It’s been like breathing again….


There are moments now when I just sit and listen to myself breathe….mostly before my children get up and after my husband goes to work. It’s a simple, natural act….air in, air out. For months of my life I cannot remember this sustaining function. For endless weeks I felt like I held my breath and I watched one monument after another crumble. They are still falling and I continue to stand in the wasteland…sometimes with my mouth hanging wide…could anything more come down?

Standing in the dust and ash it is easy to think the prior years have been wasted. I watch money go down the drain and yet another long held belief fall away…and the bitterness edges every corner…holding out for the moment it can rush in…the moment I reach for what is familiar once again. A moment of comfort in sorrow. A wallowing in things lost….anger at having been played the fool.

And I realize I’m holding my breath again….

My child, hear my voice, and give no heed to the voice of the stranger. My paths are straight, and they are narrow, but you shall have no difficulty in finding them if you watch Me. I am guiding you. You need not look to people for direction. You may learn much by fellowship with the saints, but never allow any to take the role that is rightfully Mine….to direct your steps. As it is written, “The steps of a good man are ordered by The Lord. ” ~not by the preacher, not by some Christian worker, but buy The Lord.

Trust Me to do it, and give Me the time and the opportunity to do it. Be not hasty, and lean not upon your own intelligence. Rest in Me. I shall bring to pass My perfect will in your life as you believe and live in faith.

{Come Away My Beloved}
~Frances J. Roberts

And I remember to breathe…and listen. Air in. Air out.

A post on the ‘situation’….how easily we miss the people

This morning while drinking coffee and reading Facebook posts…yes, I’m still there….I ran into yet another boiled down, simplified video of the Palestinian / Israeli conflict. The poster? A friend….must we agree? No. However, as broken hearted as I am over this ongoing life of conflict in the Middle East my heart churns, a new every time the Western Christian culture supports another simplified version of Israeli support!

Had I married the man I loved 12 years ago I would be living this conflict. Its depths and meanings would hold personal weight in my life….I would have skin in the game….it would be my children who screamed in fear… home invaded….my rights taken. It would be my husbands life I feared for every day he went to work.

These are not the things I was going to process and write about today….I was not going to enter Into the fray…I was going to continue to keep quiet….as I do at family gatherings….church encounters and the endless other places where I do not conveniently fit into the prescribed ‘christian’ culture.

Today I live a life of freedom….I have the luxury of making a choice to engage or not. Today I reach out and lovingly hold my blissfully ignorant children and my deepest fear when Mike leaves the house for work is that he may cut himself badly enough to need stitches.

Amidst the angry talking heads, simplified videos and ignorant catch phrases can we try to remember that this ‘conflict’ (it’s really war) affects families, children, mothers, fathers, grandparents! The people of Gaza have no place to go! A million and a half people who can’t run and hide. They are fish in a barrel. Try as we might to understand, we are ignorant….our freedom and our rights are a blessing but they also keep us ignorant of the vary real hardships that others live day in and day out.

So when we (outsiders) ‘hold a view’ or ‘pick a side’ it is always from a half understanding when placed next to those who live it. There are countless ways out for us! I keep silent when I should speak, some put their heads in the sand, while others choose to listen to the loudest argument or pick up whatever their church / religious group or politician tells them to believe.

My heart breaks and I continue to sit on my hands and clamp my mouth shut…if I’ve learned anything it’s this….waving fists and pointing fingers…screaming insults….they all land dead on arrival. We argue about root issues and ‘rights’….how easy it is for an American to point a finger and give and answer. I hear the same arguments over and over…Israel uses it’s weapons to protect people while Hamas uses people to protect weapons…how simple? How clear…I wish someone had thought of that before…we could have saved so many if only we had known sooner.

This world is a sad and dark place. With all of its beauty and joy there are unspeakable pains and suffering that, as an American, I will never understand….never come face to face with….never pay for with my own body or that of a family members….

The shame that I will own is that the taxes I pay contribute to wars and deaths and things that I can not control. The ‘church’ I desperately love, often turns a blind eye and at worst supports this conflict for some obscure belief that we can control when Christ will return to earth. While children scream and the outside world rages…where is the church? Where is our love for the down trodden….for the broken? And, please, what does that even look like?

Let us be wise and loving. Oh, that we would see more clearly and speak more kindly…that we would pray for and love those who hate us and those we love. Take a moment….listen to those on the ‘other side’…hear the fear in their voices when they share their story…choose not to allow your interactions on such topics to speak only in general….only a regurgitation of what you have heard. This world is full of people just like you….just like me. So when we choose to boil down a topic to address only the points we believe are relevant we miss the life, we miss the hurt, we miss the people.

Leaving Facebook? (Part 2)

The time has come…..I’m realizing that my world is just too loud, and a tool that was once wonderful is now a burden. The joy of keeping up with old friends, seeing photos of families grow and the off handed jokes that involve chickens are no longer strong enough to hold me to a space.

For weeks I’ve been drowning in one angry post after another. How is it that people I talk with in person sound so foreign to me online? People, our words hold weight! Why do we insist on dumbing our ideas down with insightful language? In a letter I recently posted to a dear friend I expressed it this way.

I wrestle with an honest desire to see and understand both sides of an issue, but there is just endless amounts of crap to sort out before you can even really ‘hear’ what someone is saying.

