Tag Archives: grace

Grace Given in a Simple Hello

I rarely share what I write in my handwritten journal. From time to time I may share bits, but never an entire entry. Not because they are full of deep personal thoughts, but mainly because the entries are usually very boring. What we did the day before or what all I need to remind myself to do that day or our plans. But when I sat down to write last night and the words were flowing I knew I would share it here today.

The clock reads just after 8 p.m. Chris and Sam are home safe from Tuscaloosa and both sound asleep. I enjoy my alone time, but oh how I missed them this weekend.

I’m not as tired as I thought I would be considering the time change.

The house is quiet. The hum of the refrigerator is all I hear.

I’m curled up in my favorite chair as I write. My heart so full of joy. My head full of thoughts on the presence of God, choosing joy, and Covenant.

And grace. Grace is filling my thoughts most of all.

Especially the gift of grace given. Of the power it contains. Grace heals and God uses the grace we give to heal.

So many hurts do not deserve grace. But that’s the crux when it comes to grace is it not? Giving that which is not deserved.

Yet when we do we take away the power of guilt. Grace given releases the one gifted from the guilt they feel. It lifts a burden. It allows them to heal.

God uses the grace we give to heal.

Even the grace in one simple word can heal. Even a simple hello in passing can give the person who has hurt us the permission to forgive themselves.

Isn’t that the most difficult aspect of forgiveness? Forgiving ourselves? Yes when others hurt us we often struggle to forgive. We must work through it often times. Consciously making the decision to forgive and show grace. It may take time and deliberate prayer to forgive someone who has wronged us, but I find it infinitely harder to forgive myself when I’ve hurt someone. We have a tendency to heap guilt on ourselves.

But when we are repentant God can use even the smallest grace to heal so we can forgive ourselves.

We can give grace in even something as small as a simple hello.

When was the last time you gave someone the simplest of graces? Have you ever been given the simplest of graces that made all the difference?

683. For new brake pads. (11/1/11)

684. For excellent customer service. (11/1/11)

685. For Gena and friendship that remains through the years. (11/1/11)

686. For sweet Harper Grace & newborn goodness. (11/1/11)

687. For Erin, Ben, Owen & sweet new Ruth Ellen. (11/1/11)

688. For the grace found in a simple hello. (11/2/11)

689. For first Wednesday at HighlandsAU. (11/2/11)

690. For beauty in brokenness. (11/3/11)

691. For a heart that has found healing and peace. (11/4/11)

692. For cute crochet hats on a cool fall morning. (11/5/11)

693. For authentic friends. (11/6/11)

694. For grace given. (11/6/11)

695. For the worship team at Highlands Auburn. (11/6/11)

696. For covenant. (11/6/11)

697. For Chris and Sam making it home safely. (11/6/11)

698. For hugs and kisses. (11/6/11)

Snipets and Grace

Hummingbirds flit around the feeders. Chasing one another, especially the red chested one (the male perhaps), away from the sweet nectar. Swooping so close at times I wonder if they will fly right into my head. My daddy will refill the feeders for a third time later that afternoon. He sits watching them. Never tiring of their antics.

Later hubby and I walk around campus. Blue sky deepening as the sound of the Marching Southerners permeates game day. “I miss walking around campus,” he says. “Me, too,” I reply. Fifteen years since we spent our last Fall on campus. Fall will always be my favorite time to go back to the foothills and The Friendliest Campus in the South. It never seems like Fall until we make it back to a football game. At least one during the season.

Today just snippets of an Autumn weekend. Continuing to count the gifts. Grace. Eucharisteo. Joy.

581. For getting through a Monday. (9/12/11)

582. For a day at Grants Mill and time spent Karla. (9/13/11)

583. For an understanding husband when plans spontaneously change. (9/13/11)

584. For a friend asking for my opinion and help with a project and their affirming words about my gifts. (9/14/11)

585. For paint and canvas. (9/15/11)

586.For hearing Rick Bragg speak at JSU. (9/16/11)

587. For hummingbirds. (9/17/11)

588. For an afternoon date with Chris to the JSU game. (9/17/11)

589. For being on campus at JSU during Fall. (9/17/11)

590. For the blue of the sky moving closer and closer to October Blue. (9/17/11)

591. For the planet in the eastern night sky. (9/17/11)

592. For time on the porch. (9/17/11)

593. For a spirit feeling at peace again. (9/17/11)


A Sabbath of Remembrance

The moon casts shadows across my yard. A planet hangs brightly in the eastern sky. I forget which one. Settled into my favorite rocking chair I listen to the night songs. A star here and there straining to shine against the light of full moon. Autumn night meriting a blanket to keep warm.Ending a day of rememberance. A day of thankfulness.

The days begins early. Waking at four before the sun rises for unknown reasons. Praying then eyes heavy I lay down for a brief nap. Waking again to prepare for church. An emotional service remembering September eleventh. Serving during the next service. Watching as church fills to almost overflowing for a second time that day.

A quiet afternoon at home. Husband resting. Recovering from sickness. Son playing. A Sabbath nap refreshes my weary mind.

The late afternoon light of Fall begs for exploring. Camera in hand I find a road and see where it will lead. Or rather what it will lead me to.

Old country churches. Cemetaries in disrepair. A sunset catching my breath. A much needed afternoon for my artist soul.

Then alone as I put my feet to walking then running. Worship music lifting my thoughts upward. Away from the pain of exercise. Almost an hour later cooling down my breathing returning to normal. Thankful I pushed myself to complete my normal routine. There are days the exercise battle is hard fought. Stretched I return home. Thankful for our little family and a Sabbath to rest.

