Maybe it’s the rain, or because I’m still sifting through my reflections on Refine. I’m ruminating on a great many things these days–
Last week we bid farewell to the old Ash tree that once shaded the top portion of our backyard. Though it had been healthy when we first moved in 10 years ago, it died a slow, quiet death while we lived unaware.
We took her shade for granted, and only noticed her distress when it was too late. Next year, we will burn the pieces for warmth during the winter and by next spring, it’s likely they’ll be little trace of that old tree.
My 8 year old watched with sadness, as they cut away at her limbs. When I asked him what he would miss most about the tree, he shrugged and scowled at the men working with beautiful precision to take her down.
Turns out, what we will miss most about that old tree is simply it’s presence. It’s always been there, as long as we have, and the absence of her leaves a hole in the yard, a bright spot without the sanctuary of shade.
I can’t help but wonder what else I’m living oblivious to.
Things are changing.
I’ve spent the last week cleaning out closets. The kids have grown so much in the last year and now that it seems Spring is here for real, we have been transitioning clothes and taking out what doesn’t fit, making room, clearing clutter.
It’s tedious work, but at the same time relish the feeling of accomplishment that comes with finishing the task.
I rather like this shedding.
It’s been 2 years since we planted a spring garden. I miss the soil in my hands, and my morning inspection of the plants. I ‘ve missed barefoot walks in the morning dew, touching the tender shoots, measuring their progress.
The garden is ready for planting. Since we didn’t start plants from seed we will be buying most of our plants in their pre-started pots at the nursery. This isn’t how I like to do it but at this point, it’s better than nothing.
Saying yes to planting feels perfect and right this year.
I feel the need to tuck away a bit, to linger in closets and in the garden. I’m hungry to stand in the kitchen and cook from scratch, to hang clothes on the line–to do everything as slowly as possible.
This isn’t like me, yet it feels exactly right.
I’m on extended retreat.
Some of you have asked if they’ll be another Refine, will I do it again, you ask.
Here’s the best way I can answer that: While I fully believe God is with us and meets us in the middle of our mess, there is great value in slipping away to meet with Him intentionally, away from the distractions of our everyday lives.
You don’t need to wait for a scheduled event. Plan your own. The truth is, we prioritize the things that are important to us.
Make retreat a priority.
I don’t know if there will be another Refine–It’s not my decision to make right now.
Please don’t let that stop you from getting away with God.
Give time to God. As soon as possible. Right now.
Make God your priority.