Not So Serious Sunday

Children, family, grandchildren, hope, puppies, Redemption, rest, wonder

I lean towards the serious, it’s the design of me. Someone asked, “Why do you always look so sad?” I answered, “Not sad, just thinking.”

But, I sure did think about the candid observation.

sometimes serious one

Yesterday I positioned myself on a piece of cardboard alongside a three year old. We’d played Cracker Barrel tic tac toe over lunch and annoyed the other shoppers by giggling over a plastic toy chicken.

Last week, I sat on the driveway and played “marbles”.

Together, we slid down a high slope of a backyard hill moist from humidity.

Our faces glistened with the warmth of a Sunday in November. We giggled over choosing which puppy we loved best and we decided on the brown one, the one that nuzzled most.

Not so serious me later (on purpose) fell off the yoga ball repeatedly while being serenaded by Elizabeth’s uncontrollable cackling.

Laughter prompted by toddlers, puppies and Sundays.

I’m not so serious, thought you readers should know.

And I should remember.

On Right Paths

Art, bravery, confidence, contentment, courage, Faith, memoir, Redemption, rest, waiting, walking

More thoughts and art because of the 23rd Psalm…

I woke with the thought, “Yet, not I, but Christ in me.” and began searching for the scripture. This is typical, it’s either a song or verse. This time a song by CityAlight. My friend texted me early another song by them. So my day started with the gift of worship.

I’ve been resting, revisiting and relishing Psalm 23 for going on three years. I could live and be led by the six verses.

Last week, as it often happens, I read verse 3 with a new clarity. I’ve been thinking/saying “God kept me for this time.” as an acknowledgment of the gift of being an artist and sharer of words.

Like most people, I can get tripped up on my own steps and I pray, less Lisa, more Jesus and little phrases like God, not glory. I gotta keep my steps in step.

Because when David wrote about restoration, he also praised the Lord for guidance and he remembered the most important truth:

This path of restoration and righteousness I am walking is for the making known the Lord’s name, not his, not mine, not yours.

Today has been the first day this week I’ve been able not to rush from my Bible to my to do list. Now, when I rise to do some things, prepare myself for obligations and the weekend, I rise lighter. I rise with a lifted spirit and a steadiness in my heart and steps.

Sermon to self, stay on this path.

Thoughts on Psalms and Paint

Art, contentment, courage, curiousity, Faith, hope, mercy, mixed media painting, painting, Redemption, rest, Vulnerability, wonder
Goodness and Mercy

A few months ago, I discovered an online publication, “Collected Magazine”. I connected and they connected in reply. The result includes some of my artwork and an interview about my Psalm 23 series. Here’s the link:

Collected

Goodness and Mercy is available

September Hope

confidence, contentment, courage, Faith, hope, patience, Prayer, Redemption, rest, Trust, waiting, wonder
Hold On

Mid-September mornings are striated light on the thick green floor. The mysterious vine spills over, bent branches scattered with once purple blooms now fading to lavender.

The season is changing, the blooms done with their blooming and I’m torn between acceptance and longing for longer.

Does hope have a season? Will we need to wait for it to make sense again? Will I embrace the soul of hope and not pack it away like a summer dress, move it to the back of the closet, knowing it’s there and yet wondering if it makes sense?

I greeted someone this morning to ask a favor and I began with, “Good morning.” Ready to send the message, I paused and rewrote it

Adding, “I hope you’re feeling hopeful this morning.”

Hope is important to my friend and I.

Weeks ago, I typed a message more like an essay telling someone jolted by bad news that we don’t stop hoping, we don’t give up on hope.

We don’t “put off our hope”, don’t defer it like asking for more time to make good on a debt or commitment.

We don’t procrastinate hoping, I told her because that makes our hearts even more broken.

Instead, we keep hoping and we see the beautiful bloom, the tree of life.

Fulfillment.

“Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life.”
‭‭Proverbs‬ ‭13:12‬ ‭NIV‬‬

I hope you’re feeling hopeful this morning.

“But may all who search for you be filled with joy and gladness in you. May those who love your salvation repeatedly shout, “God is great!”
‭‭Psalms‬ ‭70:4‬ ‭NLT‬‬

I hope you remember all the times you’ve seen hoping bring fulfillment and I hope you will believe, believe again or simply start hoping it may just be true.

