For all the in-betweens

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Some days it seems I’m in-between more than anywhere.
In-between here and in-between there.

In-between who I was and who I want to be.
In-between where I’ve been and where I now see.

In-between dreams that have died and those just born.
In-between drop-offs, pick-ups and mess-ups galore.

In-between bedtimes that take too long and mornings that come too soon,
In-between the starry sky and bright side of the moon.

In-between great losses and bountiful gains.
In-between parched dryness and soul-quenching rain.

In-between should-have, could-have and would-haves if known.
In-between all the ways that show me I’ve grown.

In-between the girl of my youth and the woman she thought she’d be.
In-between the dreams of her past and ever present reality.

In the in-between is where I find myself these days.
And I’m starting to realize that is ok.

It’s ok to be where God’s put me to grow.
If that’s stuck in-between, then I’ll wait for the “go.”

Truth be known: life’s all one big in-between,
In-between the beginning, the end and eternity.

If the in-between’s are all we have, there really is no doubt,
We must make the most of all of them before our time runs out.

“What has been is what will be, and what has been done is what will be done, and there is nothing new under the sun.”- Solomon, (Ecclesiastes 1:9)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Five Minute Friday | {paint}

It’s that time again. Five minutes to just write. Linking up with Lisa-Jo Baker and her fab following of Five Minute Friday writers to hash out five minutes of words on a given prompt without hesitation or much editing. Just real. raw. words. Tonight’s prompt is {paint}.

START

There seems to be a theme in my mind and world and dreams lately…a theme woven around these thoughts of dreamers and artists.

To consider the word {paint} fits right in, in an odd little way.

I’ve never painted anything worth talking about. My kitchen wall five times in one week because I never liked the color…still don’t, but how many coats can an old wall of pine paneling truly stand? It’s peeling from children’s nerf gun attacks now, anyway.

I’ve always considered painting a skill set I just didn’t get and really didn’t want. Sure, it would be nice to be able to paint pretty pictures, but I’ve never picked up that kind of brush and I’m too old to start.

Then I consider this: I do paint. I paint daily. With words penned and thought and voiced. I paint daily.

I paint the story of my life. In all it’s mundane and monotonous tones on days that end in “y.”

I paint the story of my children’s lives. In it’s rainbow of  wet kisses and tight hugs and never-ending “I love you’s.”

I paint the story of my Savior. In it’s black and white and not so many shades of gray. There is no gray with God. He is the I am.

And as my brush paints fast and hard and deep and wide the canvas of my life, I see that today I paint. I’ve been painting all these years.

 

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And in the end if the finished work is worthy of anything at all, it will leave a trace of the One who painted my existence.

What is today a perfectly imperfect masterpiece will be perfected in His time. When the Master Painter bids me home and finishes the work He started.

What a beautiful thought. This muddled, befuddled, gloriously ordinary work of art will be made perfect by the brush of God.

The painter of crystal blue skies and fiery red sunsets will put the final strokes on my life’s canvas.

With that thought, I’ll strive to paint with more purpose and definition and love than before. Now that I know I’m a painter after all.

In His Hands,
Meredith

STOP

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Woman to Woman: When bearing with one another is just barely.

Some things are easy to do together as women. Eating. Chatting. Shopping. Put all three together and we have the perfect day. Well, most women, anyway. We can all agree on at least two of those, though, can’t we?

Some things aren’t so easy to do together as women. Agreeing on where to eat. Cutting each other off trying to chat. And telling her she really shouldn’t buy that dress in that color…or that size. Unless you are for REAL friends, then maybe you can pull that off without angst. Maybe.

In thinking about the next part of Colossians 3:12-14 we have been unpacking for several weeks now (details here)…we come to the thought of “bearing with one another.”

Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness,humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another…” (Colossians 3:12-13)

Sounds really good. But how do we do that? What does that look like? What does that mean…?

To be exact, the word bear as defined by Merriam-Webster’s means “something that is difficult to do or deal with.”

My nose is a little wrinkled at that. And then I laugh a little, too. Yep. That can be me. Most days. If not every. day.

So how do we as women learn to “bear” with one another?

The way I see it, there is only one way. In love. Through Jesus.

