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Redeemed

breathing without breath

screaming to be heard

under churning waters

can’t say a word

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caught in the trap:

to open up and breathe

would invite drowning

deluge and bereave

 

somehow there is peace

in the panic within

the feelings subside

when forgiven of sin

 

at last all is made

right with the world

swept to His feet,

lying battered and curled

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here i can stay

for a while or two

no judgment or cares

only redemption is due

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Swept Under

Swept under, swept up and swept under again…

 

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Forever means nothing except in eternity;

A taste so rich, a swing & a miss -

Priorities lie where the heart’s not so shy,

But dreams can be true bliss.

Pierhenge.

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For more creative silhouettes, please visit the Weekly Photo Challenge.

 

Hey, God…thank You for shadows of things to come…

For the illumination You provide, bringing things once dark into the light;

For long shadows shrinking as Your light rises over all things;

For bold outlines that bring definition to hazy horizons;

For stark contrasts that complement each other in perfect harmony,

And for fresh perspectives gained by ongoing change.

Looking up, I see an afternoon of “digit-al” clouds…

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…and looking down, I see a sunrise reflected in “rooty” patterns:

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Texture makes us feel something more, causes things to stand out like a visual brain teaser and gives us perspective.

Texture allows the visually impaired to read and brings life and added meaning to an otherwise one-dimensional perception.

It makes us think harder and brings pleasure.

For more textures, please visit this week’s Photo Challenge .

Hey, God, thank You for all the textured beauty You bless us with, everywhere we go.

Thanks for perspective, for opportunities to feel – really feel – and for making things seem a little more interesting and real.

There is nothing I do not love about summer. It is my favorite season, hands down.

Naturally, I couldn’t resist sharing a few glimpses of my summer for this week’s Photo Challenge:

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Fort Morgan, Alabama

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Sunrise on Jeckyl Island, Georgia

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Favorite Swimming Hole

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Sharing my paddle board with a friend

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Horse Fly!

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Unexpected companion while kayak fishing on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina

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Summer Lovin’!

 

Thanks, God, for summer lovin’…for cherished memories, for seasons of change, of play and of rest, for periods of sweat and cooling off.

Thanks for tall, refreshing drinks, toes in the water, humming cicadas and opportunities to grow and explore new horizons.

Thank You for an unforgettable summer of growth and new beginnings.

Please bless the WP readers with a safe, happy and enjoyable summer.

And may everyone find time to relax, recharge and reinvent themselves.

Today marks the third birthday of this blog.

It began as an alternative way to communicate. And, like many blogs, it evolved into a completely different animal altogether, then transforming to a platform for creative writing to a platform for photography to a platform for prayer and reflection. God, the sea and musings have never failed to tie them all together.

All these things are a reflection of growth having occurred, of forward movement, being swept up in the current of life.

If you’d asked me three years ago today if I saw myself (or this blog) where I am today, the answer would have been an unequivocal NO.

Growth is so cool, y’all! See where time takes you? Places you never dreamed!

Staying stuck sucks. (say THAT ten times fast!)

So in honor of the third birthday, I offer a bit of creative writing, photography and prayer.

Minus the mistakes I’ve learned from, like ditching the 2k word post, straightening out the horizon on my beach shots and such.

Why, here’s a picture I just took this weekend on my beach – how many of you were too polite to tell me in days past that my crooked horizons made you seasick? This one’s for you:

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Okay, so the horizon is just about straight, but the damn chair is crooked – I’ll get it right one of these days. Thanks for bearing with me….

Oh, but here’s another one from the same day – is this better? (Side note: water temp, 82 degrees F, perfect for snorkeling, boogie boarding, kayaking and tubing – all of which I was blessed to play in those cerulean waters yesterday – c’mon down, y’all)

(and no, I did NOT photoshop any people or crowds OUT of the picture – this is really what my beach looks like – never ever a soul encroaching)

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Okay, the horizon is not slightly off – that’s the curvature of the earth, right?

(I went for a run later down the beach and saw that catamaran up close – it’s a beaut!)

I was told my blog had been branded as this or that and I felt compelled to live up to the brand, one of which included reverent prayer. I was so busy bowing my head I got out of the habit of blogging for laughs, like the Expense of DIY post or Chore Evasion and others like it, back in the day.

