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Friday, December 3, 2010

in the spirit

the weather's turned cold here in east tennessee, and after a literal monsoon came through and dumped enough rain here that i invited folks over to kayak down our driveway and course down our street that resembled something akin to the ocoee river {where they had the atlanta olympics white-water events}… but no takers. let's just say it was wet.
followed by a pretty snappy cold front. nothing gets east tennesseers more pumped up than a few flakes in the sky. snow flurries in these parts are novel enough to get faces… young and old alike… pressed up to the glass to watch. and these weren't even flakes. they were microscopic snow balls.
there's nothing like cold weather to get me in the christmas spirit.
but even if it was 90° outside… i'd still be in the Spirit.
i love this time of year as i really stop—even in the midst of all that needs to be done—to listen and wait.
to be in tune with what the Holy Spirit is up to this year.
i had a nice dose of that yesterday as i traveled to atlanta to meet with our partners. it was a difficult place for me to go to because it's been a challenging time for me lately and i've had to really visit what it looks like to die to myself and put my own desires aside.
as a designer, spending eight hours driving for a 4.5 hour meeting seemed like completely wasted time. i can't work. i can't be productive. i can't accomplish my tasks. all i can do is drive. and i was irritated. what a waste, i grumbled to myself for the four hour drive there.
upon my arrival, i had to wait for my boss to get off her conference call. i sat in my coworker's office and we chatted… for over an hour. grrrrr. not accomplishing anything, i grumbled. then i started grumbling via text to my friend mama4real.
can u rlax and just enjoy not doing? she texted.
BOOYAH… right between the eyes.
waiting. i'm horrible at it.
and right there, God showed me how waiting is a good thing. how being is a good thing. how much He values community.
sometimes work isn't about doing. it's about being. and building community. and that is a valuable thing.
i was pretty glad God grabbed me by the eyelids and pulled my face close to His. He showed me how much He values people. and relationship. and just in the nick of time, too. beacuse my boss asked me, as we were wrapping up for the day, what i thought about making the trip down.
in all honesty i would have harrumphed it off and glossed over the question with a half-lie of oh, it was alright!
but i was able to honestly share about how valuable it is for us to build community, face-to-face. God probably isn't too happy about email, i said. and probably even more unexcited about texting. {my co-workers and i have struggled with hiding behind our computer screens.}

so what does this have to do with advent?

waiting and watching. being still to see what God is up to.
oh, how i do not enjoy waiting. or being still. or listening {being completely honest here}.
my friend ellen is captivated by advent wreaths and how people observe advent. i'll be linking to her to show her mine… but my wreath doesn't really show the whole story… unless you look closely and see the activity of spending time watching and waiting. the first candle… hope. oh, Lord, i'm so thankful for the Hope you've given us.
i'll share how we use devotions through advent when i get back to my blog. i'm pretty captivated by activities this weekend, and want to make sure to take my time to watch and wait too. can't let a blog getting in the way of what God is up to… hope to share more of what the Holy Spirit is showing me soon.


  1. Praise God that He still works in the heart of man (and woman) - even task oriented people like us. :-)

  2. Awe!!! Wow! It was just the suggestion that came to mind when you texted me! I know that you are constantly busy busy at something, and you never get any down time, so I thought, what a perfect opportunity to JUST BE!!! :)

    Aside: I came through your blog through google instead of my own blog like usual. I couldn't remember your URL, so I googled "Consider it pure joy" and as I hit enter I thought "good luck!" figuring a slew of expositories and theology discussions would pop up, but you were #4 on the list!!! Pretty cool! :)

    Love you friend!!!

  3. As I read this tonight (from school I just looked at the pitchers--spelling intended), I thought, but driving can be so relaxing for all the reasons you mentioned.

    Talking to people about nothing can become important.

    Taking time away from routine can lead you places you never thought you'd wind up...

    Love the wreath. Thanks for the mention. Brad's daughter made one the other day, I'm going to post it on Sunday. It's sweet...

  4. It does seems like a long drive for a long meeting. God has slowed me down. I have been sick for two days. Can't do all the hussel and bussel at all! Sitting here has made me realize what I need to do now and what can be done over the next few weeks and I'm feeling very calm about it. My daughter is going to help me next week. All I can do is try to breathe, read posts and watch movies.


love me some comment love… thanks so much for taking the time to share your heart with me!