Working at the dining room table, it was as if I could feel the stare; I looked up and through the window. That deer had been prowling the yard for days. I was a bit concerned for there had been rain those days but all seemed well. Until now. I grabbed the camera and walked to the kitchen door, opened it and stepped out. There she stood, bold and bad; posing behind the remains of an Annabelle hydrangea as if to say, “Spray, spray, but I will find a way to feast where I please, so there!” All those stalks had held bloom buds. <sigh>
I’ve been reading Bonnie Gray’s blog, Faith Barista, for a few years now. It was in her writings that I learned about “whitespace”; not an empty, mindless place but rather a set apart, intentional space to let my soul breathe and to nurture it in ways that are unique to me.
I could relate to Bonnie as she wrote of taking time in coffee shops or walking or even just sitting out of doors. Time to rest, to wait, to be inspired, to write. I knew this was a need in my life and with the encouragement of her words I began to be more intentional to experience this rest. I began to take my camera with me and make space in my life to see, sometimes being wonderfully surprised by what the lens would capture.
As time went on, Bonnie began to write this book and to deal with the additional trauma of PTSD, post-traumatic stress disease. Some of us have very broken places in our lives. We cover them well, for a time. As Bonnie is healing, she finished writing this book that not only shares her story but encourages me to took into living my own better story now by learning to care for my soul, to let it heal and to grow.
I could have just quickly read through the book and put it up on a shelf, but I’m committed to this journey with Bonnie. A journey to find healing and more rest for my soul. Each chapter ends with three things: first, a thoughtful place to “Pull up a Chair” and uncover pieces of my story and to journal, for as for Bonnie says, “words are more than ink on paper. They are the soul prints of God’s voice – carrying the unique timber of heaven-on-earth that only you can speak.” Then there are Whitespace prompts – think-about-its that challenge me, make me squirm about or get up restlessly and go dig in the garden or pull weeds or sleep and dream till the answers come, and a pause for rest comes in this journey to awaken my heart to be fully alive to God – where I can – just. be. me. Then the last thing that Bonnie suggests are conversation starters. Needful, ’cause Jesus and I haven’t talked much about many of these things.
One of the things that still holds my attention was the answer I realized to a question posed in chapter 2 – “What realities have I accepted living with for decades that have become immovable parts of my identity?” No, I’m not going to tell here. But perhaps it is a question you might like to consider for your own life?
Thanks for reading about this journey I am taking; if your soul might need breathing space, some rest or healing, come along! Here are links for more encouragement:
Again, Bonnie writes at http://www.faithbarista.com/ Her book is available here. A blog tour to read how others are experiencing “Awakening your soul to rest” can be found though the blog tour button on the right.