Monday Musings

Monday: Second day of the week
Musings: meditation; thoughtfully abstracted

Forgiveness is more than just dismissing someone from your life in much the same way as submission is more than just letting the other person have their way.

Mature community is considering and pursuing the good of the whole body.

“Nothing wrong with it” is not the same as declaring something good.

Love is our motivation and the means by which we are to do things.

Having grown children come home for a visit is the absolute best.

Doing a hard thing is well, hard. It is not an excuse to not do what needs doing though.

Learning something new, especially when it is replacing an old way of doing something, takes time and I can get impatient. Lightroom, I am looking at you 👀

Industrious: constantly, regularly, or habitually active or occupied
Seems like a good thing to aspire to be, yes? But someone can be constantly, regularly, and habitually active or occupied with things that are not necessarily profitable or godly. I like including an obsolete definition that also defines it as being skillful and ingenious but of course the same problem rears its head. I can be a skillful and ingenious cat burglar but that is not a good thing at all, is it?
The what of our industry is just as important as the actual being of it.

I think I am going to dwell on that last musing a lot this week.

In other news…

Hays helped walk me through using the drone I got for Christmas again while he was here this weekend and yesterday Rob and I got it out and played with it.
I may or may not have shared this publicly but the first time I tried to use it by myself back in January I crashed into the house and we had to send it back to the company to get fixed 😬 Thank goodness for good insurance and understanding husbands!
I’m going to keep taking my time and learning to use it when I have Rob with me as backup. I have a terrible sense of direction and get nervous with the controller (You are only supposed to use your thumbs, for heaven’s sake!) so he keeps me calm and able to focus.

My first two real drone shots ~

An aerial shot of our home.

I really love this shot. It does make me laugh though because I thought I had flown the drone straight across the street from our house but it seems I actually took a hard right and went down the street a ways 😂 I told you I have a terrible sense of direction! Someone has a lovely pond in their backyard, don’t they?

Happy Monday, y’all!


Macro Macarons On A Monday

On Saturday the ladies of my church came over and we enjoyed a lovely brunch and fellowship over a discussion on Psalm 23. It was my first time hosting a group since we moved here and it was so fun to have them here! God has indeed been so gracious to us in this move.

And the food. Breakfast foods are some of my favorites and we had a veritable feast to savor and enjoy. As an afterthought I picked up some frozen macarons, partly because they are yummy and, being completely honest, partly because I knew if there were any left over I could take pictures of them 🙂

And there were so I did and now we get to enjoy the fabulous alliteration of macro macarons on a Monday and if that isn’t just a fun way to start the week I don’t know what is. In all seriousness, I realize it may seem a silly thing to do and really a lot of the pictures I take may seem that way. I mean, these probably aren’t going to grace anyone’s walls just like the ones I did of an artichoke or the cheerios. But to me these pictures, the ones that so delight my soul but will never be hung or even printed, are small acts of beautiful resistance.

I have an online friend that I have been following for years and this morning she shared some of her heart struggles while living in China as the government there begins to push another lockdown due to covid. She talked about how Japanese-Americans were forced to live in internment camps during WWII and as an act of resistance they took to gardening. “They made rock gardens and ornamental gardens, vegetable gardens and gravel gardens. They refused to give in to the desolation. They preserved their culture and humanity. They resisted the harshness of their condition, and they did it with beauty.”

Christine went on to write that as she read Psalm 23 with that thought in mind it was as if God himself is known to create these beautiful acts of resistance…I have prepared a table for you to sit and feast in the midst of your enemies.

So, I ask you dear friend. What beautiful act of resistance will you commit this week? What small beautiful thing will you do or make that tells the world Christ is King?

Me? I think I am going to pick up my camera and see what unexpected and often overlooked beauty I can find to photograph.

Monday Musings

When were kids my oldest sister was the crafty creative one then as we all became adults I became the one who takes pictures and blogs, plans parties and decorates, etc. (She still gets really great ideas and can find all the parts and pieces to make things happen. It’s her gift, really.)

But recently our little sister has had the opportunity to do some writing for a women’s ministry that she is involved in and one post she shared stayed in my head and kept me thinking so I am going to piggyback on what she was talking about for a few minutes.

In her devotion she was addressing this idea in our culture of female empowerment, the constant bombardment of equality for women that disregards the true power we have in favor of the pseudo power the world would have us believe is more and better. She reminded her readers that we were designed with a purpose, formed by a rib being taken from man’s side to be his helper. She went on to explain the duties and functions of our actual ribs:

Anatomically speaking, ribs are connected to the spine. This gives strength and power to them. They are an essential connection to the very core that holds a person up. They are there to uplift. They come around and protect the heart and lungs, blood and oxygen.

We can’t survive without them. The ribs guard those inmost, core parts and protect them from harm. In this way, we are to guard our loved ones, protect them, and ensure that they have what they need to live. Ribs are small but strong bones, they may bruise but they are not easy to break. 

