Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Walks and Thoughts and a Honeysuckle Bush

Disclaimer: Today's post is a bit...um...reflective and a bit personal. You've been forewarned.

I've got a lot of things on my mind as of late. Sometimes, I start thinking about them all and it's overwhelming. Last night I decided to "walk it out", as I often do when I want to process or think about things. During my walk around the neighborhood I had a few talks with God and a few talks with myself.

I have experienced a lot of sadness lately. Not a lot of firsthand sadness, but it seems to follow me. I received some bad news about someone I used to know and the poor decision they made. I watched some of my friends from a previous church suffer through the loss of someone very close. I received troubling news concerning my father's health and the procedures he will have to undergo in the near future. None of these things are especially earth-shattering or life-altering...yet...but they seem to weigh on me unusually heavy.

As I walked around the very hilly neighborhood last night. I would notice my breath become more rapid and shallow when I walk uphill and it would slow down a bit as I walk downhill or when I was on level ground.

I was reminded that when sadness or troubling times come it's a lot like walking uphill. It's harder to breathe and you tend to only focus on getting up that hill.

The walk uphill brought melancholy thoughts. Sadness. Frustration. Even anger. Why do bad things happen? Why can't people make the right decisions? Why are people taken from this earth so soon?

It was at the top of the hill when the ground evened out a bit that I looked to my left and noticed a young bunny grazing in the twilight. He stood beneath a fragrant honeysuckle bush. The sight and smell of both took my breath away. So much beauty right there in the midst of my sad thoughts.

This scripture was imprinted in my mind at the moment:

Lamentations 3:22-23

22 Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed,
for his compassions never fail.
23 They are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness.

An overwhelming sense of peace flooded me as I was reminded that God is good. His mercies are new every day. His grace is prevenient. His love is forever. To be struck by something as ordinary as a honeysuckle bush and a bunny made me realize that there is beauty in the ordinary. There is joy in the mundane.

There is peace in the promise of renewal.

As I continued walking downhill I found that my breathing slowed down. It was actually easier to breathe now than it was when walking uphill. I was able to breathe deeper and longer.

I thought that though my sadness is very real, the God who holds me is also real. Though my anxiety is high, my God is higher. When I don't know what else to do, the promise of new mercy and new grace each day sustains me.

My problems are minor in the grand scheme of the world. I am reminded of this in a way that isn't chiding, but gratifying. I am grateful that I am not sad all the time. I'm grateful for my family. I'm grateful for the job I have and the friends I have and the people I love and the ones that love me. I'm grateful for life, for breath, for sanity of mind and for a glass of fruit punch when I'm thirsty.

I'm grateful for walks that help to clear out the fog in an anxious mind. And I'm thankful for the bunnies and honeysuckle bushes it takes to do so.



  1. I'm glad you had a walk and a think and some realizations. So necessary to stop and do that when you get bogged down. I'm sorry the sads are following you, try to hold on to your thoughts from this walk and they'll see you through.

  2. Amen sister! Good stuff. I love when God reveals himself through the small things.


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