Gratitude Day 635
Psalm 116:7 – Now I can say to myself and to all, “Relax and rest, be confident and serene, for the Lord rewards fully those who simply trust in him.”
It’s official. The Vielhuber porch is officially open for sitting, relaxing and hanging out together. And I’d love to have you stop by and be my friend if only for a little while.
When we bought our house almost six years ago, it was the porch that drew me in. It’s open on the front of the house and screened in on the south side of the porch; perfect for eating and visiting and keeping the bugs away. About a year later, some friends gave us wicker furniture for the front side. Some spray paint and new cushions keep it looking fresh and inviting.
On the screen-in side, Hubby Rick and I eat most of our meals during the summer. Sunday morning, I couldn’t find Rick. Where was he? Reading a morning devotion at the table on the porch with a cup of coffee beside him.
Nearly every day, Hubby Rick reminds me once again that these summer days are the ones, he lives for ALL. WINTER. LONG. (In case you aren’t aware, winter is not his friend.) He’s more than ready to spend hours on this porch … and so am I.
Food just tastes better on the porch. Seriously. Maybe it’s the soft breeze wafting through the screens or the picturesque street that we live on. As one neighbor told me a couple weeks ago, he’s having serious lawn envy as he tries to get his lawn looking like the neighbors who have been keeping their lawns pristine for years and even decades. As our realtor friend Amy says, “It’s the street I want to live on if I lived in town.”
Last night after I got back from a run, I took a post-run snack to the front porch. And I sat, eating my snack. I saw folks out for an evening stroll. I heard the birds singing to each other. I saw the mother robin dash in and out of the bush where she has her nest hid in the branches. The wind chime dinged occasionally, and the flowers smelt divine.
It truly felt like a little bit of heaven right here on earth.
We wait and wait through snow and sleet and cold and damp for the days when we can simply be on the porch. I’ve moved my morning devotional materials out to the porch, and you’ll find me out there the rest of the mornings this summer, sipping coffee and trying to get my heart and mind ready for the day.
I have a new sign on the porch this summer. And the words are dead serious. Porches are made for sitting. Visiting. Relaxing. Being. This porch is a great place to do this. It’s not unusual for people to mention our porch to me. A woman at our local library talks about walking past our porch with her friend. I invited them to stop and sit sometime. “Seriously?” she asked. I assured her that I was more than serious.
Or when I’m at the school delivering weekend food bags, someone will say, “I love driving by your house. It’s so serene.”
For me, the porch is a place where I can sit and simply be with God. Where I can slow my mind down, if only for a few minutes, and drink in the world around me. It’s where I can J.S.T (just sit there) and slow my mind down so it can hear more than my own thoughts.
Another favorite way to use our porch? Sit with a friend. Share a meal with someone else. Talk smart and drink big glasses of ice-cold beverages that sweat in the afternoon sun.
It’s all ready. For you. To stop by, relax, listen and feel the breeze and the sun all at the same time. Life goes fast. Sometimes, we just need to SLOW. IT.DOWN. Sit on the porch. Drink in creation and be. I’ll have the peach iced tea ready. Stop by anytime.
For a porch where I can slow down and be with God and friends, I am grateful.
Holy God – we cram so much into our days and lives. And You know the craziness that we impose upon ourselves. Help us to slow down this summer. Drink in life around us without feeling guilty. May we discover the true art of being with You this summer. Amen.
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