The song “Ruby Tuesday” describes our spring.

I met a man in an Israeli cafe today who dryly commented, “It was a short spring.”

So many of us are like the spring. We come and then we go. Just like that.

We are warm and then we’re cold. We flourish like February’s daffodils, a Wordsworth poem, and then we fade.

We are rarely constant.

The weather is confused. Redbuds bloom while snow blows through the air.

May we be a little more stable as the seasons around us decide what to do.

Nobody Knows

March 21, 2013

“Nobody knows the trouble I’ve seen..” go the lyrics to the old spiritual song.

I can relate.

Nobody knows so much about my life in recent years.

Not the entire piece. People know bits. Even chunks. Family members, friends, children, an ex-husband have supported me in so much.

I will forever be grateful.

But nobody knows the extent.

Except Jesus.

We can walk a million miles, 500 miles away from home; we can go into the ditch and drive our car off the road; we can mete out resources and live from day-to-day, but nobody knows how each of us truly suffers, except the one who walks each weary step with us. Like the man walking up the road, a coat pulled tightly against the wind, I saw today.

Tomorrow is my birth day.

Tomorrow begins a new year.

Tomorrow, Jesus walks in tandem, like He does today.

Spin

March 19, 2013

I just finished my first spin class.

Soon, I will be riding the Spring Tune-Up ride with BRAG and need to be cycling. The problem is there is no safe place around where I live except for the Silver Comet Trail and I dislike it. Plus, it is dangerous by myself.

I think about spinning as I turn the pedals with my quads and how green the bicycle is. I love that! I’ve always loved to cycle.

It is a free feeling. And an amazing invention–the bicycle.

I wish there were more bike lanes. I wish I lived in a culture that valued green. I wish it was practical to ride a bike as a means of transportation, say as in Amsterdam.

I’ll never forget the bikes there. The women in warm leggings, dressed in skirts for work, looking so healthy and fashionable pedaling for their commute. What a concept.

Much of my life is spent in my car. And I like my car. But I love cycling.

Maybe I’ll move to Amsterdam. I love leggings and the marijuana is legal. Just kidding!

Separation

March 17, 2013

My family has just left.

They’ve been with me all weekend.

I stand beside the side of the road and wave until their car tops the hill.

I pray and bless their travels, wipe a tear I saved until they were out of sight, before I turn to go inside.

It’s been a good weekend of birthday celebrations–four! But the leaving is always hard. The separation.

I guess sin is first and foremost a separation. From the One who loves us most.

I hate that. I hate goodbyes. I hate separation.

A Woman Tying Her Apron

March 15, 2013

I sit in the McDonald’s parking lot near my house frequently.

Here, in my car, I sip Coke Zeros, play Words With Friends, and relax.

Through my windshield, I can see the back of a Mexican restaurant.

One morning, while the light was still slant and made shadows, I glimpsed a woman at the back door with the sun on her brown face, a long braid over her shoulder.

Then, she turned to go back in, but paused a moment to tie her apron.

It was such a beautiful scene, a feminine vignette.

I haven’t forgotten that scene. It is now etched in my memory bank like a painting.

Life is filled with such scenes– beautiful vignettes.

Wicked Awesome Cookies

March 14, 2013

My family is coming into town this weekend.

We will celebrate four birthdays.

I am making ‘Wicked Awesome Cookies’for the event. My sister-in-law gave me the recipe.

They combine oats, peanut butter, and chocolate chips.

I think they will be wicked and awesome.

Which leads me to think about the word ‘wicked’ and how it often feels awesome.

I think sometimes we get it wrong.

The actions that the Church has condemned as wicked have in fact been awesome.

Like love between two partners, no matter the gender.

Like enjoying good food and feasts with sinners.

Like honoring prostitutes who provide escape routes.

Like yummy cookies and sensuous sex.

If they are wicked, I don’t care.

I think they–and much that we are prudish about–are awesome!

Familiar Cobwebs

March 12, 2013

Each night, before I go to bed, I have my rituals.

I plug in my cell phone, lay my glasses on the bedside table, and reach over to turn off the lamp.

Every night, I see the same cobweb. It is behind the mirror hanging over the dresser.

At first, I thought I should knock it down, but now, it has become familiar.

I kind of like it there.

I am reminded of the cobwebs in my head–those familiar wisps of thoughts hanging in the background. Behind the mirror.

When I look at myself, I don’t see them. It is only when I go to bed that they linger like spun silk, chains of amino acids stronger than steel.

I think we need some of those cobwebs. They remind us of our humanity-flawed, fearful, uncertain at times.

I’m not going to knock my cobweb down. Perhaps the wind from the fan will blow it away, or over time it will disintegrate, but for now, I enjoy its company.

Like my own, even when I am restless as I settle into bed.

I have a new job.

I am a Chaplain for hospice which means I visit people who are dying.

Family and friends have asked if I find the work depressing, but I don’t.

It is important work–to accompany people across the line. Through the process of letting go of this life to move to the next.

It’s a bit of a continuum but also a lonely journey we each must make.

It’s good to have companions.

Sort of like life on this ole earth.

We are all dying. We are all being made new.

We all need companions.

Spring Forward

March 10, 2013

Im not sure when I’ve wanted Spring to come so badly.

It’s been a long and dreary Winter. Not the extreme cold or the beautiful snow of some years, but the drawn out rain and windchill which cause the dark days to seem even darker.

God, I love Spring!

The hope of purple hyacinths; the prayers of Jack-in-the-Pulpit; the slow buzz of insects emerging from the ground.

I love the warm winds and the light–a different color and tone, the value painted on the skin.

I love farmers turning the earth and baby plants outside grocery stores.

I love thinking about my own kitchen garden and what I may plant this year; which flowers will replace the pansies in my clay pots out front.

I love thinking about sex in the Spring and how it flies through the air.

The hope is here. It resides in a day like today.

Tomorrow, it is supposed to rain. I’m sure we’ll have more cold weather.

But for now, I am basking in the Light and the Promise that there will, indeed, be a Spring.

Cowgirl Is an Attitude

March 9, 2013

“Cowgirl is an attitude, really. A pioneer spirit, a special American brand of courage. The cowgirl faces life head on, lives by her own lights, and makes no excuses. Cowgirls take stands. They speak up. They defend the things they hold dear. A cowgirl might be a rancher, or a barrel racer, or a bull rider, or an actress. But she’s just as likely to be a checker at the local Winn Dixie, a full-time mother, a banker, an attorney, or an astronaut.”

— Dale Evans Rogers, Los Angeles, 1992

I grew up watching Roy Rogers and Dale Evans on a black and white TV.

Little did I know then, that one day I would own cowgirl boots and go dancing in them twice a week.

Little did I know then I’d grow up to be a cowgirl.

I’m not all cowgirl. There are many facets to me, as there are to you.

But I am a pioneer.

Have blazed trails I didnt ask to blaze. They were given to me.

I simply walked, and hacked, and stumbled, and got caught in briars, but sometimes RAN down new paths. The ones God showed me.

Now, once again, I’m on a new path.

I’m not really blazing trails at the moment, but my life requires courage and a pioneer spirit, as does yours.

I like thinking of myself as a cowgirl.

I like my attitude.