2017: Page 209

Page 209 was an exciting and productive day.  I began the day checking messages before heading out into the early morning coolness to begin mowing.  I enjoy mowing, at least the large area mowing with the rider, as I find it relaxing and it is easy to look back and see what was accomplished.  Some tasks in a ministry of service are difficult to measure in terms of accomplishment — the only true measure for those is often faithfulness.  

By mid-morning I took a break from the mowing to get a snack and a drink.  While I was in the office the proof copies of my illustrated children’s book came in, so I eagerly went through them to make sure everything was correct.  After checking out the printed book, I gave approval to shift the process from “in process” to “completed” so I could order copies and begin the process of making them available on Amazon.  As I approved them for publication, all of the information stated that it is typically three to five days before they become visible and available on Amazon — so, back to the hurry up and wait routine.  After doing what I could with the book for now, I headed back out to continue the mowing.

By early afternoon I made it to the back field and there was a deer standing along the edge of the lawn watching me mow.  After I had mowed awhile and she kept watching, I went inside to get my camera so I could get a few photos.  The pictures weren’t horrible, but I don’t think taking photos while sitting on a running mower is a good way to get clear, sharp images.  I suspect the vibration of the engine running was enough to put just enough of an element of movement in the process to make the photos less than I had hoped.  I think a similar outcome is the reason God says we should be still and know that He is God.  It doesn’t seem to take a lot of movement in my life to cause my image of God to blur just a bit.  The more hectic and chaotic life becomes, the less in focus God becomes to us — we usually get that.  It is usually the times when we think we have stopped to gaze into the beauty of God and His Word but we keep our engine of life running at full speed during a momentary wait, that the blurriness  of the image catches us by surprise. 

After finishing the mowing, I was ready to call it a day and head out for a late afternoon lunch.  As I stopped by the office, I discovered that Amazon’s three to five days had been accomplished in three to five hours as my book was being listed for sale on Amazon’s site.  So instead of going to lunch, I spent some time sharing the link to the book page — https://www.amazon.com/dp/1946319015 — and then working with Amazon to link the paperback and Kindle editions on the same online listing.  By then, the afternoon was turning into evening and I was tired and hungry and people were coming into the building, so I decided to head home and finish up the inside cleaning and building prep early Sunday morning before the Sunday School and Worship gatherings.

At home I spent a little time unwinding before heading out for a lunch/dinner combination with my family.  After eating, we headed down to Potato Creek to enjoy the evening and see what we could find to photograph.  Today’s photo was a good scene to begin wrapping up the day’s excitement with.  While we didn’t stay long enough for the actual sunset, watching the sun as it sat low in the sky and reflected off the water, was a relaxing reminder of God’s glory being present throughout creation.  With no eagle present at their usual locations, we drove through the park to enjoy the scenery.  As we were about ready to leave, a deer walked across the road in front of us.  I stopped to see if there would be another one coming, and sure enough, it wasn’t long before a second deer bounded across the road in front of us.  They didn’t go very far, but the prairie grasses were tall in the meadow along the road and they were difficult to see as they kept watching to see what we were doing.  I did manage a few photos of them through the grass as I climbed up on the bed of my truck to get a better view.  

As I reflect on the day, here are some thoughts/lessons that stand out to me:

  • It is pretty exciting to finally finish a project that has had numerous delays, obstacles, and multiple times of “hurry up and wait”.
  • Each day holds a variety of opportunity.  Some that we anticipate, some that we must plan for, and some that will catch us by surprise but the only way to experience any of it is to live out the fullness of the day.
  • Not every task that we need to do is enjoyable and relaxing but it is good to have some that are in order to balance the necessary tasks that drain us.
  • Serving doesn’t always produce immediately visible results, but it should always produce a growing faithfulness.
  • Some work that God calls us to takes time for it to unfold — often more time than we would like.  We honor God as we learn to have the patience to allow each step of the process bring the next step into being.
  • Sometimes our periods of waiting are times when we are simply supposed to wait.  More often, they are times when we are supposed to be doing something else while we wait.
  • It is difficult to get a clear picture of what God is doing in your life, and in the lives of others, if you are never still long enough to see clearly.
  • Many times we settle for a blurry picture of what God wants us to see, simply because we simply aren’t willing to shut down even for a moment in order to gaze intently.
  • Serving requires flexibility and when I lose sight of that principle, I easily become irritated.
  • Glimpses of God’s glory are often revealed through His creation to all who would stop long enough to gaze upon it.
  • Did I say how excited I am to finally have “A is For Animals” in print? 🙂

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