Dec 30, 2013

December Learning

 To tell the truth, there is so much that I learn in a month that when Chatting at the Sky invites bloggers to link up to share what’s new for each of us, its really only the public worthy or the perceptions that ‘rise to the top’ that get sifted and printed here. All the rest, the numerous inklings of expanded awareness, settles in the soul and is honored as gifts that were given, intended for continued growth that hopefully will shape a better me.

But here,
these are a few things I can share, 
some gifts that might resonate with another.

A small Christmas still carries a message. 
Here’s the back story: circumstances resulted in just our three foot Christmas tree this year. An oversight resulted in no Christmas lights lining the rooftop. Presents by way of charitable donations lead to no gifts to wrap. Out of state travel meant no holiday cooking. These traditions were missed but the three foot tree still lit the manger scene. Christmas carols still filled the chapel. And the spirit of Christmas still warmed our hearts. It really is only about a very small babe.

The dubious quality of corn syrup aside, I still love Pecan pie at Christmas time, especially my mother in law's masterpiece. 

Those quiet, wintery days between Christmas and the New Year, I slip into READING mode. 
Just finished Nina Schuyler's The Painting of set in 1860‘s Paris and Tokyo. A beautiful tale of enduring human spirit in the grip of war and revolution, sustained by memories and art. The turbulent historical backdrop expanded my awareness of the Japanese Revolution and the Prussian siege of Paris. So appreciate how knowledge of history informs life.

I learned that according to 74 year old, life long Louisiana resident Phil Robertson, he never saw his fellow black citizens mistreated. If inequity is the norm perhaps one is blinded to its presence.

St. Stephen's Day and Boxer's Day share a history of GIVING TO OTHERS.
"Box" up what is needed and give it those in need. Both of these traditions are celebrated the day after Christmas. I love that! It reminded me of this delightful Christmas ad of young people providing Christmas joy for an elderly neighbor.

Your visit,
your reading of these thoughts,
its always and honor.
Happy New Year!

Dec 18, 2013

A Light Has Dawned

We sit with steaming cups of tea,
mine, green with hints of orange rind; 
his, Chai, with rising wafts of vanilla.
Our kitchen window frames a view of blowing, wintery woodlands. 

“Another grey day”,  he says.
It is grey. White grey sky. Dark grey-brown trunks and limbs. Grey-green pines and hollies. Pond waters rippling liquid slate. Even the wood ducks repeat the same color palette.

Against a backdrop of these framed window panes the table candle flickers boldly bright. The Christmas tree glitters, brilliantly casting light far across the room. 

Against the dark and the grey, because of the dark and grey, the power of LIGHT expands its dominion and claims all attention. 

The light of Our Lord arrives in darkness; 
at His birth and in our hearts. 
The flame is eternal.

The people walking in darkness
    have seen a great light;
on those living in the land of deep darkness
    a light has dawned.
You have enlarged the nation
    and increased their joy;
they rejoice before you
    as people rejoice at the harvest,
as warriors rejoice
    when dividing the plunder.
For as in the day of Midian’s defeat,
    you have shattered
the yoke that burdens them,
    the bar across their shoulders,
    the rod of their oppressor.
Every warrior’s boot used in battle
    and every garment rolled in blood
will be destined for burning,
    will be fuel for the fire.
For to us a child is born,
    to us a son is given,
    and the government will be on his shoulders.
And he will be called
    Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
    Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
Of the greatness of his government and peace
    there will be no end.
He will reign on David’s throne
    and over his kingdom,
establishing and upholding it
    with justice and righteousness
    from that time on and forever.
The zeal of the Lord Almighty
    will accomplish this.

Isaiah 9: 2-7

Posting with other communities pondering the quiet, the small, and the Spirit filled. 
Join us at Tuesdays Unwrapped, or click on buttons for Still Saturday and The Sunday Community that are listed below.

Dec 16, 2013

The Proclamations of Angels

The angel went to her and said, “Greetings, you who are highly favored! 
The Lord is with you.” 
Luke 1:28

 An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people." 
Luke 2: 9-10

Angels we have heard on high
Sweetly singing o'er the plains,
And the mountains in reply
Echoing their joyous strains.

James Chadwick 1862  
(Translated from a French carol by an unknown author)

Dec 9, 2013

Seek Peace

Consider the blameless,
observe the upright;
a future awaits those who seek peace.
Psalm 37:37 NIV

Look at those who are honest and good,
for a wonderful future awaits 
those who love peace.
Psalm 37:37 NLT