Sounds simple enough. So why is it so hard?

Why is it hard to bear with our sisters through the good times and the bad? We are fairly good at being there for one another when the rudder falls off and the ship starts sailing out to sea.

But what about bearing with one another on the good days? 

Why is it hard to be happy for our sister when her life is going good and ours is not. so. much?

I’m speaking to me. Why can’t I just be plain happy about this woman’s writing accomplishments and not envy her in the least? Why can’t I look at this other photographer’s site and not wish my photos were as good as hers and I could explain myself on my “Me” page so eloquently?

It all goes back to comparison, doesn’t it? Ugly. Old. Comparison.

We’ve all got warts. Yours may be bigger than mine or yours may be smaller. But a wart is still a wart. (I don’t have any pictures of warts and if I did, I wouldn’t submit you to them.)

When we can learn to bear with another, warts and all, then ladies, we will be getting somewhere.

When we can give each other flowers daily through grace we will arrive. We may not get flowers from our man every day, but why can’t we shower each other with some grace flowers of our own?

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I know it can be done. I’ve seen some amazing acts of grace and Jesus pouring out of women in several communities lately. Like this new-to-me community at (in)courage where they just chose nine over-the-top talented women to join their writing crew.

And oh-my-soul I was brave (or dumb) enough to submit an application…just because. Because I’m a dreamer like that these days. And they were gracious enough to not only send me an email but a beautiful note (like the kind you get in the mail…yeah they still have those and here are some beautiful ones I may just buy myself) full of grace saying they prayed over 475 entries and could only choose nine and that didn’t include me…yet. Well, I included the “yet,”…because I’m a dreamer. 😉

And Lisa-Jo Baker’s Five Minute Friday crew and twitter parties are full of other blogging women giving grace and loving on others. There’s cake and chocolate and coffee every Thursday night. It’s the only place to be. Unless you fall asleep rocking your three-year old, which also happens to me a lot of Thursday nights.

And then there’s the Compel community where so many writers are coming together and encouraging one another…bearing with one another…even when it’s kind of hard because in our gut we wish we had what she had. Her words. Her website. Her number of followers. Oh, yeah, that’s a big one for me lately. How on earth do you get over 1000 followers?! Le’ sigh…

All of this to say…it’s not always easy to bear with our sisters. But it’s always right. And always the better way.

It’s the way of Christ. Bearing one another’s burdens. And bearing one another’s joy, too, I believe.

To bear with your sister is to be like Christ. And that’s worth the bearing, even if somedays it’s just barely. There’s grace for that.

And the more we learn to bear our sisters burdens and joys, the closer we get and more apt we are to be able to tell her she really needs to try on a different dress. Amen?

Thankful you are bearing with me,
Meredith

LINK UP HERE:

 

On Wednesday’s we have started a tradition of speaking “Woman to Woman.” Find us on twitter or Facebook with #w2w. I’ve asked other sisters to join in the discussion by adding their own links below or by adding their thoughts in the comments. If you have a blog and would like to link your post, please link directly to your permalink (ie. https://4hisgloryblog.com/2014/04/02/woman-to-woman-patiently-impatient/) and not your homepage URL (ie. http://4hisgloryblog.com) by clicking on the little blue frog below. You can go back to the beginning to see the foundation for this community here. We would be humbled beyond belief to have you join in. The more voices speaking to one another, the more chance we will be heard and the more opportunity for healing and growing as sisters. And to spur one another on in love, we ask that you visit the person linked before you and comment to encourage. Our words matter. In giving and receiving, they matter. You matter. More than you know. We matter. xoxo- Meredith

NEXT WEEK we will hash out forgiveness and putting on LOVE…which binds everything together. Come back and join us, won’t you?

 

The stuff dreams are made of.

I’ve never considered myself a dreamer. A realist? Practical? Yes. A dreamer? No.

I don’t particularly see the glass as half full or half empty. I just see a glass with water in it. That’s the truth anyway, right?

I have also never considered myself an artist. Never. Ever. That is a term left for people that dance or paint or wear cut off sweatshirts that hang off one shoulder and have long, pretty hair. That’s never been me. Ever.

