writing, faith, life ~ update October 21…

The “tagline” for my blog is writing ~ faith ~ life … and I’ve decided to experiment with posting a little weekly update that covers each of these areas. I’ll try it out and see how it goes, and how it feels, and just take it a step at a time.

So here’s the update for this past week…

W R I T I N G

I got some work done on the novel, and that was my only writing focus – and I feel conflicted about that.

On one hand, yay for making progress with the novel!

On the other hand, I didn’t do anything with the anthology, and the only blog post I put up was another printable (which didn’t require much actual writing).

It feels like I didn’t spend as much time writing as I could have. I wasn’t as productive with the writing as I wanted to be.

In thinking about moving forward in a way that feels better, I’ve decided I want to try a more structured schedule (again) than what I’ve had lately.

F A I T H

Time in prayer steadies me, comforts me, sustains me… and this week reminded me of that truth again and again.

This month I’m participating in a challenge to write out the book of Ephesians. I write a few verses each day and use a variety of tools to go deeper into the book, and this week I continued with that study.

This week I was reminded, daily, of the importance of my personal relationship with Jesus. I was also reminded (again) that I’m not good at apologetics (for a variety of reasons).

And I was reminded to take my life moment by moment, staying in the present moment, not looking too far back or too far forward.

L I F E

After summer weather continuing into autumn, we suddenly seem to have jumped to more winter-like temperatures. (I hope things swing back a bit so we can experience autumn.)

We were having to run the air conditioner just a few days ago and now we’re running the central heat. Not even a full week passed between them – and it used to be that we could go for a few weeks without running the a/c or the heat (and save some bucks on the electric bill) … but the past couple of years have been different.

I won’t get into ideas or theories about the weather changes, but I’ll just say things are not the way they were for most of my life, and I’ve been alive for quite a while.

Our kitty has sought lap-time on these cooler mornings.

My husband had the day off work on Monday, and didn’t have to go to work on Friday until early afternoon, so we had extra days this week of relaxing mornings and taking-it-easy time.

Even though it’s cold outside right now and I get grumpy if I think about the weird temperature changes, the sun is shining and the sky is a beautiful blue…

And I am grateful.

 

trust is always a thing…

As the anthology seems closer to becoming a reality, it feels like I have to trust even more that the writing will come.

As the new novel gets closer to being finished, it feels like I have to trust even more that the story will come.

As I continue to go through the days – and continue to deal with my lifelong stuff of anxiety, self-doubts, feeling like few people care – it feels like I have to trust even more that Jesus is with me.

Maybe it’s not that I’m really having to trust more. Probably it only feels that way because this is now, this moment… and past times and past feelings can feel less intense (sometimes) when we look back.

In reality, trust has always been a “thing” for me, whether it’s trusting God, trusting other people, trusting myself, trusting my voice and my writing.

Earlier this month, I made myself a small, easy TRUST bracelet.

I’ve been wearing it every day.

Around 20 years ago, I made a similar TRUST bracelet because I wanted a visual reminder to trust God, trust Jesus, on my faith journey. Because, like I said, trust has always been a thing for me. And back then, as it has been through so many periods in my life, my anxiety was amped up big-time.

(I believe there are many reasons for the severe anxiety issues I’ve had most of my life… and trust definitely plays a part.)

That particular trust bracelet was on a gold chain, dainty, easy to wear. After daily use for a very long time, I put it away. When I decided recently I wanted to return to wearing a daily reminder of TRUST, that old bracelet wasn’t an option anymore.

So I decided to make myself a new one. Inexpensive. Simple. Easy.

The main thing is the message it carries, the reminder whenever I glance at my hand.

TRUST.

God is with me. Jesus has my back. I’m never alone. The writing I’m given to write will come.

I see my bracelet with the simple block letters. I’m reminded of what I already know.

And I remember to trust.

It’s not always easy for me. But it’s oh so necessary.

 

spaces…

As I continually try to go through my days with more grace and ease, I’m reminded of how spaces can be important.

A space doesn’t have to be fancy. It doesn’t have to cost anything.

For me, it simply needs to feel right for that moment.

My somewhat new morning routine now includes front-porch-sittin’ time.  Although we’ve lived in our house for ages, until two or three months ago I’d never spent much time on the front porch.

It’s small. It’s narrow. It feels so…exposed (for someone who is highly sensitive, extremely introverted, and socially anxious).

But suddenly I felt guided to spend time out there, enjoy some fresh air, before the day became too hot. So I went outside and sat on the front porch one morning. And then the next. And the next…

And now it’s become a routine I treasure.

My husband has weekends off from work, so the two of us sit out there together, on our old park bench, on Saturday and Sunday mornings.

On weekdays, I head there alone with an ancient, small, battery-operated radio.

I listen to soft jazz. I talk to Jesus. I look at the sky. I breathe the fresh air.

It’s a gentle, ease-full, slow movement into the day.

Another space I’ve come to appreciate more this year is the availability of tables at the public library where I can go to get some writing done away from home.

For the first time ever, I ran into a period this past winter and spring where my writing seemed to flow more easily when I was away from my desk – and not only away from my desk, but away from any room of the house.

Fortunately, the public library held the key to unlock my writing flow.

My space at the library offers a different view, different routine, and different feel than my familiar surroundings of home.

The writing is once again flowing when I’m at home  (and I’m so grateful!) but I’ve decided to continue scheduling days when I pack up my writing gear and head to the library to work.

A change of space, a change of pace, a change of view…

Finding the right space for that moment.

It can be a little thing. But it can be powerful.