Recently, at a writer’s meeting, we were challenged to look at our writing like a garden. What does our garden look like? What was there? What would others gain by spending time in that place we have created with our words? These, among some other questions, prompted the following to pour out of my fingertips.
Quiet sunshine lives here. Air to breathe in deep as butterflies and birds dip and weave gently amongst the layers of greens and browns that make shadow and light friendly companions. I feel my feet here. Step by step, one at a time, walking forward not caring where. My smile lives as memories touch at the edges of my mind.
Wooden benches wait for conversations. Paths wait to be walked. Voices are yet to speak. Lives are yet to be created. Struggles are yet to be fought. Victories or yet to be discovered. Dreams will live and die and so will love, yet it will all be full and free. The boundary lines have fallen in pleasant places for me and all that I am and have to offer depends on me exploring this given place with all my senses.
Sometimes, there is a heaviness, a weight that tries to quiet me. But, if I close my eyes, and whisper one word, the one who owns my garden comes. Sometimes he blows a fierce and ruthless wind that almost takes my breath away. Other times it is like a lover’s exhale on the back of my neck that says, “You are mine, listen to my voice, it’s the only one you were made to hear.” And when I listen, all is well again.
If others were to sit a moment with me here, I hope that they would hear him whisper in the quiet stillness of this place. That they would take something from here to remember. A leaf to press in a precious book. A rock to roll in their hand when needed. Even if they can’t name the mystery of this garden place, I pray that when they leave, what they have experienced here will not leave them.
My lover is calling me, and I will go with him. Go down the long sun dappled paths where the shadows hold no darkness. Where the sun warms my face, and my eyes can close because there is nothing to fear.
Being a writer is a strange and mysterious thing. Sometimes you know the words you want to put on the page. Other times, words and thoughts appear that you hadn’t thought until you typed them. It’s weird and so very beautiful.
The line that struck me as I typed was, “The boundary lines have fallen in pleasant places for me and all that I am and have to offer depends on me exploring this given place with all my senses.”
It is easy to feel lost in this world of information overload, constant striving, and trying to maintain the pressing drive to be something and keep up with all that we have access to. Yet, I’ve come to believe we were not meant to live in a world that is so big.
Can we find joy knowing all the things about all the places and all the people everywhere? I don’t think so. We were made for intimacy not all access passes.
A portion of Psalm 16 reads, “The Lord is my chosen portion and my cup; you hold my lot. The lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; indeed, I have a beautiful inheritance.”
As I thought on what I had written, and on what God’s word says, it shifted something in me. God has placed boundaries that are in pleasant places. A place to explore and enjoy. To feel safe and secure. To spend time with him and enjoy all that is there.
I think we spend much of our time looking outside the fence trying to make sense of what we see out there, and we forget he has given us a beautiful inheritance inside the boundary lines.
So, this got me thinking. I don’t need to know all the things about all the people everywhere. I need and want to know what my garden looks like and the One who made it.
So, with my writing, I think this activity helped me focus. I want to walk in a place of beauty, sharing that with others. Creating characters or using words to bring things closer, to help others live that intimate life.
So, as I write, I am confident God will show me what my garden looks like. Would you take a moment and think about yours? Writer or not, you have a pleasant place to explore if you have chosen to walk with Jesus.
So take a look around today friends. What do you see?