Wednesday, June 26, 2013

day 26: seeing.

If you've been around me at all lately (especially in the last year or so) you've heard me reference the book One Thousand Gifts over and over again, probably to the point where you're almost tired of hearing about it without actually reading it for yourself. Here's my bit of a shameless plug for it: if you can read it, DO. I had someone ask me what it was the other day, and I realized it's a book that's harder to explain than I realized. "Is it a novel?" she asked. "Okay...a biography?" "Well than what is it?"

If I had to put it in a sentence, I'd say it's the shameless, broken, searching outpouring of a heart dry and desperately searching for God in a world sucked dry of grace and thanksgiving. It's a bit like a blog, a bit like a journal, and a lot like a heart. Her name is Ann Voskamp, and she has her own beautiful blog here. Hop on over if you're curious. But you're probably even MORE curious about why I'm including her as the highlight of today's blog-a-day.

I refer to people like Mrs. Ann as heartwriters. I've met a lot of writers growing up....heartwriters I've met only three. They have a unique ability to string average, everyday words together in ways that feel. They turn stories into memories, leave you lighter or heavier when you're done reading, and invite you to walk alongside them every step of the way, even when you're not there. I think they see the world a little bit differently than most people....which coincides wonderfully, because the word I was given today was see.

One of the things Mrs. Ann continually touches on in her book is this idea (and truth) that everything from the way the sunlight looks streaming through your windows in the morning to the way water feels sliding through your fingers while you do the dishes is a gift and something to be thankful for...and when you slow down to thank God for each of His gifts, your eyes are opened to how much you truly have to be thankful for. In the face of such an overpowering rush of thanksgiving, it is impossible to allow room for fear, doubt, anger, impatience, and the like. And I think that's what I mean when I say that "heartwriters" truly see.

Where we see trial, they see grace. Where we see pain, they see healing. Where we see mad, irritating children, they see young, growing image bearers, and opportunities for patience & grace because all is grace (...and sometimes they just see mad, irritating children ;) They don't see people, they see the soul beneath. They don't see actions, they see the heart behind. They see God, EVERYWHERE and in EVERYONE.

I've wondered sometimes how many people I walk past daily without truly seeing. I've wondered how many conversations I enter & exit flippantly because I can't slow down long enough to see how important they might be. I've wondered how many opportunities I miss because I've trained my eyes to see what I'm expecting, and forgotten that God doesn't always work in the ways that I expect.

Just some food for thought....or rather just some of my mind ramblings :)

"I want to see beauty. In the ugly, in the sink, in the suffering, in the daily, in all the days before I die, the moments before I sleep." 
-Ann Voskamp- 

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