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Tuesday, August 19, 2008

new days

"To give of your time requires sacrifice.
Take time for a quiet walk or a scenic drive.
Above all else, simply take time for each other.
If blood is the gift of life,
then time is the gift of love."

~Rainey~'s felt like a whole new journey has begun since my brother-in-laws motorcycle accident 11 days ago. if you're only tuning in, you can see the blog that his family put together for him here.

whenever i'm able to get a sitter for the boys, i venture into the hospital, mostly to see my sister and just hug her if that's all i get to do. twice in the past few days Carl had lengthy surgeries on his legs, so the three of us sisters went in to be with Fan, keep her company, eat some good, (non-hospital) food and chat about life. i have been given a renewed vision to love the days i am in. to be deeply, truly grateful for the things i have TODAY. vision for the future is good and necessary, but it's living in the NOW that makes life beautiful, unique, inspiring and real.

"if you have time to open the back door in the morning
while you're drinking your coffee
and look at the sky or hear the chorus the birds offer,
you have time for the marvelous....
most of life is fascinating if looked at closely enough."

~Diane Ackerman~

There is such POWER in gratefulness. I want to "tap" into that and let it run through me, onto others. Today, while waiting for the surgeon to give us a report on Carl, we got to talking about the incredible support that surrounds the Smuckers at this time. It was mentioned that many, many people are left alone to face life's struggles, to cope and transition on their own. It is what we do today, with the people in our life, that reflects into our future. Even in his pain, Carl asked Fan, "was I nice enough to the people around me today?" I was so convicted by that, because I can surely say, that with a healthy body and a sound mind, I am not so "nice" to all those people around me. I see Carl and Fan recognizing that they are NOT alone, that there is literally an army of people around them, holding up their arms.
"Where you go, I will go. Where you stay, I will stay."
~The book of Ruth~
Fan was speaking today about the Psalms and about how often we run to those chapters in times of struggle. David cries out in PRAISE and then the next chapter, he LAMENTS. It is in this fine and beautiful balance that Faith lives. God is still Sovereign and Good whether we worship Him through our joy or tears. He is moved by our worship toward Him and if we only have tears to offer, He's okay with that. He is leading us on a path of redemption....bringing us toward Him through things that may seem circumstantial...."I bare you on eagle's wings, and brought you unto myself." Exodus 19:4. Yes, we had church today in that waiting room that's for sure!
"And so what seems an hindrance, has become a way,
what seems an obstacle has become a door,
what seems a misfit has become a cornerstone.
Jesus changes our hurting from a random series of incidents and accidents
into a constant opportunity for a change of heart."
~Henry Nouwen~

Although this picture does not belong to me, it represents what I'm trying to say: relationships are what matter most in this life. Let's take time and do all that is in OUR POWER to cultivate the fields around us so that in the years to come, the harvest will be plentiful, the fruit will be sweet and the labor worthwhile. I'm seeing the sooner I grasp that this life isn't about me, the sooner I truly start LIVING....truly living.

To a life lived well.


Sharon said...

Wow Janelle, I think I've just heard a great sermon...and I now have tears in my eyes! You're a great pillar and doing an amazing job! Thanks for being an inspiration. Well done.

Sheila said...

You write so beautifully! Thanks for sharing and challenging us to embrace whatever life throws at us.

It was a treat bumping into you last night! Hope the rest of your week goes well.

Anonymous said...

I love you, "Shrish"

Jena said...

friend- I keep coming back to this and reading it over and over again... such truth... thank you...