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10 Things I Learned in Spring '24

Rewind > Reflect > Learn > Grow

Oh hey, short on time? No worries! I'd love to join you on your commute or daily walk/run, or shoot, even while you take care of that to-do list. We can't let these things get in the way of this friendship. It's just starting to get good! Click below to listen to the blogcast.

It's been a Spring of beholding - beauty and wonder, miracles and hope. As God unfolds the goodness of each of these in our lives, I believe obedience looks like being present to linger - to behold - the glory of heaven before and within and all around us.

Without further ado, here are ten things (not all the things but ten things) I've learned this last season.

10. First Spring blooms on the farm

Last rewind, I was telling you about the first snow on the farm, so it's only fitting to tell you about the first blooms! Tulips, daffodils, bluebonnets, roses, creeping phlox, but the ones which steal the attention are by far the irises.

Oh my lanta, they are a sight to behold!

Truly, it gives new meaning to this word "behold" in scripture. I may have a million things I'm carrying inside or a trillion things on my mind to do, but I approach an iris and I have to stop. I have to bend and get on eye level and stare deep into the petals. I take in the delicacy of the petals, the vibrant combination of colors, the texture throughout, the height of some. I lose time beholding the beauty before me.

One of the earliest times we see "behold" is in Genesis when God says to Noah,

"Behold, I establish my covenant with you and your offspring after you...I establish my covenant with you, that never again shall all flesh be cut off by the waters of the flood, and never again shall there be a flood to destroy the earth." - Genesis 9:9-11

After enduring the flood, this was a promise to behold! A promise to stop, stare deep into the creation before him and trust God is powerful. He had seen this firsthand and lived to tell about it. And now, Noah was learning something else: God is the God of restoration. Behold!

And these flowers, oh how they sing of God's faithfulness to us! Here today and gone tomorrow, beauty to behold!

9. Our God longs to be known by us.

The flowers at the farm are such a joy for us, and because of the gardener before me who planted them, every iris is named. Names are powerful, they help us see certain characteristics we may otherwise overlook. For instance, you may walk by and see a pink iris, but after reading the name tag, you now see it as the Powdered Sugar iris bringing new depth to the image before you, a tangible sweetness and softness (to behold).

As I've been studying the names of God this Spring, I find myself similarly drawn deeper into awe and wonder of the way God reveals Himself to us. Through His names, we see again and again He longs to be known by us ...and trusted.

8. Beholding the sun and the moon.

April 8, 2024, we watched as a total solar eclipse moved across North America. A phenomenon indeed to behold! I couldn't help but think about the power of light. A light so bright, even when it is covered by the moon, I can't look at it without special glasses.

May the light of Christ shine just as bright through us ...not for our sake but to offer hope to a world searching, a world desperate for light and not even knowing it.

7. I don't want to worry.

I prayed these words driving to work one morning, and they returned to me as I drove home later in the evening, taking in the artwork before me that was the Oklahoma sunset.

I couldn't get enough, so even as I turned down a country road, I keep stealing peeks through my driver-side rearview mirror. And it was no coincidence. A rearview mirror is used to look back. Worry is anxiety about the future. As I began to process these seemingly simple thoughts, I thought of how God's Word repeatedly tells us to "remember." This is because there is great fruit produced in our lives as we live out Psalm 77:11:

I will remember the deeds of the Lord; yes, I will remember your wonders of old. - Psalm 77:11

Remembering God's faithfulness yesterday gives us strength for today and this strength helps us trust He will be with us tomorrow.

When we find ourselves saying, "I don't want to worry," remember to remember. And for those times we forget, God paints us a sunset, He orchestrates a sunrise. And we see, our God is in control. We have no need to worry.

6. Focus on what matters.

Last winter, I shared a new practice of ours of physically counting miracles with marbles. This may seem like an elementary discipline but guess what it's revealed to me? Every season - not just Christmas - is a season of miracles. Counting them helps us tarry there, lingering in the glory of the Miracle Maker.

And, friend, there's just no better place to linger. So get yourself some marbles or pennies or paperclips or whatever it is you have laying around the house and ask God to open your eyes to the answered prayers all around you!

