Saturday, August 31, 2013

Labor Day Weekend in the Air

My view from the Ferris Wheel at York's Animal Farm

Gorgeous view of the ocean and York beach

Looking Down

It was the first time in years that I had ridden the Ferris wheel. It was my favorite ride as a teen. I think this Ferris wheel was a throwback from those days. It creaked and moaned as we made our way to the top while other passengers boarded. The guy running the controls sassed adults and children alike, instructing them to sit back and absolutely no rocking! 

I looked at Terry and said," I think this thing is an antique." 
I was hoping for reassurance. Instead I got a "yep."

 Oh boy.

 I was ready to get off before the ride began. Although I was brave enough to take a few pics with my iPhone, a sigh of relief escaped my lips when my feet touched solid ground again.

I must say it had a few moments of fun and I can't recall the last time Terry and I laughed together that much.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Sacred Moment

After a busy morning, Lily and I took a quiet walk through the cemetery. A golden statue caught my eye, so I let Lily get out of the stroller for a bit. This will remain one of my favorite photos along with its companion that can be seen on Wings Open or Instagram. Sacred moment on a Monday morning.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Uncommon Love

Cindy and I snapped beans from her garden today while listening to Cd #2 in this series. I loved it. Graham Cooke shared how grace hovers over a sinner, waiting to cover through forgiveness. God sees us as His Beloved and doesn't call us to performance but to Love. As he talked, he shed a whole new light on receiving and giving forgiveness. Beautiful Grace.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Love in Person

Two of my favorite people, Cindy and John, open their home to me once again. I'm lying on the guest bed in the "blue room" as I affectionately call it. I debated on traveling back to the camper tonight but just didn't have the energy. Stomach problems are acting up too. Cindy went off to VBS and I turned on the fan and opened my iPad to catch up on emails and blogs. 

VBS was a little too much for Lily last night, so we decided not to go that route again this evening.

I don't have any great words for you tonight. I can see God's love through these two people and their giving hearts in practical ways all the time. I thought they would fit nicely with my August filter. Do you remember what it is yet?

Our purpose here on earth is to be loved by God and then to pour that love out on others.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Hope, Prayers, and a Bear in the Night

I was sitting on the camper sofa yesterday reading and looked up to this. I had used it to pin up the July schedule for campground activities. The schedule was long gone but I neglected to remove the clothespin.
I needed that.

I'm feeling better today, although I only slept a few hours. After tossing and turning for hours, at 3:00 am I was wakened by something outside in the garbage. I'd forgotten to take it to the dumpster. The noise got louder as my tin can with bird seed was drug by my mysterious visitor into the woods. I quietly climbed out of bed and crept to the back bedroom. In the moonlight or camper lights, I could see the tin reflecting but couldn't see what wrestled it. Getting more nervous by the minute that my intruder was the bear who had visited this spring, I snuck back to bed and covered my head. Once I drifted off to sleep, I dreamed of a bear stuck in my window and my inability to find escape. 
Morning revealed garbage strewn all over the yard and my can too far in the woods to retrieve. Dandy.

Nevertheless, its a beautiful summer day. I am sitting on the deck, all packed and ready to head to my sister-in-law's home for the night or a few days. Not quite sure. It will depend on how Lily does when we take her to her first vacation Bible school tonight.

Pondering the fall, praying over my family, petitioning for my needs. This is Monday.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Sunday Frustration and Reminders

I can't believe I am sick again. I've gone over all possible causes from food to allergies to camper smells now that the windows are closed at night to a virus. For years I've cried out to God for complete healing and now when I need it most, it seems worse! One more thing piled on to the daily struggle for good health.

Listening for his voice this morning. Writing in a new journal. Reading through the achy, dizzy, sinus, slightly nauseous feelings. 

T.D. Jakes says that our problems are security guards over our promises. Now ponder that one!

Remembering my August Filter: my purpose here on earth is to be loved by God and then to pour out his love on others.

His love does not depend on my circumstances and they are not a measurement of His love. 

There are days that understanding must bow its knee to love, regardless.

Friday, August 16, 2013

Beautiful Lady

Hello Beautiful Lady.

I greet the morning dove who has become my daily visitor. Last year's morning doves were fat and plain and gray. She is slimmer with a hint of peach gold on her belly.

She looks at me atop the bird feeder. I don't move but look directly into her face from my perch on the deck.
I feel sad for her. The new bird feeder poses a challenge for some reason. She seems timid, almost fearful every time she comes, about finding a spot on the narrow ledge. Most of the time she settles for the seeds on the ground. Today she flutters her wings and makes a perfect landing on the feeder. I am happy.

