Nooooo!

The fog gave way to the snow last night, so I was blessed with a very different view of the world this morning. Watching the girls come in to open my curtains and show me the snow was even better than the beautiful snow globe outdoors. The howling winds calmed, but snow was blowing in all directions. They loved showing it to me! Children have the right perspective when it comes to snow, and their excitement is contagious:)

Fresh snow is a clean slate, and there’s nothing children like better than a blank canvas upon which to create. Anyone with painted walls and children knows that! They have the right idea, and I love the new paint that allows them to create away. The snow invites me to be still and watch as God creates beauty right before my eyes. Snow is a miracle even when I know the science behind it, and it always fills me with awe.

Being with the kids makes snow all the more amazing, and it helps that Tyler is here with a truck that can navigate the slippery slopes if necessary. Fears dissipate when I know I’m not alone. I am reminded that Christ promised to never leave me, and I know that has always been true. He has always been with me, and He always will be. I know families can’t always be together, and I thank God for the beautiful and very unexpected blessing of living with my son and his sweet family. Living and loving together is what God has in mind for His world. In the living and loving, we find Him in one another and in His beautiful world.

The biggest lie in this world is that it doesn’t belong to God. It is my Father’s world, and I love the beautiful hymn that proclaims that powerful truth. It’s easy to give up on the world, but if I do, I take a little piece away from Him and give it to Satan. The world is like all of us. There is good and bad, and neither it, nor we, are perfect. God in all of us and in His world:) It is worth the effort of listening and looking deeply when I find Him in the heart of a friend, the eyes of a stranger, or on a snowy landscape.

Unlike a sunset, snow will not be ignored. I love that about it, and I believe that’s what children love about it:) Whether I like it or not, my plans are going to change. I’m finding it’s best  not wait for a snowstorm to stop, look, and listen to what my sweet Lord has to say or show me each day. This morning, He simply said, “Look at this!” I’m so glad I did, and I love that He had my two sweet little mentors make sure I began the day with the proper perspective. Lillyann immediately wanted to go outside and make a snowman, and little Mylah just kept saying, “NOOOO!” she wasn’t commenting on Lillyann’s question. She was just saying “snow” in Mylah talk, or maybe she heard God’s response to all our plans for the day and was passing along His message:)

Fog and Faith

The fog today was as thick as any I’ve ever seen. I missed seeing the beautiful mountains in the distance, but there is a soft lesson hidden in the white mist that touched my heart. It reminded me that faith is believing without seeing, and that was a lesson I needed today. I like knowing what’s ahead when it comes to finding my way, and that’s exactly what God is trying to get me to change. Not being able to see ahead is unnerving, and uncertainty about where He is leading is even worse. The praying life is about love, but it also requires a level of faith I do not yet have. I suppose that’s the point of the lessons:)

I don’t know if it’s human nature or just me, but I say I trust and then offer a list of questions up to God in an effort to find out what’s coming. Even with all those lessons in love about being present and staying in the moment, I still find myself with one foot in the future. The world says to get a foot in the door, but God says to keep both feet in the present and leave the future to Him. Perhaps one day I’ll learn to do that without having to be reminded.

Lillyann is like me when it comes to wondering and worrying about what’s coming, and I love that about her. If I ever get weary with her worrying, I just remember that I am the same way with God. He is patient and loving, and I ask Him to help me be the same. Lillyann is surrounded by those who love and care for her, and I thank God the love He placed in each of their lives and in mine. Knowing you’re loved is at the heart of faith, and God’s love is the most powerful force on earth and in heaven. How can I not have faith when I know who He is and how He loves.

Fog is part of living in the mountains, and I love watching it settle in the valleys. When it comes too close to home, I don’t like it. Today was a vivid reminder to have faith in Him when I can’t see or don’t understand what’s next on the path. The fog is lifting, and the temperature is dropping. I see the mountains, and I see the beautiful white fluffy snow clouds coming from the west. The girls are excited, and so am I:) The beauty of a spring snow is that you know warmer temperatures are just around the corner. Looking forward to the snow and also the sixties this weekend.

My faith is getting stronger, but I have a long way to go. The girls don’t worry about whether or not mommy and daddy will take care of them. They play happily as all children should. They have reminded me today to do the same when it comes to my Father:)

Stillness

The snow started falling around noon as predicted today, and we have five inches with more on the way. The girls got up from their nap and were thrilled, especially Lillyann. She yelled for mommy to come downstairs and see the snow after looking out the window and telling me, “Oooh! There’s a lot of it now!” Together, we got the girls in snowsuits, coats, etc., and they headed to Meme and Pepe’s to go sledding. They were so cute heading down the driveway. Mylah plopped back on Lillyann which was fine with her as it was warmer with her baby sister on top of her:)

I decided to take photos and drink hot chocolate and skip the sledding, a sure sign I’m getting old! I love the snow and had two nice winter walks, but I gave up sledding years ago. Snow brings out the kid in me, but it also makes me stop and enjoy the stillness. It isn’t as much about not being able to drive as it is a sense of wonder and awe at the transformation which occurs as snow blankets everything making even mud beautiful. It’s a lot like Christ’s love except for the coldness:)

The praying life is a life of stillness in the storm and warmth in the cold. It’s been a week of high winds, power outages, and snow, a perfect backdrop for lessons in stillness. Whether the imposed stillness of snow, holding Mylah while she sleeps, or laying beside Lillyann while she falls asleep, the stillness this week has been powerful. I am learning to be still and recognize God’s glory and appreciate the stillness that comes when I enter into His presence. Praying and stillness go hand-in-hand. Silence used to be the goal as I thought I had to find a quiet place to pray.

Cookie, the German Pointer, and two very sweet little girls are teaching me that silence may be golden, but stillness is a state of heart that doesn’t depend upon silence or solitude. In fact, I’m learning that being in the midst of my sweet family brings greater peace than time alone in a reflection center designed for prayer. Time alone in solitude and silence is important, and I love to meditate on God’s Word; but I’m finding that stillness is a much deeper state that brings a sense of peace much like that beautiful blanket of snow.

Sweet Stillness

The world is so pure and beautiful right after the snow falls, and I love walking in freshly fallen snow. It amazes me how mundane objects and plants become magical when covered with a blanket of fresh snow. Stillness has the same effect. I don’t always have silence when I pray, but stillness doesn’t require silence. It comes when I stop and allow the everyday to become an expression of God’s glory.