Ya know, one of the things I was really good at while in Italy was taking time to appreciate. I know I talk about this a lot, but every so often it strikes me again how blindly I'm walking through this beautiful and carefully planned life.
I was driving home today after work and several errands with Aaron (which included buying a mattress! Yeah!) when the realization hit me again. The sky this evening is a white shade of gray, forewarning us of snow, they say. Its tone is the type that always makes other colors so much more vibrant and noticeable. Around the corner from my house is a private school, the building of which embraces old architecture. The bell tower is sturdy and textured, the top spindly and intricate. Terracotta base, the top a green like rusted copper. I drove by and happened to look upwards at it. Against the sky all its details and shades popped, as if quietly saying, "LOOK. Stop and look at all I have to offer your eyes and your heart." It's inanimate, it's always there, it's seemingly unimportant. But it provokes life simply because of the way it makes us stop- not only only our eyes, but also our hearts.
Stillness. Admiration. Awe. Beauty. Shock in the realization of how often I miss this.
One of the things He is re-teaching me now is the fact that full glory to His Being equates to full enjoyment in Him. All for all. I am not wrong for having freedom and peace and joy. I am not sinful enough to be out of His gracious sight, and I'm not good enough to believe that I can make it all up to Him and give myself a reputable name. I am what I am: His. And that means free. Accepted. Loved. Wanted. Enough. Full. Sung and danced over. Smiled upon. My new name is "My Delight is in Her." How heart melting is that, how truly gripping and humbling and life shattering. And how often do I push it away for the sake of over productivity, self value, busyness, laziness, feelings of utter defeat and not enough.
And still He reminds me. Gentle pushes, urges towards deep breaths and tears of joy. For the sake of my relationship with him, the sake of my being, the sake of His name, I am commanded to look up. To notice. To relish. To praise. These things- these seemingly mundane things- they are not for naught. They are arrows, directors, reflections.
And I just love the way He grabs each of our attentions- each in such different ways. For Aaron, it's through the coming together of his favorite people, laughing, being. For Krysia, it's through dancing, serving others, doing things that make her soul rejoice. For me, it's through the small things. Glimpses, moments, visuals and smells and feels. The contrast of colors (which is one my favorite creations of God ever), the feel of the wind all around me, the sight of another person's creativity manifested. The actual doing of putting on denim and large cozy socks and planting myself in the kitchen to make granola. He and I connect in that way; it's our thing. And I love it so much, because it doesn't happen with anyone else in the way that He makes it happen between the two of us. I'm so thankful for the way He created me and knows me and points me back to Himself.
Look up, my friends. Pay attention to the things you pass over everyday; regard the things your soul naturally leans toward. They're there for a reason. They're there for connection. They're there for life.
P.S. Stay tuned... I made my mom's favorite this week- soft brownies with mint buttercream and chocolate ganache. Recipe to come.