Friday, June 19, 2009

friday five: life is a verb

(All sorts of situations at home have delayed today's post, including no internet access!)

Jan at RevGals writes:
Jennifer recommended this book, which I got because I always value Jennifer's reading suggestions. The author of Life is a Verb, Patti Digh, worked her book around these topics concerning life is a verb:
Say yes
Be generous.
Speak up.
Love more.
Trust yourself.
Slow down.
As I read and pondered abaout living more intentionally, I also have wondered what this Friday Five should be. This book has been the jumping off point for this Friday.

1. What awakens you to the present moment?
Two things, which at first glance seem diametrically opposed: tension, and the Holy Spirit. When I feel my shoulders getting tight I stop whatever I am doing and take a deep breath. I try to release whatever is on my mind as I exhale and simply empty myself. In that emptiness other things often emerge, and those things tend to do with a present moment.

The HS is my most reliable partner in spontaneous crime. Out of nowhere a detached thought will emerge, or I will observe a detail in my surroundings that causes me to pause and consider some aspect of it. She is especially good at getting me to listen to silence. I can recall one evening a multitude of years ago when my goddaughter and her sister (then both under the age of ten) came to spend the night with me. As I was going to bed I was stopped by the sound of their breathing, an awareness of their presence and a reminder of the aching void of not having children of my own. (My goddaughter and her sister are pictured to the right, all grown up!)

2. What are 5 things you see out your window right now?
The front yard, full of birds eating breakfast.
The opportunity for getting better acquainted with our neighbors across the street, two of whom we haven’t met.
A garden project I would like to move from planning to reality.
The colors of sunrise reflected in the windows of the house across the street.
Our overgrown front lawn.

3. Which verbs describe your experience of God?
Inspire, accept, comfort, disappoint, amaze, annoy, love, surprise… I’ll stop there or I’ll be here thinking about it all day!

4. From the book on p. 197: Who were you when you were 13? Where did that kid go?
At 13 I was a girl adjusting to the separation of her parents; making new friends when in seventh grade four grade schools funneled into one junior high; experiencing live birth when my dog had a litter of puppies; suffering through death when the firstborn pup died at five weeks, and the mother of the litter was killed three weeks before Christmas; being involved in every conceivable sport for girls, either as athlete or team manager. As I list the things most readily available to my memory two themes emerge: grieving and relationship building. Where did that kid go? She was tasting adulthood, and her road pretty much continued down that path.

5. From the book on p. 88: If your work were the answer to a question, what would the question be?
How are you seeking to respond to God’s call of service through your gifts in this time and place?

I don't know if I would call this a "bonus," and it doesn't follow the ff instruction, but I found this a very challenging post today. Guess it's illuminating some of the bumpy road that is my path at present, and that's not exactly comfortable. Guess God is answering one of those prayers about revitalizing my faith! Careful what you ask for...!

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Nik said...

Clarinda's still down the road at the other end of the Mile :)

Songbird said...

Such a powerful image in #1.

angela said...

I want to add your verbs for God to my list! Amen

Since this is my first visit here, I can only guess what you must be going through but if the young woman at 13 is any indication, you really are living.

MumPastor said...

wonderful photo of your goddaughter and sister - that one actually is a good description of God for me! Their love is tangible. Great play!

Jayne said...

What a great Friday five. Loved your insight and answers. Have a beautiful weekend. :c)

revhipchick said...

great F5--love that you included annoy as a verb

Jane said...

Thanks for your honesty - I also found it a challenging post to write - enjoyed reading what you wrote

mid-life rookie said...

"The HS is my most reliable partner in spontaneous crime." Hadn't thought of it this way before. If we are truly inspired by the HS, then yes we will do at least one thing others will "tut" about even if it isn't technically criminal. I need to look at my life and see if I'm causing enough "tutting" around me. If not, I may not be living up to God's potential in me.


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