Making Room in Your Rhythm of Life

Most of us try to create a rhythm in our lives. Each day has it’s own plans, agendas and meal menu. Having a reliable plan helps us to stay on-track and moving forward.

Monday is for shopping. Tuesday is Bible Study. Wednesday is a day off. Thursday is Volunteer Day. Well, you get the idea.

We are actually in tune with God when we create our rhythms, he created the seasons to come in a rhythm too. The spring season’s milder temperatures warm up the earth, melting the snow and ice. Summer brings bright sunshine, heat and growing gardens. Fall winds cool us, while leaves turn from green to brown.

And winter? Brr! Snow, ice, whipping winds and bulky clothing are the hallmarks of this season. When I think of winter, I think cold. All the time.

So imagine my complete surprise last weekend. A miracle cameΒ to northern Illinois. The high temperature on Saturday was 70 degrees. I mean, that’s crazy talk, it’s February!

My husband and I put in hours cleaning up our garden. We filled garbage cans with piles of leaves and with wet-paper reeds from last years tiger lilies. The rose bushes got a trim and the cement walkway in front of the plants is now in view.

I went for a walk without a coat, meeting neighbors on my way. As we chatted, young moms and dads pushed strollers with strapped-in toddlers, headed for the park.

Normally, February 18th looks more like a gray still-life painting. The average temperature in this short month is 33 degrees, with a total monthly snowfall of 8 inches. We usually have cloudy skies for days. Snow and icy winds. Heavy sweaters and scarves. Balky car engines. Balky groundhogs too.

It seems that the usual rhythm of the winter season skipped a beat somewhere.

I think God wanted to drop a little gift in our laps. Yes, he created the flow of the seasons, and saw that it was good. But that doesn’t mean he can’t create some room for change now and again. And what a beautiful change we experienced in the middle of the winter season.

So what about our own plans and rhythms? We create them to fit our lives, and they are good. But maybe we should start making our lists with a little room too. After all, God might choose the day we’re planning to drop another gift in our laps.

Maybe God is planning a little surprise and he can’t wait to delight you. A neighbor might call and need you. You might need to drop everything because a family member is in town, or a dear friend knocks at your door.

I’m back to heavier coats and thicker sweaters now, but the memory of last week still makes me smile. I can’t wait to see what God does in my life this week. Of course, I’ve made my plans, but they are flexible. So go ahead Father, and surprise me. Whatever you bring, I know I’ll be delighted.

 

 

Surrounded by the Spirit on Facebook

 

49 thoughts on “Making Room in Your Rhythm of Life

  1. Amen, sweet friend! As a Midwestern Ohioan, I am very much connected with this post and view even though we spent most of the week (Wed.-Sat.) in Indy indoors at the Midwest Regional Basketball Tournament where our middle grandson (a high school senior) was playing for the last time we could go watch. When we weren’t in the gym in Indy, we saw and felt it too. Then Saturday we wakened to snow flurries, icy highways, and snow flurries in the air with temps in the upper 20’s!

    I think that we all likely benefit when the rhythm of our days gets upended a bit to remind us we are not in control. It allows for the sweet surprises you note and also the development and maturing of trust when we are upended for less pleasant reasons.

    Have a blessed week, my friend! The weather forecast for the week ahead looks a bit like a roller coaster. I never have enjoyed roller coasters, but I will savor each moment of each day as it comes.

    Love and hugs to you!

    • Hi Pam! Oooh, I don’t like roller coasters at all either. But like you, our week ahead looks like a real mixed bag. Well, it is March soon, coming in like a lion I’m sure.

      I like your thought about being upended to remind us that we’re not in charge. We can make the plans, but should always be aware that God is in control. Life works out better that way!
      Love and hugs right back my friend,
      Ceil

  2. Ceil, I love how you have juxtaposed here our human need for routine, and God’s unexpected intervention into our “comfort zone” to show us something new and delightful, or different and challenging. The latter is what He has revealed to me over the last several days. Not easy, but you know what? I’ve never doubted for one moment that He is right by my side during all the uncertainty, the discomfort, and the profound disappointment. God will see me and those I love through it all if we hang on to faith and trust and hope.
    Spring is early here, too. The blooms of the flowers are an amazing testimony to God’s eternal promises.
    Blessings always!