5. More marbles please!

Speaking of marbles, I'm going to need a lot more. This Spring, some of the most beautiful women who I have so much respect for took time out of their day to come paint with me and talk about friendship - the good, the hard, the ugly.

Friendship, it's a topic I've been thinking and praying and studying and observing and living for a good while now and God's opening doors for all these thoughts to be written down to offer hope and a strong dose of courage to others. Humbled, honored, holy-kamoly are a few of the words which come to mind as I reflect on the gift of friendship with each of these women and the gift it is to have them speaking into this little book God has laid on my heart to write.

Throughout scripture, we see God's people stack stones as a memorial to remember what God has done. I'm so thankful for this opportunity to paint, because now I have a carrot spoon rest and butter dish to serve as my ceramic, modern-day "stones" to help me remember - specifically on those days when writing feels hard or the heart-work behind it too exhausting, God is the provider of all wisdom, creativity and understanding. Just remember how He provided so generously through these women and friendships!

So yeah, marbles. I'm gonna need more of 'em.

4. And carrots too!

...because they make just the cutest vase filler, don't you think?

The cashier at Trader Joe's, a little confused, looked at my basket then up at me and asked, "Did you come in for the flowers or the carrots?"

I smiled and laughed at the odd pairing and said, "Both! They're going to be used together." He gave me a "Hmm" and waved his hand in the air as if to say, "Alright!"

And because my hydrangeas went limp and looked awfully sad by the time I got home, I tried a little hack to help them come back to life, and wouldn't ya know, it worked! Check out the video to see how:

3. Long live steam!

Spring around here means flowers but it also means: Steam Tractors. One of 'Dubya's first loves is his 1915 Russel Steam Tractor. After seeing my Easter garden flag, he said, you should make one with a steam tractor!

(I think he greatly overestimated my painting skills.) Given the detail work on the tractor, I opted for graphic design over paint this time. Long live good memories and long live steam!

Also, here's the Easter flag tutorial if you missed it!

2. People need to hear your story.

This Spring, Dubs' and I both had opportunities to share our stories. Our stories are very different but the best part is one we share in common - neither of us are the heroes of our stories. This is reserved for God and God alone, and not just because it's the Christian thing to do but because He has proved Himself faithful and His resume in our lives is Hero, Redeemer, King and Friend.

Who has God put in your path who may be encouraged by your story? Don't think it requires a stage or even being dressed up. Both opportunities came to us while wearing regular clothes and sitting in lawn chairs, no fancy pulpit. Be honest, be vulnerable and let God get the glory He deserves!

1. Walking and trusting one step at a time.

I've been walking a lot and one walk this Spring led me through one of my favorite hiking trails in Nashville. As I soaked in the crisp Tennessee temps, this truth settled in deep:

Trust the pace and the path God has for you. It's all on purpose. He calls us not to strive but to simply and faithfully abide.

This is my prayer over you, friend. As you abide in the Lord, may you come to trust Him more fully with those cares and dreams and desires on your heart. Your pace and your path are on purpose. What a beautiful purpose it shall be!

Looking Ahead

Looking back helps us gain perspective as we look forward. Now, shifting our gaze forward...

Summer is nearly here and I'm so looking forward to spending another Summer in the Psalms with you all again! I'm always blown away with how God brings the people and stories He wants to share with us and this Summer is no different. Make a point to join us each week - here or on your favorite listening platform!

Now, it's your turn. What have you learned through this last season?

To help get you started, you can download your FREE printable in the Resources page. (Add your email below to gain access today!)

Let's find strength knowing we do not endure these seasons alone. Let's find joy knowing there is purpose for each season we walk. Let's find peace in reflecting on the lessons learned and accepting these circumstances, much like seasons, as temporary. Let's find rest as we cling to the eternal.

The good life, well it starts with a good day. Then another. Then another. Let's choose to live #TheGoodDay one day at a time.

I love hearing from you, so go ahead. Leave a comment. Be brave. Maybe your comment will speak life into someone else!

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