Such deliberation has been going on in my mind today on this 12th day of Christmas! Should this weekly gratitude roundup continue this year, or no? Has its time come and gone? Is it finished with me, or is that a call I hear to the keyboard? Hmmm...Seems like there is just no way to stop a gratitude practice, so #SevenGratitudes continues! I hope to dabble in many topics here at For the Birds in the year ahead, but the gratitudes really have to keep on rolling. I see no way around it.
Grateful for each of you who stop by every week. Thankful for your texts, messages, and comments. I appreciate your presence and participation--such support and nourishment to my heart!
Thanks for being here, beloveds!
This week I am grateful...
For just coloring.
I was reminded this week that boredom breeds creativity. Now, I have not been bored, per se, this week. I have not been bored, but I have been going about life at a drastically different pace than the whole of 2017.
Which means I got to color. Just color.
What a gift it is to feel the rise of motivation within me, an invitation to simply and meditatively push color around. Each shape, swirl, and tone gently quieted my mind and helped me just be there—not for a grade or to accomplish anything at all. Just to be there.
Lucky to have neighbors who like to color, too.
For the thrill and problem-solving of rearranging furniture.
I loved rearranging furniture as a little girl. It was empowering to figure out how to move big dressers or bookshelves all by myself and it was exciting to show Mama my new layouts. I understood how shifting a space shifted more than furniture. I saw things differently in my different surroundings. I felt things differently, too, as I worked out my regular routines with the chair over here instead of over there and the bed on the opposite side of the room.
When we got married Aaron said I rearranged the furniture every week. I think he is exaggerating, but perhaps not by much. He blesses me by being cool with it and often onboard with moving the heaviest pieces with me; I do not take this gift for granted.
This week, though, Aaron’s been out of town at the Academy of Young Preachers conference in Atlanta, GA, giving me ample time to work on our study.
Our study. Because now we both need space to write and wonder in our home. Because we live together, in the same state(!).
I have had so much fun, y’all. Wish I would have taken “before” pictures for you. Until now the study has been where the last of our moving boxes hung out amidst Legos, Aaron’s desk, and mountain ranges of books. Can’t wait to decorate the walls and such.
Thankful for the fresh perspective rearranging brings, for the ways simply moving furniture around and organizing our things carves space for new possibilities for our daily lives. The reality of shaping a home is that it is never finished; home is a dynamic place where life happens. Making it, making and keeping home, is important work, essential work—work that I am not ashamed to do our care about.
For the itch to know this place, its trees and bugs and texture.
Every night this week I had dreams about papers and impending half-country roadtrips. Methinks some part of my mind still finds itself in a North Carolinian divinity school. Reflecting on these dreams helped me realize that I need to take a good long walk in the wild here in Texas, soon, to know this place.
The thought has not left my mind since it got there. I now have an itch to know this place, to be able to name its flora, fauna, and regions. I want to feel them, hear them, see them—
I want to live here.
Thankful for the deep invitation to be at home and to know this place. Thankful for the drive of a good itch. Thankful for the dreams that signified a need to keep processing this good transition and this new chapter of life. And thankful for the God who holds it all.
For truth, for hope, and for my mama who reminded me of these things this week.
For a fellow WakeDiv alumnus.
I am lucky to live right next door to a Wake Forest School of Divinity graduate, second-year Wilshire resident Kevin Sinclair. It is a gift to witness his ministry at our church, but I am specifically thankful this week for his love for our school and his experience there years ago. Kevin’s joyful remembering and compassionate critique of WakeDiv supports my own processing and appreciation for my divinity school journey.
Thankful for a model in alumnihood.
For the honesty of jazz.
Wednesday night our church was led by a jazz quartet at vespers. The content of the service was centered around the experience of God in winter, that death or sleep or stillness is necessary for new life in spring. Such a message rings with truth, but can too often skip to spring. Jazz held us there in the right now, in the tension and hope of winter.
To welcome my husband home tonight.
How’s that for a change? <3