Thursday, January 13, 2011

The gift of now

The deer danced a ballet thru my yard on Wednesday night.
I didn't see it happen but they left their hoof prints in the clean white snow.

I love the way their paths crisscross.

Some went up into the woods on the left...

others on the right...

And two made their bed right here in the middle of our front yard.

It appears there may have been a scuffle to see who would get the spot closest to the house.

I imagine there was some head butting involved.

While I was investigating, my big beautiful hawk stopped to watch.

Look hard and you'll see him in the middle of the tree. (You can click on the picture for a better look). Technically he isn't 'mine' but he lives in the treetops around our house so we claim him as ours. He is enormous when he spreads his wings but is shy around the camera so this is as close as I could get. He is beautiful.

It's been a tough week hasn't it?
I like to keep my blog light hearted but sometimes I am overwhelmed by all the sadness in this world.

I'm trying to read through the Bible this year in chronological order which means right now I'm in the book of Job. I have to say it's a hard book to read. There are some books of the bible I like to read over and over again but I tend to avoid the book of Job. Reading Job reminds me that bad things happen to good people. People like Job.

And innocent little girls in Arizona.

And moms who blog.

A popular blogger and author (Joanne at The Simple Wife) suffered a major stroke this week. She is not even 40 years old and has two young daughters. I don't know Joanne personally but I really enjoy her writing and her story has touched many. Her condition remains very serious and I know her family appreciates your prayers.

So many times when we hear about something awful happening we somehow take comfort in the idea that it could never happen to us.
But not this...this could happen to us, to anyone.
All week I've been thinking about how much we all count on having tomorrow.
We are so sure we'll have tomorrow.
We say so much of life.
Later I'll do it. Tomorrow is the day I'll get to it. Tomorrow I will start fresh...
do better, work harder, be kinder to my husband, more patient with my children, more patient with the people I meet as I go about my day... more diligent in living a purpose filled life.
But then tomorrow comes and then another tomorrow and we carry on as if there is always tomorrow.
Until something comes along and reminds us differently and only then it seems
do we really step back and take stock of how we are spending the days and hours and minutes of our own lives.

It's Friday.
A new day.
A clean slate.
Full of hours and minutes and moments.
Full of God's grace and forgiveness.
Full of possibility and opportunity and hope.

A gift.

A gift meant not to be squandered or wasted but instead,
opened and savored and used.

What will I do with today?
Whatever it is, I want it to be on purpose.

"I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world." John 16:33


  1. It's been a sobering few days, hasn't it?

  2. Nice Joyce. And very relevant to my life this week..... I lost a friend of 27 years. She died at the tender age of 51. The circumstances are/were tragic. My heart is broken in ways I never knew.
    Just yesterday I saw a flock of birds and was thinking "maybe she is a magnificent bird now, like a hawk? and soaring and no longer bound by sadness and loneliness." So, your picture of the hawk in the tree reminded me of her. Thank you,

  3. It has been a hard week for many, thank you for the reminder to enjoy today because we may not have a tomorrow. May God's grace cover us all.

  4. Wonderful thoughts. And don't we all do that and think we have tomorrow or the next day to do something? Sadly, not always the case. And btw, I've always avoided Job is can too. :)

  5. Lovely post! You reeled me in with the deer and then let the Holy Spirit do His work. :) It was a great reminder.

    For the past couple of years I've had little "themes" or pithy sayings to keep at the forefront of my mind as to what the Lord is teaching me at the moment. This year's - "Live on Purpose." How appropriate your post was for me today, since just after 13 days (the last few being very full/heavy) I've forgotten that no matter the circumstances I can live on purpose. I turn to 2 Cor 9:8 for that reminder. He gives us all things to live a life of victory.

    Thank you!

    Have a great weekend!

  6. Beautiful post. This world can be so overwhelmingly sad at times. Thank you for sharing.

  7. Joyce, Thanks so much for the visit this morning to my blog - and I have so much enjoyed my hop over here to yours! We seem to have a lot in common, but instead of the girls (simply beautiful, I might add), I have two boys. My nest is empty as well... Thanks for your words and inspiration!

    Lu (Mudpuddle)

  8. A very thoughtful post, Joyce, and a good reminder. My mother died at 51 and I often think about how many more days I have been given than she had.

  9. This was a beautiful post--from beginning to end.

  10. Love the has been a tragic week! My prayers are full and I hope they are being heard.

  11. Beautifully written,Joyce. Yes, we wake up full of peaceful anticipation of another day on earth. Some days this happens and others...well, life is fleeting.

  12. Beautiful pictures Joyce and words reflective of my own feelings as I wrote my last post. Thanks for the encouraging scripture. Blessings for a wonderful weekend!

  13. You have a beautiful heart, Joyce, and you share it so clearly with your words. Thank you.

  14. this post has me pulling in all directions, emotionally. after i wipe my tear, i'm gonna go hug my girls.

    beautiful pictures, joyce! nature has a way of stirring a new perspective. love it.

  15. Beautiful post. My heart has been heavy this week with everything going on in the world. Thank you for sharing!

  16. Great post Joyce! I love the pictures of your beautiful home & the tracks in the snow.
    I haven't been able to get Joanne off my mind these past couple of days.
    I met her briefly in San Antonio at the Siesta Fiesta. She is a beautiful woman of God. I am praying and believing for a miracle over her life.
    So true that we need to embrace every single day & be thankful and mindful of the blessings in our lives.
    Have a blessed Friday & a wonderful weekend.

  17. Thanks for your post.
    I was thinking about Australia, Brazil and Tucson, Arizona - and all of the lives that have been turned upside down.

    "Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God." John 14:1

    How I cling to these words during these times. That God would comfort, heal, provide, save, minister & draw forward the strongest of the strong and the weakest of the weak - so that all that can be said is, "THAT WAS ALL GOD!"

  18. Beautiful post. It has been a tough week. I'm glad it's Friday.

    You have a beautiful home. Thank you for stopping by my blog earlier today. I appreciate the comment.

  19. Love your home - its beautiful! I am following Joanne now too! It's been a hard week for me too and I am taking a day or two break. Have a good weekend and I hope to meet up with you soon!

  20. A good word, Joyce. A good word.

  21. Yes, it has been a somber week but if there is any good that comes out of such tragedy, it is that our country....or most of it....pulls together and is strengthened.
    I thought it was President Obama's best speech, by far.
    Thanks so much for this beautiful post and for sharing the lovely pictures of your home and "visitors' tracks". :-)

  22. Beautifully written.
    And your home is beautiful too!

  23. Not sure how I missed this post on Friday. How cool that the deer live right outside your home. There have definitely been some tragedies this week.

  24. Hi Joyce, what a great post, I loved seeing the snow and deer prints, they really tell a story..and yes a very sad week indeed but need to remember God has a plan..Will say prayers for the mom who had a stroke.
    Thank you for stopping by with your sweet comment! I have entered you into the surprise giveaway!


  25. I love the pictures! Beautiful! There is something about seeing wild life so close to home. I have to admit though I enjoy the deer tracks alot more than the bear... just sayin'!
    Thank you so much for sharing what was on your heart, alot of what I have been feeling too. I think maybe that is why I have called my daughter every day just to tell her I love her! Prayers are going up for Joanne!
    until next time... nel

  26. Thank you, this post hit home and I have to enjoy each day to the fullest, giving all the love I can to my family.

  27. Such a beautifully written post, Joyce. Thank you!

  28. Beautifully thought out and written, Joyce. It's all so true. Thank you for the gentle reminder to live intentionally and on purpose for God.

    Blessings Sweet Friend,