The Quiet Side, A Different Peace…

I

two boat on ocean during golden time

Photo by Skitterphoto

 

The North shore of my piece of sugar white heaven faces the sound (Bay) side of the island.

The three mile bridge stands sentinel guard and my  small bay is dotted with white sails stirring my heart.

The bridge that brings me home to my nautical world.

The smell of fish and salt is a soothing balm to a weary girl.

The hermit crabs do a miniature square dance that leads them safely home.

The Sandpipers play hopscotch in the tide pool foam

The Gulls swoop and squawk over schools of fish and bones

There is a different peace on the Sound, the quiet side.

It always feels like the end of the day here where the tired come home to rest.

Like a sweet baby’s coo the waves lap upon the shore.

The “Quiet Side” is what the locals call the back door.

And are happily living and dying on this island right here.

 

 

 

 

 

Fear and Faith

man walking on the empty street

Photo by Alex Fu

Even in the darkness I cannot hide from you…

When my fear whispers that I will not be able to cope

that I will never make it out of this hole…

Faith tells me my Father knows what I need

The Father who keeps filling me with his strength

and just in time He supplies all the Holy Light

that I need to battle through this dark night…

I raise my head from my prayer and I see Jesus kneeling there 

The Light of the world has prevailed and no earthly power can keep me from His care…

 

 

 

 

 

 

And Christmas comes once more…

person holding flashlight in road

Photo by Simon Migaj

 

The crave for connection… As we approach the advent of the first coming of Christ I am reminded that in my sixty three years of life I have never observed a more isolated society even though communication avenues are more brilliant than ever. I love that we share the love of our families on Facebook as this is the most critical form of connection in the human race…though all of us cannot connect with blood family we still have a longing to belong.
There is much data out there now regarding anxiety and shame. I believe that most of us are still very uncomfortable with these very two unraveling entities. Shame unravels the deepest level of our ability to “connect” to anyone and Vulnerability, which causes anxiety,  comes with the extremely high RISK of being wounded. Connecting with another human being is that level that gives life meaning. To tell the true story of your whole heart tells who you are. Most of us guard that story due to past failures to be understood or to find ourselves left like a wounded soldier bleeding on the battlefield…while this may sound somewhat depressing I do not believe this is true…I have lived my life both ways. One, guarded from any and all who might hurt me or think me strange (which no doubt I am strange. Hal) On the other hand I have chosen to take the Vulnerable life path in my latter years and here is why…The most vulnerable person I have the deepest relationship with is Jesus Christ. He chose to be vulnerable in the hopes that those who believe in his sacrifice will always have Hope and Life…deep inside of us we all long for these two things above all else in my opinion… when I reflect on the Courage it takes to deny “shame” and embrace “vulnerability” it is mind boggling…I have messed up innumerable times attempting these two actions of life. The result is it leaves me victorious, humble, and often times “wounded” and at risk for “injury” deep down in my soul but oh my how WORTH it the victories, failures, and wounds have been! As I approach 64 years the end of the month I must say yes I have regrets and there are things I would do differently now but I do not regret one single day that God has allowed me to breathe the breath of an abundant life and to embrace the sweaty, difficult, messy parts as well as the fragrance of a rose or a daffodil in the Spring, the salty sea of Summertime, the woodsmoke smell of Fall, and the biting cold of Winter over and over again…
My Christmas wish is that I would continue to tell the story of my whole heart and that each of you would share yours too. It is the reason for those of us who believe in the Holy Birth of Jesus continue steady on…

Where Charity stands watching
And Faith holds wide the door,
The dark night wakes, the glory breaks,
And Christmas comes once more.

Magen veLo Yera’e (Defender that shall not be seen.)

switched beige table lamp

Photo by 祝 鹤槐

Like silver liquid the moonlight poured over my head spilling down my back renewing my eyes and my mind…

I had stepped outside the hospital to get a breath of fresh air. It had been a long shift and my body, mind, and spirit had grown weary…

As often happens to nurses, I often received words, tokens and notes of thanks and appreciation throughout my career from patients and families, and each one is so very meaningful…

Loss is hopefully made a bit more endurable by compassion and kindness. It is perhaps the truest calling of a nurse, for inside of me lives “Magen veLo Yera’e” which in Hebrew means “Defender that shall not be seen.” Of course, that Defender is not me but the Spirit of Jesus abiding in me. For there is no one good but God as Jesus said, so I know it isn’t me doing it, but I digress…

As I look back over the past forty years my memory runs to the many wonderful people, I have had the privilege to care for and their families. For some there is a reluctance to embrace the future and losing meaning of the past. For some they linger in the pre-dawn haze digesting an outcome they perhaps always knew was coming.

