Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Red Sky in the Morning...




The dawn blooms red on Fat Tuesday—the sky unfolding like petals and light spills slow over our world. I stand by the window wringing my hands.

Could it really be time already? Didn’t I just find those reindeer last week—the ones I missed when packing up the Christmas decorations? How can it be Lent already? I sit down on the steps, try to gather up time.

Teddy slips past me and stops by the window—studies the red giving way to pinks and blues.

“Oh, wow,” he says. “Look at that.”

His words make me stare. He never notices these things. But there he is, face pressed to the window.

“Look, mom,” he says, not taking his eyes off the sky. 

I rise and stand beside him—shoulder to shoulder. But it’s not the sky that holds my eyes and this new side of my son only serves to confirm how the time slips through my fingers. 



These liturgical seasons have a way of naming my lack. This is when I long for rich family traditions or a strong youth pastor to invest in my boys. This is when I long to have the tools to open up their heads—open up their hearts—and pour it all in. And I can’t help but to ask, am I doing enough?

And I wonder if they are really getting it—do they really know what it means to be loved by Christ and to follow him? Do I?

A mamma wants so much for her children—she wants to give them everything. But perhaps one of the best gifts she can give is space for their faith to become their own.

I shift my eyes to the horizon and it takes my breath away. And I remember what Amy Sherman said in her workshop at Jubilee this past weekend. She had a slide that was a jumble of words: Joy, Peace, Hope, Wholeness, Reconciliation, Shalom, Justice, Charity, and…and Beauty and so on. Ms. Sherman called these things foretastes of the Kingdom of God. Jesus is in this tired world, she said. And He is pressing these things into our lives. Joining Him in Kingdom work means to make these things a greater reality. Right now.

I think of these things as I look at that slow moving red across the morning sky. And I know this moment is enough. I lean into my boy who is now taller than I.

“Yeah,” I say. “Just look at that.”

  
With my sweet friend Jennifer today: 



 And with kd:


JourneyTowardsEpiphany

28 comments:

Liz said...

Ah, the sky was breathtaking.
What a difficult question, "Am I doing enough?" So many times, I have asked the same thing.
The answer...always the same.

"I can do it all. Trust me."
He is faithful.

Thoughts for the day said...

All you can do is really pray and pray that they find good friends, strong ethics, strong values to make good decisions, and YES a great youth pastor helps, also a strong peer group.
It does go by so quickly doesn't it?

pam said...

Beautiful sky shots....I never tire of them. I'm thankful He knows the specifics of our lives...that He knows how to call to our hearts no matter what we are surrounded by. We of this world, can make lists of gifts that would surely draw us to His feet to grow and to lift our spirits before Him to worship, yet He manages to use anything in our lives no matter how meager it seems to us. Our momma hearts cry out for God to extend love to our kids so they will own their relationship with Him. I pray that in my abiding I will hear His words to know how to pray for my kids---whatever is enough. Wherever we are He is just as present as in those well orchestrated moments of life. He is enough no matter what our circumstances. Peace momma, peace. Be still and know that I am God! Thankful

pam said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sue Awes said...

Oh, this post, this sky, this foretaste of heaven -thank you -

Brian Miller said...

ah...lovely...what a great pics...and a great moment shared basking in that beauty as well...and you know we do our best and god tends to figure out the rest for us...smiles...

path of treasure said...

Your post reminds me of the story of St. Augustine's mother. She was so concerned over Augustine's waywardness, that she went to see a bishop. He consoled her with saying, "the child of those tears shall never perish." Augustine did turn his life around eventually.

The story of Augustine's mother reminds me to keep praying steadfastly for my children... that there is hope, and a mother has a role to play, and prayer is no small part of it. It encourages me.

I love how you say in your post to give them "space for their faith to become their own." I'm not always sure I know how to do this, but the desire to see these children's faith grow is there.

Motherhood and raising children... it's a learn-by-experience kind of thing... we just dive in and have to do it- at least that's the way it is for me. I'm learning as I go. :)

Thank you for sharing, sweet friend.

