Wednesday, June 25, 2008

a rich summer

Today, I was one of the ladies who lunch.

We dined at noon at the edge of the garden under the leafy boughs of maple trees. The menu included fresh fruit and lentil-rice tortillas. The conversation was lively, to say the least. There was a sweet baby to pass around, one troublesome "bee" to brush off the children's picnic blanket on the back lawn (it was a beetle), a new friend to become acquainted with, and a chocolate-y cake to satisfy our sweet-tooth. (sweet-tooths? sweet-teeth?)

After a leisurely lunch, a few of us took a country-drive that provided further amusement. (Let me just say it involved old houses and gardens.) Mostly, we were looking for excuses to hang out a little longer.

Last evening at 3108, we hosted a strawberry shortcake/hymn-sing get-together. Talk about old-fashioned fun! Twenty people can put away quite a mound of shortcake and the appropriate trimmings. After the bowls were licked clean, we cracked open our library of assorted hymnals and dusted off our vocal chords for a good hour and a half--a worthy exercise for the soul.
Even after the hymnals were laid aside, we lingered in each other's presence until the clock over the piano chimed many times in a row. Friend #37 (the Birthday-Boy) wouldn't go home until we had read some Sherlock Holmes aloud. My kids, Friends #7 and #12, and the Birthday Boy lay sprawled about the living room like tired cats while I intoned Sherlock's death-defying antics.

Bountiful opportunities to socialize have been my portion as of late.

Being a lady who lunches in the garden, serves up small vats of strawberries & cream, and lines out the hymns from the piano is not enough for me. After the din of guests dies away, I am left to examine my own soul. Did I speak wholesomely? Show compassion? Put others interests before my own? Was I mindful of inner promptings? Did I speak words of grace and faith?

Many times at the end of the day, I am broken at how I have failed Him. There are long stretches when I wonder how this lump of clay could ever show any progress in the "Pleasing to God Department". In my despair, He pursues me--drawing me to repentance by staggering displays of His goodness. He captures my heart time after time, equipping me with unmerited mercies. They are new every morning.

Although this summer of cakes and luncheons, of old houses and gardens, and harmonizing with friends does tickle my fancy---I am reminded of my Father's business in it all. He desires for me to be His voice, His hand, His vessel in all situations. Alone, I fall entirely short. With Him, I can do all things.

What a rich summer it promises to be!


Blogger TrashTidBits said...

Sounds fun. I've been thinking about having fresh strawberry shortcake. Are there leftovers? Let's get together soon.

12:35 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ah, I echo your longing for "progress in the 'Pleasing to God Department'"...I, too, can be broken some days at my own shortcomings.

Thank our merciful Lord for the newness He promises when we come humbly before Him, broken, needy, and open.

Have a blessed evening.

~Deb F.

9:03 PM  

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