This post will begin a sporadic series on a book I’m reading that is changing my life. I will post my discoveries as I process them. This is not a book review, per se, but perhaps a book invitation…
In January of this year I felt God telling me to think about slowing down and Sabbathing more. About being purposeful in my restfulness in Him.
I ordered a book, God in the Yard by Laura Barkat (TSPoetry Press) for this purpose; she graciously sent me a signed copy (and a pressed fern leaf from her yard.)
The phrase ‘Spiritual Practice’ conjured up ‘hard work’ in my mind.
In my mind, ‘spiritual practice’ is Bible reading, Scripture memorization, prayer, journaling. Something purposeful, planned, contained…you know, disciplined.
To give you somehow idea of how frenetic a pace in which I process things, the date I have next to Chapter One in the Table of Contents is January 19th, 2013.
The date I have next to Chapter Two is January 20th…..
Yes, I went through a week in a day.
Do you think I might be speeding through things a wee bit?
Like maybe I should slow down?
Instead of me feeling pressured to produce something–I’m finding joy in the discipline of letting go and receiving.
I am learning to rest more in the realization of wonder right in front of me.
God’s timing is perfect in all of this. Barkat mentions the idea of God as a ‘divine librarian’ orchestrating the volumes we find on our shelves to speak or sing a song to us just when we need it.
Here is a discovery I made via the ‘And you?’ questions in the first chapter.
I think there are a couple of keys right there about how God might want to change up my thinking. Hmmm?
I’ve wondered all kinds of things: Why do trees’ branches grow up? Where do the birds hide in the rain?
I’ve thought all kinds of God thoughts: No wonder He wants us to get outside and play–look at this world He’s made!
In Chapter One, Barkat shares this quote, via another writer, ‘Your well (of your soul)contains the true end of the poem, and you simply won’t know it until your creativity draws it up….’
I have been pleasantly surprised when I take the leap (well, sit) and look and listen that observations just flow. I’m capturing words I know come from somewhere else, and the release of them seems to happen when I pick up my pencil and commit thoughts to paper.
Stitching together my Sabbaths to sit, rest, receive is becoming a practice I look forward to, a discipline that is refreshing and completing me.
How about you? How is God refreshing you in your life?
and Soli Deo Gloria
(And grateful to Shelly Miller for stirring things up.)