    • Hi Martha! Comfort zone is a great way to describe the rhythms we start up each day. It’s comforting to know what we have to get done, and figure out how to get it all completed. God’s little curve balls can cause disappointment, but he’s there in the mix, as you say.

      My hyacinths are peeking up through the soil, and I want to yell at them ‘Get down! It’s going to get cold!!’ But they will be fine, and will bloom later, when I can watch and remember God’s promises to all of us.
      Blessings my friend,
      Ceil

  3. We had that same gift in West Michigan. The temp made it to 61. Incredible! Yesterday we were back to snow, but we sure enjoyed that nice weather. I love thinking of it as a gift!

    • Hi Mari! It really was fun wasn’t it? So unexpected. It really raised my spirits to see the sun and feel some warmth for a change. Of course, yesterday it snowed here too. Well, at least it wasn’t enough to stick.

      I hope you see a special gift from God today too!
      Ceil

    • Hi Donna! Thanks for visiting and commenting too!

      You are so right about that saying, I didn’t think of it when I wrote this, but it would have fit in perfectly. I’m a planner, and sometimes when those plans don’t work out, well, not a fan I guess you’d say. Flexibility keeps us in balance, and makes sure that blood pressure stays low.

      Hope you had a great weekend away!
      Ceil

  4. If anyone has the ability to move us out of our comfort zone, God does! And He knows how, when and how it will affect us! Great post, Ceil, thank you so much for sharing.

    • Hi Linda! Amen to that. I think if it were up to me, I’d just stay in my zone. But God knows that’s not where life is, and it’s not really going to make me very effective either.

      Have a great Monday!
      Ceil

  5. It was delightful in southern Illinois, as well!

    Although I’m not a fan of human surprises, God ones are another story. You know if He sends one, it’s going to end up good. (Romans 8:28)

    • Hi Jerralea! I bet it was even warmer where you are! It was so fun to see the sunshine for once, and to walk outside without a coat. It reallly is those little things, isn’t it?

      I like your differing the surprises between God and man. Of course, he does use us to surprise each other at times. But as you say, it’s it’s good…then it’s God. All the time.

      Thanks for visiting today!
      Ceil

  6. Hi Ceil, loved this post. Its great to read something with a positive perspective on “unusual weather changes”. Its good to see these things as little gifts from the Lord. Thanks for reminding me to keep a positive attitude.
    God bless
    Tracy

    • Hi Tracy! You know, I started out thinking about global warming, but I just couldn’t continue. We all know it’s a reality, but why not think of this small event as a gift from God? It didn’t last, but it sure brought me and my neighborhood some joy.

      I like the idea of keeping a positive attitude. Let’s have a positive week!
      Ceil

  7. Sometimes in the UK we have all four seasons in one day. It may start sunny but it is cold and rainy by the evening. It is grey and raining right now as I write and it was quite bright this morning.

    But it’s a great analogy for our lives that you describe here, Ceil. Who knows … maybe the neighbour will come round to borrow something or other … again!!! I’d better pretend to be out … again!!!

    God bless you and your family, Ceil.

    • Hi Victor! I have heard that the weather in the UK can be changeable. I guess I didn’t realize it could all happen in one day!

      It is a beautiful thing to have a surprise sunny and warm day in February. And you know, I can’t even think of the last time someone came over to borrow anything. Must have been years ago. Maybe my neighbors are really good planners?

      Have a lovely Monday my friend. God’s blessings to you and yours,
      Ceil

  8. I find I am much more at peace when the first beats of the rhythm of my day are spent with Jesus. Then if He throws in a few paradiddles throughout the day, I am better prepared to keep tempo with Him!

