Five Minute Friday: Begin

This is the final Friday that Lisa-Jo Baker will host FMF- it will continue, but it will begin a new phase on another site. Fitting then that today’s prompt is “Begin”.

I sit waiting here, looking out the window, waiting.
For something.
To Begin.
Begin is such a big word packed into five letters, there is such meaning and anticipation there. The implication of something big, important, life changing. If you aren’t looking forward to begin anew when something ends and leaves you by the side of the road, I would urge you to reconsider. Everything starts somewhere and even creation started with “In the beginning…” 
I’m almost 62, you would think that I would not be thinking of beginnings but endings. My life has been a long succession of beginnings and endings. When you have been married 42 years, have three married children and nine grandchildren, the beginnings begin to stack up. When I look back though, on a long line of folks who have left this life to begin their place in eternity with God, it seems like a lot of endings.
I am looking forward to that Begin that starts the moment I take my last breath here on this side and to that first breath in His Presence. Of course, I have reservations- I want to be here as long as possible to see the grands have their own big Beginnings. I am content to begin there whenever He calls. Until then I will celebrate all the beginnings here and the beginnings there, too.
 
 See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland. Isaiah 43:19
 

 

 

 

Five Minute Friday: Exhale

Today’s prompt is: Exhale

Inhale…exhale. Repeat.

From the moment we are born till our last breath we measure life by the number of breaths.

Always, the exhale signals the end of a breath.

We hold our breath in anticipation, in dread, and on exertion.

In labor, we measure the contractions and ride each wave by the way we inhale and exhale until new life enters the world and the process continues…inhale…exhale.

It’s an amazing process, fresh air loaded with oxygen brings life to us and the exhale removes the waste.

A forced exchange.

In goes the good air, out comes the bad. 

The forceful release of our breath can indicate relief, relaxation, concentration, and frustration. 

Imagine that- a normal body function that no one thinks about reveals so much.

It is a barometer of feelings, that exhale.  The telltale of what is going on inside.

That sigh at the end of the exhale reveals the truth of our feelings, belying our words of “I’m fine, really, I’m just fine.” 

We mark time with that release of breath. 

We watch loved ones slowly slip away with those last breaths until the last here on this earth.

But the first exhale gave life from God to Adam.

And the rest…. Is our story.

The measure of our days is really a summation of all the exhales we experience.

It fills books, writes history,tells stories, leaves legacies and blessings and curses; it offers encouragement and signals defeat.

The tale of all that’s occurred from that first gasp to the last.

What does your exhale reveal about you?

Then the Lord God formed a man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being. Genesis 2:7

Five Minute Friday: Ordinary

It’s Friday again. Time for 5-Minute Friday- we write full tilt for 5 minutes on a word and the word this week is:

Ordinary.

Plain Jane. Vanilla. Sun shines, mild breezes blow the curtains in the kitchen window, nothing but catalogs in the mail, the wash is done, the dishes dried, dinner in the oven, and the children have done their homework. Just another day in the neighborhood.

The extraordinary day stands out in stark contrast-the fatal diagnosis, the empty crib of infertility, the crumbling of a marriage, the announcement of the baby on the way without the blessing of marriage, the call from the police station-they’ve arrested your child with drugs- extraordinarily bad days. All of them. 

And then there are those extraordinary good days: The bonus or raise at work, an extra week of vacation this year, the blessing of an addition to the family via a new baby, a wedding or a long awaited adoption, the insurance paid all of the bill on the fender bender from last week’s encounter in the grocery parking lot, the unexpected bouquet of flowers and dinner out with a surprise jewelery box for desert.

It’s the ordinary days that make these other days extraordinary-the unusual, not ordinary at all.

It’s the comfort of the sameness and stability of those ordinary days that helps us when the extraordinary days come along. God has blessed us with far more ordinary days than extraordinary. He has blessed us with the security and stability of the ordinary and I, for one, am very thankful!

