Friday, August 19, 2011

7QTF: Points of View




'7 Quick Takes Friday' is a sharing situation generously started by Jen Fulwiler who blogs at 'Conversion Diaryand who also writes a column for the National Catholic Register.

Anyone participating in this blogging exercise submits a link of their post to Jen's site (so the traffic at Jen's blog might rub off on your own), and link back to Jen's post from here (where, besides Jen's great blog, you'll find a delightful list of other blogs to choose from for your reading pleasure).

Here's today's offering:

7 Points of View...
 
1.

Outside My Window:


Is a world with which I find myself increasingly at odds... yet one with which I feel an almost desperation to connect. A funny paradox, that.

I wonder how Christ handled this... in as much as he could see into the heart of our humanity, His divinity must have left Him feeling very much at odds... and yet because of that same divinity and humanity, he was obviously driven by who he was to connect with us.

I live on a very busy street corner, in a largely economically depressed area of my city. My window affords me a view I don't always want to see, yet I'm grateful for it, because I am never allowed to forget who I am created to be, and in whose name I am called.

My window shows me a world that needs my faith and compassion... I respond to the invitation... and I pray.


2.

In My Mind's Eye:

When I was first learning to drive I found it impossible to keep the car literally in my own lane, and on the road, until my Dad offered a simple observation: "Don't look at the front of the car, look to where you are going."

Though he doesn't realize it, my Dad gave me more than a driving lesson that day... I came to understand my life will reflect that toward which I consistently turn my gaze. Items which caught my gaze this week, and which I continue to ponder in the context of my own life, include:

At Accepting Abundance (isn't that blog name just the best... anybody else besides me have trouble doing just that?!):
"...when I focus on what transcends me I'm free from what misguides me."

Emerging Mummy speaks to my on-going struggle to give voice to the deepest groanings of my heart and soul:
"...let Love be my first language, my mother tongue whether its communicated in English or a thousand tongues for only angels to hear."

Beside Myself:

An aspect of the blogosphere that I am having trouble negotiating are those issues and topics that upset and, sometimes, literally TRASH  my equilibrium... but to which I am inexorably drawn... like a moth to a flame. These are issues I carry deeply in my soul... issues over which I weep, lose sleep... and, rightly or wrongly, the altar upon which I sacrifice peace. And that's why I can't talk about them just yet... I haven't found my love language in which to speak the words I need to say, such they are heard by those who most need to hear them. For now I'll just point with trembling hand:

4.

Underneath My Bed:

School looms on the imminent horizon - there are only ten days left until I have six hours a day all to myself and... honestly... I'm dreading it. I know that sounds bizarre to those of you who have several children, but I love the happy bubble the Divine Miss O and I create together. I struggle when she's at school: I hate that I don't really know what or who is writing on her mind and heart. Even though she is only beginning second grade, we know that there is a lot that won't be good for her tender soul, and which will bruise her budding sensibilities.... it's taken a good part of the summer to erase the harm from last year. Sigh.

The Divine Miss O had a very difficult year and we, her parents, had a horrible year doing all we could to make it less so. Yet she LOVES school (you wouldn't believe the explaining I had to do when she realized she could have started at age 4)... even though it raises her anxiety level to the point of making her physically ill. Yet... we have new strategies in place, the school is aware and prepared to be more supportive and attentive to our concerns, prayers have been said to cover every aspect of concern, and off to school she will go.

I stopped checking for monsters under my bed when I realized they were inside me... I also realized... so are the knights who slay them.






5.

Behind My Back:

This isn't a viewpoint I normally spend a lot of time thinking about (and one which most people usually perceive as negative), but it's been an interesting summer. My perceptions of myself, my daughter, Catholicism, the church, my faith, people I thought I knew have been challenged and, surprisingly, found to be somewhat different than I considered... in primarily good and delightful ways. Much has been going on behind my back of which I've failed to take notice.

So, I'm inclined to ask myself: "What is it I am eally seeing here (doing my best to suspend the judgements which rise so readily)?" "What is really going on when I'm not looking?" "To what am I paying attention?" "Does that to which I attend reflect my priorities?"

I don't have clear answers to these questions as such, but I'm going to be exploring them here. I'll keep you posted (pun intended).




6.

Atop My Night Table:

I read to challenge, myself, entertain myself, escape, inform, grow. Books have always been my very best friends, my consolation, my joy. Books are touchstones in my life. Every August I place an Amazon order for books I want to read over the course of the next year starting in September. My order arrived this week!

Spencer's Mountain by Earl Hamner, Jr.
Purple Hibiscus by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
The Promise of God by David Shapiro
The Man With No Skin by Orfhlaith Ni Chonaill
Love in the Ruins by Walker Percy
Seventy Times Seven by Salvatore Sapienza
The Harrowing of Hell by Stephen Seal
Fascinating Womanhood by Helen Andelin
Three Cups of Tea: One Man's Mission to Promote Peace... One School at a Time
by Greg Mortenson & David Oliver Relin (now a bit suspect, and marginally less attractive: check this out: Questions Over Greg Mortenson's Stories)
Mistress of the Vatican by Eleanor Herman
Rediscover Catholicism by Matthew Kelly



7.

From Within My Heart:

"Grace isn't a little prayer you chant before receiving a meal. It's a way to live."
Attributed to JACQUELINE WINSPEAR

A few things for which I am grateful this week:
  • a good natured and loving husband
  • a healthy, GROWING daughter
  • my sense of humour
  • that somehow I'm going into the weekend with my laundry all caught up
  • choices (have you ever noticed how some people have so few?)
  • kittens
  • everybody I love is alive and well... others haven't been so blessed
  • music
  • the moon keeping watch
  • supermarkets
  • raspberries
  • fresh figs
  • tomatoes
  • stories
  • my body, even in all its imperfections
  • the wonder that is the Internet, and bloggers in general



...all to the soundtrack of my week:
Love Reclaims the Atmosphere by Burlap to Cashmere:



"Send blessings to your critics and careful with the least of these
Release the prisoners free...
today we'll crucify the fear as love reclaims the atmosphere"


...until the next dance!




8 comments:

  1. "Three Cups of Tea" is good regardless of Greg Mortenson's credibility. It's interesting to see the way he works within the cultures.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks for the heads up on the book, Jen. I wasn't aware there were any credibility issues with the author. I'll have to do some research.

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  3. What a beautiful post. And beautiful images to go with them. God bless you. (That must be the most generic comment I've ever left...sorry!)

    ReplyDelete
  4. I love the name of your blog and the depth of your writing. Glad to meet you through ICLW!

    Blessings,
    Michele (mommyforward.com)

    ReplyDelete
  5. Very interesting ... :)

    Happy ICLW from #86 :D

    ReplyDelete
  6. What a fascinating idea for a weekly post. YOu show so much insight into yourself and the world around you.

    ICLW #19

    ReplyDelete
  7. Great post! And what a neat idea!
    Thank you for your comment on my blog today :-)

    I agree with you about rationalizing/justifying the world outside with what I know to be God's desires and truth for us.

    ReplyDelete
  8. This is fantastic!! Thanks for sharing!!

    Happy ICLW
    #75

    ReplyDelete

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