He says it again.

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Patience is a hard discipline. It is not just waiting until something happens over which we have no control: the arrival of the bus, the end of the rain, the return of a friend, the resolution of a conflict. Patience is not a waiting passivity until someone else does something. Patience asks us to live the moment to the fullest, to be completely present to the moment, to taste the here and now, to be where we are. When we are impatient we try to get away from where we are. We behave as if the real thing will happen tomorrow, later and somewhere else. Let’s be patient and trust that the treasure we look for is hidden in the ground on which we stand.

Thanks Henri Nouwen. You nailed my thing. Thank you for acknowledging that it’s hard.

Hello 2016

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Dear 2016,

Hello there. Greetings. Are you ready? I mean you’re here. You’ve arrived and we welcome you, New Year. I reigned it in with several good friends on the dance floor with lots of glow sticks. My highlight was the NYE party with my kiddos + parents though. We danced and got sweaty.  Glow sticks flying, a countdown at 9pm, then sparklers.  Seeing their little bodies groove to the beat is the best, being foot loose and fancy free.

Tis the season to look back, look ahead…but I should Be Here Now, as I sometimes write on post-its. As a 7 (the adventurer) on the enneagram, I  avoid pain, daydream, often seeking “fun” around the corner… so for me, its about looking at the present and learning to be good with what is before me. There is this “need” deep down that seeks a thing to look forward to. I can be okay with now when I know that later has something groovy in store. When this doesn’t happen, I feel restless.

Our pastor had us think about what we don’t have the answers to, the things in our lives that aren’t changing, how do we meet God in this place? My strength comes into its own in your weakness. The weaker I get, the stronger I become. This requires me to get to my restless state, until I become calm and okay with it, with what is before me.  “Setting the mood” in my home helps. Lighting a candle, playing music. I’ve also learned that sorrow and joy can interact closely at times. Henri Nouwen helped me to grasp this…

Joy and sorrow are never separated. When our hearts rejoice at a spectacular view, we may miss our friends who cannot see it, and when we are overwhelmed with grief, we may discover what true friendship is all about. Joy is hidden in sorrow and sorrow in joy. If we try to avoid sorrow at all costs, we may never taste joy, and if we are suspicious of ecstasy, agony can never reach us either. Joy and sorrow are the parents of our spiritual growth.

So many songs accompanied me through the year. The entire Josh Garrels album, Home.  The Lone Bellow, Bleeding Out.  Josh Garrels, Pilot Me. Andra Day’s, Rise Up. The Welcome Wagon, Up On a Mountain, Recently Lord Huron. Valerie June’s, Somebody To Love. All Sons and Daughters. Wait, there are probably 30 more. NM writing them all down.

God was, is and will be…good. Straight up, all the time, good. Hope, joy, pain, love, adventure, stillness, dancing, freedom, choices. Ordinary, unexpected. Busy, or lazy, to do lists, doing. Noticing, the great outdoors, fresh air. Brisk winter, rosy cheeks. Being neighborly. Slowing down. Giving a hug. Calm in the storm. Learning by mistakes. Listening, double checking. Responsibility. Receiving, being blessed, asking for help. Community, friends. Motherhood, deep love, patience, and dancing with glow sticks.

Here, here 2016!

P.S. At the end of this day I will have seen 2 movies…Joy and Brooklyn. Also, 2016…KC’s Most Anticipated Restaurants!!