Just to left of me, the sun began to rise on what was predicted to be a warm day in Colorado. I began my early morning chores of cutting the herbs I’ll be drying this year, pulling seeds from the plants that so willingly give them, watering, then weeding specific areas of the back yard. At every moment, I listened to the birds, as they said good morning, and watched the baby squirrels that get so excited to keep me company. You see, this year I was sure to leave plenty of self-sowed huckleberry plants for them to munch on. This was a smart move if I must say so myself. Brilliant even 🙂 Insofar that this decision, keeps them from chewing on the family of squash doing so well right now.
I heard the birds in one ear and listened to Christian music in the next. Every time I do this, I can’t help but quietly sing the songs I love so much. I really think the plants love my company too 🙂 Especially the poppies that traveled all the way from Asia, now members of my audience. In these moments, I’m provided a glimpse of my core faith. The one that upholds simplicity, peace, integrity, community, equality, and stewardship to the environment. Yes, the SPICES that make my life so meaningful, delightful, unhurried, instructive, and even somewhat cautious.
During these moments I think and often pray with/for the people I love so much. For those facing challenges, and even those carrying heavy hearts, which through gentleness and understanding, are slowly creeping back to Christ. Steadfastly, as I re-entered my thoughts on the hearts strolling toward Jesus…just around 5:55, my telephone rang. It sat in my pocket, the music stopped, and the vibration remained. Now, who could this be? I answered and someone who’s becoming a friend asked…
She: “Are you awake?”
Me: “I most certainly am. Is everything okay?”
She: “Oh, I am perfectly fine. I just wanted to tell you before you really started your day, how much I appreciate you…your longing for a continuous simple life, your guidance, your caring nature, your stillness, your integrity, and your peace.”
Me: “Wow! Thank you so much for thinking of me in this way. Your ability to share these things with me, opens the path for me to say the same to you. You do know that you’ve just mentioned most of the testimonies of my faith, right? You have grounded me so much as I begin this day. Thank you!”
And we spoke for a few more minutes before it was time for her first cup of coffee 🙂
Simplicity and Peace
The simplicity of my faith teaches that less accumulated, means more to give. Our testimonies start with Simplicity for a reason. Simplistic natures do not make things complicated. Peace comes effortlessly, since there’s no need to impress or keep up with anyone. Peace also makes it easy to compliment another with no motives other than what is placed on the heart. When the mind is at peace, simply put, we know that the Father, His Son, and Holy Ghost, always provide our every need.
Often when I’m exposed to a breach in integrity, in most cases this behavior in others stems from the desire for more…more power, more recognition, more growth, more attention, and more and more. Holding on to integrity teaches me not to become greedy. My grasp on integrity allows me to play nice.
Community and Equality
In community, we understand the need to listen, be present, gather helping abilities or to just be. Tender acceptance flows. It’s one of the most beautiful community models, I know. When I am in other communal settings, application of this approach comes so naturally to me. On equality…my brethren of the past were the first Christians to recognize slavery was wrong and just not of God. During this time, Quakers from the United Kingdom (UK) resided in the Eastern, Southern, and Northern regions of this United States (US), and for this reason between those from the UK and the US, it took over 100 years for everyone to be onboard regarding the wrongs of slavery. It has been said that one of the most intriguing parts of this process was that Quaker women used to create quilts holding coded designs, which when hung on clothes lines, led slaves to the Underground Railroad. This, of my faith, which continues to believe that there is “that of God in everyone”. Born a Quaker, Susan B. Anthony, and her work, is a perfect example of this.
On my lived testimonies, lastly, I move to stewardship to the environment. We believe, it is vital that we take care of the earth we live on. For it is God’s heaven, right here! Through sweet care, this practice prepares us for the time when we place our feet on God’s golden streets. Conversely, I firmly say that some current destructive behaviors must be changed. Honestly, I really have a most difficult time being in the company of today’s Christians who do not see the importance of this. These experiences sadden my heart, so. They are quite shocking, since respect and appreciation, are not that strenuous of tasks to adhere to.
We are living in such a moment where there are great wants. What rises up from my granular being, is how can I play a good part? Gardening and farming cause me to always think of the seeds I plant in the ground, and likewise, the seeds I plant through, thoughts, speech, actions, and gentle discernment. I would hope that everything I plant will offer me great harvests…these, the fields of abundance. In thoughts, speech, and actions, the seeds I plant must be recognized as divine foundations to be used in divine resolves. Divine resolves must be rich with God’s grace, faith, and good works.
Friends, we all have our own fields to harvest, we must decide if the fields we have in our hearts are the ones we want to produce or perhaps spend time in thought of the best field one could harvest…a life completely lived for Jesus.
As I moved to the front of the yard to water the flower pots there, my neighbor leaving for work asked me “Good morning! How does your grass look so green, do you use a special fertilizer?” I responded by saying, “I don’t use any chemicals, and instead I sing!”
She was not surprised by my response. She smiled, and went along her merry way.
“For the Holy Ghost shall teach you in the same hour what ye ought to say.”
In closing, I must profess that I’m pleased with today’s harvest. Small and welcomed elements of God’s divine decree.
Have a most enjoyable week,