Getting By–Leave It Behind


IMG_3261Nature looked done in, barely getting by in those wintry days of endless gray. I wondered briefly if the Creator had forgotten us.

But then generous rain clouds appeared, pouring liquid joy on patient trees and bushes.  Fierce stirrings.  Spring came on, unfurled its glories.  My humble garlic chive bush of pure yellow straw transformed overnight, pluming up a fountain of succulent spikes.  My rosebushes by the mailbox, browned, stark, and brittle from cycling droughts, suddenly renewed with full leaves and velvet-perfect rosebuds.  Rusty, forlorn cypresses at the university sprouted a new canopy of ferny, feathery branches again.  Bluebonnets poked up tiny, deep blue spirals that grew into long, lush spikes.

Little lambsies and goslings have landed too this very week and begun to frisk about the farm next to our Eden wilderness.  So much new life!

Under harsh, fickle weather conditions, all of nature waited, stripped bare and ragged brown.  Silent, yet trusting renewal would come.  And so it did.

In the Bible Job 14:7-9 catches my gaze.  It says, “But there is hope for a tree:  if it is cut down, it will sprout again, and its new shoots will not fail.  Although its roots may grow old in the ground and its stump begins to die in the soil, at the scent of water it will flourish and put forth shoots like a new plant.”

What have you faced? What has struck you down?  If a loving Father continues to restore and renew this ravaged, savage world we live in, can He also renew you and me?

I’m taking notes on nature’s story.  Seeing, hearing what God is doing.  Paying deep attention to something that my soul like a cut down tree needs right now.

I’m still battling anxiety, insomnia, congestion, food allergies.  Not seeing a lot of progress for all the money and time spent.  I’m taming the busyness beast by saying no more, reducing time spent with social media but not social connections important to me, scratching how-to books off my reading list, not spending so much money and attention on supplements and expensive medical treatments.

I’m going simple and still.

Saying less and listening more to God.  My ceaseless analytical questions and frantic telling God what I need Him to do for me—I’m shutting it down a while.  Resting, sheltered by Unseen Shepherd arms. Breathing in presence while waiting like a half-dead, withered rose bush, just getting by.  Not thriving yet.

Me, a child waiting for Papa.  He comes.  Wisdom like a quiet stream ripples through me.  The overwhelming chaos of symptoms melts into peace that He drapes over me like a royal mantle, over my frailty and tears of frustration.  In His care and kindness there is joy that I cannot explain, but I can savor.

In the quiet His voice comes, gentle:  Abide.  Soak.  Don’t do life alone.  Don’t think and strive alone.  Bring every thought to Me.  My words are life and healing for you.  So listen every day, follow Me into new growth, outgrowing these troubling conditions.  Through joy, My joy, through love, My love.

So there is escape from just getting by, just surviving.  Escape into zest, thriving, regardless of circumstances and conditions when we listen to the Beloved.



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