A tiny chickadee joins her, yet she isn't frightened. I can hear her pecking away at the seeds, despite the noise of a barking dog across the way.
The buzzing of a large black and yellow bee distracts me as it disappears inside the orange flowers hanging beside me. Normally I would move away, but I am too much at peace. I remain in my chair.

Birds are chirping in the trees. A breeze lifts their leaves in a comforting rhythm. Neighboring campers, husband and wife converse as they work around their yard, a welcome change from their earlier argument. On the other side, I hear Hazel hosing off something. She is always cleaning or watering her flowers or entertaining friends with her husband, Carl. I never hear an argument from their camper. Its more likely laughter ringing out from their covered deck, the sound of Hazel's my favorite.

The sun is shifting from my bare feet and I sit mostly in shade now. Life is beautiful in this moment. My book lies against my chest, one I've merely begun by a favorite author. She writes about Italy, the countryside and the everyday comings and goings of its common people. I fall under her spell within a few pages.
I want to travel to Italy, but not to Roman coliseums nor museums filled with tourists, but to small simple villages where the whole community gathers for supper. Outdoor ovens, fresh vegetables, wine offered generously to a humble visitor. This is a dream.

Beautiful lady, come to flutter her wings and inspire my pen today.

Written a couple of weeks ago.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Constant Change, Constant Love

Part of my life is lived in the city. I needed to return library books today. Because I was a few minutes early I took the opportunity to observe people coming and going. These two women seemed delighted to see each other so I snapped a quick photo for August Break's theme of the day- books. 
I left my books and picked up the one I had on reserve , only to find they were still in conversation when I emerged from the building.

Amid all the hustle and bustle, there is something about this scene that warms my heart. Relationship, taking time, women that read. I am reminded of a friend I miss. Two years ago her son was injured in a car accident that drastically changed both of their lives. Her time was not her own. Then I made the move three hours away. What I wouldn't give for a slow conversation in front of the library with her today!

Life is about change. My August filter pops into place. My purpose here on earth is to be loved by God and then to pour that love upon others. God's love for me is not determined by or dependent on my circumstances. He is the constant in the midst of change.

It was cool outside waiting for the library to open. The mornings are beginning to feel fall-like and the afternoons still heated by the August sun. Seasons promise change in the Northeast. Life promises change. God eternal promise of his love is the anchor that holds, no matter what.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Summer Winds Down

As summer winds down, my granddaughters visit the camper and make more memories. Ken and I played our first game of scrabble this summer. They grow up too fast!

Sissy was a good sport and took Lily in the pool. Mama and Mammy got to stay dry.

After several walks around the campground, Lily refused to leave the wagon. We propped up the iPad with Dora playing and gave her blankie. 

It's been a good day.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Blessing - Maxwell Style

August Filter: My purpose here on earth is to be loved by God and then to pour out that love on others.

Three active days blocked my blogposting. I was busy enjoying family and friends, as well as fighting my way to Bangor in Friday's hurricane-like rain. As you can see by the photo I took on Saturday, it cleared off nicely.

I was blessed last week to have friends staying on our site, which I hadn't seen in three years. Their peace and joy spread over me like a comforting blanket and I slept better than I had in weeks. Although I reached out to them with the offer of our pop-up, it turned out to be God's plan to bless me. 

I missed them when I awoke this morning to a beautiful day and a quiet campsite. Then I got a phone call from my granddaughter who is coming to spend the afternoon. What a good way to begin a brand new week!
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Thursday, August 8, 2013

In-Between Days

In my "in between' days, I have been reading by the hours. I seem to be weary these days. Maybe its the ongoing rain, but I have taken advantage of sunny afternoons to sit and bask and read, as well as rainy ones.

I've read a few good fiction novels, but this week I landed on non-fiction. Yesterday I spent hours reading the entire book "Freefall to Fly"by Rebekah Lyons. It reminded me a little bit of Jennie Allen's "Anything" yet with its own personality and a focus on staying in the pain on the journey to finding and using our gifting. 

Tomorrow looks like a busy day so I leave you with my favorite excerpt to ponder in between posts.

"Surrender changes everything.
But we cant choose surrender. It chooses us.
It finds us and meets us in our pain.
When we are at our lowest point. Our weariness. Our longing.
It enters in when we have run out of our own strength.
When we start to believe that things may never actually change.
that our lives don't really matter... and we break.

