Walking the Walk, #4 Smell Walk

OH how fabulously wonderful You are, Lord. Absolutely fabulous! In who You are! In where You are! In how You are! I am so blessed to have met You here in this new favorite place You have given me. You have been whispering this place to me for quite some time, and I have tried to research as much as possible on how to meet You here. Yet today, You have spoken clearly, and delightfully surprised me!

It’s known for its gardens, but this is winter, so it was “barren” of the flowers everyone brags about. Yet I feel like it’s an earthy wonderland! It’s so beautifully designed. A beautiful use of concrete and earth in perfect blend… if there can be such a thing. It’s outdoors and yet so clean! Pristine! You are beautiful… wonderful… in Your time… in Your place! ❤ I go inside.

You first catch my attention with heritage… and have me think.

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What is an important tradition in my family or community?
The only thing that comes to mind are family dinners we use to have at my grandmother’s house. My mom’s family use to have holiday dinners there. There was no certain time of day. Aunts, uncles, cousins, brothers, sisters, nieces, nephews, spouses, grandchildren, great grandchildren and several family friends would come and go throughout the day. When my grandmother passed in February of 2000, we no longer saw each other much, unless it was a funeral.

What have I learned by being a part of it?
Family can be so precious… even dysfunctional families. Enjoy the time while you can. It won’t last. It makes me think of one of my favorite gospel songs every time I lose someone I love…. I’ve Got More to Go to Heaven For (Than I Did Yesterday).

I’VE GOT MORE TO GO TO HEAVEN FOR
I’ve been on my way to Heaven… For a long, long time.
And many things have happened… That clouded up my mind.
But I am more determined… To walk the narrow way
For I’ve got more to go to Heaven for… Than I had yesterday.
CHORUS:
There’s a golden street to walk upon… A bell I’m gonna ring,
A brand-new angel in the choir… I wanna hear her sing.
There’ll be a lot of friends a-waiting… When I walk through the gate
I’ve got more to go to Heaven for… Than I had yesterday.
I’ve been through lonesome valleys… I’ve climbed the highest hill,
I’ve known the joy of living… In the center of God’s will.
I’ve watched the angels come and take… My loved ones home to stay
I’ve got more to go to Heaven for… Than I had yesterday.

You continue to have me think on family tradition.

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Banana Pudding was our family tradition…
for every holiday… sometimes every meal.
Banana Pudding and Sweet Tea! ❤
“O taste and see that the Lord is good:
blessed is the man that trusteth in him.”

– Psalm 34:8 KJV

Now You turn my focus to water… Your gift to life.

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Seeing this makes me think of the struggle I have with dehydration, and this makes for a great motivator and reminder! It also reminds me of when I was doing Lovely A’s 21 Day Self Care Challenge on her Discovering Your Happiness website. My response was noted on Self Care Challenge Day 8: Water. I actually took the picture thinking of her! ❤

Chewing Gum comes from a tree! Wow! I did not know that! 🙂

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I love corn, beans, and squash! A tasty dinner to me, Lord! 🙂

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After hearing some Native Americans narrate different nature topics and traditional stories, I venture outside. I have no pictures. I started just enjoying things when I sat down for the stories. I’m walking where there are normally gardens and flowers, so says the guy when I came in and every touring person that passes me. Yet I am not the least bit disappointed. Perhaps because I have not come to see them. I have come to see You!

Again the place just seems like the most tenderly fabulous earthy wonderland! I find one of the many beautifully designed areas to sit in, and just take You in. The sun is so bright and beautiful on this winter day, and the wind just does what it wants with my hair. But it’s OK. It’s comforting… because it’s You… being playful… being tender… being loving… being personal… being You! This place reminds me of places people have introduced to me in the past. For some reason I start thinking of those special faces.

Counselors, teachers, friends who have taken moments out to sit and talk with me… knowing that I am claustrophobic… and very uncomfortable with talking inside closed walls… while a clock ticks… reminding of how unimportant my words are, so make it quick for the one who is listening. But not here. Outside in a warm sun… with no clock hovering over me. It makes me miss them so. I have so much I wish I could talk to them about. They broke protocols and rules to go out of their way to help save me from things in my life when I did not know I needed saving from anything. My heart aches for them. I miss them as much as I miss family… even if some them were dysfunctional as well.  How human we all are. Yet we are Your humans! Thank You, Lord, for going out of Your way today to meet me here. I will be back!

As I start to walk away from this area, a smell permeates my air. And I can smell how beautiful it is! So pleasant! So comforting! There’s just something about it that smells like… You! I see nothing but barrenness until suddenly I see a sign that says Lily of the Valley! *GASP* Oh dear Lord! My favorite song! My grandmother’s favorite flower, and a name sweetly referenced to You!

