Thursday, December 16, 2010

Stay awake

Reason one million and one why I shouldn't worry about the items on the house list that stay undone longer than I would like.

These beautiful little visitors have appeared just outside our large playroom picture window, perfect for tea sipping and gazing on quiet mornings with my littlest two. Claire's pudgy little finger points and her eyes get big. Even Max notices them, swinging his arms, trying to aim his new grabbing abilities at these flittering little creatures. 

Why does this make me think of my unnecessary stress? The bushes the little birds are enjoying so much are supposed to be lawn by now. When we moved in last year this part of our lawn was turned into a moat surrounding our house while we replaced crumbly old stone basement walls. A moving in/reno winter, busy career spring and a pregnant summer followed, then a fall with a newborn and still no raking and seeding was accomplished to turn the pile of dirt back into lawn. This item on the list has drove me crazy. 

And now these little birds bring me peace. Little birds who wouldn't be here if not for the undone 'to-do'. 

There's a song they've been singing at church throughout Advent that's stayed with me lately. "Stay awake, be ready, you do not know the hour that the Lord is coming."

These little moments are the Lord coming. You have to be awake to notice them. The little voices talking to you in the middle of the bustle. The small bits of beauty surrounding us. All gifts.

I love this conversation between Shug and Celie in The Color Purple. It changed my view on religion and my spirituality. God doesn't have to be a he, or a puppetteer above us. God is in us, surrounding us, flowing between us, embodied in nature.
"I think it pisses God off if you walk by the color purple in a field somewhere and don't notice it.
What it do when it pissed off? I ast.
Oh, it make something else. People think pleasing God is all God care about. But any fool living can see it always trying to please us back. ...Everything want to be loved. Us sing and dance, make faces and give flower bouquets, trying to be loved. You ever notice that trees do everything to git attention we do, except walk? ...Whenever you trying to pray, and man plop himself on the other end of it, tell him to get lost, say Shug. Conjure up flowers, wind, water, a big rock."
Or conjure up birds. And sweet little people.


  1. Lovely reflection. I will carry the idea of "stay awake" with me today. Thanks!

  2. if we slow down enough, the most beautiful gifts can be right before us.


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