    • Hi Pam! I have to admit that I looked up the word ‘paradiddle’. I learned something new today already!

      I also try to start the day with prayer, and it is a very peaceful and powerful way to enter the new hours. As he gifts, God also gives us the grace to ‘go with the flow’.

      Wishing you a Monday that’s full of grace,
      Ceil

  9. This reminds me of a the phrase; expect the unexpected. I like it as it feeds my adventurous spirit. Right now I feel a bit overwhelmed with the work I have, the projects on the go, and see how the unexpected can be such a blessing and gift from God during this time. And may those unexpected sunny, warm days of last week lift your spirits for many more days to come!

    • Hi Lynn! I was actually toying with the idea of using that phrase ‘expect the unexpected’ as a title for this post. The whole day reminded me of that.

      Of course, accepting a gift of fine weather from God as a blessing is a lot easier than accepting challenges. (I’m not so giddy over the new colder weather.) But he certainly knows your adventurous spirit, and how you can handle the pressing needs of the day. May God continue to bless you with his peace, and help you to complete your tasks well.
      Have a great day!
      Ceil

    • Hi Cheryl! It really was a lovely day, and it perked up my spirits a lot. It’s funny how something as small as the weather can make big changes in my attitude.

      God bless you too my friend,
      Ceil

  10. I do believe that we have to make plans, but hold them loosely just in case Father God wants to interrupt with a better plan–it’s always good! I heard about the warm temps in the Midwest. My facebook feed brought smiles as I saw friends sunning their faces in the park or on their patios! Love those heavenly surprises. Go ahead, God, make my day!

    • Hi Mary! Your last line made me smile! I think that should be my daily prayer really. I should expect the presence and presents from God!

      Well, it’s back to cold for us, but that weekend is a fresh memory. What a gift!

      Blessings to you in warm Arizona πŸ™‚
      Ceil

  11. Dear Ceil, Love this post! We had really warm temps here while we were in AZ, but got rain there when I was counting on warm weather. We got snow towards the end of last week, but have sunshine today-albeit cold temps. I too love it when the Lord surprises me, especially on my birthday. I always ask Him for something special from His heart that I will recognize coming straight from Him-it’s fun to wait and see what He gives me. Hope you get some more sunshine this week.
    Hugs,
    Noreen

    • Hi Noreen! We did have sunshine today, and it was heavenly. If the wind would have died down, it would have been a lovely day. Isn’t that crazy that your weather back home was better than Arizona??

      It is fun to see what he’ll bring, I agree. I have to get better at expecting these little fun surprises in my day. I think he likes gifting us that way.

      Hoping for sunshine for you too!
      Ceil

  12. Hi Ceil, God certainly is full of surprises and delights to give His children amazing gifts. Iowa’s weather has been quite mild this winter (very similar it sounds to Northern Illinois). Being thankful in all things really helps us to see with new eyes. It’s those unexpected happenings that give color to our lives and perhaps give us something to look forward to or simply memories made.

    Blessings on you week!

    Kim

    • Hi Kim! It did bring color to my life, that’s for sure. It was so unexpected, and the sunshine really lifted my spirits.
      You make a good point about being thankful in all things. It’s back to cold today, and I should be thankful that the weather is more seasonal.
      Hope your weather is treating you well in Iowa!
      Blessings to you too my friend,
      Ceil

    • Hi Stephanie! It’s been very mild in this part of the country. I can’t say that I am unhappy with it though. It’s back to normal temps today, but I was able to get out for a walk, which I really enjoy.

      No winter coat is a good thing!
      Ceil

  13. Oh Ceil, you’ve given me such heart smiles here. You are so upbeat, expecting great things from God. God truly did drop a gift into our laps. I’m so glad you and your husband could enjoy it. We had one day that was 69 degrees and my husband and I could take a walk on the bike trail next to the river. I am back to hibernating at home again as we had 8 inches of snow at the end of last week and it is back to more cold. Thank you for reminding me of that God surprise. πŸ™‚ I am so forgetful. Spring WILL come as He has promised! Love and hugs to you!