Lily of the Valley – hymn lyrics by Charles W. Fry
I have found a friend in Jesus, He’s everything to me,
He’s the fairest of ten thousand to my soul;
The Lily of the Valley, in Him alone I see
All I need to cleanse and make me fully whole.
In sorrow He’s my comfort, in trouble He’s my stay;
He tells me every care on Him to roll. 
CHORUS:
He’s the Lily of the Valley, the Bright and Morning Star,
He’s the fairest of ten thousand to my soul.
He all my grief has taken, and all my sorrows borne;
In temptation He’s my strong and mighty tow’r;
I have all for Him forsaken, and all my idols torn
From my heart and now He keeps me by His pow’r.
Though all the world forsake me, and Satan tempt me sore,
Through Jesus I shall safely reach the goal.
[CHORUS]
He will never, never leave me, nor yet forsake me here,
While I live by faith and do His blessed will;
A wall of fire about me, I’ve nothing now to fear,
From His manna He my hungry soul shall fill.
Then sweeping up to glory to see His blessed face,
Where rivers of delight shall ever roll.
[CHORUS]

It’s not visible, but I can smell despite the darkened earth. Praise Your name I can smell! I have been trying to do the Smell Walk, #3 of the 50 Walks within the Walking the Walk Challenge with Lovely A of Discovering Your Happiness, but have just not been able to smell! I had done Walking the Walk, #3 Delight Walk in its place. But I smelled that lovely Lily of the Valley! ❤ And this was before I had the occipital nerve block last week, of which I felt it opening my sinus within minutes.

As I continue to walk, I smell another familiar aroma… Spruce… everywhere! It smells so good! And just as I think of touching out of curiosity, You remind me of my allergies and sensitivities. I’ll never forget Scratch and Sniff 203! That was my Botany class. In lab exercises we walked the college campus scratching and sniffing twigs, flowers, branches (that we were warned not to touch because of chemicals to protect them). I had the worst allergic reaction I have had involving a fever. A high fever that did not break until the 9th day of a 10 day antibiotic course. No more Scratch and Sniff, Professors! 😉

All of this beautiful smell within a seemingly lifeless foliage makes me think on how filthy I must have looked to You underneath all of my sin when my soul laid beneath the dead and broken leaves, the barren dark branches, and this uninviting view. Yet You saw beauty in me. You saw You in me! Again I think of my counselors and teachers You used to save me, to clean and toil the surface, to dig out the roots and choking weeds, to rid me of that one dark blot…. multiplied by a thousand. Thank You for coming for me! Thank You for the souls You blessed me with. Help me to thankful for those I still have!

One last sign on the way out… is a Fabulous answer to prayer!

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I continue to walk around and then find this sign telling me of several small trails! Could this be answer to prayer, and a guide for the 50 Walks in the Walking the Walk Challenge! Absolutely! Thank You for this day! For this intoxicating scent! For these fond memories of people I miss so much! Thank You for just being You! As Always! ❤

 

Walking the Walk, #3 Delight Walk

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“He casteth forth his ice like morsels:
who can stand before his cold?”

– Psalm 147:17 AKJV

Lord, This is how our walk was today. I was going to do walk number #3 Smell Walk, but I was absolutely distracted and excited by the beautiful ice all over the place! I thought about scents at different times, but honestly could not smell anything. But oh I was taken by Your delightful sights. So since #4 is Delight Walk,

  1. Delight walk- Look out for things that delight or tickle you. You may use these as destination points for future walks. You might share these with others to enjoy, via social media. 

I have swapped them for now to share the delightful pictures You allowed me to get. So this will be Walking the Walk, #3 Delight Walk.  Only 47 more to go 🙂
You even allowed a couple of quick videos, which I’ll post at the end of this post.

Thank you! It was such a delight spending time in Your wonders! 🙂

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“Out of whose womb came the ice?
and the hoary frost of heaven, who hath gendered it?”
– Job 38:29 KJV

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“He giveth snow like wool:
he scattereth the hoarfrost like ashes.”
Psalm 147:16 KJV

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For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater: So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.
– Isaiah 55:10

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“The earth will soon dissolve like snow,
the sun forebear to shine,
But God, who called me hear below,
Will be forever mine.”

Amazing Grace – hymn lyrics by John Newton

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For he saith to the snow, Be thou on the earth;
likewise to the small rain, and to the great rain of his strength.
– Job 37:6 KJV

walk“His countenance was like lightning,
and his raiment white as snow.”
– Matthew 28:4 KJV

“His head and his hairs were white like wool, as white as snow;
and his eyes were as a flame of fire.”
– Revelation 1:14 KJV

“By the breath of God frost is given:
and the breadth of the waters is straitened.”

– Job 37:10 KJV

Thank You for such a wonderful day with You, Oh Lord.
You are magnificent! ❤ I love You! ❤

Walking the Walk, #2 Texture Walk

Good early morning, Lord. We are moving on to our 2nd walk of 50. The Texture walk. As I said  in Walking the Walk, #1 Color Walk, I had at first put together pictures at home representing our walk in wanting to get started on the 50 Walks and keeping reliable for the accountability. Yet I also did not want to give up or rush away 50 new quality walks with you, so I waited. Here are the comparisons of the two… and the end result of what you gave me on this walk together on texture.

