We Can All Float On

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The strings lay limp across the ground;

I gain the nerve to look around.

The sky is waiting for something.

The air longs to carry taut strings.

One breathes out an airy blast, 

And balloons are floating at last.

Another throws a flying dart

To split the colored blimp apart.

When it reaches the ground once more, 

No one knows what may be in store.

That is, no one but the one who

Takes the shreds and makes them all new.

Then another must give a breath 

To send it up—up from its death.

Yes, another may just pop it,

And the cycle’s an endless pit.

But, which one will you be today?

Flight or death is a word away.

I know I have talked about the power of words on this blog before. So, I am going to try not to repeat myself. However, each person you pass in your daily routine is waiting for someone to come along and lift them off the ground or send them up a little higher.

There will be people that send them crashing back to the ground. There will be people that send you crashing back to the ground. We don’t have to be those people.

Today is a Sunday, the start of the week. So, let’s take a moment and think about who we have been in the last week and who we want to be this week. 

Even a bursting balloon sends off air as it breaks apart. Couldn’t that air be used to send others up? When you are breaking apart yourself, use that to build others up. Use your failures to lift others up.

 

You can also follow me on Instagram @wordnerd_blog!

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Note to Self: Note to Others

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An envelope slides toward me.

But what could be within it?

Mail is now so rare to see

I’m surprised when it I get.

I grasp the paper pocket

And begin to tear its top.

Excited, I unlock it—

The safe with a stamp atop.

Once broken, the paper shows

A folded item of blue.

Without looking, no one knows;

And what this was, no one knew.

I pulled the blue thing out now.

It had a straightened fold seam.

I pulled the halves apart now

And I saw a wordy stream.

The first word was my first name, 

And the next two were simple.

Many times I’d seen the same, 

But they still called my dimple.

It’s odd what seven letters do

When used in combination

And directed just to you.

What great communication!

I received a thank you note in the mail yesterday, and it got me thinking. How often do we feel thankful yet we do not tell anyone?  

I had been given a task a couple weeks ago, and the person who gave it to me was thanking me for doing a good job with the task. While I enjoyed completing the task, I did not expect a note. However, that is part of what made the note so special.

To think that someone took the time to sit down and write a note by hand (however short and simple it was) was a great feeling. If I had been told “Thank You” in person, it would have made me feel good, but the extra time and effort involved in writing a note added to the sincerity of the thank you.

My eleventh grade English teacher was a fan of Thank You notes and said they were a “lost art.” Unfortunately, she was right. It is extremely rare to write or receive a Thank You note. When you do, it is usually connected to the giving of gifts. It is rarely used to show gratefulness regarding a favor or a simple act of kindness.

It doesn’t take much effort to write a Thank You. And, if you’re human, you probably feel thankful at least occasionally. So, join me in trying to show people how thankful we are for them or the things they do, not just the things they can give us. Let’s revive the lost art of Thank You note composition. It can be done!

You can also find me on Instagram @wordnerd_blog!

Labor Day

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Look upon the day with joy.

There is excitement in the air.

It’s odd how a girl or boy

Makes you sit for hours in a chair.

This is the one time in life

Where screams are strongly encouraged—

The time when cries and much strife

And the most extreme joy are bridged.

It all happens with much speed!

Yesterday there was just a bump,

But today new life is freed

To live and laugh and, someday, jump!

It’s an end and a new start.

It’s time for someone new. Make way!

This day is good for the heart!

Don’t you know? This is Labor Day?

 

No, I do not have my dates mixed up. I know today is not actually the national holiday labor day, but I celebrated Labor Day on Monday. As you may have deduced from the poem, this was a different kind of Labor Day. My sister and brother-in-law had a baby girl.

The birth of little Paisley Jane four days ago made me an uncle for the seventh time. However, this birth just may have been the most special and amazing to me. It was not different because I favor Paisley over my other nieces and nephews. No, I think I have just spent more time thinking about birth and new life in general this time.

