. Bugs life. Veggie tales. " Blokely..Cekery..gotta be Beggie tales"
Some of my favorite words...the color greem, incept( for except) and glubs to keep your hands warm.
All the polly pockets and Angelina ballerina's and the sacred American Girl Dolls .
Samantha, Bitty Baby, and Marisol. I wonder where we stored those?
A frog umbrella with 3-d eyes...a scooter that hung on till the bitter end...
Baton recitals, father daughter dances, the hay rack ride for brownies... ending with an emergency room visit- never mind that.
This morning it was... eyeliner ( pick your battles moms...)... converse...hair straightener...and to my giddy delight a hair flower that I made... still girly -still "dressing up..."
I know from raising my stepdaughter... time will float along faster and faster...( my stepdaughter is a mom now!) yet I still am stunned that my baby is officially a teenager.
What I am not stunned about is that she is an awesome, smart, thoughtful, hilarious, creative, talented young lady... who humbles me day after day. She is a wise soul and profoundly perceptive. I am so grateful for the divine trust God gave me with her... and more grateful for the grace I get in stewarding her.


Thank You God... For my daughter- Sophia.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Three things... three times.





Ok... this will be short but sweet...

I am hearing in my heart a message on identity. I will unpack it over a series of posts and unfold it as it is unfolded to me... sweet and slow.

To begin with I want to segue from small thinking to generosity of spirit.

Part of our identity is defined by what kind of giver we are. Are we conservative with verbal gifts or do we seize opportunities to encourage and thank?...Whichever you are is ok... its just good to know about yourself and be intentional about learning to give verbal gifts... or some call them "silver boxes."


I am asking you to tell three people three things that you love/like appreciate /admire about them- say- over the next week.
You can pour it on or gently lay it out there... whatever you are comfortable with...
It is more blessed to give than recieve so I trust this will be fun!

Then when you have done that ... tell yourself something you admire, about you and give thanks for that attribute... no matter how minor it seems, just appreciate it.
Give thanks for that quality because it is a free gift. Whenever possible share that quality with others, that's what it is for. To be given away... I will unpack this more in the coming days!
Now go forth and compliment!

Friday, February 12, 2010

"Small Thinking"...



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If there is one thing I do NOT like is "preachy" tones and sanctimony. ewww.

I will ask you in advance for a pass if I swing in to that mode...

When God puts a note in my heart it is relentless ...and I believe so strongly in this particular notion that I want to emphasize it as much as possible.

There is a phrase that keeps running through my psyche. Over and over.

Small thinking.
Two simple words- HUGE consequences.


Every time I see an eye roll or an indignant huff... from a stranger- say at a check stand- or a peer I think "you are being arrested by small thinking. "


I work with a large group of women. Strong- smart dynamic women. Each beautiful and gifted in her own right. I am humbled and blessed.
How many of you know what a group of gals in a small place can be like? The phrase -cats in a bag comes to my mind.- Not that it has to be that way but that it has the potential...
You get the picture. Lest you think I am picking on the girls- my husband and I owned a business that operated in 7 states and the boys can trip on the littlest things too... especially the more talented and effective ones, its hard work to keep those egos in line.

Back to my point-I am not suggesting some of us are immune or even should be- I am more or less suggesting that we sound the alarm in our mind to be acutely aware of the besetting habit to think -too small.

Small thinking leads to worry- anxiety- fear- hurt feelings-defensiveness- vain imaginations...it leads to pride, dissension and less destructive on the surface but very insidious-apathy.

I hear people comparing, complaining, very subtly criticizing and my ears burn and my heart sinks.
I HAVE BEEN AND WILL BE GUILTY AGAIN - But one thing God has been working out in me is perspective. He has allowed heartbreak and loss, violation of varying degrees and bitter disappointment to overwhelm my circumstances. He has allowed the unknown to linger in my tent for an extended season...I am growing comfortable with dangling in grace... I would not choose it but I would not give back the gift of it either. Then just when I think I am really good at this "living deeper" stuff, letting go and being broken I run across a story like "Bella Mella's"-


(I can't find her actual address but she is my follower - melanie click on her picture up in my followers box to visit...)
she looks like this-


