Monday, November 27, 2006

Quiet Time

Quiet Time

I’m one of those seekers.
So I’ve read the books, heard the speakers.
Even asked my mentor how’s it’s done
Decided it's time for me to do one.

A quiet retreat, alone with God
Some might think it is rather odd
But I know that it will be good
Just like they all said it would.

I’d sit, be still and wait
It will be just great!
I’ll get answers and advice
I might learn how to be really nice.

So away I go with a friend
Two days we will spend
Our wish we will fulfill
To be still, very still.

We came armed with a plan
Made before we even began
A few hours each day
We went our separate way.

Off I go by myself to find a spot
And hope there is nothing I forgot
Because once I start being still
There’s no way I can stop!

I’m ready to have a go at it.
The candle is lit
On the table I have a leaf and a rock
And a feather from a poor bird in some flock
(I collected them this morning on our walk
Back when we could still talk)

Okay, thank you God that I can be here
I really want you to be near
Nothing will interfere, my focus will stay clear
Not a distraction, not a thought will cross my mind
As I will think of you all the time.

What was that, I heard some thing
I don’t want a bee sting
Ah, look a humming bird
That’s what I just heard.

Oops, this is a distraction,
Was my first reaction
But I’m sure this is okay
It won’t ruin my day
Because God and a hummingbird
Are really close, I’ve heard :)

The amazing thing was
The wings make quite a buzz
And what vibrant colors on it
I watch for a bit. (and then he’s gone)

But he’ll be back, I presume
And my camera, it’s back my room
God, just a minute or two
And I’ll get right back to you.

Okay, now I’m set
God, you there yet?
Thankfully I do know
There’s no where you will go.
And I want to show my desire for him
And not give in to my every whim.

But my toe hurts, this splint is killing me
I better see with the trouble might be
Ah, the tape is too tight
I need to wrap it right.

Why do I need this dumb splint?
Why does my whole leg hurt?
Why can’t I even wear a skirt?
Why did it have to happen, God?
And now my legs look so odd!

Wait a minute, Janet, stop!
This path you must drop
Not going there today
Won’t go back to that day in May
You’re not here to complain
Don’t think about the pain!

I focus again, it’s not too late
To be still and wait
God, your peace I want to know
And my love I want to show

Speaking of love makes me think
Of that leaking kitchen sink
Yes, when will that husband of mine
Repair that broken filter line

He can be gentle as a dove
And that fills me with love
But the same things I like
At times make me want to take a hike

Whoa, how did I go there
And I didn’t even leave my chair
Janet, you need to beware
So that you stay in prayer.

But this chair is really hard
I can’t help my butt is scared
But it would be easier to be still
If I just popped a pain pill.

But I didn’t bring them out here
But never fear, the kitchen is near
Another short interruption –
Won’t lead me into corruption.

And while I’m in here
Since pillows are near
I’ll get one of those
Plus a fluffy blanket I chose
I’ll go back out there
And forget about the chair
I will lay down and be comfy
Then I’ll be able to think of thee!

So back out I go
With everything in tow
Now I’m comfy as can be
And God is waiting on me

Wow, the sky is really clear
And it’s getting hot out here
I could strengthen my tan
Now there’s a plan

Back inside the house I go
This will just take a minute, I know
To put on my swin suit
Oh, this does not look cute!

But Janet, remember, don’t go there
Get back outside into prayer!

God, I’m back again
I’m here to be your friend
I desire to honor you
In what I do

I decide not to stress
But just be still and rest
I need never fear
God will always be near
I see his creation all around me
As close as the squirrel in the tree
And the wind blowing across the bay
On this lovely day

I take a deep breath or two
And without much further adieu
I remember the love God has shown me
And I have to agree
The best thing I can do
Is to God and myself be true

Even if that means my ADD
Keeps me busy as can be
And quiet time … is not so quiet
God loves me this I know
And that makes my face glow!
- Janet Oberholtzer '06

Friday, November 24, 2006

What is God doing?