    • Hi Trudy! It is such a heart-lifter to think about how God will gift us. It makes my heart smile too! I’m glad you and your husband had a chance to use the path by the river. It sounds lovely!
      We didn’t get that kind of snow, but it is cold again. Back to winter. But it makes me appreciate the little gift in my lap last week. Looking forward to spring for sure!
      Blessings,
      Ceil

  14. So true that while plans are good we shouldn’t be ruled by them. Flexibility is important, and being open t what God wants to do and how he might surprise us.

  15. I always like to be flexible in my schedule when I can but always keep in the back of my mind the knowledge that we can have our plans but “things” can change in a heartbeat. As far as the weather goes…our little spring temptation is still tempting us but is about to play a dirty trick…getting down to upper 20’s in a couple of nights. Everything is coming out in bloom…sure hope it won’t ruin the “real” spring!

    • Hi Debby! You are a smart woman, I want to be like you in remembering that wonderful surprises can come in my day if I pay attention, and make room for them.

      We are looking at a snow forecast tomorrow too. I have hyacinths and jonquils starting to come up, but no buds, so I think I’ll be okay. Hope your snow doesn’t dampen the ‘real spring’ too!

      Tuesday blessings,
      Ceil

  16. I like your take on our warm weather. I’ve lost most of my rhythms and I hope to find some new ones. The warm days were a gift…
    And I thank God for them.

    • Hi Anita! I miss those warm temps now! It’s in the 40’s today, so thats at least an improvement over the past week. I agree that those warmer days were a gift, and one I was able to take advantage of, which really makes me happy.

      I hope you do find your new rhythm, and that it’s one you’ll love. Just be sure to take your camera with you πŸ™‚
      Blessings,
      Ceil

  17. Wow, what a surprise to have such a lovely day! We still have 2 or more feet of snow on the ground, and more coming this weekend. In fact, usually by this time in March, we can see the ground, but not so this year, lol! A year for strange weather, indeed… a bit off rhythm, as you said so well. It is nice for a change, but still, we like routine, lol. Yet we know spring can’t be far off… with the longer days ahead of us, spring will be with us soon πŸ™‚

    • Hi MM! It’s funny, but I was thinking about you when I wrote this post. Every time I visit your blog, you have those photos of all the snow, and our weather seemed so completely different from yours. It truly is a wierd year, at least this winter anyway. Still no snow here, but it’s a lot colder.

      Come on spring! Especially for your Idahoians, who could use a break!
      Have a blessed Sunday.
      Ceil

  18. Hi Ceil,
    I have to admit that I do not plan much in my life, and do not have a weekly routine, as the Lord spoke to me many years ago through the scripture James ch. 4 v. 14 and Proverbs ch. 27 v. 1 about not knowing what tomorrow brings. I can truly look back in my life and see that most things that I expected to happen did not happen. I really love leaving my times in God’s hands.
    God bless you Ceil with a blessed future. (I love your picture of the little groundhog.)

    • Hi Brenda! I’m afraid I’m a definite routine person. I have my list of chores for the day ready for me. I think it makes me feel like I’m accomplishing something by the end of the evening. At first I really didn’t like any interruptions to my plans, but now I hope I’m getting more relaxed in that.

      Your attitude is such a good one, and I’m glad it works for you. God spoke so clearly to you, and you listened. I really admire that about you my friend.
      Blessings,
      Ceil

      • I think the way you are is lovely Ceil, and I think part of what God has you do in your organized life is to share your wonderful, encouraging thoughts in your regular blog posts. Mine are always a bit scattered as far as timing is concerned πŸ™‚

    • Hi Jean! Yes indeed, just like God! I like that comparison. I hope I continue to be open to his wild surprises πŸ™‚

      Have a blessed Sunday my friend,
      Ceil

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *