Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Spring Leaves.

This is a poem I wrote today.  It has been brewing in my heart since late April/early May.  It has finally, finally come out.  It's about the relationship that trees and leaves have... from the trees perspective.  Anyway, here it is!

"Spring Leaves"

Spring leaves!
Spring leaves!
Come out, come out!

Spring leaves!
Spring leaves!
Must I shout?

Spring leaves!
Spring leaves!
What can I say?

Spring leaves!
Spring leaves!
For you to come out once more, and play.

Spring leaves!
How I love you,
My cherished greens
You look so right.
Sweet, gentle swaying
Lets dance all day,
and sing into the night.

I've waited, I've waited, I've waited for you.
Thinking for months, what could be said.
To convince you to appear to me.
To come back to me.
Come back from the dead.

I've protected your home for months.
I've kept a place for you.
Praising God, I reached to the heavens
Holding on to what I knew was true.

That you would come
and here you are,
You came.
You came.
You're here.


But, spring leaves
It departs,
It has to go.
My strong brown arms
Must again carry snow.
I wish there was something, anything I could do.
So you wouldn't,
You can't

No please, no please, fade not from green
Stop, stop! Your red hues make me scream
Why oh why do I replay this scene??

Spring leaves,
It's leaving
I can feel it go
The sting of each departure
Thousands and thousands, I intimately know.
must go.

Goodbye, my love.
So long, my friend.
I wish you could stay.
But Springtime must end.
I won't forget you.
My heart will know
That I will see you again.
When Spring leaves, break through the snow.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

I Felt God (At a Soccer Game)

This is a story of how God worked in my life.

It happened Thursday, at Josh's soccer game.  On the way there, I had this feeling... this feeling like, when I get there, no matter what, I should talk to the people that are there, sitting in the bleachers beside me.  I've met a few of the other players' wives, and I had one in mind that I was hoping would be there and I had resolved to really dive into her life, make her feel important, and hear her story.

So I got to the game, sat down... and pretty much no one was there.  I've never seen the massive facility so incredibly empty.  As I got myself situated, I noticed a players wife on the bleachers just beside me, I've only met her once but remember her because we share our name.  (and there aren't a whole lot of Leslie's out there) She wasn't the person I had been thinking of, but I had decided to talk to whoever, so, here she was.

As I had previously resolved, I began a conversation with an enthusiastic "Hey Leslie!  How are you??"  To which I got a hesitant, odd reply like... "Oh ya know... pretty good... now."  Heavily implying that somewhat recently she hadn't been good about something.  Anyway, I didn't take the bait and thought... ok maybe I'll just mind my business... I had brought stuff to work on anyway.  

So after a few minutes of avoiding conversation, I dove in with a, "So hey, how have things been going for you lately?  How's life?"  which started the conversation about how she had been called to jury duty, that it was a really difficult criminal case and that she was really stressed and worked up about it.  The jury she was on had closed the case that day, so she was free to talk about it... and talk about it she did!

As I said before, the place was literally empty except for me and another chap.  Leslie to my left, and then to HER left (and my far left) another guy who was probably in his mid 30's.  I noticed that as she started talking about the case, his ears perked up and he was clearly listening in on the conversation.  During a pause in her story, he asked her who the judge was.  He explained that he's a prosecuting attorney, and from there they dove into a deep conversation about the events that had taken place with the lawsuit, the other jurors, the defendant, etc etc.

However, I was on her right.  He was on her left.  Quickly and surely, I was shoved aside and pushed out of the conversation.  Forgotten.  They were immersed in conversation.  He was affirming her, telling her she had done the right thing.  Setting her mind at ease about the whole thing....  

....I was writing in invitations to a Bachelorette Party.

I was so completely out of the conversation that after a little while, I was sort of bored and decided to listen to my ipod.  That's how completely shut out of it I was.  I'm really not exaggerating at all.  and then this feeling started to set in... this.. "wow, that was really rude"  feeling.  This, "I started talking to her and now she is completely ignoring me, ridiculous!"  

but then, I felt strongly and with 100% certainty in my heart, God "spoke" to me.  

He informed me that what had transpired was exactly what was supposed to happen.  that she didn't need to talk to me, she needed to talk to the prosecuting attorney.  I couldn't offer her the assurance she needed like the attorney could.  I, "the encourager", couldn't encourage her the way she needed to be encouraged!   However, God has given me an ability to start conversations and get to know people.  and He used THAT to get THEM talking.  He used my gift, to get her to where she needed to be, and then my job was done.

and I think it's the first time that I've seen God specifically use that ability.  If I hadn't struck up a conversation (as I had been inspired and set out to do before I had even arrived at Soccer Spot) those two never would have talked.  

and when the other Leslie left, she was visibly happier; she clearly had more peace.  She even apologized for completely ignoring me,  but I didn't mind at that point.  I was so unbelievably happy to be used by God (whether or not she or the attorney ever know it)  

I realized, with ever-increasing humility, that God created me the way He did to bring Glory to His name.  The gifts and things that I can do are for His use, and I need to let Him use me in whatever way He wants.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

The Honeymoon Chronicles: Part 3

One of my passions in life is love. I love, love. I'm passionate about marriage as well. I love marriage. I love seeing beautiful marriages, I love dreaming about how to have a beautiful marriage, how to make love and in love-ness last.... so here's one of my theories on how to "make it last"

I think that part of maintaining the "in love" feelings has a lot to do with remembering your beginning as a couple. There is a certain way that couples treat each other that has a tendency to fade.

In the beginning, couples cherish each other. They are fascinated by the others words, tendencies, quirks, thoughts... They listen. They dive into each others hearts, seeking to know more. They ask questions, good questions, because they want to really get to know their new love. They are nervous. They clean their house or apartment before the other person gets there. They hold doors and make food for each other. They send cards, leave notes, buy flowers, text message, and hold hands all day.

Lets stop there. They hold hands. Lately, when I walk around in public, I've been observing the couples who are holding hands and of those couples, approximately 100% of them are NOT wearing wedding rings. Which can only lead me to believe that married people stop wanting to touch each other all the time. Holding hands in public is like staking a claim. It says, "Yeah, he's with me". Without saying anything. I guess rings say the same thing. But you can forget you are wearing a ring pretty easily. It starts to become a part of you, an unnoticed accessory... but I want to "forget" that I even reach out for Josh's hand. I want reaching out for him to be so common and everyday that it becomes as natural as wearing a ring.

Anyway, back to our list. A new couple is not rude the others' family, does not speak ill of their parents in private, and tries to win them over when in their presence. They think of creative new dates in an effort to win each others hearts. They brag about the object of their affection to their friends. and....well... they absolutely do NOT fart in front of each other.

Which leads me to my point. Josh and I don't fart in front of each other. Ok, the occasional accident happens, but really, we don't. and when the offense does accidentally take place, we are quick to offer an apology. Some people might see this as immaturity, that we "can't be ourselves" or aren't "comfortable" or "free" with each other. But I disagree. I see it as "I cherish you" and "I respect you" and "I want you to like being around me" and "I love you more than me". In all truthfulness, we have more freedom in our relationship than I had ever imagined could be possible. I have more freedom now that I am married to Joshua than I have ever been at any point in my entire life. He knows me, really knows me. But he doesn't "know" the smell of my 'toots' . It's gross, it's rude, it's not something you would do in front of a stranger, or family, or friend, or..... anyone..... and it's definitely not something that people do when they are trying to "win each other over" in the beginning.

and the thing is... I've already won him over.

But I am going to keep living as if I am still winning him over.

All day.
Every day.
Until the end of my days.