Everything old…

February 26, 2010

 

…is new again.

  Ever felt like you wasted time because you looked for life and love in created things instead of the Creator? St. Augustine did. Here’s an old prayer of his. It’s a prayer for lost time…

 Late have I loved you, O beauty so ancient and so new. Too late have I loved you! You were within me while I had gone outside to seek you. Unlovely myself, I fell heedlessly upon all those lovely things you had made. And always you were with me, and I was not with you. And all theses beauties that held me far from you would not have existed unless they had their being in you.

You called, you cried, you broke open my deafness. You blazed, you gleamed, you drove away my blindness. You sent your fragrance and I drew in my breath, and I long for you.

I tasted, and now I hunger and thirst. You touched me, and now I burn with desire for your peace. Amen.

That old prayer is a favorite of mine which is why I really like this new song by Matt Maher…

ALIVE AGAIN
I woke up in darkess, surrounded by silence.
O where, where have I gone?
I woke to reality losing its grip on me.
O where, where have I gone?
Cause I can see the light, before I see the sunrise.
Refrain:
You called and you shouted.
Broke through my deafness.
Now I’m breathing in and breathing out.
I’m alive again.
You shattered my darkness.
Washed away my blindness.
Now I’m breathing in and breathing out.
I’m alive again.
Verse 2
Late have I loved you.
You waited for me I searched for you.
What took me so long?
I was looking outside.
As if love would ever want to hide.
I’m finding I was wrong.
Cause I can feel the wind before it hits my skin.
‘Cause I want you.
Yes I want you
I need you.
And I’ll do whatever I have to
Just to get through
Cause I love you
And I love you.

on burning journals and seeing the eternal

January 19, 2010

 

I’m closing out another journal this morning. Honestly I don’t know what to do with the boxes of journals I have from the last two decades of my life. I’ve told Scott that if I die before him he needs to burn them. I should probably have our attorney (a.k.a. Dad) put that in my will 🙂 . Of course, chances are good that when I’m dead I won’t care. Still, I’m not sure I want anyone to read the unedited musings of my mind (it just sounds like a scary idea– for me and for the reader as well). 

When I finish a journal I usually flip through the pages and consider where my head and heart have been for the last few months. I found this prayer I wrote during Advent.  It was my prayer for December 6th 2009. I think it should be my prayer for today and perhaps the rest of my life.

God of Eternity,

Open my eyes to see what is eternal.

Open my heart to love what is eternal. 

Move me beyond my attachments to this temporal life

that I may love your holy will and unite my will with yours.

May everything in my life be ordered by your divine love,

received in love,

and lived in love.

Amen.


A Clean Slate

January 18, 2010

I love a clean slate, starting over, new beginnings. I’m sure it’s one reason why I enjoyed teaching at the college. Every semester was new, different and a chance to start over–new students, a new season of the year, new lesson plans–you get the picture. It’s probably why I also love the Church’s liturgical year with it’s different seasons: Advent, Christmas, Ordinary time, Lent, Easter, Pentecost and all the Holy Days. There’s something about the rhythm of life in the Church that I love–like starting a new liturgical year with Advent, a season of repentance that cleans the slate and prepares us for Christmas, a season of rejoicing.

There’s really nothing like a new year for starting over. For me the start of the calendar year is less about resolutions and more about having a clean slate on which to begin “writing”  a new season of life.  If you haven’t figured it out, this is my blog’s clean slate for the new year–a new look, new quote (gotta’ love Mother Teresa) and hopefully some new posts. 

I was silent for the last quarter of 2009. Actually I wasn’t really silent, there were plenty of people who heard my voice, thoughts and numerous opinions. I just didn’t put them down in writing. Not sure why. I think life just started rolling along and before I knew it a few things were left behind in the dust. Fortunately Scott, the girls and schooling weren’t anyof those things. We’re still on track and enjoying the home school ride. During the last quarter Scott has been busy establishing himself in a new role with the bank. We’re grateful that in this economy he still has a job and this new position is a nice change from mortgage banking.  Aside from that I’ve just been trying to keep life balanced for us all. For the most part things have been on a even keel. 

With January quickly coming to a close I wanted to get this post out there and make good on my promise to myself to post more in 2010. So once again I start over with a clean slate. If things go as planned you’ll hear from me more often and those who put up with me on a daily basis will have to listen to a few less of my opinions and rambling thoughts.


Reading List

September 18, 2009

A while ago one of my friends suggested I keep a list on my blog of what I’m reading, have read, love to read etc…

I put a text box in the margin that inlcudes some of those books. If you’re looking for a book to read and you have a question about something I listed feel free to ask.

*Note: That Holy Abandonment book is really getting on my nerves. I’m not sure how much longer my flesh can stand it so consider yourself forewarned.


Freedom

June 28, 2009

Secular freedom is having to do what we want to do. Religious freedom is wanting to do what we have to do.

              Richard Rohr

 

Because we’re about to celebrate the 4th of July and our secular freedom I thought I’d post this quote. I could say a lot about its meaning but for now…you can just think about it.

Right-click here to download pictures. To help protect your privacy, Outlook prevented automatic download of this picture from the Internet.
Right-click here to download pictures. To help protect your privacy, Outlook prevented automatic download of this picture from the Internet.

What I’m thinking about today…

November 14, 2008

A quote I once heard: Wisdom is truth rightly applied.

The courage of a friend who is willing to follow God even though she’s lost friends and the approval of her family.