As I sought a title for this post, I Googled the word THREE and these suggestions popped up (my memoirs of the last 3 years in parentheses):

  • Three waters green (I am surrounded by three waters of green, blue and other colors depending on whether or not BP decides to blow a gasket near my beach)
  • Three days grace (What I needed last year when I counted up the number of lawyers (eight) for various reasons I never foresaw, between work and family matters)
  • Three circle church (I don’t go to that church, but I did find myself involved in three different churches/denominations at once, which was growth-promoting)
  • Threes (Things come in threes – I have nothing witty to say about this one)
  • Three mile island (What could be said about the state of my house right now, especially after a neighborhood of kids chose our front yard as pyrotechnics central for the 4th)
  • Three stooges (3 of my 4 children who are still in the stage of finding flatulence funny)
  • Three brothers arms (What I often sternly say I’d better not see in my rear view mirror after the car line at school)
  • Three dog night (What happens in my back yard when our dogs and the neighbor’s dog get crazy over a nighttime thunderstorm, and they jump the fence)
  • Three rivers state park (A beautiful area, if you’ve never been, where Florida and Georgia share water, sorry, no 3 year connection here)
  • Three days to kill (If this is any insightful analysis into the state of my brain right now, I had to read this twice to decide if it meant if there was a deadline of three days to murder someone, or if it meant I needed a vacation….I settled upon the latter)

But my FAVORITE thing that popped up when I Googled THREE, was this literary gem:

Three Years She Grew

By William Wordsworth

Three years she grew in sun and shower,

Then Nature said, “A lovelier flower

On earth was never sown;

This Child I to myself will take;

She shall be mine, and I will make

A Lady of my own.

 

“Myself will to my darling be

Both law and impulse: and with me

The Girl, in rock and plain,

In earth and heaven, in glade and bower,

Shall feel an overseeing power

To kindle or restrain.

 

“She shall be sportive as the fawn

That wild with glee across the lawn

Or up the mountain springs;

And hers shall be the breathing balm,

And hers the silence and the calm

Of mute insensate things.

 

“The floating clouds their state shall lend

To her; for her the willow bend;

Nor shall she fail to see

Even in the motions of the Storm

Grace that shall mould the Maiden’s form

By silent sympathy.

 

“The stars of midnight shall be dear

To her; and she shall lean her ear

In many a secret place

Where rivulets dance their wayward round,

And beauty born of murmuring sound

Shall pass into her face.

 

“And vital feelings of delight

Shall rear her form to stately height,

Her virgin bosom swell;

Such thoughts to Lucy I will give

While she and I together live

Here in this happy dell.”

 

Thus Nature spake—The work was done—

How soon my Lucy’s race was run!

She died, and left to me

This heath, this calm and quiet scene;

The memory of what has been,

And never more will be.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Hey, God, thank You for three years of evolution, of coming into being and coming to You.

God bless the readers, artists and publishers of WordPress for this positive momentum of growth and self-actualization. Hitting the PUBLISH button isn’t the end-all goal, it’s the journey that counts and the joys found therein.

Thank You for this platform for finding my way, for taking me through, bringing me up, keeping me afloat and sending me into the future. And most of all, God, for bringing me HOME, home where I belong. Thank You for the journey, God.

And thank YOU, dear readers, for joining me here on my beach. Your friendship is the most cherished thing of all.

~~ssm

Happy Anniversary!

I invite you to share a few contrasts in my world by the sea, for this week’s Photo Challenge:

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Sargassum: Golden, life-supporting treasure of the sea

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Lined Seahorse (Hippocampus erectus)

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Florida Horse Conch (Triplofusus giganteus)

Hey, God – You have created some of life’s most profound contrasts. Good and evil, heaven and earth, wisdom and folly, to name a few.

But my favorite contrasts are the concrete ones that require little more than awestruck attention, the ones we can simply enjoy in the moment, beholding the beauty and wonder of Your creation.

Thanks, God, for the magical, interdependent web of life You created, where contrasts complement each other and are necessary for perfection and often delicate balance.

Thank You for the contrasts in our lives that You provide which foster growth, perspective and harmony.

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