So the fact that these two words have been flittering around in my over-crowded brain recently has got me thinking. And now writing.

Am I a dreamer? Maybe I am. Maybe I’ve always been and I never took the time to embrace that part of me desiring to be let loose. To dream.

Am I an artist? Maybe I am. Maybe I’ve always had a vision in me that has never felt worthy of a place to land or be made known.

Because I am also a doubter. There is no doubt, this is truth. I’m not proud of my inclination to fear and worry and I can say I come by it naturally and that wouldn’t be a lie either. But, it’s also not an excuse.

I fear the unknown. I fear failing. I fear what I’m sure will happen even though it (usually) never does.

In all the years of trying to be something and someone I’ve made myself believe I am, maybe I’ve left the person I really am behind.

And that’s who I’m in the process of now discovering. This dreamer. This artist. I feel weird even putting those two words in association with “me.” But here I am eternalizing it and there is freedom in the saying so.

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Sometimes we have to step out of who we have been to become who we really are. 

Sometimes we have to embrace the person God made us to be in spite of the fear that says we can’t. 

Sometimes we have to let go and let God in order to hold on to the person He made us to be.

I’m attempting to be and do bigger things than I’ve ever attempted. Not in my own power, which would be futile.

Only in His power and His way and His time will the picture be painted and eventually perfected. The portrait of my life.

He wants to do the same in us all. He wants us to hand Him the paintbrush and the pen and let Him write the words and paint the strokes over our lives the way He already has them laid out.

Our life is not ours to paint. He alone gives and He alone takes away. He has the perfect portrait of our life hanging in His house. We don’t get to see it until the day We are called Home as His children. And we never get to see it if we don’t call Him Father.

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My pastor explained well how when one writes a letter our handwriting may tend to change along with the mood of our words.

Friend, the words of our lives change. Seasons of life come and go and people come and go and the one constant in life seems to be change. But there is another constant that is truly constant.

His name is God. The Creator. The Master Painter. The Perfect Penman. Who has written your story and painted my portrait perfectly.

He bids us to open our eyes to what He is writing and painting and to embrace what He has created as it changes and He stays the same.

Always there. Always with us. Always for us. Writing. Painting. The words of our life.

As we dare to dream what He has in store for us. What He has planned for us. Believing that all things really do work together for good for those that love the Lord and are called according to His purpose. This is truth.

This is the stuff dreams are made of.

Your newfound dreamer,
Meredith

What are you dreaming today? I’d love to hear…

 

 

 

Five Minute Friday | {writer}

Linking up with Lisa-Jo Baker and the gang for another Five Minute Friday to just write. Unedited, unscripted. Real. Raw. Words.

Today’s prompt is {writer}. Ok, I’ll take that. 😉

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START

As a girl, I always wanted to be a singer. One halloween I was Tina Turner. The hair and all. No. Joke. I cannot lie, I’m a soul sister through and through.

For those of you that don’t know me, this was a far fetched dream. This girl does love to sing. Loud and proud. But it’s better suited for showers and trucks with windows rolled down and in the midst of other loud voices along with our church praise team.

This recent dream of being a writer has seemed just as far fetched. My soul has felt this stirring of words needing a place to land for quite some time. Taking the next step is always the hardest part for me. I’m a professional dreamer. Not a professional doer.

So when I finally took the plunge and started this blog after church almost three months ago I didn’t even know what it meant. Other than I was going to explode or implode or otherwise be a big mess if I didn’t get out what was welling up in me.

So I wrote. And I’ve kept writing. And as long as God gives me the words and a desire and a way, I will continue to write.

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I may never be considered by anyone else to be a “writer,” and I’m ok with that. Well, actually, I’m not ok. I would love to write a book one day and then maybe officially be considered a “writer.” Until then, I’ll blog. And maybe finally take the leap of faith to submit an article or devotional or something somewhere. The next big unknown hurdle to jump over. Breathe.

And I thank you for keeping this dream alive. Thank you for reading and relating to these words that spill up and out and fall from my fingertips to this keyboard that has become my long lost friend. My Mac and I have a love-hate relationship. Like my bangs.

