Saturday, July 31, 2010

Listening and Hearing: Transparency Required

Walking in the early morning hours before work days yielded rich gems this week.

Aside from the evidence of Glory everywhere I looked;

Listening ear?
evidence of Glory rang in my heart as I uncovered before the Lord my stress, uncertainty, frustration, and need for perspective.  

I listened; He spoke; I heard; He guided; I followed;
He encouraged; I took action...

We communed together in the glorious early morning.

Transparency opened up my ears to hear!

Today, I read a post by my dear friend, Tina's blog about surviving storms. 

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Sheep Hear

It's the middle of summer; the wax in my ears melts (figuratively).

Like sheep, my hearing is keen. Now.  I hear the voice of the Good Shepherd more clearly.

What changed?  Hearing helps me listen.

When I was a little girl, I played a game that required me to close my eyes and move about at the instruction of one of my friends.  I avoided bumping into objects whenever I listened, really listened to the voice giving direction to me.

Sometimes another friend wanted to play a joke on me and pretended to be the voice of the speaker, the guide.  It did not work - I knew the voice of the one I was to follow.

Likewise, I know the voice of Father.  His voice comes in different ways and in various volumes.  I continue to hear so that I may listen...
 "that you may love the Lord your God, listen  to his voice and hold fast to him..."
Deuteronomy 30:20

holy experience

Monday, July 26, 2010

Desert Doorway

This summer season finds me seeking more - reading more - calling for more time with God...

The increased time came in unexpected ways.  I am reading through the Psalms and lamenting, that is worshiping and found myself feeling the heat...the the desert...

So, what comes to my mind and to my spirit?  I remember:

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Reframing Rest: Energy Monitor

Today, I enjoyed a visit with a dear friend.  We chatted; we laughed; we prayed; we listened; we encouraged one another.   As we shared life and laughter, I felt rested. 

After the visit, energy bubbled up in my mind and body.  I completed chores with ease.

Rest refreshes...

This summer, as I intentionally balance work with rest,  worry and hurry decrease.

Keri Wyatt Kent in her book breathe: Creating  space for God in a hectic life, asks:

"Does your life have rhythm?  Does it flow or move in fits and starts?"

In recent months, the rhythm of my life has flowed in fits and starts - busy work days; busier evenings, busiest weekends.  With fresh energy,  a new rhythm emerges  for me: work, rest, work, rest...

To help maintain this rhythm, I initiated the use of an energy monitor.

My energy monitor:

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Are Your Ears Awake? HUA!

Listen - an action word, a verb...

As I reframe aspects of my life this summer, a focus on listening and hearing God emerged. 

I sometimes lament, "Lord, speak to my heart!"

When I am "still and know that He is God", my awareness of the Lord's speaking increases. 
Reframe:  Being still is an issue of both quieting my soul and stilling my body.

Reframe: Three parts comprise listening and hearing God.  I pondered the three aspects of listening while sitting in a presentation by US military officers. 

After hearing that one translation of the term HUA is 'heard, understood, and acknowledged,' my ears perked up...I will listen to the Lord and demonstrate HUA!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Sailing on the water

It came upon me slowly, but surely...the realization that I could not ignore the intensity of the pace, the volume of the assignments, and the bountiful grace and strength that enable me to thrive daily. 

I knew what I had to do - beginning when I awakened, throughout the day, and into the evening I am
                         singing songs of praise to the Lord!

Singing praises to the Lord keeps my heart filled with gratitude.  Sometimes my songs are sung as tears of sadness trail down my face.  Other times, a  wide smile accompanies the songs I sing. 

Today, I raise my song of thanks for:

#322 - 332

life redeemed

family restored

strength regained

songs sung

smiles given

forgiveness spoken

hearts connected

solitude enjoyed

time shared

meals prepared

life lived

Friday, July 16, 2010

Resting in order

When I saw the butterfly images suspended from the ceiling, I  smiled.  Fun! The creative,  colorful, orderly arrangement called out REST for my information-packed  soul...  How delightful to periodically peek at the  suspended butterfly images  during the remainder of the public health summit held in this building. 
REST came in an unexpected way...

In what ways have you experienced REST this  week?

Monday, July 12, 2010

Dripping with Gratitude

As heavy raindrops soak the parched earth, I am reminded of my thirst for Mercy drops from the Fountain of Life.  The Fountain is always present; however, I am sometimes in the shadows, sometimes in the bright light.  In any case, Mercy drops fall - new every morning, bubbling from the Fountain.  I am dripping with gratitude...

Have you ever been soaked in a summer downpour of rain?  I have been soaked in summer rain.  Every part of me drips - from head to feet.  Today, I am dripping with gratitude...

 Today, I am dripping with gratitude for:

#302 - 311

visits from adult children - such joy!

completed book chapter -  finally!

evening walk with my husband - a treat!

meeting up with dear friends - long time coming!

a  soaking bath - soothing!

gift of presence when grief arrives  - so needed!

Sunday nap - refreshing!

reframing project - enlightening!

mother/daughter shopping day - lovely!

morning glories - faithfully appearing!

 Still dripping with thanks:

#312 - 321

Son calling

Mama visiting

Children soaking

Voices singing

Pages turning

Friends sharing

Sun shining

Rain falling

Mercy giving

Grace receiving

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Dusting Off Dreams

Summertime and the dreaming is easy easier...

After viewing Bonita's post recommending the book, Knit Together by Debbie Macomber, I began reading the book and dreaming big - again.  I dusted off dreams that formed in my heart and mind years ago...dreams that I have worked toward bit by bit over the years.  As part of my reframing project, I am revisiting the dreams that were seeds years ago.  I see progress; I see value in flowing with the process of dream building.

What do you do when dreams are lost or stalled?

Walt Kallestad,  in Wake Up Your Dreams (1996), gives steps for moving forward with dreams:

Believe - great dreams do not die

Receive - guidance, direction and help will encourage you along the way

Achieve - action steps literally move you in the direction of your dream

Praise - hope arises as the Breath of Life breathes freshly into our dreams

Questions to ponder:

Do you have dusty dreams?

What step(s) will you take to revive your dreams?


Sunday, July 4, 2010

Reframing rest - it is happening now!

I took an unexpected break from blogging this week (deep breath).  I knew that I would be away at the National  Association of School Nurses (NASN) conference this week.  My intentions included finding quiet moments each day so that I could write blog posts.  Obviously, that did not happen.

What did happen?  In addition to hearing relevant and current clinical information, several session speakers spoke of:
deeply breathing and resting;
taking a sabbatical for the soul and balancing life and living my priorities;
asking for what I want and remembering to laugh and being grateful.

So, I breathed deeply and prioritized rest by:

enjoying conversations with friends and colleagues;

opening my eyes to beauty all around me (like the vibrant colors in the garment and jewels below);

laughing and learning and connecting;

breathing, deeply breathing...

The  result: I am dreaming big and opening my heart wider and thinking of the pathway of purpose that has brought me to today.  

In sharing my reframing project with friends at the conference, I found that many of them are also reframing aspects of their lives.  In my next post, I will share how my dreams are reframed.

What areas in your life are you reframing?