Sweet To Me

So I have to confess that I have a love affair. It’s true. Yes, I am terribly secretive about my love life. Most of the time because there is nothing to be secretive about. But often because I take it so seriously. Love is nothing to be reckoned with. True love earns the grandest of honor and deserves the greatest of faithfulness. I have learned. Honoring it almost to a fault and holding it in the highest respect, I give my heart away only in pieces and rarely. Only when feeling completely valued. In a way my Father would value me. In a way I would value Him. In a way I would return value. Yes. It is rare. But when I do. I do. Loving with all my heart and soul and with a ferocious loyalty. I felt that tonight. And it almost took my breath away.

Driving over Nickajack Lake into a perfect summer night and surrounded by a warm Southern wind, I soaked in everything that moment had to offer. The summer sun gave way to the night as I exited from my drive. And I saw……..

A piercing golden orange perfectly full moon - beckoning to me. So low that if felt as if I could park my jeep, roll down my window, and climb up on top of it. I once told a friend that I fall in love with the moon every night before I go to bed. I can’t say I was exaggerating. There is something about the moon that leaves me breathless. As does the magic that happens just before it appears. It’s almost as if the sunset is the pre-show leading up to the grand event.

I can remember two times in my life that a sunset was so beautiful that it made me teary. Actually that’s not true. I can think if two times in my life that a sunset has made me teary to the point of shedding a few tears – but that sounds a bit weird to cry at a sunset, so I downplayed it a bit : ) Let’s be honest, I can’t even count the times a sunset has made me teary. But shed a few tears? Twice.

Once was on the island of Santorini Greece. I had just come off of a five week trip throughout Turkey with the Rotary Club Professional Exchange Program among three of the finest people ever.

I stayed an extra 10 days to backpack the Greek Isles. Just Me. Just God. Just Me and God. I wouldn’t give a million bucks for those10 days. I was on a journey of the soul. Just coming off of witnessing the eldest of cave churches and the most primitive of church history – I was already conditioned to soak in more and more of what the world had to offer. I rarely understood a word of anything that I heard around me, and I loved every inch of it. It was as if I was in a world all my own – surrounded by beauty and culture and wonderment. There is something that happens when you are alone with your thoughts and truly by yourself. Emotions tweak, Smoke clears, Heart patters, Life is simply……crisper. And in Greece. Well, in Greece, everything is simply more colorful. Especially Sunsets.

I was on a patio of the restaurant I would go to eat crepes at night. Listening to the Cranberries. Watching something unfold that looked like it belonged in heaven, and I was getting a sneak preview. As the colors unraveled and the boldness of the ocean seemed to soak up the sun – it almost seemed overwhelming to me. Like it stole my heart. And, yes, I confess…..there were tears.

Being alone is often like loosing a sense. They say when you loose one of your senses, the others become heightened in order to make up for the lacking. I think being alone is similar. Not having someone there to bounce thoughts off of, share life with, or experience days and nights with – seems to heighten everything else. Especially Sunsets.

The other one? Tonight. Driving by a restaurant that was oddly on top of a hill in the middle of a not-so-great part of town. But I wondered. Wow- wonder what the sunset would look like from up there. Wow. Yeah. I sat there at one point between picture taking and reading Thomas Keating, and I was mesmerized. It was if I was watching a movie. Slowly revealing itself. Slowly taking different forms and showing off its colorful radiances. And I stopped and thought………….Lord, you are so kind. And then there were, yes, a few tears.

I had a friend once who would talk about how God was sweet to her. I thought that was a perfect way to describe it. The tiny little things He gives us that we often wiz by without noticing. Kinda like a restaurant on top of a hill that has an outside porch perfect for a pre-show. Kinda like an incredible summer night driving over the bridge above Nickajack Lake. Kinda like exiting and witnessing a moon so captivating that you have to pull over to the side of the road just to soak it in because it looks like it, too, belongs in heaven. Or even your blackberry not getting email messages beginning the day that you go on vacation. Kinda like that. He knows me too well. He IS sweet to me. In the purest of forms. Even when I don’t know it or recognize it or even if I forget to see it.

Tonight I am back drinking a cup of coffee at my favorite restaurant in my favorite close-to-home get away. I am at the same outside table that my new friends Danny and Tammy have seated me. They know me as the girl from Nashville who comes up to write and pray : ) I like them so much. Looking into the same window as yester-eve I see a different view. A group of friends seated underneath the same candles. They laugh and then love and they are now hugging each other as they part ways.

I smile as I make clouds in my coffee with my cream. Danny just warmed up my cup. Looking up at the moon – my heart feels just as warm. And, strangely, in love.

Lord- no words. Just thank you……

For being so Sweet : )