Simple Gifts

Tis a gift to be simple
Tis a gift to be free
Tis a gift to set down right where we ought to be.

And when we set down
in the place that is just right
it shall be in the valley of love and delight.

Joseph Brackett

As I struggled with identity and “just”-ness this past week, this Shaker song came to mind. I don’t know the history of the lyrics, and I’m sure they have greater meaning than I give to them. But, for me in this moment, I love the idea of freedom and simplicity coming when I “set down where I ought to be.”

Where I ought to be right now isn’t adventurous or fancy, but it is sweet and passes quickly. Bea has taken to snuggling in bed again. Even if it is earlier than I’d love, the sweetness of that moment is something to cherish. The baby wakes up and kicks around whenever Bea snuggles in and I get a glimpse of moments in the not too distant future.

I remember, too, what a gift this is. It’s not something I’ve earned, though we have made conscious decisions as a family to live a certain way. But, the ability to do so, the ability to stop and embrace the moment. These are gifts that I can’t discount.

What are some simple gifts in your life?

Linked with Kate Motaung’s Five Minute Friday, a time to write without editing.

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12 thoughts on “Simple Gifts

  1. You are not alone in your struggle. I have found it necessary to slow down and take in each moment. At this moment, listening to my girls clean their room is a gift. I have one that’s a little messier so for her to be doing her chores is a gift 🙂

  2. What a lovely post!

    What are my simple gifts? Well, I could start with the resolve that lets me pull myself up, against rather frightening pain and other physical manifestations, to attend to a dog with a tummyache at 0300.

    The quiet of the night as the poor little chap does the necessary in the yard, under the high desert sky. There’s another.

    The dogs, themselves…most of whom (we run a sanctuary for the unwanted, abandoned, and abused) who stayed quiet during the midnight runs (nice play on words, there, eh?).

    My wife, who would kill me if I applied the word ‘simple’ to her in any way, but I’m betting she’s not reading this. She’s an accountant, and about as simple as a Cray Supercomputer.

    And the wonderful community at FMF, the members of which have given me such strength through times that have been trying, and are getting harder.

    I’m the luckiest man alive.

  3. Beautiful Annie. And the whole idea of setting down right where we should be (are meant to be?), I love it. I sometimes try to be where I don’t truly belong, and it’s in those places when my insecurities kick in. But when I’m where God has set me down? I find peace more easily and rest.

    Simple gifts: Time and God’s presence. His whisperings of wisdom when I’m walking with my boys through the ups and downs of each day. And the online friends I’m making through writing and blogging. These are simple, very meaningful gifts.

    1. Oh, yes! When I set down in places that aren’t right, that are forced, those insecurities rise up! Looking for that valley of love and delight, resting in where God has placed me.

  4. Simple gifts in my life this week=having coffee with friends, being affirmed and valued, lots of warm quilts, a nice rain etc. Thanks for the reminder to watch for the simple gifts.

  5. Lovely post! So important to cherish the little gifts! I just had two weeks off and went to visit friends. Never imagined I needed their company, fun, and talks that much! What a gift!

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