Toni Marie made a beautiful connection from the physical description to the spiritual. We uplift. We protect.

But did you know that ribs can pop out of place? Two weeks ago I started noticing a discomfort in my back when I moved a certain way or tried to breath too deeply. It was hard to put my finder on and explain what the exact problem was but it just felt off, not right. Turns out one of my ribs had moved out of place. Thankfully I already had an appointment scheduled with the chiropractor who found the problem, popped it back into place, and straightened me out.

Reading my sister’s words on the heels of that experience showed me how easy it is for us as women to become disjointed. We let ungratefulness, a bad attitude, bitterness, selfishness, or unforgiveness push us out of place and instead of uplifting or protecting those around us we become that dull discomfort that they try to live with and around or that sharp pain that becomes a hindrance that keeps them from doing and being what they were made to do and be.

Thankfully, the fix is just as quick as the chiropractor popping my actual rib back into place. When we confess the sinfulness that has us out of place with the body, be it in our marriage or relationships with our children, or at church, wherever it is,  the Great Physician promises to forgive us, to heal and restore us. He puts us back into our place and we are able to do that which we were made for.

That, in and of itself, is reason to rejoice.

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Monday’s Musings

You know how sometimes you just have random thoughts bouncing around in your brain? Well, that’s one of the reasons I have a blog, because sometimes I need to make room by putting stuff somewhere.

One thing I am thinking about in particular since I am going to start up the photography business is exactly what services I will offer. Specifically, my niece is due any time now with her second baby and I am delighted to be on call to photograph the birth, a genre of photography that I absolutely love and want to do more of. But I have had more than a few moments of what-would-I do-if-she-goes-into-labor-while-I-am-doing-such-and-such and wonder how in the world you handle that if you do birth photography on a regular basis. (Total side note…all of the births I have photographed have been in the hospital. Would love love love to have the opportunity to do a home birth so if y’all know of anybody doing a home birth who’d be open to pictures hook a sister up.)

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Also, related to those thoughts I am doing a product shoot of sorts today that I am pretty excited about. A friend of mine makes these incredibly lovely hats and sells them in her Etsy shop. I have photographed some of her hats before but today we will be working with her model and I think it will be so much fun!

 

 

Sarah is also coming home today from a four day cruise to Cozumel. I can’t wait to hear all about it and hopefully see some pictures. She was seriously hoping to see sea turtles and sea horses. While she has been floating on a big boat with friends, Emily has been apartment/cat sitting. I can say without any hesitation that I am not ready for another child to move out and I am glad Em isn’t going anywhere just yet.

Also, can I just say that I am soooo over this summer heat. I have a friend living in Oregon and she got snow over the weekend, people. Snow. We had such a lovely spring and June was so mild but man, the heat showed up in July and has made itself way too comfortable. I’m just ready for a bit of cooler temperatures but that sounds a bit whiny, doesn’t it? Sorry about that.

All righty then, moving on.

So we watched Back To The Future with our kids over the weekend and all I can say is man, do we have selective memories! I think the story got caught up in the nostalgia of being part of our teenage years or something because I sure didn’t remember the language being so salty. Nor did I recall the thing with his mom being such a major theme in the story. Our children were properly appalled and took great delight in ribbing us for watching such a movie. They were also quite amused by the rather dated special effects and overly dramatic acting. Rob decided that if we want to share a movie from our childhood with our kids again we better watch it first.

Some parenting stuff I have been thinking about and piecing together starts in chapter 6 of Ephesians:

Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil.  For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places and 2 Corinthians 10:3–4 For though we walk in the flesh, we are not waging war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy strongholds. (Emphasis is mine.)

I also keep noodling on all the times in the OT that we were told so and so was a righteous king but he failed to tear down the high places, that is the worship places of the Canaanites.  And how our weapons of choice are prayer and worship. Intangible things that have a very concrete impact and literal affect in real time.

If we confess that our battle is not of flesh and blood, and we do, and if we confess that we fight with things that are not made of metal and stone, and we do, what does that mean about other intangible things in our lives? Our secret thoughts, hidden feelings, and tucked away sins?

I contend that those secret sins that take up that dusty dark corner of our heart will somehow manifest itself in our life in a way that is passed on to our children. We want our children to want the right things, to make the right decisions, to choose the right things, and for the most part we want the same thing for ourselves. Except for those little hidden things that no one knows about but God and we like to walk around as if they’re not there. I guess I am wondering how those insidious weeds in my own life spread their roots out to my children and others in my life.

May we have the courage to confront our high places, the desire to bring to light what we want to keep hidden and be humble enough to destroy them.

Lastly, something not quite as deep and heavy. We live in a world where words of affirmation are everywhere. Random vandalism tells us we’re beautiful. Graphic tee’s remind us to let nothing dull our sparkle. But this I saw and knew it to be the best of all encouragement ever.

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Have a great Monday!