Five Minute Friday…Garden

Sometimes it’s the process not the harvest that matters.

I’m linking up with Lisa-Jo Baker for Five Minute Friday.

Five minutes.

One word.

No editing.

No rethinking.

Just writing.

Today’s word: Garden

photo credit: thinklikemaxwell.blogspot.com

GO

So many times I flip through glossy magazines looking at pictures of lush, vibrant gardens. I see the rich greens in neat rows and produce at the peak of ripeness. Usually there is a woman not far away in a floppy hat and garden gloves smiling without a speck of dirt on her. And I think:

I want that. I want a garden like that.

The magazine shows but a moment in the life of that garden. See the truth is that the garden spent more time looking like a mess than a glossy magazine spread.

There were days it was barren waiting for something, even a weed to show signs of life.

Then as the life began pushing through the dirt, it looked beautiful, but choices had to be made and the weakest sprouts had to be “thinned out” for the sake of the best.

There were days filled with dirty knees and weeks spent with dirt that never seemed to come out from beneath the gardeners fingernails. There were times the sweat dripped and no one was camera ready.

Then after days that pushed into weeks that plowed into months, the garden looked like the snapshot.

Somehow we see three seconds in the life and think that it’s real.

I wonder if we would want the garden if we had seen pictures every day from seed to weed to drought to bugs. I wonder if we would still want the garden if we had the black dirt under our nails and our backs ached from tending faithfully day after day.

Maybe this is my garden, and this is my attempt to capture the dirt covered, real life days. I don’t want my life to be a three second snapshot. I want my life to be full of the dirt of sacrifice under my nails and the aching that comes with the weight of caring. I want my life to be spent in wait and work alike, knowing when it’s time for each one. I want my life to grow and produce fruit, but only at the right time. And I want my life to scatter seeds of hope for a new season.

I don’t want a garden.

I want my life to be a garden.

STOP

I spent more than 5 minutes in my garden today. I broke the rules, but I danced and I lived and I loved it.

If you want to join in check out Five Minute Fridays.

Advertisements

Five Minute Friday…Write

There is freedom in letting go of right for write. My heart that is so inclined to perfection needed this today; maybe yours does, too.

I’m linking up with Lisa-Jo Baker for Five Minute Friday.

Five minutes.

One word.

No editing.

No rethinking.

Just writing.

Today’s word: Write

...

photo credit: crossingislandnatur.tumblr.com

GO

Did you ever notice that write may sound the same as right, but they are so far from the same thing? One beckons Just Do It while the other stands above us wagging a finger in disapproval.

Here’s the thing: they are the same.

As long as I write, then I’m doing something right.

If I’ve been called to writing than my only responsibility is to do my best. If I do that, then I’ve got it right. You may not think so, at times I may not think so, but there is one who does, and is there any other approval that matters?

Sometimes I think that I have to get everything right and then I’ll BE. But the truth is that the right comes in the doing not the perfecting. Even perfection leaves someone in the cold.

I’ve never been published anywhere other than this little blog, but from what I’ve read by many authors when the book is done and it’s out there for the world you’ll still find things that aren’t quite right. Typos, word choices, unclear passages, unfinished business. But God never asked us to get it right. He simply asked us to do everything unto him.

So today I write, and somehow that feels just right.

STOP

Feeling inspired in the dance…I hope you do, too!

If you want to join in check out Five Minute Fridays.

Five Minute Friday…Truth

It feels like the last thing I want to do today, but here goes.

I’m linking up with Lisa-Jo Baker for Five Minute Friday.

Five minutes.

One word.

No editing.

No rethinking.

Just writing.

Today’s word: Truth

puddle

GO

I don’t want to write today. Actually, that’s not true. I want to write word after word and page after page of brilliance. But I’m not.

My writing truth is hard to face this week. I finished the 31 days and felt inspired by most of that. Maybe because it was structured and planned. I do best with structure and a plan.

But now that it’s over…I’m not sure what to do. Pieces of ideas fill my thoughts, but there is no thread to string them together. It’s just pieces.