The last few days I have been thinking about something that Philip Yancey said when he was in town ... "When you wake up in the morning, it is easy to tell God what you want to do that day and asking him for help to make it happen ... instead, when you wake up in the morning, ask God what He is doing that day and how you can help Him."
Thinking about that off and on all day is making me go through my days differently. What is God doing in Morgantown, PA right now? Where does He want me to be involved? I know my family is my first call ... is that all for now or does God have something else he also wants me to be doing right now?

Give Thanks

When you arise in the morning, give thanks for the morning light, for your life and strength. Give thanks for your food, and the joy of living. If you see no reason for giving thanks, the fault lies with yourself. -Tecumseh, Shawnee Chief

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Savoring the moments of ... Saturday, October 28, 2006

  • perfect fall day
  • a gorgeous and comfortable home of a friend
  • the leaves on the trees sparkling in the sunlight
  • excellent camaraderie in preparing and assembling food
  • 'Living Room Conversation' from two to four
  • dual roles - committee member and quest
  • anticipation as the clock approaches two
  • arrival of about twenty interesting folks - college student, mothers, fathers, director, counselor, a few authors, college professors, a few pastors and many more roles I'm not aware of
  • Author Philip Yancey and his wife, Janet
  • humbled as Janet thanked me for addressing him as Philip instead of Mr. Yancey
  • happy to express thanks to him for his writings that helped me process some of my life
  • appreciated him taking his 'rightful place' as the guest of honor, but yet not making the afternoon about him
  • happy for the breezes that found the open windows and refreshed us
  • gave the accident story in a nutshell and was struck that it is because of it that I am 'here, now'
  • heard perspectives different than my own and want to learn something from them
  • felt the passion each has for living for their maker
  • savored the moment - the present moment as a gift along my life's journey
  • was awed and humbled by the wisdom in the room and took note of the difference between that and knowledge
  • felt the love for others in the informal conversation after the 'conversation'

Janet is in pink blouse with Philip over her left shoulder

  • fun, adrenaline rush to then quickly head to Twin Valley High School for the next event
  • 'Finger Food Reception' for an hour with sponsors of the event
  • watched human behavior with a 'famous' person in the room (some fascinates me and some humbles me)
  • enjoyed being served by competent young adults
  • event felt big and scattered after being 'close' in living room
  • Main Evening Speaking Event from seven to nine
  • loved the excitement and calmness of the committee members as it all came together
  • as the auditorium filled with over 800 people wanting to hear someone talk about God, I noted the irony that it is in a building where typically God can't be mentioned.
  • loved the fun energy as the music played
  • very glad to have _____ (someone that is lost on their way through life) there
  • blessed by a man of small statue with a big, powerful voice leading Amazing Grace
  • interesting to see Philip's concentration during opening, leading up to his hour of speaking (prayer and gathering of thoughts, I assume)
  • enjoyed hearing about international Christians and the many 'calls' of life
  • wow, no notes, Philip?
  • Bible and picture of important moment of his life was all that was needed
  • walking the path of Jesus is different for each of us ... seek and you will find
  • pray for your enemies ... could our enemies in this day and age be those men on the deck of playing cards ... do you think maybe we should pray for them?
  • impressed with quick cleanup

Reflections a few days after the event ...

  • amazed by the humble attitudes expressed by the ones 'in charge' - true servants!
  • impressed with all the details taken care of
  • loved his wife - Janet, sweet, insightful person
  • appreciating more deeply the thoughts of Philip in answer to my question
  • my question, "My first priority is to love God with my whole being and love others as myself ... is there many ways I walk that out or is there one specific purpose/plan that God has for me?" His main thought was to connect to God daily through prayer, reading, etc and just allow Him to direct. The choices are many and not to stress about finding the right one, but to put my energies into the relationship with God. The path for each individual will be made clear in that.
  • also, loving Janet's comments to me more as time goes on. She noted that because I am married and have children, my first purpose is as a wife and then as a mother. And again, she said don't stress about what happens beyond that, but just continue pursuing God.
  • the challenge to love (and pray) for our enemies
  • thoughts about how the change in our country will probably not happen with the 'right' people in the right places politically, but with the followers of God loving others as themselves.