Thanks for listening again to a fairly short post about my new love and new dream to be a {writer}. Can’t wait to see where God leads…

Graciously,
Meredith

STOP

(Yep, that was probably a few minutes more than five again today. I had to help a little girl go potty and cook her a yellow egg.)

DON’T MISS THESE WORDS…Lisa-Jo has a new book. And it’s for anyone who has a mom or is a mom or may be a mom one day…”Surprised by Motherhood” is taking the world by storm. Amazon wasn’t prepared. They sold out on Day 1. Yep, I don’t lie when I say something is good. Here’s my full review and information on where to order is here. And the link to the movie trailer for the book is here. Enjoy! Oh, and get tissues. For the book and the trailer. And a pen and a hi-liter. And you’re welcome. 😉

Lisa-Jo Baker

Woman to Woman: Patiently impatient.

Sometimes even when we have been on the receiving end of  a gift, we don’t realize it. We don’t see it for what it was and is and for how it should change us.

That’s how I feel about this weeks topic of patience in our  continuing woman to woman discussion. The next word in Paul’s instructions to the Colossians…

Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience… (Colossians 3:12)

This one is a lot easier said than done for this soul. It may be a virtue, but it’s not one I know well enough of to speak of personally.

That doesn’t mean I haven’t seen it in action. I’ve seen the best displays of a woman’s patience throughout my life.

A grandmother whose husband drowned when her three children were all under 5 and never remarried or even thought about it. Patient to endure the cross of raising her children fatherless and working to see them fed, clothed and sent through school. Patient with grandchildren (at least this one…) who didn’t behave in public for her parents, but (nearly) always minded her Granny Grace.

Perhaps there is a correlation in seeing patience displayed and returning it?

I seem to have forgotten what that patience looked like as a child. I seem to need a reminder lately. And my children give me plenty of opportunity to practice this virtue I can’t. quite. grasp.

I’ve heard several people say recently to be careful what you ask of God, He may just give you plenty of opportunities to work on it.

I thought about that sitting through my Granny Austin’s funeral yesterday. I was getting ready to speak and my children were starting to “try” me. Trying this mamas patience in a sweaty-wrestless-small-country-funeral kind of way.

One was asleep on my left side, head hanging, drooling, out-of-this-world asleep. To get up would mean laying him down in the pew and risking him waking in a daze and wanting mama. The other child was on the right side wanting to leave the pew to get gum from her Gran (again) and then not wanting me to leave or for her brother to touch her as I laid him down so I could get up.

I could fill it rising in me hot and heavy. Impatience. That’s the word I know most about. The opposite of patience. We are very good friends these days.

Brother ended up staying asleep and sister ended up sitting somewhat quietly with Pop and then her aunt while this mama got to reflect on another patient woman who lived ninety years and never showed the least bit of dishonor or impatience to a soul.

Why has it skipped me? This ability to deal with adversity and children and husbands with patience instead of it’s ugly opposite.

I was thinking nobody will be able to say at my funeral, “She never said an unkind word about another. Her life exuded patience and kindness and humility.” Nope. Not me. And that makes me sad. But it also makes me real. Because I know I’m not alone. Even if I feel like it at times.

And just today my aunt brought me this cross-stitched photo she rescued from my Granny’s dilapidated farmhouse at the end of that potato field that we have gone through a million times and somehow missed this one piece of framed love.  These words that my mother made for her mother and the first word stitched was “patient,” I feel like I’m being told something today. After I’d started to write this post and wasn’t feeling quite sure it was meaning anything. It is meaning something now.

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I’ve been given a gift I’m starting to see for the first time. And now I’m holding a piece of these women in my hands, a bit moldy like me, but also stitched together with love, like me.

I’m glad to have examples of women that exuded these qualities I yearn to be. To learn. To live.

I’m reminded that the want to is as important as the journey and that’s as important as the getting there. 

So, I want to be a more patient wife. mother. daughter. friend. And I’m on a journey to get there. Not perfected until He’s finished with me. And He’s not finished with me yet. Maybe that is the best reminder of all.

He’s not finished with any of us until He’s finished. And until that day, we are in the process of getting there.

A heart desire to change, to be more like Him and to gain these qualities we are instructed to “put on” sometimes takes more guts than glory. I’m ok with that. You should be too.

