Sunday Morning

July 14, 2013

I'm sitting on my front deck in the 70 degree morning, barefooted, full-tummied (strawberry cake!), and enjoying the music of several different kinds of birds that live in our trees.  I think we must have more birds this summer than we've ever had because I hear different "songs" which has sparked me to do a little research and literal bird-watching.  Maybe I'm just noticing them this year more than I have in the past. 

I'm sitting here and I'm thinking that I'm so grateful for God's grace.  I'm thinking about how I just mess up all the time, but He graciously gives me another day to begin again.  Nothing is terribly out of sorts, and I've not committed some major sin (if we qualify sin -- which we shouldn't).  I'm just very sensitive to the "stuff" I do on a daily basis -- more stuff than I've noticed before, kind of like those birds in our trees. 

Take yesterday for instance... I yelled at Lilah who only wanted to spend time with me while I was cleaning the garage.  I criticized Molly for something she cannot help.  I responded to an angry teenager in the same way she addressed me.  That's not an exhaustive list, but those are the things I woke up thinking about and find myself determined to improve upon today. 

While I've been enjoying this quiet time outside, I've read through my Feedly and Ann Voskamp's blog from a couple of days ago featured a guest writer, Jason Gray.  It really resonated with me this morning, so I'll share it here.

When will I ever learn that it's not about me or what I think?  Most of life is not.  I'm so very quick to spout off my opinion -- an opinion which frequently goes against the grain.  That in itself gives me a certain pride because, well, I'm such a free-thinker, right?  I wonder if I could just stop it altogether -- the giving of opinions and pouring out of my thinking (unless I'm asked, of course, in which case I'm happy to oblige and tell you what I think!).

 "I can be oppressively opinionated and uppity. By God’s grace, however, I am learning to recognize it better and quicker". -- Jason Gray

I find myself here, too.  This past year I have been so irritated by the taking of sides and the splitting of hairs and a real lack of grace from the believing community as some hot topics are concerned.  We can stand up for truth and we can do it in a gracious way.  In my daily life I've struggled with my opinion that others are pious or too legalistic or just rule-keepers.  I'm sure that points more toward who I am as I have never met a rule I liked.  I suppose the point is that at 39 I'm not finished.  I suppose I'm probably more unfinished than I've ever been as I am, like Jason Gray, recognizing the numerous ways in which I am "uppity" and fall short of holiness.  Isn't that our goal as believers?  Holiness?  Not checking off a list of the rules we've kept; not keeping score of how well I'm doing compared to how well you're doing (or not).

I love summer and its quiet moments that give me time to reflect on the big stuff of life.  The school year just doesn't give me many hours that aren't already accounted for and I'm not good about carving out the time to just be alone with my thoughts when our schedule is going full throttle.  I think I may even share this on my Facebook page this morning...  That's a big risk for me because I don't know that very many people read this blog, especially very many people I actually know.  My husband has been encouraging me to write this summer.  I love that about him.  He doesn't read it; he just knows I do it and he thinks I should do more of it.  So, here goes!

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