Jesus loves you.

You can hope.

Continue and believe.

Acquiescence

Abuse Survivor, Art, bravery, confidence, contentment, courage, Faith, memoir, mercy, Peace, Redemption, rest, self-portrait, Vulnerability, wisdom
“Blue Ribbon Girl”

Months ago, we reintroduced ourselves in the parking lot. They were a family. She had a baby in her arms and another on her hip. The oldest, a boy was clinging to her legs, locked arms holding with all his little might.

A man stood by. He allowed our brief catching up, listened as she answered timidly, not meeting my eye, that she was okay. I watched all of them pile into a tiny car and slowly drive away.

She was a tough one, struggled to make up her mind that life could be better. She didn’t stay long, only enough time to bring her tiny firstborn into the world.

Then, she left the shelter, starry-eyed over her aims to try to have a “family”.

The next time I saw her, she was running the register and she saw me before I saw her. Face down and eyes of a child who’d been discovered in the wrong, she tentatively said hello.

Again, “Is everything okay?”

“Yes.”

“I’m working here now and I like it and the babies are okay.”

Smiles and see you soons were exchanged.

Yesterday, she sat on a pale pink bicycle, its basket loaded with groceries. I hurried up to see her. We talked about her bike, how much I loved it, old fashioned cruiser, no gears, simple and sort of cool.

She told me she needed it for work and how she’s not too far away but had been missing work, just came back after her daddy passed away.

Her face was stoic. He had been in a bad car accident and he never got better. I told her I was sorry.

I noticed the box of “Nutty Buddies” and thought she better get home, but she kept talking and the resolve despite her grief and trials was in her eyes, meeting mine and wide opening up with determination.

She told me she’d seen another of the shelter’s residents, this woman I thought had successfully moved on in work and raising her daughter.

She told me, “No, I don’t know what happened.”

“Well, I hope I see her too.” I said as I thought of how I wished she’d been able to stay stable, to stay in the “better than before”.

We said goodbye and I watched her cross four lanes of traffic towards her home.

I wondered about the man/father of the babies. I wondered about the other woman who has fallen back into hardship. I wondered if I should have driven her home.

For a second, I thought about the one I thought would make it, the old language of programmatic inputs and outcomes and for another second, I felt I’d failed her.

Then thought of a word God woke me with a few days ago, “shifting” and how everyone grows and then maybe dries up, withers and then along comes a little grace and rain and look it’s breaking through the hard earth, the left alone to rest soil.

Growth.

We shift to better in a moment, an hour, a day or sometimes after a long hard season of barrenness or mistakes of our making.

Acquiescence, a beautiful (even if reluctant) acceptance that may not make sense to others, but brings light and peace, resilience to our faces.

“And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
‭‭Philippians‬ ‭4:7‬ ‭ESV‬‬

“Blue Ribbon Girl” was painted a few years ago to remember the college girl who left art and after a bit of life and shifts, is finally home.”

What’s your story? Your home?

Find your way back.

Grow as you go.

Powerful Things

Abuse Survivor, Angels, Art, birds, contentment, courage, Faith, family, grandchildren, hope, memoir, mixed media painting, obedience, painting, patience, Peace, Redemption, rest, Trust, Vulnerability, wonder

I did the most silly, most powerful thing the other day. I changed the description in my Pinterest profile back to what it was originally.

Powerful? Silly? Yes, both. I edited the words characterizing me as an author and artist and I went back to the grander aspiration.

Hope.

Works on Paper

Lisa Anne Tindal, artist returned to “Artist and writer longing for a little white house near the ocean.”

Longings leading my heart back to me.

“You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.”
‭‭Psalm‬ ‭16:11‬ ‭ESV‬‬

“Come back, daughter.” my Heavenly Father keeps saying to me.

My Notes app became my diary at the beach, a call to smaller, more lasting things.

Nothing aspirational only thoughts of those around me, my line of thinking, line of prayer meandered from galleries, Italian art tours, and pricing my art in a way that measures its worth not just a sale.

We walked down the quiet street and discovered a white heron, gracious in its stance. The creek was quiet, the bird shaded and shielded by old overgrown cedar limbs as I knelt with a three year old resting against my chest.

