Thursday, July 7, 2016

Fighting for life


When I found out we were having a boy, one of my first thoughts was "OK God, you must have big plans for this one. I have no clue what I'm doing, so this is going to be all you!" 

I thought about what it would be like changing diapers and figuring out how to fix his hair. But I'll also need to consider how I'll teach him to honor and respect women, how to love people who are different than he is, how to behave with police and authorities. All this is vitally important... and incredibly daunting. And I'm tempted to be underwhelmed. But simply by the fact that this responsibility has been assigned to me, I know that God will equip me with the strength that is necessary. 

I will not succumb to fear, even despite the despair and devastation in our world. I will continue to walk in LOVE. I will be bold in my POSITIVITY. I will choose to have FAITH. And I will teach these things, along with many other truths, to my son.

This is how I will fight.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

I'm not an artist

I always wanted to be an artist. I strove to fit my skills and interests into a shape that might even slightly resemble one. But I've finally come to terms with the fact that I'm not an artist.

I'm not a painter. Though I see canvases all around me. 
I'm not a writer. Though I embrace words as a mighty tool.
I'm not a singer or musician or dancer. Though melodies move me every day of my life.

I've tried my hand at each of these arts without finding full satisfaction because I am not an artist.

What I am is a creator.
Painting with splashes of joy to enliven pale environments. 
Drawing with lines of communication to connect disjointed projects and organizations.
Scripting notes with love and encouragement in every situation I can. 
Jotting my signature on the lives of those who have influenced, inspired, and left their marks on me.
Orchestrating artists, experts in their own arts, whose parts combine to turn ideas into meaningful experiences. 
Starting a rhythm for others to contribute their voices to in a collaborative song.
Crafting a life that I am content with today and can be astonished by tomorrow.
Growing a new life that will far exceed my wildest imaginations.

A creator is who I was designed to be, built to be; who I am at my core. 
The Creator is who I am formed in the image of. So it should come as no surprise.

And I can't stop.
I won't stop.
Creating.

Monday, January 18, 2016

Love might be described as an emotion, but it is definitely not JUST an emotion. The emotional feeling of love often stirs us to action. To do things or say things that we might not otherwise. But if love is more than emotion, what stirs us to action when the feeling isn't there? For instance, why does it seem I have to wait until I miss someone or have a sentimental moment before reaching out to them? Love is also a choice. I truly believe that. But why do I only sometimes make the choice to love?

Right now, I'd say 25% of my love output (that is, actions done in love) is prompted by choice and the rest are prompted by feeling. Okay, so what is prompting those feelings that 75% of the time? Random thoughts that spur emotion? Reactions to something perceived? (I saw an old friend and was reminded to feel love for them.)  <== That seems like a big one. But why do I need to be reminded to love? If I'm operating in love, why would I stop?

It's like a being drinking fountain. Someone walks up to me and presses the right button and, in return, I bless them with an out-pouring of love. As soon as they stop pressing that button the love release valve closes and love goes back to being contained until someone else comes up and pushes the button. What a low-level way to operate in love.

Why not this: Why not be more like a lawn sprinkler? You turn on a sprinkler and let it do it's job: which is to water the entire area around it as far is it can reach, indiscriminately. So what would that mean? Anyone who happens to walk by gets showered with love - whether they were looking for it or not. By simply being in proximity, a person will be affected. There's no action needed on their part. They don't need to do or say anything to earn or warrant love. And the sprinkler? The sprinkler doesn't need a reminder nor is it waiting for a trigger. It is always spraying love.

I think this is the better way to love. I want this to be my way. And I won't turn off that sprinkler.