I have an aviary today, sort of.
If you keep up, you know that I would LIKE a finch aviary, because I would never watch tv again, I would lose weight since I wouldn’t care about eating, AND, I would lose my “au naturel” frown that I have developed over time while I stare at the computer because I would smile all the time staring at sweet birds instead.
But I have an aviary today, sort of.
It’s actually my upstairs window. The window is closed, but on the other side there are no less than a dozen flies of varying sizes, from the monsters that are like little 747s in the bathroom when you least expect to be buzzed in the morning, to the tiny ones that are SO annoying and too fast for a swatter. They are trapped between my glass window and the screen that keeps them from afternoon sun and freedom.
I am pretending that they are zebra finches and lady gouldian finches and parrot finches and I am making up cute chirping noises in my head.
Entertainment is MADE in small town USA, I tell ya. Not provided, MADE.
I am grateful for Romans 8:38-39. After yesterday’s tragedy, I needed to read and re-read. This is peace in the middle of confusion and fear and despair. This is hope.
And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Yesterday, I drove the 5+ hour drive west, back to small town USA, and for the first couple of hours, I had a dull ache in my stomach. It was an ache of “I don’t wanna leave the comfort and familiarity of the city and its ways, and stores, and people, and our church.” I love Kansas City. It has been a safe home for me for five years.
But then, in the third hour, I noticed that the ache was dissipating slightly, and I began to enjoy the drive and the view. It was a beautiful Sunday afternoon and the Flint Hills were rolling and a great contrast to the vast blue sky. I loved seeing the fields harvested and yet to be harvested and imagined the parked combines and grain trucks were due to a Chiefs game on tv.
In the fourth hour and beyond, I was so aware of how in the span of a few hours, my outlook changed once more, and I was watching the mile signs closely, anticipating being HOME, back in small town USA, back to a simpler life and schedule. As the sun set and the temperature dropped, my longing for our new home increased, and I LOVED feeling like I couldn’t wait to get there.
This message made me cry.
This message made me proud.
This message lit a fire.
And the Heartland Men’s Chorus that sang afterwards made me want to stand and shout. If you want to know what I am talking about, you really should free up your Friday evening… I have played Mark Hayes piano music for 30 years. I wonder if I could convince Sam to take a 5 hour drive on Friday afternoon.
The Chorus will present From the Heart, a concert of HMC’s greatest hits on Friday, November 10 at 7:30 PM in the stunning new sanctuary of the United Methodist Church of the Resurrection, Leawood, Kansas. Composer/pianist Mark Hayes will be featured, accompanying pieces he has written for HMC and presenting piano selections from his latest album.
I am grateful for my imagination.
I am grateful for a sealed window.
I am grateful that I love BOTH of my hometowns, that I am not emotionally running away from one to another, that I miss one when I am gone but love the one I am in at the time. Bloom where you are planted.
I am grateful for peaceful five hour drives and beautiful scenery.
I am grateful for the nudging of the Holy Spirit during some invaluable teaching by our pastor.
I am grateful for continual reformation.
I am grateful for beautiful music that prompts tears to flow and a heart to burst with joy.
I am grateful for time spent with my dad at a great movie on Friday night, time spent with my CASA girl on Saturday, time spent with our small group on Sunday morning after church, and time spent with Truly Julie at the hospital on our drive back west.
It was a fulfilling weekend, for certain.