Each time a child is born, it truly is a miracle. I watched as my sister’s stomach grew and she began to feel the newest addition to the family moving inside her. For some reason, the fact that I would be the uncle of another little girl did not really hit me until Paisley was in my sight.

When I first saw her, I immediately loved her and accepted her as part of my ever-growing family. She had done nothing to earn my love, and I did not have to try to love her. Simply seeing her and knowing how amazing and innocent her new life was made me love her.

Love is a strange thing. Many would say love is a choice. I agree with them in many cases. However, sometimes, at least at first, love is just an instinct. There is something truly special about the family that is intangible and indescribable but incredible.

I believe the process of birth and new life can be an amazing illustration of God’s love for us. Even when you do nothing for Him, He still loves you and has loved you since before you were alive. He has loved you since you were merely a fact of the future known only by Him. Being present for the birth of a child, regardless of your relation to it, is a chance to see love through the eyes of God–at least in an imperfect, human way. That same unconditional love you feel for a child at its birth is the unconditional love God has been feeling for us for all eternity.

I am not a parent, but I know that children truly are blessings. They light up a room, draw people together, and create joy unintentionally. They paint a picture of the divine romance between humanity and divinity. So, pay attention to new life. Appreciate it. Love it.

 

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Library of Souls

What if you could see

That wondrous library?

What if you could peer

Into all the pages

That reveal the fear

Present in all stages?

What if you could read

The stories of the ones

That had the most need

Of you when on passed suns?

What if you could see

All the marks your life made

On lives you can’t see

And those that come and fade?

What if you could know

All the souls that would yelp

Out questions long ago

And you were their best help?

What if you could read

How your words infected

Others with what they’d need

To feel accepted?

What if you could be

A librarian of

Books of he and she

With contents from above?

What if there were scrolls—

The library of souls?

On a daily basis, most people, unless they are extreme introverts, come in contact with many people. Some of the people are strangers, but others are close friends or family members. Each one is connected to us in a unique way.

Whether you realize it or not, you have an extremely powerful influence on those around you. Your influence can start as simple as a smile to a stranger that leads to a quick, lighthearted conversation. One simple conversation can change a person’s day. One simple conversation can change a person’s week. One simple conversation can change a person’s life.

When you go to a store and someone checks you out, you are pleased by the kind cashiers and aggravated by the rude cashiers. Well, I’m pretty sure it works the same way from their side. The customers who smile and make a point to thank them are probably much more pleasing than the ones who get angry over a long line.

You never know what someone might be going through, or how much you may affect them. I have been talking about strangers, but similar rules apply to people you know. You don’t even have to talk to someone to make an impression on their life. Simply living in front of them makes an impression, good or bad.

As far as I know, there is no way to visit a “library of souls” to see the extent of your influence on other people’s lives, but I know that each person changes their world—sometimes the world—by living. So next time you feel useless, just think about if you could read the souls of the people you have affected with your actions, words, and decisions. Let’s think about the influence we have and not take it lightly.

“Strange isn’t it? Each man’s life touches so many other lives. When he isn’t around he leaves an awful hole doesn’t he?”

-Clarence from It’s a Wonderful Life

A Boy Child’s Lament

Oh how I long for thy woolly presence

On my barren upper lip.

Why dost thou stay away from me and hence

Obstruct our companionship?

Thy dwelling on others dost still trouble

My pathetic naked jaw.

Despite my having so little stubble,

With thee I am still enthralled

So come ye now and rest upon my face;

Enthrone thyself and thy charm.

I called to thee, but thou hast brought disgrace,

And hair less than my forearm.

For scores I would wait for a mere one of thy follicles,

But thy hiding so long is a bit diabolical.

If you’re a lady reading this, you may be tempted to skip this next part since it seems directed more toward men. That is completely fine, but feel free to read on no matter who you are. The words that follow can apply to women too.

In recent months, I have been trying to define, for myself, what a man is. What about a man makes him independent and complete within himself?

I know it is not facial hair even though men are usually the only ones that get away with it. That is, unless you are in contact with a man like P. T. Barnum.