We are in this together, sister. Perfectly imperfect. Patiently impatient. That is hopeful, yes?

One patient step at at time. And not forgetting this,

But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience. (Romans 8:25)

We have a lot to look forward to one day. Could be one day very soon. No matter how long the wait is, the glorious reward will be worth the wait.

Patience is not without Hope.

And as I said over Granny’s closed casket, our Hope has a name. His name is Jesus. And He’s completely worth the wait. 

Graciously,
Meredith

On Wednesday’s we have started a tradition of speaking “Woman to Woman.” Find us on twitter or Facebook with #w2w. I’ve asked other sisters to join in the discussion by adding their own links below or by adding their thoughts in the comments. If you have a blog and would like to link your post, please link directly to your permalink (ie. https://4hisgloryblog.com/2014/04/02/woman-to-woman-patiently-impatient/) and not your homepage URL (ie. http://4hisgloryblog.com) by clicking on the little blue frog below. You can go back to the beginning to see the foundation for this community here. We would be humbled beyond belief to have you join in. The more voices speaking to one another, the more chance we will be heard and the more opportunity for healing and growing as sisters. And to spur one another on in love, we ask that you visit the person linked before you and comment to encourage. Our words matter. In giving and receiving, they matter. You matter. More than you know. We matter. xoxo- Meredith

An InLinkz Link-up

Surprised by Motherhood. {Yeah, me too.}

I have a new soul-sister-soul-mama friend I’ve never met. Sounds odd, I suppose. She has put into words what I’ve felt in so many ways on so many days as both a motherless mother and a new mama. Her book “Surprised by Motherhood” is speaking to me. From the inside out. In a oh-so-good kind of way that has me wanting the pages to go on and on. And that says a lot for me.

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As much as I like to read, I find very little time and motivation to do so. Don’t get me wrong, I have a stack of books a mile high. Toppling over bedside my reading-praying-God-chair in the living room…spilling over next to my bed and onto my bed and onto my head some nights, books that were started and never finished. Not so with this book. I devoured it. And it left me hungry for more. That’s some good eats right there.

Lisa-Jo Baker is more than likable, she’s relatable in a way that feels as if she’s reading and writing your own story, not just hers. As a daughter. As a mother. Even if your life story is completely different than hers, it is also completely the same.

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The words on these pages have breathed life into my desperate soul as a mother learning to be a mother after leaving the corporate world. I knew how to be a working mom, but learning to be an ever-present mom has been challenging. Lisa-Jo’s way of describing her own experiences as a mother through several life-transitions have been comforting for this mama in transition. And we can all say amen to another sister sharing our struggles. Eh? That’s what Lisa-Jo would say. I believe it must be a saying from her native, South Africa, and I like it. I believe our northern friends do that in Canada, too…eh? I digress.

SurprisedByMotherhood_Pin_07_OptThere are too many hi-lited words and paragraphs and even pages to mention. I really just wanted to hi-lite the entire book, but though that may be a bit redundant. And over zealous. But if it made any of the words sink in enough that I would go back and let them give me life again when I was ready to turn in my resignation letter as full-time mom, then it may be worth it. There’s your warning…buy this book along with a pack of hi-liters. They will both be your new best friends, along with Lisa-Jo.

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I’ve always tried to keep it real here in my piece of blog land. I love the transparency I find on the other side of this computer screen and may clam up if you talk to me about my blog in real life. Maybe because it’s the realest real me and it’s a lot easier to unleash the real me here than there in front of you, face-to-face. Either way, there were a couple of chapters in this book that dug into my core. Like as a knife digs into that jar of peanut butter and comes out sweeter than when it entered. It’s still sharp, but sweet and spreadable.

