When the world is too much with us… wanna play?

Molly at the beach

 “If there ever comes a day when we can’t be together, keep me in your heart.  I’ll stay there forever.”  ~  A.A. Milne, Winnie the Pooh

“Keep your heart open to Dreams, for as long as there’s a Dream, there is Hope.   And as long as there is Hope, there is Joy in living.”  ~ Anonymous

Taking Joy – It’s a God idea! ~ me

Image result for flourish clipart

She called to me as I passed her house on foot the other afternoon, and sitting together on her porch with a couple of her other friends she said softly, “I think I’m ready.”

Silently then, our eyes met.

“For the gift you have for me…” she clarified.

Nels-croppedAt her request, I’d been holding onto the simple drawing of her late husband – just a sweet little sketch of his face, wearing his baseball cap, semi shy smile on his lips.   It had been too fresh these last few months, so I’d waited. Had just been looking at the square-framed piece again on the floor of my den, asking God to make way the right time, to use it to bless with peace not sorrow.  Hope… even a light of joy, His Glory on it.  I didn’t want it to just languish away for a year on my floor, when it could maybe bring consolation in some way…   If not for her right now, I’d wondered… maybe for his son who had described him as a gentle man of quiet strength… ?

Now, she’d reached out to me, eyes moist but voice strong.  God had set the time.

Later, picture in hand, she touched it lovingly.  “I think I will share this with the kids and grans,” she said.  Fingering it, she added… “You know, what I hate most is the word, widow…”

I know,” I agreed.

Thoughtless labels that sting.  Spinster.  Alone.

In wordless companionship, we bent over the likeness for a moment or two.

“I love the way you put in his laugh lines…” she pointed out.  “And the inscription...it’s so true…”  (Those words of description, offered by his son at the eulogy, just caught me for this, I told her…)   She swallowed.    “I think now, I want to turn to remembering the joy.”

She shared of wanting to somehow lighten the load of another woman in a similar circumstance who’d been reaching out to her.  A stranger she’d spoken to once, who had somehow retrieved her email and been texting…

We talked of lighter, hopeful things… of so much family who surround her here… how she is not completely alone.  And of the One who holds onto her most.

Later, ruminating on my own, words of a verse God has led me to read so many times fell like a shawl tucked softly round my shoulders.  “You will nevermore be called forsaken.   I call you Hepzibah (I delight in you.“)  I call you Beulah.  (Married, My Bride).” [Paraphrase of Isaiah 62:4).

I love those names You give, Lord, I whispered, rolling them, their meaning, on my tongue.   Hepzibah.  Beulah… 

A zippy song Hayley Mills sang in Disney’s Summer Magic – Beulah Land – wafted back  (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jZ5twH1HVvs   ) – a scene where brother and sister are singing of a joyful new hope they envision for their widowed mom and family as they set out to their new life in the land of Beulah…  A playful tune with lyrics that reference God’s promised land, now lifting me…

And looking at my latest drawing from a sweet photo of little Molly at the seashore (up top), happily sifting her golden bucket of sand… a look of pensive dream on her face, as Mom snapped her picture… I can’t help but think of a promise for refreshing and renewing us to wholeness that God has written into childhood.  How He uses such a gift of creating and imagination to nourish our souls somehow. But…not just for a time…

Stay as a little child, He enjoins us. For in doing so, we will understand faith, hope, free abandonment of care to His Hands…

A little one, like Molly, here.  Openhearted to dream…to play…to create something out of nothing.   Children after our Father’s heart…

Remember to keep close the play times of life, I think I hear Him calling to us who are grown, burdened with loss and cares.   Come away with me, my beloved…

Sit on a beach.  Play a tune on the piano.  Sing round the house.  Plan a day to fly a kite.  Make playclothes out of stuffy old drapes and lark a song over hill and dale.

