Retire, retired, retirement….When I read the definition of retire the word that catches me is withdraw. That word gives me an aha moment. Withdraw- to take back, to retreat. To take what back? To retreat from what? At this time and place I am taking back my sense of Being. Retiring from the incessant pressure to do in a world desperate for certainty and control. As I made this transition and shared it with people the question asked most often was, ‘What are you going to DO?” What’s next?” The answer I felt drawn to give was “Just BE. I’m just going to be. Wake and see where the day takes me.” Granted I have this opportunity because I’ve put in some time doing. Doing what is expected to get here. The real answer of what is next is to enjoy the Sabbath God provides, and know next will come along whether I’m ready or not. Other reactions to this transition have made me smile and reflect. One friend said, “You’re pretty young to be retired.” True. Another said, “Oh yeah, I know someone who retired early and was bored stiff within 2 months.” Sad. Retire doesn’t mean done living, or serving, or learning, or growing. At the end of the definition there is a brief line about winning permanent possession of (as a trophy). That is how I feel at this moment in time. I’ve won permanent possession of my God-given life, and as I retreat we’ll see what wonderful wilderness I end up in.
an opportunity to learn & grow?
I hear this a lot. Comparison is the thief of joy. Disagree! In my experience comparison becomes the thief of joy when it is rooted in pride. Pride pushes me to ask, Am I better or worse than you? Is my situation better or worse than yours? How much better or worse? Pride is the real thief of joy.
Comparison is simply an opportunity to learn & grow. Comparison can be grounded in appreciation not pride. Appreciation for differences & most certainly similarities, not better or worse qualifications.
Comparison allows me to know that I am me & you are you & that is ok. We are the same & different just as God made us.
It is natural to compare. It is a God given ability & a gift when used appropriately. Embrace opportunities to compare in a meaningful way, from a position of appreciation & the thief of joy holds no power.
Garden: a rich, well-cultivated region, a fertile or delightful spot. Garden: to tend a region cultivating richness, to care for a spot enhancing fertility and delightfulness. My garden is a place and what I do in that place. Location and activity wrapped into one. A sanctuary that requires sanctifying. My hands and heart working with what God gives. Earth, water, sunshine, air. Wisdom, seeds, life. Bringing beauty to behold and reminders that for all things there is a season.