It’s the one year anniversary of this lil
I would love to pass gourmet cupcakes with sparkler-style candles to all of you faithful readers who have returned time and again to read this little journal of Rare and Beautiful Treasures.
What a year it has been!
I will be real with you and tell you that this has been a difficult year; the kind of year that brings you to your knees and leaves you with but one breath of air left in your lungs to cry out for mercy. Somehow in the midst of that rubble, this blog was born.
Prior to this year I lived my life (like all people?) afraid of the black and blue that hovers in the shadows. I was ready for the black and steeled against whatever the blue might bring, but it was many shades of grey that turned up at my door like a thief in the night to slowly dismantle things: page by page, memory by memory, love by love.
Today, on this anniversary, I can tell you the specifics are not important, but the lessons are varied and true. I consider myself to be but one amongst a brotherhood of the courageous, who will ultimately be called the triumphant. And I am confident that after a year of standing in ashes that God will somehow use them for beauty. I wait on that day with an eager heart, and I pray that I will not be so caught up in my own plans that I will miss the transformation. For today a new life kicks within me and I want to keep walking forward, but to not forget the lessons of the past, learned on ice cold nights when my head was plastered to the ground in silent prayer. My heart will always remember the cries-“Yaweh, where are you??”
So here I sit today, as the season’s change, the air is cool but the sky the bright blue of promise, and share these lessons (link heavy!) learned in one year of recording God’s Rare and Beautiful Treasures:
1. You really can train your mind to focus on the simple things
. It is worth the effort.
Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things.
2. If you write the lovely things in a journal, and then post them on the internet for the world to read, people will. From countries across the world, your voice will be heard.
3. This takes courage.
4. You will make irreplaceable friends that you otherwise would never have known this side of eternity.
6. Life is the same for readers in Brazil and Australia as it is for me in Indiana: life’s stress will come but you can always take time out to watch the birds and to bake a pie. Somehow, in the midst of life’s jagged edges, this matters.
7. Home improvement projects
will take twice as much money as you anticipate and six times as much time.
8. The easiest projects you create on a whim and a song will circulate through blogland and be every one’s favorite.
9. Neutrals may be best, but a pop of color goes a long way.
10. You may cry an ocean of tears, but the Lord knows every tear. Someday He will use them to wash you free of that which will have fallen away.
Thou tellest my wanderings:
put thou my tears into thy bottle:
are they not in thy book?
11. Sometimes you cannot feel God-and that is ok. He is still there.
12. God answers prayers.
13. Sometimes you will be thrown about in a raging sea, but only to be better refined for the journey before you.
14. On your birthday, you may receive a call from a stranger you have never met, offering to pray with you, and then the answer will be clear: “Yaweh, there you are.” (thank you to a special friend who has made Jesus alive and real to me over and over and over this year, I love you Steph.)
15. Sometimes the best renovations cost the least amount of money.
16. Ralph Lauren and his paint colors cannot always be trusted. (sorry Ralph, but seriously, send clothes, all will be forgotten.)
17. Green monster smoothies taste great and will help you shed pounds: 1 cup almond milk, 1 banana, 2 heaping cups fresh spinach, 1 Tbl almond butter, few ice cubes, blend. Trust me, friends.
18. A good novel and cup of sweet milky tea can improve almost any day.
19. You are sometimes powerless to protect the ones you love the most. This hurts like walking barefoot on broken glass, but carries an important message-you must trust God to protect them according to His perfect wisdom. For you are not God.
20. Francine Rivers writes life-changing books. Haddasah, sweet sister in faith, thank you for your faithfulness.
21. You will be blessed if you take the time to stop and buy the flowers.
22. You can never have too much wainscoting or too many hardwood floors.
23. You might always walk the earth with a limp, but your crutch will be the One who suffered more and knows all.
24. For To everything, there is a season.
and every season will bring understanding and thereby knowledge. Your house will then be built upon a rock . . .
25. “its rooms filled with rare and beautiful treasures.” Proverbs 24:3-4