I came away realizing I have my own anger issues to deal with. As Lisa-Jo said, ”Sometimes you don’t realize you have a temper until you have kids.” Ahem, yeah, that may be an understatement for me some days. And this, “There is no rage like the exhausted rage of motherhood.” Ouch. But misery is certainly better with company, so it was like a breath of fresh air to know I am not alone on those exhausted days when I lose my temper. And I lose it more than once. And then Lisa-Jo tells about becoming determined to mother deliberately and she began to write a new story about her son in her heart and in his life and God graced her and him with a peace and relationship she couldn’t have imagined in those early days. The words from that chapter of her book and life gave me a renewed hope as I fight for these children God gave me and am learning to mother intentionally. It’s a battle for their souls and  mine. A war against impatience and endless bottom wiping. A fight against a hunger for your alone time and their hunger for you. And it’s a fight worth fighting and letting God help you win together.

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If it’s not obvious, I’m a fan of both Lisa-Jo and these pages that I’m so glad she was brave enough to write. She says we are all brave as mothers. She is correct, isn’t she? This woman that grew up in South Africa and swore off motherhood after her mother died is now speaking to mother’s hearts all over the world about the glory and guts involved in being a mother. It’s not all good, but it’s not all bad, either. Eh? Yeah, I’ve been surprised by motherhood in a lot of ways, too. And the best is yet to come, I’m sure.

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You can get your own copy of this pretty little book right here or in your favorite bookstore this week. I promise it will be worth giving up a cup or two of coffee this week if that’s what it takes to get it in your hands. The aroma will be stronger and last longer than that cup of coffee and will awaken your soul in the most beautiful way. Enjoy your reading! Come back and let me know what you think and make sure to leave a review of your own on Amazon. It’s time to take make our voice known. The brave ones.

Graciously,
Meredith

 

 

 

Five Minute Friday | {Mighty}

Here we are again…another Five Minute Friday with Lisa-Jo Baker and the gang. She prompts, we write. Five minutes (give or take…give a little for me usually), real, raw words. Short. Sweet. Hopefully. 😉 Enjoy!

{mighty}

Big word, mighty is. Well, not a really big word, but it means big. Right?

Powerful. Strong. Brave. Willing. Mighty.

Well tonight I don’t feel very powerful. strong. brave. willing. or mighty.

Sometimes we have minutes, days, weeks, years that suck the life right out of us and leave us anything but mighty. Much less than mighty.

And then the thought of the Mighty One comes to mind.

The One who gave me this life. To live free.

He never meant it to be about me. My wants. My needs. My desires. My might.

He gave me this life to be about Him. His will. His love. His ways. His Might.

Jesus died in humility so that in three days His Might would be revealed and never questioned again.

When He died and rose again, His Might took over for my failings. As a person. As a parent. As a wife. As a friend.

In His Might, I can prevail. Not because I am. Because He is. The Great I Am.

No matter what gives you the thought you are un-mighty today, there is One whose Might can fill that void.

It’s not up to us to be what He wants to be for us. What He’s already proved He can do in us. If we let Him.

We have a mighty call alright. To stop the fight and give into His Might. 

Your Mighty Mess,
Meredith

And if you have a mother, know a mother or “am” a mother…don’t miss Lisa-Jo’s book “Surprised by Motherhood.” I’ll never be the same for reading it. And I’ll recommend it to every woman I know. Mother or not. Get it here now. Go. Now. You’ll be sending me chocolate because you love it that much. (Vanilla Lindt preferred. Thanks!)

Grace in the Gap.

She’s home now. At peace now. That woman whose hug and collards felt like home.

Reunited with those who left her before she was ready to let them go.

There’s peace knowing where she is. With her Maker.

Face to face with the One who created her.

I wonder what she did when she saw Him.

Fall prostrate at His feet?
Run up to Him for an embrace?
Stand in awe with no words? What could one say, anyway?

And before she left she was graced.

In the gap between here and there…she was graced.

With visits from family she rarely got to see…not knowing she wouldn’t see again.
With last days spent in peace and with those she loved by her side.
Last moments in the presence of a grandchild and daughter.

Some call it good fortune, good luck, good karma. Whatever that is.

I call it Grace. And I’ve seen it before in times like this.

When my mother died one morning from a sudden heart attack and shared her last night on earth with her very best friends and then a late night talk with me. None of us realizing it was the last words we would share with her…
That was Grace. Nothing less.

When my other Granny gave up her fight with dialysis and her loved ones spent a week telling her goodbye and at her side as she was ushered into Glory. And that grace offering of being able to sing “Amazing Grace” to her sweet frame in that bed the last night she drew breath as she had sung to me so many times as a child…
That was Grace. Nothing more.