Did you look? Do you understand what her story is? Her beautiful 12 year old son just passed from this world to eternity in December. She is allowing her loss to resonate in the hearts of all who hear her story. Big Thinker!



~~~~~~"2/8/10
Abba,
To “be still and know” seems not enough. Or too much. In the silence, I stifle a scream. In the stillness, my body rocks. Back and forth. An empty chair moved by the wind. In this world, we will have trouble. Be of good cheer? Yes, alright. The eternal truth that You, indeed, have overcome is the only promise that my heart hears, that my frame obeys.
But not for long. The sighs, the moans, my son’s name under my breath, and the agitated movement of his mother’s body begin again. Yet there will be a day when morning brings more than mourning and silence and stillness are no longer my enemies. Others confide it happens. It must.
My love to You this morning, Abba, for perhaps it is Your ruah that rocks me.

~~~excerpt from her blog...No smallness here.


If you have time to read only one post of hers read Dec. 16 2009.
You will be undone.








Now lets re-visit gossiping and fear/impatience and vain comparisons... SMALL STUFF.

The contrast to those negative outgrowths is the -missed opportunities. The opportunity to dream big as my friend Jeanne is blogging about-




The chance receive the dream custom made for your life-
Other chances to pour in to the person before you that they are valuable, the things you appreciate about them, why not? What will it cost you?

When you are myopic you can't see the horizon, the vast beauty of all those around you, you also can't see the pain. You miss opportunities to comfort, or quietly empathize. Complaining and comforting are mutually exclusive activities. Its true.

When I consider Melanie's dreams for her sons life and her calling to place them on the alter of trust, I am motivated to fulfill every chance to speak purpose, value, hope and future to all those I encounter.
I don't want the regret of thinking too small, and too inwardly to characterize my days however long or short they may be. I would like to be continually practicing the discipline of thinking big. Relying on the One who's thoughts can't be known and letting him whisper the thoughts I need for today into my heart.

I long to be a big thinker, even on the littlest issues.
Here's to the discipline of checking myself, and not being overcome by the "little foxes."

"You don't have a soul. You are a soul. You have a body."
~ C.S. Lewis


Song of Solomon 2:15 (New Living Translation)

Young Women of Jerusalem
15 Catch all the foxes,
those little foxes,
before they ruin the vineyard of love,
for the grapevines are blossoming!



Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Dreaming of spring...





Early morn- Paris Street Market- 2009


"Paris" -2009



I can hear the people and the sighs of wonder as I look at these pics...





I woke this morning with a yearning for spring.

I feel optimistic and excited for what this season will hold. It has been a winter of struggle. I've mentioned before... both literally and figuratively for many.
This morning I am dreaming of open air markets, early morning junkin'- or selling- I'm undecided if I will push myself this year to do the street market. Any thoughts?

I am leaning toward yes- but I we will see. Last year it was a monthly ritual, with great reward. (Namely the amazing women I met and worked with.)

The arriving before dawn, setting up the steam rolling off the coffee as I merchandised my outdoor Magpie.
Then there is the late afternoon satisfaction- euphoria both from exhaustion- and heat...not to mention a great big success each and every time.

I worked with some great talent -women who I will highlight in coming posts- creative- passionate and soooo truly gifted. We would resonate off each other in a way that created a real buzz...very rewarding.

Alas- there is the merit of just shopping at them. No pressure - no worries just pure enjoyment...

I did hear the rumblings about a new market VERY close to the real Magpie... hmmm... now this is a distinct possibility. I will definitely unpack that more as details unfold themselves.


What are you looking forward to?

Happy Day.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

The details...






























Just a little tease of the treausures I am digging up for Magpie, a new lot of vintage slips, Jesus
and how bout those tea towels... cutest wedding present!
More soon lovelies!






Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Divine order

















Order.


Today is the beginning of a new month, new possibilities and I am yearning for order.

My "baby" will officially be a teen this month. My shop will be closing in on one year... and my dreams are starting to bust through the soil, like tulips or hyacinth - shots of green in the dormant season.

I have been feverishly hunting- painting searching for fresh inspiration... I have also been nesting more than I have for several years. Volleyball is starting and various summer street markets are opening up registration... what will this new season hold?


I have bonded with new friends, refreshed contact with old treasured ones...




All of these tangents cry out for order. From my perch I can fly off and come back to refresh and regroup. I can be free to create and connect. These are my two favorite activities...
-I am off to organize Magpie... and freshen it up I will post pics of my new treasures shortly.


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