“Life seems but a quick succession of busy nothings.”
– Jane Austen
It was another crazy morning rushing and running around the house to get out the door. Heaven forbid if I was a minute late, right? And of course, I created a big list of things I had to do. And heaven forbid if I didn’t do those things either, right?
As we were getting ready to leave, Hunter started to put on his gloves. But then, he thought it was a great idea to explore what the little glove fingers could do. Ugh, I didn’t have time for this. I was too busy! And the exploration of little glove fingers seemed to take forever. Now we really had to rush!
Frustrated, I said to Hunter, “Come on, come on, we have to hurry up!” Hunter looked up at me, sad and confused. Really Jodi? Poor Hunter. In the midst of my haste and busyness, I overlooked this precious moment of a child’s imagination at work. With a deep sigh, I realized I should have praised Hunter’s joyful playing instead of worrying about my busyness.
White, starry snowflakes sprinkled down from the silver sky outside the church windows. Sitting in our pews, we were surrounded by this beautiful, gracious snowfall giving us a feeling of peace and comfort. It seemed like the chapel was a scene in the middle of a snow globe. But before this precious sight, our chapel globe was picked up and shaken leaving us to wonder what will remain once the snow settled to the ground.
Recently, our spiritual lives were turned upside down. We received news that our pastor and his wife, Pastor Bob and Sally Bardin, were leaving the congregation to follow a new calling to move back home with family in North Carolina. This left us sad, unsure and unclear of what God had planned for us in the future. However, not only were our lives shaken, so were our pastors with the bittersweet reality of venturing towards a chapter that’s yet to be read.
“We’re all beautifully different. Cherish what makes you a you.”
– Karen Salmansohn
A gentle, cool breeze caressed our faces as Hunter and I strolled through crowds of people at Lake Geneva’s Annual Winterfest. We stood in awe at the marvelous display of snow sculptures before us. Starting from single blocks of snow, sculptures were carved with intricate detail each representing a specific theme. There were fantasy figures, animals, robots, snakes, aliens and more. Every sculpture was beautiful in its own unique way that touched a distinct part of our soul. But it was more than the artwork itself that made them spectacular — it was the beauty in the differences that made them special.
If true beauty exists within our differences, then why in today’s culture we shun or push away anything that’s different from us? Why do we have trouble accepting and appreciating the variety of opinions, talents and perspectives? I admit that I’m guilty as the next person responding with a knee-jerk reaction to someone who lives or thinks different from me.
“Always do what you are afraid to do.”
– Ralph Waldo Emerson
On a warm summer night with a crystal clear sky, my co-workers and I gathered together with our families at Lake Geneva Canopy Tours. With zip lining and climbing high ropes, we were eager to challenge each other and push our boundaries to new heights. Filled with excitement, I was ready to go.
But then, I looked up into the trees at the obstacle course of high ropes above. And oh boy, those ropes were high — 18 to 32 feet high. Suddenly, my heart hammered out of my chest as my stomach dropped below my knees.
I stood paralyzed on the ground. I watched as my team ventured on and walked the high ropes like superhero acrobats. Sure, they were safe. After all, they did have safety harnesses on. And tour guides helped them too. But, I was reluctant and unconvinced this was a great idea.
Then to my horror, Hunter looked up at me with sweet, inquisitive eyes and said, “When are you going up Mommy?” With bursts of short breaths and feeling like I was going to hurl, I suddenly realized…it was my turn to climb.