I long to push past this and feel the success instead of the hard. I’m not talking money (although getting paid for my words would feel validating). I’m talking the successful feeling of doing what my heart dreams to do.

I want to write books. I have for so very long. The blog is great and it’s an outlet for me to explore and build disciple and skill. But it is not my whole heart.

How do I push past this place? How do I find my heart? Will I have the book with my name on the cover?

Sometimes truth brings more questions than answers.

STOP

This was one of those dances that left me in a puddle on the floor. Dim the lights please and I’ll walk off stage quietly.

If you want to join in check out Five Minute Fridays.

Day 29, 30 & 31: No Pretty Bow

I’m ending my 31 days early. It’s my exhale.

photo credit: hercampus.com

photo credit: hercampus.com

I’ve loved writing this series. It has been cathartic and built discipline. But these last few posts I had planned are not clicking. I’m wound tight trying to pull the ideas out and put them here for you.

Then I remembered why I’m here.

First, I am here to write. Good. Bad. Inspired. Planned. Choppy. Whatever it is, just write.

I’ve done this.

Second, I’m here to be real. My one rule in writing here is that it represent my truth. It may not be your truth, but true to me and who I am and what I feel. Even if it’s wrong.

I’ve done this.

Third, this whole month has been around this notion of exhale. This idea that I’ve spent too long holding my breath and clenching my teeth. Too long trying to control air.

This is where I got stuck yesterday.

I’ve done this for 28 full days. I’ve practiced letting go of my breath and my chains. I’ve worked to put down that which I was never meant to carry, face my fears, own up to my anger, adjust my reflection, renew my faith, and find inspiration.

Ending here is the ultimate test in exhale for me. I hate to leave things unfinished. I had my list and my plan for days 29, 30 and 31. This was not it. But I felt my shoulders creeping up and my fingers typing tense, so I’m making a choice.

To exhale.

I have no pretty bow to tie this package in. All I have is my breath and my dance.

And I choose that.

If you’ve missed any of the series, please click on the link below.

photo credit: 1ms.net

photo credit: 1ms.net

Day 28: Rose-Colored Glasses

I sit on the front steps and look down at my feet. The sun has set and I’m sitting here waiting for the dog. I’m in pajamas and it’s not even eight o’clock at night. I’ve yelled at my kids. Yes, the ones who have been home sick for a week. And it was something about picking up pencils? I don’t even remember. It’s been a week of kids in and out of my bed at two, three, four in the morning. How did I ever do this when they were infants?

Don’t you feel inspired?

See, I could have painted the picture differently. It could have gone something like this:

I sit on the front steps and look down at my feet. The stars are shining and I’m enjoying a cozy fall evening in my pajamas. I’ve spent the whole week with the kids. They’ve been sick, but we’ve had lots of time to snuggle, read books and watch movies together. They’ve even snuggled with me in the middle of the night. Someday they’ll grow up, so I’ll take all the snuggles I can get.

Both tell the same story, and both are true. I always have been able to make both sides of the argument.

photo credit: psychologytoday.com

photo credit: psychologytoday.com

Too often we see or read version two. We get the romanticized version of life from others and we feel inspired. For a moment. Romance is rose-colored glasses but at some point you have to take the glasses off. Then we are left wondering why our life doesn’t seem so rosy.

Because you know what else is inspiring? Real. Knowing that other people are in the trenches with you. Knowing that the everyday can be beautiful and gratitude filled and hard and messy in the same sentence. Knowing that inspiration is not your circumstances or even how you face them, but who you face them with.

Because I wasn’t on those steps alone.

Can I do better? Sure. Can I be better? Definitely. Could I love more? Absolutely. Could I be loved more? Not a bit.

The inspiration doesn’t come in what any person does, but it is God’s love in them that inspires. It’s not our job to set out to inspire people. It is our job to love and be loved, even when it’s not rose-colored.

To see the rest of the 31 Days of Exhale, click on the link below.

photo credit: 1ms.net

photo credit: 1ms.net