What does this look like? How will I stay in touch with people? Can’t I just unfriend some? Who knows!

What I do know is that my heart hurts and if people want to stay in touch I’m not going anywhere….I’m just changing where my voice can be heard. As well as how much I have to listen to.

As things stand today I am trying an experiment. I have worked the first step of purging most of my friend list, and I will likely do another purge in the coming weeks. I have also changed who I follow. If these steps don’t help then leaving will….but we’ll see. I am desperate to change some of the norms I have build into my life….they just don’t fit right so I don’t see the value in staying confined to them.

A call for civility…leaving Facebook behind (Part 1)

It has been a few days and I feel like I can now begin to process some of my thoughts more openly. Social media has gone nuts lately! At what point did it become ok for grown adults to belittle and dehumanize those who are not like them? These were not the lessons I was taught as a child….oh, hold on….maybe they were…

In my youth when my questions and thoughts were outside of the prescribed ideal there were plenty of nonverbal signals that informed me I was out of line…as I grew older the pressure of those around me was enough to solidify those early nonverbals. For a child like my brother, lines meant little more then that there was something beyond to be explored, and that it was likely interesting….but for me…the girl who desired to please parents, teachers and bosses…the girl with endless questions on the inside….this was a world of shackles.

I learned young that my opinions had little value…thoughts stifled. Questions always had a specific answer and I knew when my questions were the wrong kind. Tone speaks so loudly when you are young. Now, I am grown a woman of 34 and I look at the world around me with its endless bickering and ragging and I think….this is what I was taught….

Those with power have voice.
Those with a voice keep it by being louder then those around them.
Teach your children the black and white so they know and will do good.
Asking questions = questioning authority.
Learning means that a person can recite what they have been told NOT understand and own what they believe.

It is no wonder to me that this current culture is filled with those who yell…..with people who say horrible things about the ‘others’ that surround them. This is not ‘rag on my childhood hour’ but there were seeds planted years ago that are now coming to fruit. Cultures and generations clashing that don’t even have the vocabulary to speak the same language.

I’m learning and owning a few things

To my Christian friends and community

It is rare that I am in 100% agreement with you, and unlike I grew up believing, that is ok. I respect you. I love you. I want to know you and how God has moved in your life. I do not have the corner of the market on truth, and the body of Christ is diverse for good reason….I can see parts of my savior reflected in you that I would miss if I didn’t know you.

I will do you wrong. I will hurt you. I will speak without thinking, and act on impulse. I will put myself before you…time and again. I am sorry…and I will be sorry. I will do my best to except your correction and criticism with grace and humility. I will trust that you are looking out for my good.

To those I love who do not walk this faith with me

You are a jewel and a treasure, a blessing to me in ways that you can’t even imagine. Thank you for sharing your story with me. It is my earnest desire to create a space that allows for you to share who you are, what you think and why….even if it is drastically different then where I stand. You bring color to my life. Thank you.

I will do my best to respect how we are different and continue to invite you into this life I live. I will not hold you to my convictions and I hope to learn from yours. This doesn’t mean I won’t tell you what I think….sometimes when you ask….sometimes when you don’t, but I trust that if you know me you already know that

There is more to be said….I am confident that it will make its way out in fits and starts….

Ebed House…the continuing saga….

Well, just incase you might have missed it…we don’t have it all together around here. In fact it’s the total opposite. We are visiting family out of town and I realized just what a mess we look like!

It is a major accomplishment that ALL of the rabbits have been moved outdoors! Outdoors means out of the basement. It is the middle of summer….it should not have taken this long, but it did and we are rejoicing that the basement is animal free, bleached and on its way back to some sort of ‘normal’

We have 14 chickens! Yep 13 hens of laying age and 1 rooster. We are currently getting 1 egg a day! Do the math….something is wrong! I have researched, we have treated for all kinds of fun mites and bugs….I have scrubbed that coop….my brother and I have wrangled bird, soaked and lathered each leg in hopes of killing leg mites and easing a little pain. All with no change to the egg count. So they are all being treated for worms. YUCK! Just YUCK! If there continues to be no change we will butcher them all and start over next spring….

Back to the rabbits……we lost 5 last week. They up and died! One at a time, all from the same litter. What on earth? After much research I have come to the conclusion that their diet was a bit out of whack. They were getting too many greens and not enough roughage. Their little tummies need that roughage to keep them happy and healthy.

We have been growing barley fodder for the animals….my one success….or so I thought! We thought we were feeding our animals a GMO free barley. However, the label was never really all that clear and then I opened the last bag a few weeks ago to find all kinds of junk in with the seed. Let’s just say that brought the fodder to a screeching halt…..and that was two weeks ago. I tossed my hands in the air at that point and put the bunnies back on pellets….because they have likely been getting GMOs this whole time anyway!

The garden just makes me sad….there isn’t a whole lot that we could change there….that one is all nature! And then there are the bees. Mike checked the hive before we left to visit family. Out of three hives only one still has it’s queen. So a friend is checking on ordering two more queens….but man! Just Man o man…

And yet none of it is wasted. There are lessons to learn. We are new at this whole thing and I think for two kids who grew up in the suburbs that we are doing relatively well. Yesterday Pearl had 9 kits! Today I am praising The Lord for small joys and every new life. Oh, and that mom and babies are all outside!!