Wednesday, April 27

sunsets and heaven

i came across a train stopped on the tracks on my way home tonight. no sign of impending movement. my usual route home was completely blocked off. now, normally this would upset me a bit as i'm typically quite anxious to get home at the end of the day. [read: i'm an introvert and a homebody.]

but the sky was incredible. a thunderstorm had just passed through, leaving the sun exposed again, setting and shining an amazing golden color with hints of red and pink across the sky. puffy white clouds and gray storm clouds popped over the deep blue. and because of my unexpected detour, i got to enjoy it even longer.

there's something about sunsets and sunrises and beautiful skies that makes me ridiculously happy. bad days, sad thoughts, and worry and stress disappear under a gorgeous sky. something inside me is filled with peace. 

lately i've been thinking about heaven. i was challenged at easter sunday's service to be expectant each and every day for Christ's return. if i have to be honest, i really don't like to think about it, and i'm not usually very excited about it. this is an indication that something here on earth is holding more importance. idols are so easy to come by, aren't they? 

but the last couple of years have been tough. tougher than most of my years here. getting into a long distance relationship, losing my niece, moving away from my family because of my relationship, and wrestling with inner things that have just seemed to become more magnified as i've found myself away from any form of comfort and familiarity have tested and tried and taken their toll on me. quite frankly, i'm exhausted. and frustrated. and don't really know where i'm going. anxiety is a fairly constant companion.

and then there are nights like tonight... where my soul just gets a chance to breathe. my heart gets a chance to swell. and my mind gets a chance to rest. and i can't help but think that if a sunset can bring me this much peace, how much more will seeing the One who created the sunset.

this earth, this life - it's not how it was supposed to be

the pain, the heartache, the struggles, the loss, the loneliness, the stress, the mistakes, the worry, the tears... they are temporary.

joy, peace, hope, love... they are eternal. He is eternal.

so lately i've been thinking about heaven. 

"therefore we do not lose heart. though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. for our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. so we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal." [2 cor 4:16-18]


Tuesday, April 26

i want to ride my bicycle

my stud and i saved our change over the last year. well, ok... john saved his change for the last year and i contributed here and there [what can i say? i like plastic!]. add to that some tax refund money and we got ourselves treats this neverending winter spring...


i just love that it's green!

however, it's not been very nice around here lately. the weather has been chilly, rainy and yes, even snowy! we've only had about two days where it was decent enough to ride.

but... they are predicting a warm weekend.

here's to hoping those tires will see some trail!

Wednesday, April 20

the right now

a friend of some of my friends was killed in a car accident this morning.

he has a wife and a daughter. he was just a year older than john.

my uncle was in a car accident two months ago. he is in a vegetable state and will spend the rest of his life in a nursing home.

he has a wife and four sons.

it's all so terribly tragic.

and as i've been thinking about it today, it's hitting me how much i take the future for granted.

there is no guarantee john and i will have children. there's not even a guarantee that we will get married.

and yet i can't keep track of how many times in a day i say to myself "i can't wait until i'm a wife", "it'll be different when we're married", or "i just can't wait to have children". i'm constantly wishing for and trying to will time to move faster so i can get to tomorrow.

but tomorrow is not promised to me.

i think it's ok to have these desires, but i really need to wake up to the fact that they may never come to be.

i don't know how long i have here. is this how i want to spend my days, my minutes, my seconds? residing in hopes and dreams for the future? or being present and grateful and giving all i am to right now? right now i have a wonderful boyfriend. right now i have amazing friends. right now i have moments that God has planned for me to do His work. moments that i will miss out on if i am not living in today.

it scares me to think of how much i might be losing out on because i don't value the present.

it's selfish of me to use the time i've been given to live in a reality that doesn't exist.

i want to know my days were spent well at the end of this life. i want to know i did the things He wanted me to do when He created me. i want Him to look at me and say "well done".

i want to start living for this moment.

Monday, April 11

wonderful grace

the package was waiting outside my door when i got home friday. i was relieved excited to see the return address from dayspring. inside was their wonderful grace carved wooden serving tray. it is beautiful.

dayspring is beautiful. this is the second time they've generously sent something lovely to me.

to be honest, the tray was not my first choice for this particular giveaway. but, i've spent the last month or so moving and [slowly] getting settled into a new apartment [yes, i'm on the hunt for curtains!], and i have been on the hunt for a tray to put on my ottoman for a sturdy surface and to dress it up a bit. it didn't even occur to me that i could potential be receiving one! how perfect is it that the wonderful grace tray was sent to me. [and my living room!]

inscribed on the tray is wonderful grace ~ authentic peace ~ unfathomable love ~ simply joy ~ unending hope.

i'm sure that no matter what kind of a day i'm having, one of those truths will remind me of Him and his unfailing presence in my life.

i'm so stoked i don't have to give away my firstborn child but instead have a new piece for my living room.

thank you, dayspring!

:: disclaimer: i received this product from dayspring through (in)courage in exchange for this review. oh, and because they rock. ::

Friday, April 8

a look inside

my thought process...

a FedEx note was taped to the door at my apartment for me yesterday. they'd tried to deliver a package but needed my signature.

my thoughts yesterday:
for me?! i don't remember ordering anything... did someone send me something?! suh-weet! come on friday! i LOVE packages!

my thoughts this morning as i left my signature on the note:
what if it isn't something nice? what if it's a letter saying i owe someone money? or my firstborn child? maybe i shouldn't leave my signature...

eternal optimist i am not. 

part two is sure to come...
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