How could it be?
How could God create a life that doesn't matter?
So we cry out, and we ask for rescue.
Because somewhere deep down we know we are missing it.
Our own attempts have failed us.
This life we orchestrated falls flat and leaves us lying in a corner, 
huddled in despair in those dark hours of the early morning.

Then we see it. The crack of sunrise. Just a glow on the horizon.
Pink and orange starting to rise and create a hue that colors the sky.
It's God whispering: I am here. I am true. I am strength.
I love you as you are. Broken and fragmented. Let me carry you.
Let me show you a life you never dreamed or imagined.
Let me take you on a journey so marvelous you point back to Me.
Let me rename you.
Let me bring you back to your truest self.
The way I ordered you from the beginning.

All this for My glory."

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Gratitude in Bloom

It's a beautiful day. Some of my flowers have survived the rain here at the camper. I am grateful for the sunshine today. Taking a break from much reflection and enjoying the moments. 

Monday, August 5, 2013

No Edits, No Filters

I took this shot today in the backyard before lunch. No edits, no filters, just Lily in the sunlight.

My August filter: my purpose here on earth is to be loved by God and pour out that love upon others. 

That's the plumb line for my thoughts this month. 

God's love, no edits, no filters, just me in the Sonlight.

Saturday, August 3, 2013

The Quiet Side

August Filter 
 My purpose here on earth is to be loved by God and then to pour out that love. 

My days this week were a mixture of traveling and quietness. On one of the quiet days, my goal was to write but every word seemed dry and forced so I got in the car and drove to southwest harbor. After meandering through a few shops, I drove to where I thought hubby and I always went to sit and watch the boats come in. I ended up in a quiet little niche of the harbor, where the only people around seemed to be locals who belonged there.

I gave up my idea of finding a place to read but settled for taking a few photos instead. The breeze was blowing, sun shining and a young teenage boy rode  his bike past me, down the path to a simple house on the water. I was only there a few minutes but the scene left a lasting impression on me. A place where one belongs. It's not a small thing. How many people long for such a place?

Applying August Filter : No matter where I am or how much I feel like I belong or not, I am loved by God right here, right now.

Last night when I returned to the camper from a long drive through bumper traffic, I discovered something wrong with my wheel. I called hubby, begging him to come down and take care of it. He couldn't. I whined, fretted, and went to bed in tears, tossing and turning all night. I awoke feeling like I'd failed a test of some sort. 

This morning as I drove to VIP to have the wheel checked out, I heard the holy whisper. 
I love you as much today as the quiet days when you were basking in the sunshine of my grace.

Even when I am not writing about it, this is day 3 of applying it.

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Thursday, August 1, 2013

My August Filter

Frustrated by my Blog press photos being blurry but its all I have on 3G  here at camp.

"My purpose here on earth is to be loved by God and then to pour out that love." Inspired by Graham Cooke

My oldest granddaughter is away this week taking a journalism course. She surprised me with her ability to transition into meeting new people, writing course challenges and keeping homesickness at bay, at least thus far.

When I was 17, I wasn't thinking about college or new opportunities or traveling. I was getting married.
As a little girl I used to dream about becoming a nurse or an actress. In junior high, I looked into nursing school, made a few inquiries, and was certain this would be my future. Then my family moved to Maine and I, the shy new girl, was plunged into a high school where everyone knew each other, except me.

I don't recall a teacher or counselor or anyone telling me that college was a possibility for me, although I was taking college prep. My family barely had enough to make ends meet so maybe subconsciously I dismissed the dream.

I did go to college for a few years after my last child left the nest, but I took a leave of absence before completing my degree and never returned.
I wonder if I let fear stop me. I was facing some tough courses that weren't my strengths. I had thrown myself in full force, taking honors English and history classes to the point where I was burnt out. I could barely balance a checkbook and it was months before I could read a book for fun.

So why do I feel like I failed?

Perhaps because others lives seem to be filled with accomplishments and opportunities and mine seems plain and simple.

What if I take all of these thoughts and filter them through the thinking that my purpose here on earth is to be loved by God and to pour out that love? What then?

Then I post a photo taken a few weeks ago with me, my sons and two of my grandchildren and we all look happy together.

This is what I did. I raised my family and actually with tons of mistakes, often being too hard on them because I was hard on me and I didn't know God wanted to love me, just as I am.

The truth is they are awesome! Not perfect but they are loved by their dad and me.

And now there's Lily. And I love loving her!

Love can't be measured in BAs or salaries or honors.

Those are my thoughts on this first day of August, unedited.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad