Tag Archives: Rich Mullins

First Day of Autumn

My mom has a Colorado scenic calender that hangs near the kitchen. This month’s picture is titled, “Little Snake River sunrise.” The sun shines on the dry mountain peaks giving them a tan color for the horizon. The trees shimmer with orange and yellow. The sky is blue. You can see the fleeting trace of dark clouds at the top of the picture which are being replaced by puffy white ones that lay low in the sky by the peaks. And there is a double rainbow. I notice that I tend to stare more at pictures or paintings these days. I soak in the color schemes or theme. I try to visualize what the artist had in mind. This picture was the same. Just one of those that makes you wonder if the photographer purposely waited until sunrise to take the picture or whether it was spontaneous. I go with the latter.

Like the picture above. It was taken last Autumn, a day after one of my chemo treatments. My sister and two college friends were going to Yellow Springs to enjoy the air, colors and tourism. They really wanted me to go. So I went. I had a great time. This picture was spontaneous. Look at how perfect it is. Everything from color coordinating, our hand positions (that was not planned either) to my eyes peeking out from the leaf. 🙂 I thought the other two were doing the same. I don’t think the picture would have turned out as great if we planned it. And I love to plan! Ask my family…it drives them nuts. There is nothing wrong with planning ahead. Ask event coordinators. I am sure the word procrastination is never mentioned during their interviews. It is actually a job I could see myself thriving in, minus the telephone calls. Aside from profession, when you plan ahead based on circumstances, it is harder to embrace change. Trust me, it seems to be my life’s bad habit.

I wrote a post at the beginning of Spring about how my vision is blurry when I take my eyes off Jesus. Two seasons later I see parallelism to my future much like a leaf. A leaf grows in the Spring. It nourishes in the summer, and it dies in the Fall. Its beauty peaks a few days before it sees the ground. Have you ever watched a leaf fall from the tree to the ground? How is a leaf to know the timing of when it will be set free or the circumstances around it that will shape the direction of its fall?

Not that I am falling (well, ok, I do physically when I twist my ankle), but the circumstances around me seem to be falling. At least in my leaf-like eyes. Circumstances such as my last day of work is in exactly two weeks with no prospects open for something new. Circumstances such as my next MRI is October 22nd. To be honest, thoughts cross my mind frequently of what those results will show and whether or not I will have to restart another treatment. Circumstances such as finding an apartment, fixing my car, putting my paintings in coffee shops, or where God needs me to serve in a ministry. Circumstances–temporary things that shift like the wind. Circumstances that weigh heavy on the heart, much like the tug of gravity on a leaf. Circumstances that are out of my control or leave me confused.

I cannot see what lies ahead, but I have to trust in God’s timing. It is perfect. It is not spontaneous like human plans. It is tenderly planned to meet all my needs. He sees the greater picture. I see the spontaneous moments piece by peace. I must admit that as much as I try to keep my eyes on Jesus, I am more like Peter who looked down at the roaring waves beneath his feet. Life is walking by faith. “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen,” Hebrews 11:1.

And faith is much like Autumn. Change is here. Change is not always a strand of negative effects. Without the change of colors and falling leaves, how will Winter ever arrive? I must embrace change. I must embrace the Autumn in my life, for even when everything around me seems to be falling–it is beautiful. And so I wait. I wait for God’s timing, because if a leaf falls too soon it can be trampled. If it falls too late, it can wither. I wait for His release of beauty as I enter the Autumn winds.

Well, sometimes my life just don’t make sense at all

When the mountains look so big and my faith just seems so small

CHORUS: So hold me Jesus, ’cause I’m shaking like a leaf

You have been King of my glory

Won’t You be my Prince of Peace

And I wake up in the night and feel the dark

It’s so hot inside my soul, I swear there must be blisters on my heart


Surrender don’t come natural to me

I’d rather fight You for something I don’t really want

Than to take what You give that I need

And I’ve beat my head against so many walls

Now I’m falling down, I’m falling on my knees

And this Salvation Army band

Is playing this hymn

And Your grace rings out so deep

It makes my resistance seem so thin


Rich Mullins. “Hold Me Jesus.” A Liturgy, a Legacy, & a Ragamuffin Band. (1993).

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Filed under Adjusting to NF2, Family Times, Hospital Trips, Paintings, Random

“Sometimes the night was beautiful…”

What a week!! Quick recap of big events:

I bought myself my first pair of sunglasses!!! I think they are pretty cool. 8-D (Yes, they go over my glasses–but they work great!)

I finished a painting. I tried Snapple’s new tea: Bret’s Blend Tea–Trop A Rocka. It has mango, pear, peach and cinnamon flavoring. Delicious! I got to talk to some friends from CO. My little sister comes home from college tonight! 😀 So exciting!!! 😀 We got to see some family friends who are in town and had dinner with them. And the biggest event of the week: yesterday’s hospital trip.

I had my annual 3-month MRI and doctor visits. It was a LONG day! I checked into radiology at 6:30 a.m. for my MRI. I got out around 9:30. Got a nice bruise on my right arm from the IV they used for the contrast. Went up to my regular doctor visits that lasted until 12:45 pm. Ate my sandwich on the run to my 1pm appointment for an ultrasound on my left leg to see how the blood clot is doing. I got out of there at 2:30. Back up for one more appointment and finally got to leave the hospital around 4 pm something. I was so tired by that time that as soon as I got in the car, I fell asleep. Thanks to my dad and mom for being there, because while I was sleeping, they were stuck in rush hour.

The day, although long, went well. It is my own battles of striving to be independent that cause me to build a defense wall when I attend appointments, especially when they are Occupation Therapy concerned. I like to do it on my own, even though my body is changing. And for me, it is harder to except the fact that my body is changing and getting more slow, than it is for me to adapt to changes. For example, when doctors ask me if I have noticed any changes…I say the obvious ones that I might be concerned with or notice getting harder to do. Then they ask my parents and they say things that I really have not noticed, because most often either I am used to it by the appointment so I forget the changes or I just don’t take note…like I can’t see myself walk, so I don’t notice how my right leg and ankle are working or seeming different. I am not mad at my parents for speaking these things, but my first initial reaction is to clarify with justification and try to prove that I am doing just fine. It is a hard day to sit and discuss about all the big to tiny changes noticed. It is not that any big steps are taken towards these changes–it is just discussing them. I think what frustrates me most is having to talk about all the options out there–possibilities–for when the time comes that I do need more assistance in maintaining my independence.

Independence. The word in itself is what I fear most I think. The thought of losing my independence causes me to strive to work harder to maintain what I can do right now in life. Like driving. The weeks following my blood clot, I could not drive and I struggled! When I was ready, driving and taking management of my schedule helped me get back towards feeling independent, even though I had just let go of my apartment. God only knows the future. He knows when I will need help and has surrounded me with an amazing family who helps me in more ways than I probably recognize and a team of doctors who have resources to help me as well. I just hope when it comes to that time, that I will have let go of my pride and recognize that I will need help. And not all help is bad. Not all help classifies me as helpless. Not all help labels me as disabled. The assistance at that point in time will enable me to continue to live independent for as long as I can. I must learn to embrace help, not build a defense against it.

I have not received the results for my brain and neck scans yet, but scans of the spine were stable. And the left leg shows stable as well. This is a praise!!! 🙂 Thank you for your prayers!

Last night before I went to bed, I went out to feed Muffy. The moon was bright, stars were shining, and it was a lovely warm evening!!! I sat on the patio and started humming Rich Mullin’s, “Sometimes by Step”. Of all the day’s worth of emotion, chaos of schedule, and long discussion…it was so nice to sit in silence. Just for a few minutes. No thoughts of the day spent or thoughts of tomorrow. Just a deep breath of wonder realizing how tiny I am in the universe, yet God knows me by name. He loves me and takes care of me. I am so blessed.

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Filed under Adjusting to NF2, Books and Movies, Hospital Trips