Teatime for seven on a Sunday evening, oh, bless my soul! We arrived home from a weekend away with Cassidy after visiting a college and it felt so good to be home and rubbing shoulders down the length of our handmade table again with all its cracks, chips and shifting boards. Home. It’s a place intimate to each of us and dearly missed when we can't get to it.
Cucumbers sliced thin and layered onto English muffins thickly spread with honey goat cheese. Oranges sliced and arranged were quickly scooped up onto the littlest one's napkin, hot tea with milk for him as well. Fresh mozzarella dotted a crusty round loaf I purchased at the grocery store after church, along with a blueberry cream Bundt cake. It felt special and cheerful on what seemed like day 1,000 of cold and snow.
And it's no surprise to me, I knew I’d feel this way in March. A weary longing for all that’s warm and colorful and free, like a summer day. We stopped at a conservatory on our way home, and well... I’ll just show you.
I hope you feel a little warmer now!
The snow is beautiful in its own way, no doubt. But there's something deeply life-giving in spending time in a thriving garden oasis. We need color, we need warmth, we need life from seed to maturity, and we need to set our eyes on all that holds beauty, so we know what to leave behind for those after us. And not just in plant form, but in every way.
It was a discussion around our table one afternoon - what you leave behind you. The question was: When you enter a room are you leaving behind peace and joy? Do you add creativity and inspiration to each conversation? Is laughter and encouragement on your lips? Of course, we all answered no, not ALL the time. But it's the goal! (At least when appropriate as there's a time to mourn in every life)
To be a life-giver means you can look forward into the lives of others and know that in time they will grow and mature and many of the hard days will pass them by, so you need not weigh them down with the what if's, God knows all the possibilities and still chooses to hold us near. There's no fear in His love and all worry is cast away with its perfect timing. We can be strength givers to those we encounter by trusting God's hand in their life, we can choose to set our minds on things above even in the midst of dark times and we can look for all that's good and lovely and show others what we've discovered!
The snow piles up outside yet again and I'm off to crack fresh eggs onto a hot skillet for two little boys with empty bellies. I hope you too find ways in your day to refresh those near you and leave behind an abundance of cheer for days to come!
"Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things."
"My life passes as swiftly as the evening shadows. I am withering away like grass." Psalm 102:11