Entertaining My Thoughts

via Daily Prompt: Entertain

There’s something quite compelling to me about the concept of “entertaining a thought.” I seek entertainment when I am bored, when I want to be amused, or when I need to relax and unwind.

My thoughts rarely stop. They come unbidden. Sometimes I try not to think about a certain thing, but my mind keeps returning to it.

Most frustratingly, in the middle of the night, I wake up thinking about a problem or an idea I want to explore. My mind just won’t stop. I learned a long time ago, that counting sheep doesn’t work. So I entertain my thoughts knowing that eventually I will fall asleep and dreams will come.

Dreams are the most entertaining thoughts I ever have and I welcome them. There’s something so weirdly random about dreams. You never know who is going to show up.

This mind loves to entertain thoughts. I pour them a drink, offer them a snack and say, stay awhile. Take off your coat. Pull up a chair. Tell me, what are you thinking. 

But most of the time, entertaining my thoughts is not a social engagement. It is a solitary pursuit. There’s a party in my head and you’re not invited.

Static

via Daily Prompt: Static

It seems a little weird to look up a simple word that I already know so that I can write about it. I looked up “static” to see not just its meaning but also its synonyms, thinking perhaps one of them would inspire me for the WordPress daily prompt challenge. The dictionary says that static is “lacking in movement, action or change, especially in a way viewed as undesirable or uninteresting.” Static has the synonyms unchanging, unvarying, stable, steady, fixed and constant among others.

The problem with relying on synonyms for meaning is the nuances or subtle differences of meaning like those that came after the word especially in the definition of static. While the words stable and steady have positive connotations, to be static may be considered undesirable or boring.

The word static reminds me of the word inert. Inactive. Doing nothing. Inert matter stays at rest unless it is acted on by an external force. An object can be static indefinitely unless something or someone makes it move.

There are times when lack of movement or change is desirable. When I was growing up, we moved a dozen times. I wanted my home life to be stable and unchanging and it wasn’t. As an adult, I’ve learned that change is unavoidable and that change is often desirable or necessary even if changing is not your choice.

There are times when it isn’t good to be static, when we should resist keeping things the way they are. For me, now is one of those times. I do not accept the way things are going in my country. I will not normalize vile, racist behavior. I am not inert. I want to be a force for change, even if it is just with words.

Standing My Ground

2017 was emotionally exhausting. Everyday the news brought concerns about what would happen to immigrants or refugees or the poor or the environment or democracy or freedom of the press. It is no wonder that I ended the year feeling sad and depressed. But as discouraging as the year was, I learned some important spiritual lessons.

Live like there’s no tomorrow. My brother-in-law passed away unexpectedly last year. He was only two years older than me. His death reminded me that not one day is promised to any of us. Time and chance happen to all. There’s nothing like losing someone to remind you that you should not take this life or the people you care about for granted.

Trust that God is on the side of truth and justice. Sometimes it seems like people will get away with lying or covering up the truth. I find hope in what Jesus said: For there is nothing hidden that will not be disclosed, and nothing concealed that will not be known or brought out into the open (Luke 8:17). Jesus said that we will be held accountable for every careless word we have spoken (Matthew 12:34-36).

Trust that the good news is still the good news. No matter how many bad things happen in this world, the good news is still the good news. Jesus still loves and forgives sinners. He still comforts those who mourn. He still offers a path to salvation. He is still the most powerful example of love, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, self-control, and humility that I know.

I will stand my ground where hope can be found. Lauren Daigle’s song O’ Lord reminds me that “until this race is won, I will stand my ground where hope can be found.”  I know the one in whom I’ve placed my trust. I know that he will take all that is wrong and make it right. I will not be discouraged.

Lauren Daigle
Though times it seems
Like I’m coming undone
This walk can often feel lonely
No matter what until this race is won
I will stand my ground where hope can be found
I will stand my ground where hope can be found

Oh, O’Lord O’Lord I know You hear my cry
Your love is lifting me above all the lies
No matter what I face this I know in time
You’ll take all that is wrong and make it right
You’ll take all that is wrong and make it right

 

 

Viable Seeds

via Daily Prompt: Viable

Last May, I went to the People’s Climate March. Someone handed out free packets of seeds for flowers that were supposed to be attractive to bees. I had no idea what kind of flowers were in the packets. I waited until the end of May so the ground would be warm enough and planted the seeds in pots just in case the mystery plants spread too much.

It took two or three months for the plants to bloom. I loved watching the wildflower mystery unfold over the summer. There were marigolds, snapdragons, bachelor buttons, red clover and other flowers I didn’t recognize. Unfortunately, the flowers didn’t attract bees.

I am not much of a gardener so I have never given much thought to whether seeds are viable. A viable seed is one that can be germinated under the right conditions. If seeds are stored in the right conditions, they can remain viable for years.

I have discovered that it is very easy to germinate snapdragons from seed. I let the plants go to seed, then scatter them on the surface of the soil.

One of the reasons I love wildflowers is that they are viable in conditions that often don’t appear to be ideal – a little bit of dirt, a little bit of moisture and a little bit of sun.

Viable. Capable of surviving in the right conditions.