The courage and joy of another friend who, after having many miscarriages, will for the first time give birth to a healthy baby girl today.

The sad fact that many things I get stressed over are “rich nation problems.”

Thomas Dubay’s book, Deep Conversion, Deep Prayer. I highly recommend it.

How very grateful I am for my family.

And finally, minestrone soup. That’s what I’m making for dinner tonight.


Without Him I am Nothing

November 9, 2008

We sang one of my favorite songs after Communion today. It’s called “Breathe.” My Protestant friends would consider it an old song. Most of my cradle Catholic friends would say it’s a relatively new song to them. My pre-Vatican II Catholic friends have probably never listened to it before.  Anyway…

It’s such a simple song with simple lyrics and a simple melody but it never fails to lead my heart into prayer and express the cry of my heart. The chorus says this: And I, I’m desperate for you. And I, I’m lost without you.”

That’s it.  It’s so simple and yet it says it all.

I’m desperate for Jesus. I’m lost without Jesus. 

On her Facebook profile page my neice, Hannah, puts it this way:  

“Without Him I am nothing.” 

Me too Hannah, me too.


Since I’ve been gone…

November 5, 2008

Ok, this is probably my longest hiatus yet. It’s been a different season for me. Not much time and little inclination to post. Just “doing” life with my family and reflecting on it with God. Here are some of the highlights of the last two months.

Since I’ve been gone…

  • Ella turned five.
  • I took that road trip to Georgia with the girls (solo – no Scott, just me and the girls. Yes, it was a long drive and yes I used lots of bribes –Dairy Queen, Dunkin’ Donuts, gummy bear candy)
  • We finally took the training wheels off Claire and Ella’s bikes
  • I’ve nursed a lot of scrapes and bruises
  • We’ve had our first cold front (thank God!) and fall has finally begun in Florida
  • Claire turned seven.
  • I finally gave in and let the girls get their ears pierced.
  • The Tampa Bay Rays went to the World Series and lost (not that I really care. I don’t really watch baseball, except I did watch a few innings of the series)
  • I’ve wrestled with God over a few things. God won.
  • I’ve eaten more Halloween candy than anyone should be allowed to eat
  • I’ve exercised twice as much to ease my conscience over my Halloween candy addiction
  • I reconnected with an old friend whom I’ve missed very much!
  • I’ve seen one too many political ads
  • I voted in the presidential election and my candidate lost
  • The girls started Christmas play rehearsals (Christmas already, ugh! Time is flying by too fast)

Not very exciting but it’s our life around here. Of course there’s more but not everything is for “publication.” For those of you who check in with me every once in a while, keep doing so. I’ll write more frequently in the coming month. 

I


Summer Blogging Hiatus

July 8, 2008

I took a week off from blogging at the beginning of June to spend time at the beach with my family and I found myself taking the whole month off. The time with the family was great. I must have enjoyed being “unplugged” from the computer. With the exception of checking my email I’ve  been “off line” for almost five weeks– no posting on my blog and no reading other blogs. It’s been kind of refreshing. Suppose that means I’m not a serious blogger. Or, maybe it means something else. Not sure. I am sure that all four of my blog readers have emailed me wondering where I’ve been and what I’ve been up to :-).  

 

Instead of blogging I’ve been doing a lot more journaling. You know, the good ole’ fashioned pen and paper kind of journaling. I’ve been journaling since I was in high school. I have boxes and boxes of journals that I probably need to burn or have buried with me when I die. There’s something therapeutic about journaling. We have adoration at church on Wednesdays and I usually take my journal with me to record those things He’s speaking to my heart. Sometimes I need to write for me and for God. Journaling is a way for me to empty my head and heart and make space for Him to work in and through me. And believe me, my head is so full of opinions and my ways of thinking that I need to empty it just so I can hear Him speak!

 

June was also arts and crafts month at the Simmons house. When we weren’t in the pool or at the beach we were doing the arts and crafts thing. This non-crafty mom has been tie-dying, painting, making beaded necklaces and decorating sand buckets for our week at the beach in July.  I’m rather impressed with myself.  

 

Other than schooling here and there I’ve kept the girls schedule pretty flexible. Lots of time for playdates with their friends, pool time, and puzzles and popcorn during those summer afternoon storms. I love the slower pace of summer. I think one of the reasons I was attracted to a teaching career was that I enjoyed the “school schedule.”  Even though I had to teach in the summer the session was more laid back and relaxed.  I don’t have the girls in any summer camps this year. Only one week of VBS at the end of July. Aside from that we’re making it up as we go along. I don’t know how much I’ll blog this month either.  Scott, the girls and I are headed to the beach for a week of family time. The following week my folks will be at the beach so we’ll probably go and build some sand castles with them.  I suppose I’ll write when I can.

 

Hope your summer is going well and you can get some down-time too.


Short Hiatus

February 4, 2008

Haven’t posted in a while.I’ve been reading and journaling a lot instead of blogging. Also working on my guitar playing. I have a deadline. I actually have plans to play in front of someone other my children and husband. I’m supposed to lead a group of women in worship music as they prepare to serve on a retreat (less than four weeks to go…my fingers are soooo sore!).

I’m reading a  challenging book by Thomas Dubay called Deep Conversion, Deep Prayer. My flesh hates it but everything  else in me says “amen and amen!” It’s a good primer for Lent which starts on Wednesday.

So, that’s where I’ve been. I’m sure I’ll post something more substantial soon.