Dolly@ Soul Stops said...

beautiful photos of the sky and the image of you and your son enjoying God's gift of beauty together...so wonderful, Laura :) (makes me feel the warm cuddlies - my made up word)

diana said...

You got/caught the sky in the morning and I got/caught it that evening. Shrove Tuesday glory, yes? This is beautiful, Laura. All that yearning to be good enough, for your children to be filled enough. Best thing you could have done was exactly what you did - your got up and stood beside him, validating what he was experiencing. Yup. That's it. Thanks for this.

A Joyful Noise said...

Your photos of that sky are unbelievable! So glad you and your son could share this together.

redemptionsbeauty said...

I was having your same thoughts yesterday, wondering if I am doing enough to convey Christ as we sat in church last night.Then I remember myself at that age and how I didn't have the same understanding I have now. It's a journey and God is faithful. Your photos are so lovely, what a beautiful sky revealing His glory.

Nancy said...

What Shelly@Redemptions Beauty said. It's a journey and God is faithful. And sometimes He makes a point of painting the sky to remind us.

For my young man, it's a night sky full of stars that tells me he gets it.

You've done a much better job of translating the Jubilee experience into words! I just downloaded Amy's book to my Kindle.

Kim Hyland said...

"This moment is enough" . . sighhhh. What freedom! What rich words. Thank you.

kd sullivan said...

I know these moments with my man-boys...they are the most dear in the world.

Lea said...

Laura, as a Mother of sons myself, I could truly feel the LOVE in that moment that you and your boy shared "two-gether." God bless you both.

Jodi said...

Now that's a memory to savor, and an answer from the Lord to your mamma's heart, I think.

Jody Collins said...

Laura, the phrase "these liturgical seasons have a way of naming what I lack" really spoke to me. I've been a Protestant believer (i.e. not traditional)for 40 years. I actually wish quite often that our Church would observe more of the seasons/cycles in the Liturgy.
I've been reading around the community and there are so many profound posts about Lent. Just has me pondering.
Beautiful post.

Megan Willome said...

I think he's getting it. He sees you getting it, and that counts for more than you know.

Our sky was like that today. But you captured yours.

Matthew Kreider said...

My hands can't hold dawn either. And the job of parenting often slips out through my fingers, too. But all of it still takes my breath away. Beautiful surrender.

Danelle said...

Your pictures, both words and those clicked with camera, really left me breathless. Those days I've had too, with sons sitting by my knees. . me full of wonder in His creation and the wonder of whether I am doing the parenting thing "right". And how time truly flies. . truly.

S. Etole said...

What beautiful moments to share.

alyssasantos.com said...

Ah, I love this piece! I love that he's taller than you and you're still having these moments with him -- makes me smile. It's funny how we think it takes so much effort, but our job is to be, in his presence. What joy! Also, I love the photos... I can't wait until my leg heals and I can get out there again and be inspired by God's creation! Yay! Bless you today, my dear. This is so precious.

Jennifer @ GettingDownWithJesus.com said...

You're doing it for your son, and he's doing it for you. You're reminding each other of the goodness of God that invades every square inch of our world. He is here. And He has given you both the eyes to see.

Joe Pote said...

Beautiful pictures! Beautiful sky! Beautiful moment with your son!

Beautiful reflections of God's glory!

Thanks for sharing!

David Rupert said...

I always thought i could model faith and my kids would just adopt mine just the same. But I'm finding out that I dont want them to have my faith -- I want them to have their faith because then it will be real.

So, now, they are grown and wait. And pray.

emily wierenga said...

oh laura. you paint such a beautiful picture of God for me. thank you.

Nikole Hahn said...

As usual a restful place to visit on a busy day. :o) Your son will have great memories of times like this.

Jen said...

"A mamma wants so much for her children—she wants to give them everything. But perhaps one of the best gifts she can give is space for their faith to become their own."

I am learning this too...it is hard for me. I wonder when my 10 year daughter questions it and worries cause she doesn't always feel Him...am I doing something wrong? I just try to encourage her and share how I see and feel Jesus near in my life. I cannot force it on her or make her feel it. It is hard stuff though.

Jen