life and faith

Girls just wanna have fun

Pursuing a God-sized dream doesn’t seem to suggest having fun. They’re a fairly serious matter in terms of intent, dedication and commitment. But there needs to be a time for resting, playing and appreciating how far we have already come.

Holley has requested us to get in touch with our playful side this week as she’s encouraged us to do various things. These include doing something creative, snapping a picture and building a Pinterest board. We can choose to make a craft, read a book, bake a treat or wrestle with our kids. Whatever energises us because “sometimes along the way to our dreams we just need a little time to play.”

Soon after I read these suggestions I realised I have signally failed to factor fun into my life. For far too long now my life has been all the poorer (and far too intense) as a result of missing out on fun and play.

Chronic sickness and fatigue, as well as lack of practice, may limit my options somewhat. But I will do my best to re-introduce play/fun/enjoyment, even if it will take a bit of a gear-shift mentally and some working out creatively!

Here’s a snapshot of some things that have brought me pleasure this week.

Tuesday

Dear Holley,

In this week’s assignment are you asking us to do something: Frivolous. Unnecessary. Naughty? Or to try the Fantastic. Unlimited. New or Find Unexpected Nuances in our daily lives? Maybe all three.

Wednesday

A Limerick – Ode to Holley
 
Sweet, encouraging Holley Gerth
helps us pursue dreams for all they are worth.
She sets a weekly task
and this one’s a big ask

for she wants us all rolling in mirth.

Having fun is just doing more of what gives us pleasure, enjoyment and relaxation. Sometimes it’s okay to have fun and act your shoe size (mine’s 3.5 – 4 UK or 36 – 37 European) and not your age.

Thursday

I love to write and have introduced fun into it by writing in a new way recently. Five Minute Friday encourages us to attempt 5 minutes of free flow writing on a given topic. So here is a slightly longer exercise instead of non-edited, as-it-comes writing.

When I am at a crossroads, I….
fun - writing - uncertainty - crossroad sign @wordsofjoy.me

When I am at a crossroads I hesitate, dither, and try to remember which way I should be going.  Uncertainty kicks in like an unwelcome stranger beside me. How to choose? Too many choices only serve to confuse. Is life governed by the shoulds and oughts?

Would it really be so terrible if I gave in to “What if..?” As long as the question isn’t fear-based, then it is a road rich with potential of unexplored avenues. There could be pathways to pleasure, roads to ruin, or streets of secrecy and shame. I remain rooted to the spot. Certainty shadows my thoughts and beckons with a sense of concrete calm.

Go with the familiar is Certainty’s refrain. Seems sensible. Logical. Doable. Though I can’t avoid the fact it seems dull and pedestrian too. What if I gave in to a desire for pastures new,
took the left instead of forking right, blindly stepped out into my fate and my future? Would that be so terrible?

Crossroads have an intersection. A meeting point. Here, thoughts bundle together like traffic colliding. Being sure of where you’re heading is no bad thing. Being grown-up and responsible. Secure. Safe. Yes, okay, a tad boring and predictable too maybe.

My inner child longs for safety. It’s more about the heart being stable than the road being less than rocky. Lush green pastures are not the usual stopping place for me. I’ve become accustomed to the wayside, the dark path, barely enough light to step ahead.Lived for far too long in Safe Pastures in terms of fear of embracing the new.

Pleasurable pursuits

Friday

Pleasure on a plate


Spring is sprung









 

Participating in Five Minute Friday Fun here
 
Saturday
 

Energy levels are very low today. But I am rejoicing in having a husband who has a Jesus-like servant-heart. He till loves me as tenderly as he did when we were starry-eyed young lovers. And he delights (usually) in doing the multiple household tasks I cannot manage, and always makes me smile with his great sense of humour.

I am needing to rest a lot physically so have turned to reading, an activity I love. A lot of my reading is done online these days. Though books still play a big part in my life, it takes me much longer to finish them than it used to! I’ve nearly finished reading this book. You can find out more about the book here.

I am chilling out with ‘JOY’ gentle lighted candle. It’s  fragranced with aromatherapy essential oils Jasmine Absolute, Bergamot, Patchouli, Basil and Yylang-Yylang. The scent helps soothe away cares of the day.

Sabbath weekend fun and relaxation


Sunday
“Your work may go uncelebrated, but it will not go unrewarded. God has put you exactly where He needs you. You are fulfilling His purpose every day. Once you accept that, you’ll find joy and meaning in what you’re doing” ~ UCB Word for Today

Though I rarely make it to church, ‘church’ makes its way to me via TV programmes and music. I particularly enjoy sermons by Charles Stanley, Paul Scanlon and Charles Price. Playing worship songs and singing along to the lyrics helps me to connect to God.

My taste varies depending on whether I need quietly contemplative, rocky, soulful, contemporary or traditional sounds. Today, I am listening to the lively Newsboys album God’s not dead and finding it so uplifting.

Another lovely thing I enjoyed today was having our first Skype video-call conversation with our youngest son and daughter-in-law via my new laptop. It was great to ‘see’ them as they live at a distance and trips to visit one another are far and few between.

Reaching the end of our fun challenge

Monday

I wanted to go out and take a photo of a magnolia tree as it is one of my favourites and the sight of them in bloom lifts my spirits. We don’t have garden space for one, unfortunately, but they are in my neighbourhood. Sadly, my camera is broken and I lack the fitness to make an excursion. Nevertheless, I have borrowed photos instead.

Close-up of the blossoming flower
The tree in gloriously full bloom

the fun of seeing a magnolia tree in bloom - Image Courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.Net

I’ve indulged in child-like ways with a chocolate mint lollipop for dessert tonight!

Tuesday

To close – another limerick ode to Holley

 
A delightful young lady called Holley
always looks friendly and jolly,
for she’s found a great scheme
to help you follow your dream

and to ignore her advice would be folly.

I also attempted Open Office Draw as I wanted to learn how to add words to images on my computer. Sadly, I didn’t quite master the art enough to enable me to share anything. Though it has encouraged me to find up my old drawing materials and have a go once more.

This week has been eye-opening for me and I’m determined to keep seeking ways to enlarge the capacity to enjoy my life, whether resuming old hobbies or taking up new ones.

The things that have brought me pleasure and enjoyment are minor and may seem insignificant to most, but they added liveliness and colour to my life. I have welcomed the emphasis on experiencing the richness of abundance from God who freely gives us all things to enjoy.

“You have made known to me the path of life; you will fill me with eternal pleasures at your right hand” ~ Psalm 16:11

Hope you have seen His hand of grace upon your life too in relaxing, fun-filled moments. Do feel free to share in the comments below.

Linking up here with Holley Gerth and the rest of the God-sized dream team.

10 Comments

  1. graceglimmers 23rd April 2013
    • Joy Lenton 24th April 2013
  2. Eileen 23rd April 2013
    • Joy Lenton 24th April 2013
  3. Deborah Bolton 23rd April 2013
    • Joy Lenton 24th April 2013
  4. Lisa 23rd April 2013
    • Joy Lenton 24th April 2013
  5. Anonymous 24th April 2013
    • Joy Lenton 24th April 2013

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