Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Moving Forward

As the year ends I can't help but think about moving forward. It is sort of comforting that we are always moving forward. Life shoves us along its river of doings and beings. Sometimes I swim with the current - thats a good day. Sometimes I get hit by a free flowing log - not so good! Sometimes I get hung up in slack water and float. But the river is going somewhere and thankfully as long as I stay in it I will get to the great Ocean of timelessness - or at least partake in the great timeless feast God has prepared for us.  Maybe I'll get to serve at table! Maybe I'll get to wash dusty feet. Hopefully I am getting prepared now as I push forward each day. 

Then there is the endless loop. Sunrise. Sunset. Feed animals. Peace for thirty seconds. Feed animals. Peace.....

Children are the master teachers of helping us adults to move forward. Their lives are moving at a much faster pace than ours so if we are lucky we latch on to their energy and ride the wave. After spending a whirlwind day with my granddaughters I wonder where the time went. I see their fresh, beauty and golden smiles and it seems that they have never been far away. Then the day is gone like the river in spate and I cannot grasp but the memory of it. It is a super sense of loss but then they return as if time has not really past....sure they are older but their freshness, discovery, openness to love carries me on its lovely electric turn bringing me to life again. I find it even in my adult children (now that I have seven instead of five) their youth, their discoveries, their deepening sense of relationship carries me along the banks with effervescent speed. To gain children through marriage is a special delight. There is a purity there and a timeless river of discovering a person. Lauren has been this for me - such a beautiful woman in her own right but such a wonderful friend and it is a delight and such a gift for her to have joined our life and family. She has jumped into our river of life bringing with it so many gifts and I can sail down this river and partake......

Well I am moving forward now to fence fixing, granola making and whatever else rears its foamy head today....but what a grand opportunity!

Saturday, December 20, 2008


This morning as LuLu bobbed ahead of me on the morning walk I was thinking about animals. Go figure! Acutally I was composing in my mind the final chapter of a book I am working on. It had to do with knowing. There is an interesting point in a relationship with a horse when they accept you and their home. You can see it in their eyes. When they first come they hold back commitment - they don't risk their comfort, their trust.

When I traded my first horse for Max it was a devastating decision for me. I get attached. When I found out the "good" home I was promised was a lie I mourned my decision and worried for years about where my good old Arabian had ended up. I decided right away to not get attached to this big, red, roman nosed horse. And he felt the same way. Because of his injuries he had been passed around and the year before I got him was stuffed away at a college somewhere to be politely neglected.

No, I wasn't going to commit. I wasn't going to go through the gut wrenching separation again! As I looked at Max in the stall the cold, blank look in is eyes assured me we were on the same path. As I came out regularly to work him I saw a change take place. At some point I saw recognition in the almost unreadable eyes. Then I saw that he was looking for me (not always happily) but still he had crossed the bridge of commitment. He had reached out. At that moment I realized that I had already met him halfway. We were suspended over the turbulent waters of chance. We were willing to risk everything for this relationship. I saw for the first time what I was blind to before: the knowing in a horse's eyes. They changed.

You can have all the belief, the doctrines, the dotted i's, the crossed t's in the world but until you know - I mean come to know - the person of God then you are just stuck on the far side of the bridge. Religion is ridiculous without meeting Him, letting him in, taking the risk. I stood in the stall waiting for proof, waiting to climb out of neglect, of being passed around, not finding a home. But then He came - never wavering, never leaving, always loving.....and that's what Max taught me about relationships. Unless a seed fall into the ground and die it remains all my relationships, no matter what, Max taught me to reach out and take the risk. It is pretty funny that with all my intelligence that it took him to start the relationship! Thanks Max.

Picture of Hannah our new guard giant dog above. She is the sweetest!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Hannah, Tango and LuLu

Marygate has widened its tent to include two more goat babies and an Anatolian Shepherd dog to guard my flock. It is good to get new life even though it changes my "comfortable" schedule. Night feedings and worries about youngsters reminds me of how little I like my routine changed!

I haven't focussed enough on Advent but God is faithful and is nudging me to think about serving Him better. In a discussion about the Beatitudes I realized for the first time that the reward of the beatitude is for this life. Frankly I have skimmed over the beatitudes for many years, acknowledging their efficacy for life and b/c they are Jesus' words! But the hard noggin finally realized that practicing them now produces the comfort, the land, seeing God...etc - all they promise is produced when we mourn, are peacemakers, are meek. I have been concentrating on being a peacemaker with my tongue - quite impossible to do on my own! Even when I am "justifyably" angry at a situation I am trying to see how I can bring peace and hope to all those around me. A life's project as my tongue is so unruly and the brain and attitude that feeds it!

LuLu my week old baby is capering about the house as I write - quite dangerous!