Thursday, September 25, 2008

Shades of Inspiration - Gray

This week's Shades of Inspiration is focusing on "gray". You can view my flickr photos here or you can view the entire group. As always, there are some amazing photographs. It is fun to look for a specific color throughout the week. It really makes you aware of your surroundings.

This is my favorite photo for the week. I drive by this place several times a day; it is just 1/4 mile down the road from our house. It brings to mind so many thoughts. Gray. That is the color for this week and the color of this house. Makes me think that there certainly are many "shades of gray" around here. As evidenced by the clothes hanging on the line, someone lives here. Someone also lives in the $400,000 house just around the corner. Then there are the "gray" houses in the neighborhood. Not literally gray, but figuratively somewhere in between.

Humbling. Another thought that comes to mind as I drive by. I whine because my sink doesn't drain properly. I wonder if they have running water? I complain because the electric bill is too high. They swelter in the heat with no air conditioning. I grumble about not being able to keep up with the laundry. Theirs is hanging out for all to see. I am humbled by the sight.

Peaceful. Really. There is something peaceful and comforting about laundry blowing in the breeze. It makes me think of simpler times. I would like a clothesline. I had one (and used it regularly) when we lived in Kansas. I'll have to figure out how to get one here. Not having to listen to the rumble of the dryer is a peaceful thought.

Take some time to look at the ordinary things around you this week. What thoughts do they bring to mind?

{"Look around you: Everything you see is God's—the heavens above and beyond, the Earth, and everything on it." Deuteronomy 10:14}


Anonymous said...

I found your comment of Angie's "Bring the Rain" blog about modest panties. I just wanted to let you know that I think I understand your caveat about "black humor"~~picking out your daughter's panties. May God continue to bless you!

Now, I see your beautiful photo of the laundry line. (Did you know that a "solar powered clothes line" has been invented??)

On the way to a Bible study at church this week, I was able to call the local radio and relay a story on the topic of special experiences with one's grandparents. My paternal grandmother had a powerful mental and physical health habit of gratitude. She lived alone as a widow from age 70-89. She told me that her habit was to tuck herself into bed at night praying "Thank you Lord Jesus for my warm cozy bed and that I am not sleeping under the viaduct."

Then she would add a long list of blessings: her smooth fresh sheets scented with sunshine and fresh air from drying on the line, the sound of the wind against her window and the waves lapping on the shore....

One night a prowler broke a window but she didn't climb in bed at night listening for the sound of breaking glass and the fear of "what might happen." Was that the "weakness" of a woman with a "Pollyanna" blush on reality or was it powerful strength and wisdom? I have murmured her little mantra every night and morning for years and I, too, feel the enormous blessings available as I sense her sweet benediction and the Lord's protection.

She also loved to repeat a few scriptures that were "memory gems" from her mother. "Be still and know that I am God." (It actually is said to mean "Shut up! I am God and you are not.") Good word! . As I need to remind myself, "He is God and I am not." I get so over-invested in the "almighty
Michal-ness" of myself..." In quietness and confidence shall be your strength."

You are so right to consider the "poverty" of the people with the humble home and "solar powered clothes line." No matter how humble the circumstances of my life, I am fully aware that Queen Esther in all her glory didn't have the comforts that I enjoy when I flick on the electric lights or fill a tub with gallons of hot running water.

We can never be grateful matter what our circumstances. "Rejoice evermore, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus, concerning you."

Thanking God for your thoughtful comments!

In Christ, Michal Ann in case I have to post as "anonymous"

Heidi ( said...

Nice photo...really captures more than a house and a clothesline.

Don and Dixie said...

It is amazing at the difference in surroundings in just 1/4 mile wherever we live. I remember using a clothes line for years before I had a dryer. We need to appreciate all the finer things of life that God has provided us with!

kristy mae said...

I meant to comment yesterday but the day got away from me. Then, I thought of your post this morning when I was taking my son to school. There's a man who volunteers at the hospital who is confined to a motorized wheelchair. His son goes to school with mine. This morning, I saw him bringing his son to school, riding along on his motorized chair and I was so humbled by that. Just knowing that I get caught up in things some times and I should always remember to praise Him for what I do have - an able body, healthy children, etc.

By the way, I tagged you on my blog :) hope you have a great weekend!

Brooklyn said...

Thank you for this post. It made me think. I often times these days do not do still and think. God shows us blessings in so many ways all day long and I miss most of them because I am rushing around. I also think I am going to get a cloths line :)

Southern Fried Gal said...

It is always a blessing to visit your blog! This post is beautiful. I also really like that you back every post up with a scripture! Blessings to you!

Joy said...

That is a wonderful photo. It makes me grateful for my blessings as well as makes me think that it doesn't take a lot of "stuff" to live a good life.

Tamara Jansen said...

Enjoyed your blog!

Katy said...

You are so right...we gripe and complain about so many things instead of just counting our blessings. Sometimes we don't realize that even the simplest things (like a comfortable bed to sleep in) are such wonderful blessings!

I hang my clothes out alot. I LOVE line drying clothes! I am all about simplicity!!! :o)

I just found your blog!!! HELLO!!! :)