 

Five Minute Friday: Opportunity

FMF is back! and here’s the first one of the brand spanking new year!!!

 

Opportunity

Doesn’t that word just fairly shout itself out loud? Just looking at it makes me want to grab it and run!

Paul instructs us to make the most of every opportunity because the days are evil, calling us to be wise in Ephesians 5.  He knew what would be facing us in our day. Are we, in wisdom, grasping opportunity when it shows up? Do we declare the Goodness of the Lord; do we share what He has done for us; do we make the most of every opportunity we are given? 

It comes on silent feet, you know. Quietly it arrives in the middle of a conversation, after an outburst, at the bedside, in a storm of tears. You don’t notice its arrival, but there it is, right there in front of you, before you know it. And… if you don’t grasp it – it’s gone in a flash, the blink of an eye! Because the days are evil. And opportunities are fleeting…

Be wise, girls. Be wise. Make the most of every opportunity!

Ding. Time’s up.

 

Five Minute Friday: Wonder

Ok, Today’s prompt is the last one of this year of 2012. We think, we write and we share today on the subject of:

WONDER

I don’t wonder that I can see the moon whole and shining; hanging in the sky like a big pearl waiting to be plucked. I don’t wonder at the splashes of pink, purple, orange, blue and red  slowly streaking across the sky in the early morning. I don’t wonder at the mountains pushing their way up from the ground, covered in snow sparkling in the sun. I don’t wonder in the sound of the ocean waves lulling me to sleep on a summer afternoon. I don’t wonder in the fruit of the garden planted with care.

I do wonder in the God who did all these things- Who offered them as a gift to my senses. Who continually gives to me, especially the things that are of little monetary value. He has given me everything.  That is what I wonder at.

I wonder that the Author and Creator of the Universe would take time to give me good gifts. I mean who am I really?  That He would stoop low to show me His favor? That He would send Himself to rescue me? That He would protect me from harm in so many ways? That He would think enough of me to give me that moonrise or sunrise or flower or tomato or beach or snow because He knows I love them so?

And, then, I wonder at His answer: “Because you are mine!”

Take a little time to wonder at His Love in this season we celebrate His ultimate Gift to us. In the midst of the parties, the decorating, the carols, the presents, the carpool lines, the check out lines, the onlines- you know all those things that are just the layers we have wrapped around the Gift. Wonder at the Gift and let yourself go in the pure Joy of Him!

Linking up with Lisa-Jo Baker:

Five Minute Friday

Stumbling Block

Ok, Today’s prompt is the last one of this year of 2012. We think, we write and we share today on the subject of:

WONDER

I don’t wonder that I can see the moon whole and shining; hanging in the sky like a big pearl waiting to be plucked. I don’t wonder at the splashes of pink, purple, orange, blue and red  slowly streaking across the sky in the early morning. I don’t wonder at the mountains pushing their way up from the ground, covered in snow sparkling in the sun. I don’t wonder in the sound of the ocean waves lulling me to sleep on a summer afternoon. I don’t wonder in the fruit of the garden planted with care.

I do wonder in the God who did all these things- Who offered them as a gift to my senses. Who continually gives to me, especially the things that are of little monetary value. He has given me everything.  That is what I wonder at.

I wonder that the Author and Creator of the Universe would take time to give me good gifts. I mean who am I really?  That He would stoop low to show me His favor? That He would send Himself to rescue me? That He would protect me from harm in so many ways? That He would think enough of me to give me that moonrise or sunrise or flower or tomato or beach or snow because He knows I love them so?

And, then, I wonder at His answer: “Because you are mine!”

Take a little time to wonder at His Love in this season we celebrate His ultimate Gift to us. In the midst of the parties, the decorating, the carols, the presents, the carpool lines, the check out lines, the onlines- you know all those things that are just the layers we have wrapped around the Gift. Wonder at the Gift and let yourself go in the pure Joy of Him!

Linking up with Lisa-Jo Baker:

Five Minute Friday