Posts Tagged With: gifts

Arrested by Beauty

Arrested by Beauty

Stopped in my tracks to notice

My senses alive 

To see, to listen, to smell, to touch, to taste

These gifts all around

I am taking beauty personally today

As my beloved and I slowly walk this town

The bald eagle shows off his mighty wing span

The chickadees flitting from one tree to another

With their happy chirps

The autumn leaves in full display calling out:

“Look at me, look at me!”

I brush my fingers through the fragrant lavender

I breathe in the fresh sea air and let the sound

Of waves wash over me

Later the taste of fish tacos caps off our walk

This walking, this paying attention

Calms me, refreshes my spirit, 

Brings me home to my body

Today I am alive, happy and grateful

Categories: Autumn Poems, beauty, Birds, Life, Photography, Poetry, Seasons, Trees | Tags: , , , | 4 Comments

Advent: Gifts

When your best

isn’t good enough

 

When your acts of kindness

go unnoticed or

fall flat like a pancake

missing the plate

onto the dusty floor

 

When the recipient

of your kindness

doesn’t appreciate

your efforts

 

Remember

how God’s kindness to us

was spurned

 

At the inn:

“No room here, try the stable.”

 

At the cross:

“Crucify Him!”

 

He knows

He sees how we suffer

He can relate

When our deeds

go unnoticed

 

He on the other hand

appreciates our every effort

and receives each with

a warm singing heart

and outstretched hands

Thank you is his response

to our feeble gifts

 

May our thank yous

ever increase

as our hearts expand

to become

grateful people

© 2013 Julie Clark

Categories: Advent, Faith, God, Life, Poetry | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Recovering

The other day I was recovering from a cold. I was not feeling very energetic so I lay down for a while on the couch to read. An old companion of mine entered the room and started making his presence known. Actually, it was a feeling.  It was the feeling of not doing enough, not being productive enough, not really having my life together enough, like I should have. For heaven sakes Julie, what do you do? The last few years I’ve spent a fair amount of time getting rid of this “old buddy”, but here he shows up again.

I think about the years I spent living in Central Asia. Many of my early years there I was nagged by the feeling that I wasn’t doing enough.  I should get out there more, meet more people, have more people over for dinner, and learn language better. I had an unending list of shoulds. Now I am learning I was not meant to do the shoulds but be me, right there, right then.  Be the person I was. Love and care for people the way I could.  Love and care for my family.  Words were a small part, living and loving the bigger part. I think about the gifts I received, in the form of what I learned from living among a people different from me.  I learned so much! Not by being told how to do something, but by the example of my friend’s lives. They just did the things that were normal to them and what were normal to them became important things for me to learn.  Here are some examples. I learned the important place that elders have in society. They are honored, taken care of, and listened to.  I learned how to speak blessings over people.  That’s what they do, all the time. I was blessed when I came in and when I went out. I was blessed when I was met on the street. I was taught how to treat guests with great honor because the guest was bringing great honor to me by visiting. These and many more were gifts to me.  They are gifts that have become a part of my life.  I treasure them and I treasure these friends who taught me.  I wonder if there were things about me, gifts that I left with my friends in this the same way.  I have an inkling of what they might be, but I don’t really know. What really matters now is for me to continue to be the person I am.  I am growing in paying attention to the day at hand and the opportunities that come to do good in each day. In doing that I have gifts to share with others just as I have gifts to receive from others. I enjoy life so much more when I live this way.

Categories: borderlands, Faith, Hospitality, Life, Love, Travel | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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