The first picture shows napkins. The second is a variety of papers. I can’t help but think of my friend Sayer over at the Oaken Reed, as he is genius and passionate at knowing all about paper. 😉 I would grossly mess up detailing them as he could. The third shows newspaper puzzles. (Can anyone tell I love puzzles? ❤ ) The fourth picture shows more clearly the bookmarker, the compo, newspaper puzzles, the magazine puzzle, and the receipt. I was going to include a picture of a paper towel, and a box of tissue, but before I got a chance to put it together, you allowed me to snap the pictures below.

The first and last picture alone have so much texture difference in the different types of leaves and in the fact that some are dead, some are dying, and some are thriving. Together they all make sure a beautiful picture. Even that sharp yellow is because the leaf has lost so much life. Death… debris… drab… is so sad and depressing if I stop to look or think on any particular one too long, but if I choose to see it as a whole… creating God’s own mulch… is has beauty… has life… has purpose. For some strange, it makes me think on Ecclesiastes 12:7.

Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was:
and the spirit shall return unto God who gave it.
– Ecclesiastes 12:7 KJV

 

Walking the Walk, #1 Color Walk

Ok, Lord. Here we go. Just you and me… on these 50 Walks of Lovely A’s Walking the Walk challenge that she posted on her Discovering Your Happiness. I am looking forward to each new walk. That is why I waited patiently for you to provide the Color Walk and the Texture Walk (though I was so eager to begin). The day I tried to begin I only came across that picture at lymphedema therapy on the wall, and that I posted on “NEW” Series, # 1 Walking the Walk. I even corrected the numbers on the title to correlate with Walking the Walk, #1 Color Walk.ltw6Everyone seem to love it so. You surely blessed them as you blessed me when I saw how beautiful those rich colors were. You brought my camera to mind, and I snapped the picture. But I didn’t want to give up a quality walk with you out there in your world, and the challenge did include making a collage.

  1. Colour walk – Bring a camera/phone look for the brightest colors, make a photo collage of your collection.

The first day that you provided out, you allowed me to think about snapping a picture after my doctor appointment. Just before I got into the car I saw an abundance of leaves of different kinds. The different colors got my attention, but it was texture that you brought to mind (so those pictures will be in Walking the Walk, #2 Texture Walk). As I continued my busy day, I found the only moment I was going to have with you was while putting something on my very empty stomach. And then I noticed… colors in my meal. The salad alone was so rich in color… and very tasty! 🙂

I was able to collect and create my first collage. No it was not flowers, or leaves, or the beautiful scenic Blue Ridge Parkway where I had hoped to spend time with you. Though that is my favorite spot, it was closed because of ice. It was not by a lake or anything outdoorsy. But it was you… whispering in my ear… to pay attention to the blessings you were providing… and that the walk was about you and me… with YOU leading… not me.

“Trust in the Lord with all thine heart;
and lean not unto thine own understanding.
In all thy ways acknowledge him,
and he shall direct thy paths”
 – Proverbs 3:5-6 KJV

The picture you had provided at lymphedema therapy was enough to you. It was the perfect example of how often I wish to walk with you and serve with you, but just as often feel like I fail you because my health leaves me in a bed. What kind of walk, or testimony, or life is that to give back to you? It has been a long hard journey to find peace in my walk, my testimony, and my life being YOURS. There are others who cannot get outside, some not even out of there bed. And there will still be days that put me back in mine. Where you are… is where my heart walks. And you tell me… where I am, there you walk with me.

“And He walks with me, and He talks with me,
And He tells me I am His own;
And the joy we share as we tarry there,
None other has ever known.”
In the Garden, hymn lyrics by C. Austin Miles

 

“NEW” Series, #1 Walking the Walk

“and thine ears shall hear a word behind thee, saying,
This is the way, walk ye in it,
when ye turn to the right hand, and when ye turn to the left.”

 – Isaiah 30:21 KJV

Ok, Lord. It’s time to begin our new journey of walking through this new year. You had me to choose this path that You allowed Lovely A of Discovering Your Happiness to create in her post Walking the Walk. As she says, “Walking is such a great thing for the mind but I also think walking for a purpose is a good idea.” And that’s exactly what this walk is all about… an intentional walk following You wherever You lead for the purpose of growing closer to You every step of the way, knowing that in each step You have a purpose for me in that particular walk. I am eager to join You in each walk.

There are 50 different walks to look forward to enjoying with You. The first one Colour Walk has me using a camera to capture some colors and making a photo collage. I have been mindful of this, but with the frigid temps and the problems that I mentioned in “NEW” Series #1, Introduction, the best that I could do was this photo hanging on the wall at lymphedema therapy.

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My Alcatel smartphone camera did not do a good job of holding the rich colors, but I will have to learn to make it work, or know why it will not. This will have to do until You allow me that walk where You have rich colors waiting on me, Lovely A, and all those who will witness the walk with us, as they journey alongside.

As You assign and provide each walk… I will walk, photograph, note, color, or whatever is on the list, and will be sure to blog about it along our Walking the Walk journey. Thank You for giving me yet another special way to spend time with Lovely Anita, and Lord willing, encourage her in her own walk with You. I know You love her so much! Thank You for using her 21 Days Self Care Challenge last year to teach me, encourage me, motivate me, and help me to really be more mindful of this temple You have given me. Bless her Lord for every time You used her. ❤