There's This Dare


How old are you?

15?

51?

I hope it has occurred to you that it doesn't matter your age, but what you do with the minutes that add up to the sum of who you are.

There's a book I read recently called "Notes from a Blue Bike: The Art of Living Intentionally In A Chaotic World" by Tsh Oxenreider. I honestly didn't want it to end. I purposefully spent hours alone laughing and crying and reading (sometimes two or three times) the pages. It's only been a week and I'm ready to read it again. *First for me. Second for we.

One thing is certain. I'm not going to be able to digest this book in one blog post. So I'll just stick with the forward for tonight and try to share as many thoughts as I can as I have time.

I agree with Ann Voskamp (author of One Thousand Gifts) that this book oozes with
refreshing possibility.

Whether your 13.

Or 31.

Or 62.

Or 93.

Wherever we are, our minds can be renewed. Our reality transformed to match the vision of God.

There's no other way but with God's help, but I'm certain we have to wake up to the idea of it before we can even move in that direction. Saying out loud that a revision is needed is a good place to start, saying it's important to live on purpose, for a purpose, and free of shame.

King Solomon, who wrote in the book of Proverbs, once said "without vision, the people perish."

He was revered as wise for a reason.

Tsh points us to find or recover our vision in every area of our lives.

As I read I imagined teenagers deciding to live and be different because they have a new heart, a new courage, a new purpose. I see moms and dads not surrendering to the status quo because they have decided to take time to shape their children's hearts. I see adults in frenetic places, quieting and knowing in the stillness before God that there's a better more peaceful and more purposeful way. I see all of these people, including myself, saying yes to leaving the other option (chaos) behind to explore the goodness of God found in every waking moment--even if that waking moment be chaotic--there is stillness to be found at the center of it.

Ann, in the forward of the book, describes the dares she finds in it's pages:

-a dare to live fully right where they are--right where they are called to be
-a dare to live their dreams instead of living their default
-a dare to do more than make a living someday--a dare to make a life
-a dare to intentionally live the life they intended to live

There's a journey for you, a road sign with your name on it.
Have you found some space this week to ask yourself who you are?
Whose you are?
Why you live?
What you are living for?


Are you actually living?

As I read the forward to the book and smelled the meal my husband and I had prepared together in the kitchen, I could see it. I could see a glimpse of this intentional life. Balanced by more than my yes and my no. Balanced by a contentment and a wakefulness in the moment that we have before us.

And the phone rings.
She's 14.
And she needs to talk to someone.
I am here in that moment.
Silencing my thoughts to listen.

Friends meet up at the lake for a run with the setting sun.
We breath in humidity and exhale laughter and relief.
Blood flows. Lungs expand.

I tuck them in. I kiss their foreheads.
I tell them they are loved with a beautiful without end love.
I am here in that moment, receiving their joy and innocence.
Giving them my presence and my love.

I reach out my ice cold toes toward that warm body laying on the couch next to me.
Relaxing and saying with no words at all--I'm so glad you are here with me.
 
So, there's this dare---Tsh and Jesus are calling us to it--to live as if this whole heaven thing were real (and it absolutely is) to live as if it could be real here and now (because it can and will be if we wake up to it).




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