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So even to old age and gray hairs,

O God, do not forsake me,

until I proclaim your might to another generation,

your power to all those to come.

Psalm 71:18~ESV

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I sit in my chair, gazing out the window. Fog, thick as pea soup, embraces.

One hand wrapped around “Sassy, the charming cane,” the other cradles my cup of hot coffee, I make my way closer to the window.

Peering through the fog, this is no ordinary morning. No ordinary day.

Fingers of icy crystals poke up from the barren, winter ground. A glaze of ice covers everything lying dormant. Patiently waiting for spring and new life.

Pen and journal in hand, I begin to list the extraordinary gifts laid out before me this day.

The frozen ground brings a slowness into this place. What seems like millions of crystal stars spread out before me, twinkling. Almond cookies, made from scratch, thoughtfulness closing a gap. Love, in the form of hand made valentines, lay nearby. A tray of rich, chocolate brownies, now a rubble of crumbs.

“Ordinary days don’t matter all that much, but they are given to us. God gives the extraordinary~the birthdays, the holidays, the moving~in days, the days when we come face~to~face with him on the mountaintop. He also gives the deep~valley days. Days in the valley of the shadow of death when, strangely, I have been more aware of his nearness than ever before. But as if these days were not enough, God gives us more.” Christie Purifoy~Roots & Sky

There is poignancy in this day. Extraordinary found in the ordinary, as I mark the passing of time.

I cross a threshold to the backside of fifty today. Pushed into a world blanketed in white snow standing several feet deep. A late valentine, placed in my Mother’s arms.

I find myself this morning, not sitting in the past, but looking forward to what is left. Pondering thoughts of how to make this time count.

Days ago, I closed the pages on Roots & Sky. Prose that strummed deep chords in my soul. I placed it on the shelf. An old friend, I will re~visit often.

It’s almost as if Purifoy  sums up the past few years of my life with her words…

“But for twelve months I have witnessed the glory of a quiet life. I am beginning to understand what it might mean to be ambitious for quietness rather than accomplishment….I am sure it is the most worthy of all my ambition. The quiet life shares the good news loudest, perhaps because only the quiet life is first able to hear the good news.” 

These past few years, I have lived a quieter life. To say I would have chosen it, would be a stretch. To give up frantic ambition, filling my days with noise and busyness. Things that seemed so important at the time.

No, the quieter way of life found me. And I found glory.

In the quiet, He has quieted me. Opened my eyes to the wonder of Him. Taken me to the mountaintop. Carried me through the valley. Quenched my thirst in the wilderness. I have tasted his provision. Been drenched in grace.

I sat with my thoughts and strummed those chords, looking forward.

I long to make these days ahead in the wilderness count for something. Cultivate beauty in them and through them. Leave a legacy, somehow.

A legacy that proclaims His glory, through the living of my story.

The extraordinary in this day will fade as the days get longer, and time moves forward.

I’ll reach behind me to scratch old itches. Feel restless in the quiet. Grumble a bit over the wilderness. Chase ambitious thoughts.

I’ll turn back to the pages my handwriting is scrawled upon. Run my fingers down the wonders I have recorded. Be reminded, there is more in this place; there is emptiness in chasing ambition.

I am taking away many things in my journey through the wilderness.

On this day as look ahead, I take these things from Christie Purifoy’s Roots & Sky…

~to make it my ambition to lead a quiet life

~to cultivate beauty in the hard ground of the wilderness

~to shine as a star for Him

~to proclaim the wonder of His Glory

To scratch the surface of these things, will be to leave a legacy. To have more.

Gifts of Grace 

Tammy Mashburn

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