Hills alive with the sound of music…

“Wanna play with me?”  are words of invite echoing back to me from a time that truly seems not so long ago…  a joyful request from Molly’s mom to me every time I saw her, when she was just such an age as her little one now…

I smile at this drawing now…Molly, living it out, moment by moment.  The finding of joy and hope and dream at play…

And…on this threshold of Sabbath weekend, I hear the Father’s invite (to you, to me) to the same free abandon.

 

© Pam Depoyan

Connor-croppedOne more thought…  Once again, I am wondering if either of the reminiscent drawings here (Sweet Molly up top, or Little Zorro, left) evoke any stories of your life – or speak to His calling you back to something you may have tucked away to the wayside, maybe a long forgotten something that gives you the truest joy? 

Maybe it’s time to return to His Childhood promise of a joyful noise of play before Him… or maybe…to find it now for the first time…

If so, please share about it in my comments!  I want to hear your stories!  🙂

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Pen and Ink portraits – Mine, from my Picture It In Pen and Ink blog (https://pamdepoyanblog.wordpress.com/).   Please do not copy without permission. See my copyright info button on the sidebar.  :)

 

Interested in a print, or a custom portrait that tells one of your stories?  Visit https://pamdepoyablog.wordpress.com to see more…  Ideas or questions?  Contact me at pam.depoyan@gmail.com.

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About Pam@Writing...Apples of Gold

I love to hear your thoughts, even chat back and forth amongst comments.Won't you join the conversation? :) ..................................................................................................................... May my stories refresh you, like a whisper from our Father's Heart !
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23 Responses to When the world is too much with us… wanna play?

  1. Thanks so much for sharing at Thursday Favorite Things Blog Hop!

  2. lynndmorrissey says:

    Pam, I love this. LOVE THIS!!! As you know, my friend, Kel Rohlf (of Soul Pantry and also souldare) and I are writing a playshop for the summer. So this sings to my heart. And yes, I suddenly remember dancing on Daddy’s size 13 black shoe tops. Such fun. How I miss him and our child’s play together. He’ll be gone 10 years next year. And my mother is a widow. She would empathize greatly w/ your friend. She was saying just yesterday how much she misses my father. He and she often played, b/c she’d literally play the piano while he sang (he had a stunning voice), and he would always make her laugh. Thank you for your ministry to your friend, to children, and to your readers (your other kids)! 🙂
    Love
    Lynni

    • I’m so glad you like this, Lynn! Didn’t want you to feel I was “stealing” your thunder with this…. but you somewhat inspired me in it with your wonderful upcoming playshop. You remind me of dancing on my dad’s shoes and my grandfather’s too… and watching my younger cousins when their time came to do the same. 🙂 My grandfather had a stunning voice too! Thank you for sharing those memories and your encouraging words as always.

      • lynndmorrissey says:

        No, I didn’t think that for one second. I just thought it was a happy coincidence, and it really touched me. My dad’s dad did, too. Runs in families, I thnk. So glad you have that memory too.

  3. Eileen says:

    I have the childhood memory, as a little girl, when my parents would lovingly have me say my nighttime prayers, with them, before I would go to sleep, and they would lovingly “tuck me in,” and give me a kiss on the cheek. I remember the special prayer that I would say to my Guardian Angel, who would be watching over, me, and protecting me, through the night. The prayer, went: “Angel of God, my guardian, dear, to whom God’s love, entrusts me here, ever this day, be at my side, to light, and guard, to rule, and guide. Amen.” After this prayer, at night, as well as saying other heart-felt prayers with my parents- ( who were also the guardians of my life), I felt so very secure, in placing my head on my pillow, knowing I was so loved and cared for. This is a very happy memory, for me. For God was present in my, life, as well as my faith, and belief in, Him, from the time I was a very small child. And this faith, and belief, has continued to stay with me all of my life. Praise be to God!

    • Beautiful, warm memory of your family, your child heart then and now and blessings of His heart on you, Eileen. Thank you for sharing it. Knowing He is with us always, sends His angels to minister to us… so wonderful beyond our imaginations. Blessings to you today!

