Hmmm… Weathered Skin, A Violin and Joy

Tucked away somewhere in our family home is a black and white sketch that frequents my subconscious. An elderly disheveled looking man with weathered face and hands contentedly draws the bow across the violin strings. My thoughts are not taken to where he might be standing or for whom he is playing, but the look of joy on his face as the voices of cords and wood filter into the air. That expression brings to mind a quote by Sarah Young from her devotional book, Jesus Calling,

When you let others’ expectations drive you, you scatter your energy to the winds.

This aged gentleman is not concerned about others’ enjoyment of his performance, but the pure pleasure of producing a joyful sound.

I must find this sketch for my office wall as a reminder that joy is found within oneself not from outside circumstances.

Hmmm…The Practice of Giving Thanks

Neglecting the practice of giving thanks has darkened their minds.
~ Sarah Young, Jesus Calling

This I know is true; focusing on the negative is blinding. Following the February death of our parents, I found myself in a blue funk, a gloomy place with little interest in what normally brought pleasure. Yet today, as soft fluffy clouds float across a baby blue sky, nearly naked trees stretch their arms heavenward, and the smell of Mom’s stuffing tickles the nose, I find myself excited with anticipation for the day’s traditions and the making of memories with family and friends.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Hmmm… Clear the Debris

Driving past the family home as gloomy grayish blue clouds dim the brilliance of the autumn leaves, I noticed a piece of garbage in one of the flowerbeds. Making a mental note to stop on my way from work to pick up the unsightly litter, a whispering voice floated through my brain.

What are you doing about the messy state you allowed yourself to be in the last few months? What are you doing about the scattered indifference to the enjoyed interests that once reminded you of Me? I know you are grieving. However, you allow circumstances around you to dictate how you feel and respond.  Wake up! Change your focus. I Am still here. Clear the debris and enjoy Me.

Hmmm… Tangible Reminders

With the popularity of social media and the lack of teaching the social graces, sending greeting cards through the postal service may become a lost art. Do not jump to any conclusions. I appreciate greetings sent electronically just as much. However, there is a different aspect to receiving a folded sheet of card stock with a pretty graphic and printed sentiment. It is a physical expression of one’s love and care.  So, today, this first birthday without a card from Mom and Dad, I will reminisce over my collection of cards received over the years and frequently read Isaiah 43:1-3; tangible reminders I am valuable and not forgotten.

Hmmm… Moment of Clarity

Despite the ugliness of Alzheimer’s with its thievery, the soul of the person remains. Thankfully, God does not forget and knows we need those brief reminders, those moments of clarity that give us a snippet of respite from an otherwise devastating thief. (Isaiah 42:16, Isaiah 43:1-3)

Hmmm… A Whole Lot of Roaring

There is a whole lot of roaring around the globe over the killing of Cecil the lion. Some are calling for the hunter’s extradition to Zimbabwe, while others suggest his punishment through bodily harm.

Hmmm… I wonder the absence of the same level of protest over the removal and sometimes desecration of our own national symbols; reminders of this country’s faults and merits.

If we remove and/or destroy the memories of paths traveled, how do we decide the next step in our journey? (Psalm 78)

And, the Trump-et Blows

We all know how sharing our political views in this forum, and similar, can produce explosive conversation, which is why I do not make it a habit of sharing mine. However, I do want to thank one of My Monkeys for sharing this article through email.

As I read this very interesting piece, I was reminded of my own comments during a recent conversation with family. I cannot understand the Trump-et’s want to be a presidential candidate. He is arrogant, bombastic, and does not possess the typical decorum we are accustomed. He is not afraid to speak his mind, does not care if people disagree with his opinions, and makes no apologies for them.

Do I think he will receive the nomination for his party? Time will answer that question. Yet, I believe his purpose is to bring forward the truth of each candidate, no matter his or her party affiliation.

My Monkey, I too, will keep listening as long as he continues to sound off along this line.