Love Upward & Outward #2

20180414_100445  “Two or more adults required”, is what the directions said. (Maybe I should say the directions WARNED!)

My wife decided we needed a wheel barrel in order to properly work our garden area, and I believe she is right, but did it have to be so difficult? “Some assembly required?” Our continuing saga of creating a beautiful place to “Slow Down, and Hear God”, Turtle Gardens. Nobody said it would be easy. And neither is loving upward and outward. In fact, two or more adults are required!

First of all, even though children seem to have a leg up when it comes to faith, let me be quick to say it requires an adult to have the “self-control” to properly love. Many are the flaws and imperfections we all bring to the common table. There will always be plenty of things to get upset and in a huff about, if that is what we are prone to do. And believe me, human nature is prone. Spiritual maturity is required to love others as ourself.

I see the creating of these Turtle Gardens as a physical picture of a spiritual path. It is my hope to reveal living lessons in picture form of the life God has called us to. Love involves two or more. It’s not about you! Death works in us so life can be born in others! That’s how love works. It’s a garden requiring much attention, but the beauty of it, and the peace of it, fills our life with such wonder and awe from day to day! Wow! It’s hard to explain. God makes it work. Another God paradox.

I have mentioned in earlier articles a home that was the victim of a drive-by shooting in which some 40 bullets were shot into this house. A one year old little girl was hit and died. I heard this on the news and thought how terrible. I did not know till someone called me that I knew the grandma, whose house it also was that was attacked. I’m planning an article soon showing a “Turtle Box” from our “Turtle Gardens” concept, that I just spent two days putting together. An old wood box became this:

It has a message of slow down and hear God on the side panels. More pictures will come in next article, but there is a lot of pain on planet earth, and we who claim to know the love of God, need to find real ways of showing it. It’s my prayer this flower box will open a door for me to talk with the grandma about God. We had some small conversations at work, but there needs to be much more. There is a “Table” our Lord invites us to. A Table I hope to sit at with her, and perhaps share some pain, and a cup of coffee. Table Ministry.

The body of Christ is too full of selfish children acting like children, and having very little adult action of true sacrifice to reach the world and create disciples in a real way. Ask yourself, how many have you “discipled”? Go ye and make disciples of all nations? Our Lord discipled more at Tables, than Temples.

There are no short cuts to discipleship. Perhaps that is why we see so little of it these days. In our “hurry up” and instant society, we have lost patience for the hard work and sacrifice of true disciple making.

In getting back to the wheel barrel, which is today’s lesson, my wife and I had some good quality time together as we struggled with the assembling of this thing. I had seen her trying to do it herself as I was digging out dirt for a screened in porch. I did not really want to stop what “I” was doing to enter what she was doing. But when she read me what the directions said about “two or more required”, I realized I needed to, and I’m very glad I did. It was the most fun I had that day.

20180413_162657

My wife, whom I have given the Indian name of “Grandma Turtle Faith Lady”, was so very proud of her wheel barrel as she wore her Wonder Woman shirt that day. You can see in this picture the joy in her smile, and even in her eyes. That look is priceless.

For a short time we were basking in the glow of success. The wheel barrel was together and working great! It was going to make our garden so much easier to create. However, this is planet earth, and it didn’t take long for some of the “earth curse” to try and upset the glow of our hard earned achievement.

As she was backing her way out of the surrounding construction work, you guessed it, she was in for a tumble! Grandma Turtle Faith Lady was about to go down! Hard!

In a split second her look of joy suddenly became fear, as the back of her heel struck a log while moving backwards, as it is hard to see, she instantly found herself falling! Making matters worse, the log lay beside a pile of pointy limbs! Thank the Lord she did not get impaled! But she did get a small cut and a very hard landing jarring every bone in her body. She was in pain. Planet earth had managed to do it again. Like coffee; bitter and sweet.

My first thought was get to her and is she alright? My second thought was get a picture for the blog site which she refused at threat of my own death. Needles to say, I have no picture to show you. So I helped her painfully and slowly rise from the ground.

I often compare life to coffee; bitter and sweet. Let’s enjoy a good cup of coffee together. We all experience bitter and sweet on planet earth, but together we can turn it into a cup of coffee around a “Table of God”, and help each other find our way through another day on our way to those pearly gates. I know we’re in no hurry to get there, but that is our eventual destination, so might as well encourage each other along the way. Turtle Gardens continue: “In progress.”

20180413_164247So this is Grandpa White Feather, “Fellowship of the White Path”, still building Tipi Retreat and also Turtle Gardens, in hopes of encouraging one and all to “Slow Down and Hear God, especially if you’re pulling a wheel barrel and walking backwards. Right, Turtle Faith Lady? (i.e. Wonder Woman.)

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