I told her I was so happy for this gift, this peace today in a white elegant bird.

So, my prayer because God hears them. If possible and good for us, I’d love to have a seaside house for those I love to gather.

To gather again.

To search for the white bird daily.

White Bird

To paint on paper bags, be surprised by God again, to be visited by birds and song.

Aspirations so small and mighty.

So settled, not seeking.

So confident of my heart’s desires being known by my very kind Father.

Last weekend, I responded to the question of when I became an artist with the truth of flunking out of college, losing my art scholarship because of hard things and harm and then working hard as a helper of families before, in my 50’s, coming back to art.

There’s truth there, but even more in the realization,

I’ve always been an artist in the very same way I was told “You’ve always been brave.”

Paper Bag Works

I did a powerful silly thing. I changed my Pinterest bio back to the true, although dreamy thing.

To be an artist with a little white house near the ocean.

To gather. To paint.

To search for the white bird with my family.

“In returning and rest you shall be saved; in quietness and in trust shall be your strength.
‭‭Isaiah‬ ‭30:15‬ ‭ESV‬‬

Alone With My Faith

Abuse Survivor, beach, confidence, contentment, Faith, grace, hope, memoir, patience, Peace, Prayer, Redemption, rest, Stillness, testimony, traumatriggers, Vulnerability, wisdom, wonder
Edisto Beach Shells

I woke without alarm and quietly found my clothes. Carefully, I remembered the sandals were on top. The contacts were turned right side up and the bathroom window gave enough light for a splash of cold water on my cheeks.

The old door creaked as I closed it. Bare feet on the steps, I saw the pink behind me as I thought nothing of walking alone on our last vacation morning.

The promise of grandeur was kept. I thought if I could touch the far away sun, I’d never let go.

Edisto Beach

Decided that’s why we’re not made to hold such things, we’d cling so fiercely we might never see from a distant perspective.

How deep is your faith?”

I asked myself this morning, the question in the tune of the Bee Gee’s song.

Edisto Beach

Riding home from a week away, I enjoyed what my husband calls a “conversation hiatus”, a thing he will never fully understand. I’m just glad he allows it. I thrive on quiet. I require a flushing of the mental overload, a reset of sorts, a not always pleasant assessment of events, conversations, interactions and pushed to the side for later thoughts.

Processing, becoming prayers. Seeing from a distance, not holding tight or looking too close.

Heal what is hurting. Mend what is broken. Speak what needs to be heard. Continue with me, Lord, these lessons I might begin to live, to teach.

Edisto Beach

Find me, Lord, where I left you.

Keep changing my perspective, Father. Keep redeeming what is not mine to remake.

Psalm 23 became a plea in a hospital bed for me back in 2019. Maybe I made it more than it was, the scary episode of vertigo that refused to quit. Likely, I did make it bigger than it was.

Because it wasn’t the episode, it was the fear. It was the trigger of being forced to quit or being grabbed and shaken, being unable to escape a violent grip.

Over and over for months, I said to myself.

“The Lord is my shepherd. I have everything I need.”, taking the opening line of a well known Psalm and making it mine.

Now, I prefer a different translation.

“The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.”
‭‭Psalm‬ ‭23:1‬ ‭ESV‬‬

One that reminds me no matter what, how, or when…I shall not be in want.

My faith will and has sustained me.

In the morning when I rise, I’ll keep considering my perspective. In all that affects me, I will pause and examine the ways I have changed.

I’ll give myself a minute and I’ll ask, “How deep is your faith.”

Knowing that’s all that matters and knowing that’s all and only what makes me, me.

And I shall not want.

“…that he may teach us his ways and that we may walk in his paths.”
‭‭Isaiah‬ ‭2:3‬ ‭ESV

Edisto Birds

I shall continue.

Continue and believe.

Hope you do too.

Looking For Day

anxiety, beach, birds, contentment, courage, family, hope, Peace, Prayer, rest, Stillness, Vulnerability, waiting, wonder

Windows without screens were raised in the dark. No breeze through the night, only murmurs of others and the occasional firefly spark.

Someone had an accident, downed a power pole they say fueled the entire island.