The greatest gift these people have given me is the privilege and opportunity to see that God’s design of our longing to live is not a fragile thing. It is in fact the very strongest thing about us. Yes, our physical bodies wear out with time or disease. Ah, but the soul, the spirit of a person, it fights for life! We were designed for life not death and that is why the “Unseen One who defends us” is the Holy Spirit who lives within those who believe.

Jesus told his follower that He would send us the exact essence of himself in the person of the Holy Spirit to comfort us, to guide, and teach us about Him. It is the transforming phase of the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus that He sent us the Holy Spirit, who is unseen but defends us all the way into eternal life.

This is one of the many gifts that nursing has been to me for I have seen, I have witnessed the presence of the Magen veLo Yera’e. He is faithful. He is comfort. He is Peace. He is Jesus the Christ, the presence of the Holy God himself. Jesus is the gift of eternal life and the forever Defender of our Faith and there is a day coming for each of us when we will see Him face to face and we will know Him in Spirit and in Truth. So, when the night is long and dark and grief comes and hope seems so silent I remember the “thank you” from my patients, other human beings just like me with whom I am allowed to care for, hold a hand, say a prayer, shed a tear, and talk of our loved ones we will miss and already miss. Oh yes, there is much physical  technical data in taking of lab work, blood pressures, procedures, surgeries, and various myriads of daily physical care. But the expressions of “thank you” and the bittersweet outcomes are more than a gift.  I have been gifted with the precious sight of a Child of God being carried home in the arms of the Magen veLo Yera’e, the unseen shield, the Holy Defender of God’s precious people.

Seven months ago, my own Mother who was not acutely ill but was called home from this body while all alone was in fact not alone at all,  the unseen defender was present to the very end.
In this season of giving gifts I am like the little drummer boy…I have no gift to bring before my King but the thanksgiving of letting me know some of His children in this intimate way and being an eye witness to the presence of Magen veLo Yera’e, The unseen miraculous presence of The Holy.
So, you see there is much more to our Christmas celebration of the Jesus Child for with Him he brought all we need for life and godliness.

Sweetest Hallelujah

 

 

photo of child s hand playing clay

Photo by Kate Romeo

These small child’s hand prints on my glass backdoor

the sticky applesauce and popsicle on my kitchen floor

I wouldn’t trade for all the mansions in this world.

 

These conversations with my daughters

the new territories in this journey

I wouldn’t miss for all the fame this world could offer

 

These days I count as precious gems

to the road that leads me found the bend

I will simply give my sweetest Hallelujah

White Sky

white feathers illustration

Photo by Aleksandr Slobodianyk

 

The galaxies in the Night’s heaven are like living poetry

Your beautiful idea happening right in front of me

The air is clear and crisp in a season of knowing

Joy and grief, tears and smiles the evidence of living

Love falling down like white feathers all around 

I cherish your gifts to me Oh God, I see you in utter Holiness

Sunshine (a poem by me in high school)

 

background beam beautiful close up

Photo by Pixabay 

Sunshine stay with me a while I haven’t had you for so long

You are gentle and make me laugh and sing a happy song

We will not speak of love unless it should happen to grow

We will just run and play,  you are a shelter from the cold

You are just the thing I need to help me heal again

There is no way of knowing if we will ever end

Sunshine stay with me a while we will both be free

You are just the thing I need, you let me be me

The Cathedral Tree

 

snow covered green plant

Photo by Marta Dzedyshko

Like the vaults of God’s Holy temple

the blue spruce branches arch over me

Each heavily draped with new fallen snow

I kneel down in grateful prayer under the Cathedral Tree

 

I have never been one to love easily and trust

but You Oh God have loved me with perfect love

I was heavily draped in sin and you washed me white as snow

I kneel down in humility under the Cathedral Tree