  4. Anna Smit says:

    Pam, this is so precious, so beautiful: the memories, the story of your dear friend, the pieces of art and the calling of our Heavenly Father at the end. Oh how your words and art always tug at my heart strings. What a beautiful gift that is you could give your friend. I know that for us, photos of our Mum are so precious now: maybe one day I can also have a sketch made from one of her photos with our girls…if you lived in the same country I’d pay you to make one for us: I love how you capture people’s emotions.

    Your sketch of the wee girl at the beach makes me think of Mum: the beach was her favorite place. A little less than two weeks before she passed away we amazingly managed to get her there, when she suddenly had a light patch: we organized a wheelchair taxi and somehow lifted her on there (four of us together). She didn’t want to leave: she couldn’t talk at that stage…but when we asked her if she wanted to go she kept shaking her head. She’d love taking her grandkids (our girls and my brother’s) to the beach and we did it as much as we could in those last months…until she no longer had the strength.

    • Anna, I wonder if you would email me at pam.depoyan@gmail.com – I’d love to talk with you a bit more than I can on this comment. 🙂

      I’m so sorry for your loss of your mom. I know how hard it is. I still find it hard to believe that both my parents are now gone. Bittersweet memory of the beach with your mom, but I’m glad you were able to do that for her. This drawing reminds me somehow of my mom and my aunt, the way they looked as little girls, too… though it is of my friend’s little one. It blesses me so much to know that my writing and artwork so touch your heart. You touch mine with your words here!

  5. Chasing Slow says:

    A beautiful story about how your blessed your friend. You are quite gifted! Hopping over here from the Scripture & a Snapshot link up.

  6. Beautiful illustrations!

    • Thank you, Lydia! I recently put all my artwork on a separate blog… pamdepoyanblog.wordpress.com if you’d like to see more! 🙂 If you go there, just click on the “gallery” links on the right side of the blog to view by subject…

  7. Carol Cook says:

    Oh, what a beautiful sketch and lovely post.

    Thanks for sharing with SYC.

  8. Jann Olson says:

    Your artwork is wonderful! What a cherished sketch of her beloved husband. Something to bring her joy each and every day. The little zorro evoke all kinds of warm memories of my kids growing up. Pretend has always played a big part in our life. I still have a closet full of dress ups for the grands. Thanks for sharing with SYC.
    hugs,

    • Thank you, Jann. I hope it will be that to her! Imagination is such a gift of the Lord to us, and so important, isn’t it? Thanks for sharing your warm memories. I love that you keep that closet full! I have a lot of fun memories of dressing up in mom’s old dresses and hats!

  9. Ann says:

    What lovely drawings!! The story of your neighbor friend, and of you waiting for God’s timing to present the gift to her, reminded me of my mother. She lost her 2nd husband just a year ago at the end of this month. It has been difficult, but the most loving thing we can do is just to be there with love and support. They need time to get through the emotions and learning a new reality of moving on. Remembering the joys and good memories are a good way to start doing this! Thanks for sharing.

    • Thank you, Ann. I agree… I am experiencing the same in moving through those I’ve lost in the last few years. I know you must be a blessing and a comfort to your mom in this time of grieving. Thank you for sharing your heart and thoughts on this!

  10. I’m at a stage of life now where I always have at least one little one wanting to play. It’s so easy to let the demands of the day squeeze out that time, but I wholeheartedly agree that carving out that precious time is vital. Thanks for sharing at the #LMMLinkup.

    • These years go by so fast and play time is what you will all cherish and remember the most, so true. Life is filled with so many things we have to accomplish, but I do encourage you to carve out that time as much as possible. 🙂 Blessings to you as you hold them close! Thanks for sharing!

  11. Thanks so much for linking with Waiting on…Wednesday! What a beautiful post with beautiful drawings.

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