I’m now motherless and grandmother-less and I’m at peace. Because these three women breathed life into me and so many others while they were here. And that breath lives on in those they exhaled life into.

And in the gap that I’m in now…between today and eternity…there is grace.

There is grace in the gap for all of us. We don’t always see it or feel it or know it. But it’s always there.

Grace beckons to be received. His name is Jesus.

His grace was poured out on the cross in a pool of blood. And it covers those who claim it.

Covers us in peace like we’ve never known. Covers us white as snow.

Oh, yes, there is grace in the gap. Between the now and then and here and there.

There is infinite Grace if we take the time to see it and feel it and live in it.

Go in Grace today and claim it. It’s yours and it’s mine.

Graciously in the Gap,
Meredith

 

 

 

Woman to Woman: Meekness is not Weakness.

A woman covered from head to toe who only speaks when spoken to and has no ability to defend herself. Timid and shy. That’s been my view of what the word meek meant in the past. Meekness is weakness, right? That’s what people say. That’s what people think. I did.

I was wrong. They are wrong.

Meekness is actually a characteristic of Christ that we are to emulate. And wear. Boldly.

Continuing to talk woman to woman today as we dissect this instructional verse,

Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness…” (Colossians 3:12 ESV)

What is meekness if not weakness? An attitude of grace, I believe. A choice to take the high road, when you are being steered down the lesser one.

Surely meekness is a close cousin to the better fit of humility we discussed last week, but not one in the same.

Merriam-Webster’s defines meekness as “ enduring injury with patience and without resentment” and “not violent.”

It doesn’t take more than a few seconds for this notably aloof blonde to recognize the greatest living testimony to that definition.

…looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.” (Hebrews 12:2 ESV)

Has another human ever exemplified the definition of meekness more than Jesus? I say not.

And how do we as women begin to see ourselves as capable of the same? I ask you. I don’t have the answer. I just know He did it. And He expects us to. And then there is this great reward for figuring out how to wear this seemingly impossible to wear trait,

The payoff for meekness and Fear-of-God
is plenty and honor and a satisfying life. (Proverbs 22:4 MSG)

Yes, please. I’ll take those words on my headstone. “She lived a God-fearing, honorable and satisfying life.”

How do I get there? How do we get there?

meekness_inspirational

We could start by recognizing meekness for what it is. It does not equate to a life lived in fear or under someone’s thumb. Quite the opposite.

We choose to endure our trials with strength and dignity and grace. This does not mean we endure abuse that goes against the laws of man or of God. Meekness is not a means to excuse or tolerate abuse. God allowed laws to be put in place for our protection and if we experience abuse that breaks those laws, we should always seek help and a way out.

I’m talking about the trials that God gives us to endure for His names sake. Those things we don’t necessarily want to go through, but when we do we come out stronger than before and He is glorified through our example of meekness to a world that needs to see it personified.  To a world that saw it once and didn’t realize it for what it was.

Jesus endured the cross for the JOY set before Him. He could see the other side and in humility and meekness, He stayed on the cross when He could have called legions of Angels to rescue Him. But He had a greater plan. One of redemption and grace and hope. A plan that through His meekness was fulfilled.

Woman to woman, can we remember this great example of meekness the next time we face a trial threatening to leave us only weak?

Can we agree that meekness is not really weakness and is actually worth putting on? And even weakness when worn in the image of Christ, is strength.

It’s not wrong to be weak. When we are weak, He is strong.

It’s not wrong to be meek. When we are meek, He is lifted High.

In meekness He was lifted high that we might experience the same Joy one day. One glorious day. A day worth putting on meekness for today. 

Graciously yours,
Meredith

Welcome to Woman to Woman Wednesday’s here on my little piece of blog real estate. Working to encourage each other to truth in Christ. I would be ever so honored if you would link-up with your own blog post on today’s topic by clicking below on the little blue frog or at the least, share some comments with us. We are all in this together and we can learn so much more from each other than on our own. Agree? Thank you for stopping by and I can’t wait to meet you! xoxo-Meredith