As I sat outside a few nights ago, a Blue Heron flew overhead. While at the beach earlier that same day as the kids splashed in the water, a Bald Eagle circled above. Both times I spotted those majestic birds flying over head, it took my breath away. I stopped and thanked God for all He has given us and marveled at the work of his mighty hand.
As I sat down for quiet time that night, I realized something. I have been on this earth for 32 years. I have lived right here in this area for every one of those years (aside from during college) and until I met Howard, I never knew these birds existed around here. I was 20 when we began dating and his family is very into nature and bird watching so over the last twelve years they have taught me a thing or two about birds and identifying them. The boys are GREAT at spotting and identifying wildlife and trees of all kinds.
What stood out to me though was that these things had been a part of my surroundings for TWO decades before I ever even noticed them. It seems that we see them all the time now that we are looking for them. I can't help but wonder how on earth I never noticed them before. So wrapped up in my own world, I was missing on the beauty surrounding me.
Similarly, Howard and his family have opened my eyes to what having a relationship with my Heavenly father can be. The past few weeks I can't help but notice each day how a veil really has been lifted from my eyes since meeting Howard and I am overwhelmed with gratitude. Not only is he a wonderful father and husband, but he was a tool that the Lord used to help to open my eyes to all that I was missing out on. The blinders have been removed and I can see again and what a beautiful world it is.
While I can see a vast difference in my life and awareness, I still have to wonder what I am missing out on. I have spent so much time in my life in survival mode. I have just tried to live moment to moment, breathing in and out and putting one foot in front of the other. If I am being honest, I feel like I am still waiting for the other shoe to drop. Mundane is something I am not terribly familiar with. I feel like I am always looking for the next tragedy or dilemma instead of just basking in the mundane of today.
In an effort to merely survive, I am sure I have missed out on some things. I have spent a majority of my life in fight or flight mode, and right now, God has handed me a season of blissful ordinary, a season I have always longed for and I am not sure what to do with it. As Isaac's birthday approaches I am keenly aware of how my world has changed forever and I am intent on not wasting all I have been given and all I have been taught. I don't want to waste anything He has given and I am trying hard to keep my eyes fixed on Him. I am seeing beauty everywhere and my heart floods with joy as I sit here on this deck watching three amazing gifts crafted by God himself run around the yard.
Instead of looking for the tragedy that is looming around the corner I am trying harder than ever to look right in front of me, at ALL I have been given. I am determined to see the beauty in the mundane and look at the world with the wonder I see in the eyes of my amazing kids. July 14th through July 20th are the days that Isaac blessed us with his presence, the Lord gave us life and though it was also taken away, He gives good gifts and Isaac was no exception. My goal this year is to honor those days by finding things each day to celebrate the blessing God gave us in Isaac and bless others by pouring His love out from our cup that runneth over and to give hope to hurting hearts. My heart hurts and I long for my boy who would be SIX years old this month, but I have to know that God has a great plan and my only hope is to follow Him and to walk in obedience and love. I am more thankful than ever for the hope that Jesus gives by overcoming the grave. One day, one day...the tears will be wiped from every eye and our hearts will hurt no more, and for today let's try to get out there and help the hurting hearts everywhere because while we long for "someday", today is happening right now. If we can ease a hurt or just share hope and love, let's make a difference today and not just waste it away wishing for eternity.
The truth is that I don't want to wish a way a moment of this. I don't want to spend each day looking forward to tomorrow when today has already been given. Those who know the Lord and all he can do, are so blessed, but there are so many out there wishing their lives away because of the hurt they carry among other things. It is our responsibility to share what we have been given, and largely, it is love. We are called to get out there and LOVE our neighbors, even when it is hard and even when it is scary, and with God, we can do it! I have spent many a day just wishing Jesus would return so we could get on with Heaven and just stop hurting already, but I think that kind of thinking will get us into trouble. That isn't why we are here...we are here to love...we are called to help the less fortunate and to share Him and how he has changed us. Has he changed you? Are you willing to get out there and spread His love?