Having broken up with my first girlfriend a couple months ago, I began a search to find contentment in myself. I realized I had been so caught up in her that when we were no longer dating, I had a hard time being content for a while.

At times during our relationship, I identified myself as her boyfriend instead of the man I was independent of our relationship. Then, when I was left without the relationship, I found myself scrambling to find contentment.

In our relationship, I had begun to rush. I had a girlfriend. Therefore, marriage was in my head (definitely not a bad thing to be in your head when dating, but it can be dwelt upon too heavily). I was looking so far ahead that I was not content with the amazing time I was in.

It was not until I was without that I began to feel truly content. It took me losing a relationship to find contentment.

The contentment was not some magical force that found me though. It was and is rooted in the person of Jesus Christ.

This past week I heard a woman speak on relationships between males and females. One of her main points was that before you can have the healthiest relationship possible with that special someone, you have to realize who the most important someone in life is: Jesus.

Now, I do not claim to be a master of contentment. It is something I have to fight for daily. But, it is not in the struggles that you find fault in a person. It is often when a person allows struggles to guide decisions and actions that he or she is found at fault.

I look forward to the day when I find that special someone and begin the rest of my life with her. Until then though, I will try only to focus on the most important someone in my life.

If you have any questions about Jesus or why I feel contentment with him, feel free to ask them in the comments!

Now’s The Time…Of Your Life!

The sun is beating down,

And the beads are rolling.

The beams heat up my crown

As we’re slowly strolling.

Move up a few short feet;

Stand for a few minutes

In the midst of the heat

Staying within limits.

Trudging on bit by bit

For maybe an hour,

Longing to get to sit

Where others would cower.

I’m waiting in this line

For the time of my life,

But this life that is mine—

Although spotted with strife—

Is the best ride of all.

The time of my life

Is not when lap bars fall.

Now’s the time of my life!

Since last Sunday, I have been on a family vacation with my parents and two of my five siblings. It has been filled with nonstop activities and interesting situations.

Just one of these situations involved me (who has shoulder-length hair) being mistaken for a woman! After the waiter that made the mistake finished apologizing, my family and I had a good laugh and finished our evening with a good story to tell.

One of the most memorable things we did was go to a theme park. As with any theme park (at least this is true in my experience with them parks) there were long lines for the most popular rides. As I was thinking about how long I will wait for a ride I want to experience, I thought about my life in comparison to that line.

I have waited over two hours just to ride a minute-long rollercoaster that promises new thrills like never before.

I just wonder though, am I waiting in line in life for some short bout of truly living?

I often get into the mindset of okay, what do I have planned? What do I have to look forward to? And, instead of truly living now, I am waiting in line for something that is not here.

Yes, there are times of preparation and waiting in life, but how often do we wait to live when we do not have to? How often do we long for a great ride in the future, but ignore the thrills and views of the one we are on now?

Let’s have the time of our lives, now!

Has there been a time in your life when you waited for something in the future, but missed something in the present by doing so? Feel free to share about it in the comments!

Writer or Blockhead?

 

pexels-photo-905614.jpegWhen the words won’t come,

Something is likely brewing–

Something truly great.

 

For a writer, one of the worst feelings in the world is the feeling of having no ideas or inspiration for writing. Some writers will deny the existence of writer’s block, but I believe it is real. Sometimes I just can’t seem to come up with a creative thought.

But, with the right outlook, anything can be written about and can be looked at in an interesting way–even writer’s block. 

Having been sold more than any other book in the world, the Bible is the most influential work in history. It was written over the course of many centuries. However, after the last book of the Old Testament was written, there were 400 years of silence. No prophecy for four centuries. No words from God.

The next time a book of the canon pops up on the timeline, it is a gospel (probably the gospel of Mark). So, during the 400 years of silence, something amazing that would change the world was on the horizon.

I’m stumped. Although I do not have an abundance of ideas now though, I hope that some of my best ideas are just around the corner. If you’re in a season of silence, a season of drought, a season of lacking motivation, when the season is over, it may just be one of your best seasons ever. Hold on through the silence. The best is yet to come!