Leave your phone, your notebook, and your water bottle behind.
Just you and me around the lake this morning.
Can you do this?
But what if the sunrise is spectacular?
My sunrise is not meant for you to preserve,
distribute or reproduce.
But what if there are words to record?
My words will be there,
when you return.
But what if I’m thirsty?
There’s a fountain part way around,
but you won’t need it.
So, out the door,
down the steps,
along the ramp
and through the archway I go.
Onto the path that encircles the lake.
There, there in the East is the glow.
The shadows deep, growing pink on the waters,
the geese and the swans, silhouetted against it all,
going about their morning as if this happens every day.
But I, I the intruder,
the visitor from out of town,
pause at the spectacle and smile at the cast.
Behold, the Premier! the one and only showing of
Sunrise. Today. For me.
Tears. Tears of joy.
This is a mere yawn
for the Creator of the Dawn.
Rounding the bend,
the action in the eastern sky is obscured by trees, hills and shoreline.
Wait! Don’t go!
I race around the bend but, alas,
I’m too small to see it.
Too near to perceive it.
Look away, my child.
There, in the away,
by the light of the sun just risen,
I see the day.
Take nothing with you, said He.
Nothing to encumber. Hands free.
Let me show you the Glory meant for you.
Just the two of us, here in the morning, on the mountain, around the lake.
What can I do in the face of a God who loves me like that?
“I can say what I want. It’s a free country!” the kid said, shoving his friend a little harder than a friend shoves a friend. The rest of us standing in line to board the flight pretended not to notice these boys ‘doing what boys do’.
That kid is feeling pretty free. I’m thinking he probably has had a pretty smooth ride to today. It’s likely he hasn’t experienced much hardship, suffered significant tragedy, or been the victim of persecution or injustice. These are the heavy burdens that tend to come into our adult lives and, thankfully, the very young are unaware, but when do we introduce them to our kids so they can become acquainted?
Oh, we teach our kids to say please and thank you. We teach them to say I’m sorry. We insist they sit up straight and eat their vegetables. But do we teach them that sometimes things don’t go as planned, and in fact sometimes things stray very far from the plan and we must carry them through anyway?
Just say thank you gets us part way. It gets us to the starting spot on the game board and ready to play. We pick up the dice where our thanks takes its turn. Thanks tosses and goes. It launches from the start point and doesn’t look back. That’s the way the game is played. Take no prisoners; first to finish wins.
But what needs doing?, hesitates before hefting the dice. Onlookers might suppose this is for rule clarification or directional assistance, but actually it’s for confirmation. What needs doing? pauses to be sure it’s really her turn. Is there anyone who needs a lift to the game before I begin?
“Lord, show me the need I’m meant to attend to?”
“Dear one, you couldn’t bear the masses of hurt, pain and hatred you would see through My light.”
“How do you bear it? How can you live that way?”
“I didn’t. It killed me. Now I do.”
…”I am so grateful. Show me how to live in deep gratitude for this rather than in the shallow thanks that precipitates please, may I have another.”
“Lord, there is no other. You are my way to our unfathomably generous God. Please help me live out my gratitude.”
Gratitude works with.
Gratitude gives back.
Gratitude commits for the long haul.
It doesn’t look around for better options.
It finds a place for everyone.
Truly Grateful stays and helps,
Thanks tosses and goes.
Free is not free from burden.
Its hands are empty and held out.
What needs doing?
“Jesus came for a far more radically transforming purpose than to serve as a role model. Jesus came to invite us into a living relationship with him, to abide, live and move in his spirit, as the branch abides in the living vine. Just as the bird does not imitate the air or the fish imitate the water, but rather they abide in their life-giving element, so are we to live in Jesus and Jesus live in us.” ~ Flora Slosson Wuellner
What is your “life-giving element”?
Where do you settle in with a deep sigh
and say, ah, everything I need is here.
Now, I am clicking, the ideas are coming,
the world is starting to make sense because
I can see myself as I am and know my place in it.
I can drink to quench my thirst
and breathe to inspire my mind,
I can gulp my sustenance
and wriggle free of my stiffness.
I can soothe my own soul.
Such a place of flourishing
is this space of abiding,
I in Him and He in me.
What’s your place of abiding?