Streets welcomed walkers, children giggled and competed on their bicycles. We joined the porch sitters who hoped it wouldn’t take long.

All night long was powerless, no covers, nothing but time for intermittent prayers and mind wondering worries, sleeping in our undies with the door open.

Morning began with the chatter of insects, birds, other sounds I had no idea signaled the morning to wake up.

I tiptoed through the beach house and decided to go, to go find the new day, the sea and birds.

And they came and kept coming, their flight like a dance and a song.

God’s hands on the harp, the long and low strokes causing melody and chorus.

Rhythm.

The lifting of the wings, the beaks straight and strong, the dipping down and the floating back up

Crescendo.

And I, with no charge on my phone for more photos, making it 10,001.

But, these and this came before

Saying, sit and rest.

The show is not yet done.

The morning after the blackout night, windows open and a mind that refused to be quiet.

The electricity returned before morning and rather than sleep I went looking for God, looking for day.

I believe I will again tomorrow.

Sit in the awe and wonder, listen to God.

“In the morning, Lord, you hear my voice; in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait expectantly.”
‭‭Psalm ‬ ‭5:3‬ ‭NIV‬‬

Where’s Peace?

anxiety, confidence, contentment, courage, Faith, hope, Peace, Redemption, rest, Trust, Vulnerability, wonder

The ceiling fan is whirring, kitten calm and purring. Sounds from down the hall tell me my husband is stirring.

I’ve just been reading about hope and twirling my feet in circles, a quiet quirky habit.

Stopping by a friend’s home last week, she mentioned her husband’s in the bedroom watching the news. I stopped myself before saying, “Tell him to stop watching the news.”

Seconds later he came down the hallway, disheveled and dazed. I thought, “See, told ya so.”

I didn’t.

Maybe he was actually napping, lulled into drowsiness by the incessant woeful, panicked argumentative banter.

How, I can’t imagine.

“Return, O my soul, to your rest; for the Lord has dealt bountifully with you.”
‭‭Psalm‬ ‭116:7‬ ‭ESV‬‬

Because there’s a stirring up all around us, a critical chatter and a dull humming dread.

It’s a choice to decide on different.

To know our souls must rest.

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.”
‭‭Romans‬ ‭15:13‬ ‭ESV‬‬

I hope you rest today, tomorrow and the next.

I hope you care for your soul.

Linking up with other writers, prompted by the word “stir”.

https://fiveminutefriday.com/2022/06/09/fmf-writing-prompt-link-up-stir/

The Calming

anxiety, confidence, contentment, courage, Faith, love, memoir, patience, Peace, Prayer, Redemption, rest, Vulnerability, waiting, wonder, writing

The morning fooled me with its horizon.

Thick clouds bordered the pine tops like hills, like in the mountains.

Crescent moon to my left.

I remembered smiling, remembered the now distant idea, “Look at the moon, precious child. It’s called a crescent. It reminds me of your smile.”

The idea still near, I drive into Monday.

Radio boring, and podcast unnerving because of the cadence and tone in the guest’s voice.

Found a second episode and found the same. A conversation on attention and I couldn’t focus because of the speed of the exchange, the “chirpiness” in the voices.

Was the listening speed wrong in my app?

No, it’s me. I’m afraid I’m a bit particular about voices, quick to silence those that are pushy, perky or peppy.

Maybe it’s a southern thing.

Maybe simply timing.

“And who knows whether you have not come to the kingdom for such a time as this?”
‭‭Esther‬ ‭4:14‬ ‭ESV‬‬

Last week in the same number of days, I was told three times by a trio of different people, one a total stranger.

“You are calming.”

“Have you been on the radio? Your voice is so calming” and “Talking to you calms me.”

A friend, a former colleague who’s an executive and a young stranger.

This morning I noticed the coming day coming slowly as if the earth had decided to stay under the soft covers.

No sound now, music or podcast wisdom.

I enter Monday with full attention as I pause for the passing family of careful deer.

I feel the weight shifting as I turn, the road narrow with a picture perfect view.

I am quiet, quiet as Monday morning mostly sleeping.

I’m calm. I’m easy.

I’m hearing my voice again, patiently waiting my turn to use it.

“Prayer and patience…prayer and patience.” Aunt Boo