Thursday, February 28, 2013

Enough:: First fruits

When I planted broccoli late Fall, I was worried there wouldn't be enough. Tonight it's just me and my girlie. We'll have a little pasta and share this just-ready beauty. From the first fruits of the broccoli bushes.
My guess is we may have more than enough...

Well, what do you know?

Thursday, February 21, 2013

My One Word: enough:: Pan Shopping


In the process of considering my one word, enough, I bump up against this truth: I have Royal status at Royal! This means I've spent more money than I have on an ongoing basis and have earned all these points and now I get a $20 credit twice a month which usually covers tax and maybe part of the shipping cost and all I have to do is just keep on buying from these curated sales and get all this cool stuff that I kinda want and really do need and really, really, really, what, I ask, does this have to do with enough?

Maybe it's the part where I just think of the word with a period at the end and rest.

I like the pans Tom Colicchio has added to his sale collection and is sharing. I could use them in many ways. But there's a little tap on the side of my head. A note. A beat, that begs the little question, "don't you have a few pans and could you stretch to make that cast iron pan work to sear the steak the same way the Mauviel's extra thick stainless steel pan (that comes with the extra thick stainless steel crepe pan) would?"

I hear my husband's voice: Where does this go? (Which also asks what does this do and why do we need this?)

I hear Krissy's words of her Grandma Dora: Use it up. Wear it out. Make it do. Or do without. (This is why we have these sister-friends we have.)

I feel freedom. Even if only for a moment, I the sense that I don't have to do anything.


I'm (non-judgmentally) aware that I've climbed or maybe even jumped onto a hamster wheel of invited sales with rewards and free and wants and sensational and more-than, spinning under my feet and into my home. And while I end up with a beautiful cabinet of lovely things, I've lost perspective, space and a reasonable degree of breath.

What is there to gain? Where is my heart? Is any of it really treasure?

I'm watching. Listening. Seeing. Enough.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Enough:: Seeing it in the trash

We have the weirdest trash situation. Weirdest.

For all the right reasons, my husband wants our trash to be put out in the morning just before the recycling and trash pick up. It makes sense to me. We've had more than one identity theft experience: the checks with our old address and someone else's signature, the credit card with the gift card reload to a store I've only been in twice in my life, the stolen wallet. So, I truly understand the shredding of almost everything. I even understand not putting the cans out at night, but, I have a hard time, none the less, with getting them to the street when trash pick up day happens on our earliest day at school. 6:30 am is early enough for departure but walking cans out to the curb can be almost brutal. Especially for a boy who really wants to sleep and really wants to honor his dad's request.

A few weeks ago I, the very early riser, took to moving the cans from the other side of the backyard gate to the driveway. Easier. Participating. Honoring the one who honors.

I should say here, we've gone a few rounds on why this can't be done the night before like all the other neighbors. But there's no winning with this question. I was here when our next door neighbor's trash can, which was half way down his driveway and under our bedroom window, was set on fire at 5:00 in the morning. One of our running neighbors saw it and put it out before the winter-dry vegetation caught flame. I fully understand the rationale.

So, with that gift of submitting to one's husband's authority (oh yes, hear the groan, feel the pain, know the blessing) we just do it. He's right anyway, right?

This morning, trash day, I found myself with an extra hour. Dad was driving the early birds to school so I had time to make amazing lunches, a yummy breakfast for the teens and went out to move the cans - with a very light heart.

What I noticed was this: only one can needed to be moved.

Less trash. Very little recycling. An easy task. One can to the other side of the gate. And somehow in this morning I see enough. Enough with the arguing already. Enough with taking ground, standing ground. Enough with the consuming consumeristic mounds of consumer-driven boxes that come in the mail. Enough with the three bags full life we often lead. Less. More. A light heart. A surrendered will. A simple view. A helping hand. Some ease. Enough.


Tuesday, February 19, 2013

My One Word: enough:: Women who Love

My one word journey led me to a wonderful women's online magazine: SheLoves. I've read a bit, you'd like it. And as I perused I noticed a manifesto for women who love completely. It starts with

Let us be women who Love.
Let us be women willing to lay down our sword words, our sharp looks, our ignorant silence and towering stance and fill the earth now with extravagant Love.
Let us be women who Love.
Let us be women who make room
.Let us be women who open our arms and invite others into an honest, spacious, glorious embrace.
It goes on. You can read it here. But before you go, really read these words. "Let us be willing to lay down our sword words..." I think about the girls on my daughters volleyball team who can level each other with a word, "...move your feet," or an eye roll at a misstep. I think about my friend who is proud of the fact that she needs only one word and a look to make her point. I recall the biting words leaving my mouth in frustration at an co-worker, a sister, my child. I wonder what it would be like if we all agreed that we didn't need to take ground, show some one, or make a point. But instead, loved. Made room. Opened our arms and invited others into an honest, spacious, glorious embrace.

We'd have enough and we'd offer enough. (Extravagant love rears it's beautiful head again.)

For me, I'll live in the first stanza this week and I don't think I'll wait for the rest of the we. I have the will and the Spirit driven power to simply love, without the sword words, offering room.

I have that to offer and to share.

Monday, February 18, 2013

My One Word: enough:: Your Love

This word enough is interesting.

Last Monday, I was invited to a private concert with Casting Crowns. Me, my lovely friend Lori, and about 148 others I've not yet met. We were sitting in the chapel at Mariners Church and then, all of a sudden, we were singing with Casting Crowns, listening to their stories and worshipping.
That is more than any enough I can think of. 
It felt a lot like abundance.
Especially when Lori bought lunch.

