04/25/14 You Just Never Know…


I had two realizations this week: Cats can fly! Just look at my boy cat Omar, lunkhead and adventure seeker extraordinaire. ūüôā We’re still not quite sure how he got up on our neighbor’s roof!

 

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The second was more of a question.

During dinner with my friend Christine, we talked about places to possibly go for missions trips, in the future. It seems we typically think of third world countries with no running water, an abundance of flies, foul odors and famine; upon hearing the words ‘missions trips’.

In 2014, with the ever increasing problem of heroin addiction that decimates lives in Northern Kentucky and an area of Cincinnati known as Cheviot;¬†a weird thought crossed my mind. I wondered if someday churches might start sending people to Cincinnati and¬†my figurative backyard of Cheviot to spread hope and the love of Jesus? Cincinnati a missionary’s destination? It’s a bit sobering to realize there’s an area of such despair virtually within walking distance.

Maybe I can begin my mission work without packing a bag or setting foot on a plane. Helping out in the soup kitchen at Vineyard Westside Church in Cheviot, my home church, might be a most worthy ‘mission trip’.

I suppose I want to toss the thought out there that there’s probably SOMETHING each of us can do, to make our corner of the world a less suffering place. We don’t have to wait until that far off day in the future to help. The world and its many nooks and crannies needs our help NOW.

Peace.

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09/14/12 Depression Sucks, But It Doesn’t Have To Be The End


Cat, with its mouth open

Cat, with its mouth open (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Hello everyone. The summer brought a lawn that I nicknamed Tumbleweed Connection and a drought in my blog. My writing vibe was dry and dead. Inspiration¬†seemed as elusive as fitting into size 12 jeans… just not happening!

I wondered what it would feel like if I were to write a¬†meaninful blog sharing insights into a life pursuing a relationship with God and then I realized I don’t even know what that looks like. Who can define such a relationship? Isn’t¬†it rather relative, a matter of perspective? For some, it could be the ‘twice-a-year-letting-your-backside-hit-a-church-pew’ (Christmas and Easter). For others, it’s prayer 24/7. For a few, it’s talking to God throughout the day about all matters great and small.

I fall into the third category. It doesn’t make my way any better or worse than the rest of the world. It just makes it my way.

What if I measure it by how happy I am? I don’t think that would work either. I’ve had the summer from hell. A very bad bout of depression that isn’t quite over yet. Something about a dark night of the soul comes to mind.

Depression is so hard to explain to a person who’s never had it. It’s having every blessing you could ever hope for, yet you still feel on the verge of tears and ready to walk away from everything, crawl into a cave and hope there’s a landslide, so that the opening to said cave would be covered up and you could hide endlessly from humanity.

It’s looking in the mirror and wondering about God’s sense of humor in making a mutt like you, while looking at others and feeling sure they have all the answers. You’re the only one who could possibly be this stupid. You trudge along and try to get through the episode. Part of you wouldn’t care if you didn’t.

Then something happens, it can be miniscule or gargantuan, the happening is different everytime. Maybe it’s hearing a dear friend is really sick or an acquaintance has lost a longtime job and may lose their house. Or maybe it’s when you’re delivering the newspaper with your son and you make the acquaintance of a cat, an adorable feline who wants… DEMANDS your attention… you give her fifteen minutes of cuddles and then when you try to leave, she proceeds to put her teeth in your leg. For whatever reason, this doesn’t even phase you. You patiently have a conversation with this feline, explaining that this behavior isn’t cool, that if you’re going to hang out together, she must keep her teeth in her mouth and not on your leg… and you guess you’ll just have to come back next week and give her some etiquette lessons. The whole time, she sits there gazing at you like she’s actually listening! You walk away feeling a little bit lighter and smiling, not really sure why, but life seems a little better, suddenly.

In that moment, I talk to God; laughing about the absurdity of speaking to a cat as if it understands me, wondering how many people saw this daffy woman …. being who she is… and suddenly life doesn’t seem so bad.

I bet the prayers of friends might have had something to do with it. Maybe God knows better than anyone what the best way is to reach your hurting heart. It might be crazy as heck to everyone else, but it works for you. 

Maybe you can pass the blessing on and pray for someone else having a bad day/month/year/life. Maybe, just for today, the depression doesn’t win, God seems a little closer and you have a smidgen of insight into why you’re here.

To straighten out cats with wayward teeth!

Abundant blessings to you. ūüôā

02/22/12 Poetry About Trains, Serenity and a Clever Cat!


 

Train Trip

 

   

The train arrived at platform nine
my first trip riding rails so fast
I climbed aboard, excitement mine
I see a glimpse of life roll past

The panoramic scenes swoosh by
the placid plains a balm to me
I drink the sights with thirsty eye
my soul it steeps in tranquil sea

Such vision fusion seems surreal
who¬†knew the harmony I’d feel
from simple train trip to the coast
a senses feast with BritRail host

 

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Serenity Found

 

 

walk along old paths
pressed in ancient forest floors
pure serenity

 

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Puzzling!

 

 

Cuddles sat, face scrunched, sorting sound
Sniffing for words much like a hound
Snip this one, it isn’t quite right
Snatch that one before it takes flight

Canine clues got under her skin
“Who let those silly fleabags in?”
‘He¬†likes lasagna,¬†feline clown’
Scamper, scribble, write Garfield down

Simple puzzle makes spirit fly
Super hard one elicits sigh
Solving puzzles gets her a prize
Sardine¬†snack for “Kitty Word Wise!”

 

 

I thought I’d share a little of my poetry with you, as it’s been the thing I enjoy most lately. Poetry and short stories. The stories are easier for me, truth be told!¬† Oh, those of you who know my cat Buddy, the above cat isn’t him, but it surely is a twin! I made her a girl and named her Cuddles.

Writing keeps me busy, but I’m happier than a piggie in a fresh mud puddle and it’s way cheaper than psychotherapy, so I think I’m on to something. ūüôā¬†

I hope you enjoy this poetic break in your day. Cheers!

Comments sought and always welcome. ūüôā¬†