In my view, inspiration is necessary. If I am tunnel-focused on the work at hand — whatever that life work may be — I lose the beauty of this life. My hope slips away. My passion exits. The color disappears. Inspiration is a way to revival. It’s a rebellion against all that holds you back from creating the beauty the Lord planned for you to release into this world.
If we don’t intentionally live in a place where inspiration is possible, the joy of living fizzles away. That’s really what this summer devotion is about. I shared with you a project to memorialize your summer. The purpose is to let the sacred be sacred. Namely, crystallizing the time you spend with people doing the things that make life sweet. The aesthetic craftiness of your summer memory book makes no difference at all. Treasure the summertime with your loved ones and remember this season a long time from now.
Be Inspired by Reading
I shared with you a few things to read. It’s not a race or contest to be the most well-read. There are thousands of intellectuals and book lovers out there who will read all of us into the ground. Books ignite thoughts in our minds to ponder and share with friends. Words spring questions to talk to God about. Books multiply our ways to think about life and solutions to our problems. Reading puts your creative mind to work and often gives you plenty of ideas of how to bless others. Choose books, blogs, and articles to read that cause inspiration, change, and connection in your life. The experts say that twenty minutes a day is all you need to create a reading life. It’s my good challenge for you.
Be Inspired by Sharing Food
I shared a few recipes with you. Not because we are on our way to becoming the next food influencer on Instagram but because it’s another way to create and share. It’s a way to discover what brings you joy and lights you up. Making things to eat for my family, their friends and my friends brings me happiness and fulfillment.
Be Inspired to Share Yourself
I shared with you my thoughts through the weekly devotions. Sometimes I believe it’s too bold to think that you really want to read about this complicated, up and down, yet thriving little life I am living in my thoughts and in my actual days. Vulnerability is a hard choice. I am learning, through many of you who are reading this and living life with me, that there is no real heart and soul, or gratitude, or colorful living without choosing vulnerability. I am learning that there is no valid reason to hold back the winning combination of truth and love. It’s hard to express and sometimes even harder to receive, but it is the way of Jesus.
Be Inspired to Use Your Time Wisely
Finally, I shared with you questions and exercises. The purpose is not to overload your to do list. No. Never. Please. Let that never be the case of the things you are choosing to do with your time. If it turns out that you chose something that isn’t lightening your load and lighting up your life, quit. I am a recovered perfectionist and a hard-core finisher. But no more do I continue with stuff that makes me weary or grinds my soul. My desire is to go where God is and join Him in His work. If the questions and exercises inspire you to reflect, grow, and revive your desire to join God in His work, please do them. If not, choose something else that takes you to your first love.
Fall is Upon Us
We are here at the end. Fall is upon us. Yet, for me, sisters, it’s the beginning of summer. I look out my window at the net my husband put up to catch the mangoes falling off the neighbor’s tree into our yard. I read exciting messages of families landing in Greece to celebrate recent grads. I read texts of a husband and wife leaving on a plane for a sabbatical that we actually prayed would happen for this beloved pair. I see my son and his girlfriend savor the last few weeks before they each set out into the next stage of their new adult lives. I see one of my best friends move out of our neighborhood into an upcoming season of empty nesting.
For the Love of the Seasons
Seasons my sisters. My tears stream. For the love of the seasons. My breath is taken away by the thought that we are loved so deeply by God and others. We actually get to live these seasons. This is the wondrous feeling of gratitude. My streaming tears do hurt as I ponder these things. This is a sign of living and loving and doing our very best to be where God is.