Today I was listening again to Casting Crowns.
And I began to muse over the words of Your Love is Extravagant.

These words connected so beautifully to my one word: enough.

In God's economy, extravagance, His gifts, become my enough.

Your love is extravagant
Your friendship, it is intimate
I feel like moving to the rhythm of Your grace 
Your fragrance is intoxicating in our secret place
Your love is extravagant

Spread wide in the arms of Christ is the love that covers sin
No greater love have I ever known You considered me a friend
Capture my heart again

Spread wide in the arms of Christ is the love that covers sin
No greater love have I ever known; You considered me a friend

Capture my heart again
Your love is extravagant
Your friendship, it is intimate

How about it? How do you connect with the extravagance of grace?

Sunday, February 17, 2013

One Word: enough :: the secret of contentment

This morning, sitting at my kitchen table, I was listening, again, to Kenton Beshore's thoughts on Journaling. (You can always connect from the right panel, too.) I'm a writer. I love morning pages (three pages straight, no stopping, no editing, first, first thing in the morning). Love.

As I seek after what my One Word will reveal, I was moved to revisit the simple plan Kenton shares. And listening, I stumbled onto the most divine truth. Truth because I know it. Truth because I live it. And truth because if we test it, it proves itself.

The secret of contentment.
And it is simply this:

Love what you have.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

One Word: enough :: a phone call

Last night I went through the endless phone messages that we just don't get to on the answering machine. Well! I guess I use my cell phone more than I thought. Note. And there was that mishap with Kohl's where in the midst of the holidays a bill wasn't paid and they called fifteen times. Note. Paid. Done. Oh dear.

About seven calls in I heard his voice. My wonderful pastor Harold. "Beautiful ones. I noticed you haven't been here in a couple of weeks and just want to remind you, you're loved..." And while he goes on it hits so hard.

The weeks away, first a sick child.
Then a group oversleep.
Then just a week away.
They all added up and they all mattered to someone else.

I felt, I knew, that my little choices to be home for a bit might be noticed or counted. Might be.

My church is going through upheaval. Upheaval is to be expected when your stated mission is to plant 100 churches in 40 years. One and two went by and the shift wasn't so big. Three was painful, my favorite young pastor and his sweeter than sweet wife moved into Compton to establish their church and of course, friends went with them. Friends I love and friends I haven't met but made up the tapestry of our church, their side of the room, their row. Many church plants later we're ok. The occasional twinge of loss is there, but overall, we're good. But then two pastors felt called, together, to plant fairly nearby. Several people, mostly from my service felt moved to move.

The pain comes slowly because families think and decide and stay away for a while and then go. A month ago, it felt to me like I was wearing twenty bandaids and they would be taken off one-by-one and rather slowly. Painful.

So when my girl wasn't feeling well, I climbed into bed and with her and snuggled. Safe and warm. I didn't think of the feeling. I was away. But as I write, I see we became an empty set of chairs. Someone else's removed adhesive.

Then the words: "Beautiful ones..."
I heard the voice of the man who taught me the words, grace stacked on grace. I hear his inflection, his determination, his love. For a moment, I remember how he asked me to stand shoulder-to-shoulder to work and love and watch what God would do. Remembered his reminder at my grandmother's funeral and then my other grandmother's graveside memorial, that God's oceanic love is enough.



It takes courage to carry on. It takes grace and peace and it takes just a word to remember that courage and love and peace can all be borrowed and shared and that much of the time, we don't even know we're loaning. We just standing there. Shoulder-to-shoulder with word of song coming from our hearts and it matters.


Friday, February 15, 2013

One Word:: a necklace

Liz Eaton One Word necklace
Here's another token of One Word. This necklace is made by another talented Etsy artist, Liz Eaton. She also created a few others like this one.

I think they're wonderful. And I find myself so engaged in the One Word notion, that it became momentarily comical when I realized how enough was already bumping up against more. Well, what do you know?

For now, I'm not really doing anything about this. Just noticing. Noticing and being aware are good journey partners, don't you think? I can go deeper into what I've learned about this, but for now I'll just say, non-judgmental awareness is one of the best concepts I've encountered. And, I'll be happy to learn all there is just watching for now.

I will say that as I noted my wants jumping for joy I heard a voice in the back of my head, from my other favorite pastor in the world: Kenton Beshore, at Mariner's Church in Orange County. Kenton said, with such grace and boldness: "What's the one thing most people in Orange County don't have?" (sustained pause and the answer is?) 


And, isn't the necklace just lovely?

Thursday, February 14, 2013

One Word

I'm very, very excited to be embarking on a new journey.

One Word.

My beautiful friend Krissy called me Saturday and suggested I look at the One Word 365 website. She wanted me to think about joining her on the journey this year. I was instantly intrigued and thought I had a word right away. Kris, being very wise, suggested I try on the word for a while. So I did.

That night I got into bed with a book I'd purchased online, rather randomly, during some after-Christmas shopping. The title truly intrigued me, especially the simplicity of the cover, so I bought it.

I started to read and within a page, I knew, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that my word had found me.


Something I don't always know that I have.

Since the call, I've read a bit. Prayed a bit. Settled on the word. Joined a FB page, connected with an Etsy artist who shoots pics of words on the beach, ordered that picture of my word and through the miracle of God doing what He does, found the website of the pastor (that would be the photographer's pastor (I know...right...)) who started MyOneWord. Whew!

All I can say, is watch the video, listen to content, read, look around and think -- would you want to join a few of us who are holding a word with God, one word, for a whole year?

My 13 year old is in. Trust.