Full moon casting shadows as I listen to the night sounds. Giving thanks to the Father as I count the gifts. The gifts. They truly are all grace.

559. For Fall like temps. (9/5/11)

560. For energy and motivation to run my usual intervals again. (9/5/11)

561. For no ankle pain after running. (9/5/11)

562. For getting the laundry washed, dried, folded, ironed and put away all in one day. (9/5/11)

563. For a productive day. (9/5/11)

564. For wind. (9/5/11)

565. For time on the porch listening to the wind and rain. (9/5/11)

566. For that brief moment after four days of clouds when the clouds brighten and you see the sunshine. (9/7/11)

567. For free Chick-Fil-A chicken biscuit. (9/8/11)

568. For sunshine and blue sky. (9/8/11)

569. For small group. (9/8/11)

570. For moon so bright. (9/8/11)

571. For getting laundry done all in one day. (9/9/11)

572. For the Switch 56 leaders at Highlands Auburn. (9/9/11)

573. For getting to see Tom and Rachel while they were in Auburn. (9/9/11)

754. For Autumn flowers on my front porch. (9/10/11)

755. For Mrs. Wood celebrating her 100th birthday. (9/10/11)

756. For an afternoon to explore with my camera in hand. (9/11/11)

757. For a sunset that took my breath away. (9/11/11)

758. For time alone in the fitness center running on the treadmill listening to worship music. (9/11/11)

759. For a planet hanging in the eastern sky. (9/11/11)

760. For cool Fall air at night. (9/11/11)

What are you grateful for today?


Counting the Gifts

The counting. The naming each gift. Causing my mind to turn from frustrations to gratitude. Instantly a lifting of my spirit. I can easily rush through my day forgetting to stop and give thanks. But when I do how much brighter my attitude and outlook is. It’s a discipline. Self discipline has never been a strength of mine. But this I know has to become a habit. Hopefully it is. This naming of each grace.

276. A fun photo session with a senior guy about to graduate. (5/10/11)

277. No show socks. (5/10/11)

278. For feeling like I'm coming out of this funk. (5/10/11)

279. For being able to run half a mile at once again. (5/11/11)

280. For rockin’ the to do list two days in a row. (5/11/11)

281. For Words with Friends games. (5/11/11)

282. For a client being thrilled with their photos. (5/11/11)

283. For hubby & kiddo having a nice afternoon to play golf. (5/11/11)

284. For bubble baths and books. (5/11/11)

285. For morning sunshine. (5/13/11)

286. For apple sauce. (5/13/11)

287. For cooler temps after the rain. (5/13/11)

288. For birds singing as I start my Saturday morning. (5/14/11)

289. A day with cooler temps. (5/14/11)

290. Kiddo having enough confidence to video himself playing a song on the guitar & sharing it on facebook. (5/14/11)

291. Time spent with kiddo at the piano & guitar practicing. (5/14/11)

292. Watching the wind blow the tops of the trees against the sky and clouds. (5/14/11)

293. Compliment from my father-in-law. (5/14/11)

294. Afternoon light playing through the trees. (5/14/11)

295. For a church who encourages its pastor to take a sabbatical to rejuvenate and rest because they love him not because they are unhappy. (5/15/11)

296. For Sunday afternoon naps. (5/15/11)

297. For cloudy gray days to simply rest. (5/15/11)

298. For a new worship song learned. (5/15/11)

What gifts from the past week can you give thanks for?

Grace Gifts 5/10/11

There is a restlessness disrupting my spirit these days. Unexplainable so I move through the motions. The search for grace gifts taking more effort and focus. I know they are there so I intentionally slow myself. And I list.

245. Finishing the devotions for a teen girls retreat. (4/26/11)

246. Technology during severe weather coverage. (4/27/11)

247. For wind. (4/27/11)

248. For leaves blowing in the wind. (4/27/11)

249. For a friend sharing a gift. (4/28/11)

250. For a quiet night. (4/28/12)

251. For an evening alone with mexican and movies. (4/29/11)

252. For encouragement from another writer. (4/29/11)

253. For time to give out food to those cleaning up after the horrific storms. (4/30/11)

254. For time with family. (5/1/11)

255. For an amazing sunset on the drive home from church. (5/1/11)

256. For rain and thunder without tornadoes. (5/3/11)

257. For sliver of crescent moon. (5/4/11)

258. An owl calling as I go to bed. (5/4/11)

259. For cooler temps if just for a day or two.(5/4/11)

260. For Target cardigan sweaters. (5/5/11)

261. For a calm day subbing. (5/6/11)

262. For friends who are finding peace. (5/6/11)

263. For opportunities to guest post on a couple of blogs. (5/6/11)

264. For haircuts. (5/6/11)

265. For time with Rachel and Teresa. (5/6/11)

266. For the birds in the tree outside my parents’ kitchen chattering & singing away. (5/7/11)

267. For honeysuckle blooming along country roadsides. (5/7/11)

268. For kiddo singing to himself when he thinks no one is listening. (5/7/11)

269. Beautiful day on the lake for a boat ride. (5/8/11)

270. Unexpected afternoon with Sam after checking him out of school early. (5/9/11)

271. Chris rubbing my back. (5/9/11)

272. Falling asleep easier. (5/9/11)

273. Time at the piano. (5/9/11)

274. Encouragement from a twitter friend. (5/10/11)

275. Listening to the birds sing as I fold laundry. (5/10/11)

What grace gifts are you thankful for this week?