'Tis a gift to be simple
'Tis a gift to be free
'Tis a gift to come 'round
Where we ought to be
And we find ourselves
In the place just right
'T' will be in the valley
Of love and delight
I am reminded of the words from an old Shaker hymn tonight as I sit at my desk with my back to the sunlight streaming through a window that overlooks Lake Taneycomo and the rolling Ozarks. Birdsong punctuates the sultry breeze, and happiness flutters within my breast. It is, as Laura Ingalls Wilder penned several decades ago, the simple things, after all, that make life worthwhile. I feel wealthy tonight for simple reasons.
Because a friend listened to my woes and cared enough to offer a thoughtful response to my lament.
Because Catherine sent me birthday present, late or early, depending on how I want to look at it! Friend Jennifer A. Marshall's Now and Not Yet affords a positive perspective on Christian singleness in the 21st century. Friends and I have noted that we are not single by choice, but by necessity of our society's changing mores. Our marital status is a matter of fact. There is simply no longer the emphasis on marriage there once was, and yete we hold marriage as the ideal, and don't always recognize the opportunities that God is giving us to make a difference in the world as singles. The first chapter tells the story of a woman who, instead of being a wife and mother at age 28, was running a public relations office in Iraq following Saddam's fall. This was the door God opened to her. "And godliness with contentment is great gain."
At the library, I discovered a new novel that promises to be a good read: March, by Geraldine Brooks, a "richly imagined" novel about the March girls' father. How's this for an opening sentence? This is what I write to her. It made me want to read just what he wrote!
Someone made a donation of old magazines: knitting and craft magazines, and a big stack of Smithsonians. I took six Smithsonians, and found a multitude of knowledge and inspiration within their covers. Sometimes I feel my world imploding. Reading about other places, other people than those I encounter on a daily basis helps me to realize how interesting the world is, and how varied is the human experience, despite its rythms of love, birth, work, and death. I feel more alive when I read widely.