Stories that Shine on an Awesome God

Posts tagged ‘writing’

Writing Prompt

Oranges…  I see. I feel. I taste….

Oranges as a creative writing prompt?

I could turn this into a blog. I’ve needed to blog for months. Fallen way behind, doing other writing and editing and living. Blogs are important for writers to keep up. Mine is particularly important, because I’ve dedicated it to sharing God, in little “penpoints” of light.

Why not?Oranges

I was nine, just home from school, and ready to play. The garden patch with its tangle of dried plants and weeds beckoned my little brother and I into a game of Hide-and-seek.

Run and disappear into the weeds. Wait for footsteps. Jump up. Run. Repeat. Laugh a lot.

Trip. Fall down. Scream. Leap up. Scream some more. Swat at yellow jackets angry that you landed on their home. Dash to yours.

Mom met me at the door, stripped off my clothes, and prepared a tub of water and Epson salts. As she sponged the healing potion over my seventeen stings, my tears subsided.

“You stay here and soak,” she cooed. “I will bring you something to help you relax.”

Enter oranges.

A plate of orange wedges placed, eye level, on the edge of my tub. A whole plate of expensive and therefore, scarce and carefully doled out fruit, all to myself. To be savored in private. One at a time. Each section glistened with succulent promise. Mom smiled, turned, and closed the door.

oranges 3

My nose touched the plate. I sniffed the tangy, citrus burst, then closed my eyes and took time to inhale the smell of comfort.

The surface of the wedge of orange between my fingers pressed firm yet pliable, smooth yet dimpled. Most of the wedges included the globular flesh of the orange’s navel. I would tug them off to savor their peculiar texture and their enhanced sweetness. Under the skin, a layer of white cushioned the juice. Perfect. The pith of a navel orange would extend the pleasure.

I sank back into my very first luxury soak, and brought the orange to my lips. As the elixir slipped between my teeth and over my tongue, the stings on my body receded. I sucked the wedge dry and reached for another. And another. Life was again worth a game of Hide-and-seek.

As my friend, Grand Andrew wrote and sings, I was “living in the luxury of the little things.” (Check out his music, here. Grant Andrew Music )

To this day when I’m in pain, and if I’ll remember, there is comfort in the little things. There is luxury and solace in the smell, the taste, the feel of the oranges in my life.

 “The [orange] trees of the Lord are watered abundantly.” – Psalms 104:16

If I take the time to relax and enjoy God’s simple gifts, so are my days.

Creative Healer

Pulling folders out of the metal cabinet, I glanced at their tabs before tossing them into the trash bag. “Church Communications, Youth Ministry, Sermon Topic Ideas . . . .”

“I won’t need these anymore, ever,” I gritted as the mound on the floor grew. “After what I’ve done, the shame and dishonesty, God can never use me again. Never.”

My eyes fell on a manuscript draft that had launched a creative flourish nearly a decade before.

“This I’m keeping, but not much else.”

The emotional pain constricting my heart blocked any thought of creativity.

I tied the ends of the trash bag and set it outside the room that had once been my daughter’s. Before she married and left home. Before I had turned it into my own private space to write and study. The file cabinet was empty just like my side of the walk-in closet down the hall.

It was time to leave. Time to make a new home. Time to live out the consequences of my choices in an arena devoid of church fellowship or ministry.

Four years later:Image of Corn plants against the sky

I bent over a hoe, scratching dirt around tender corn stalks. Creativity did not enter my mind. Surrendering to the hoe, to the whole, huge garden that my new husband loved, filled every crevice of my thoughts. Straightening my back, I gave in and breathed an agreement to learn the lessons that garden had to teach.

“And I will write! I will write those lessons.

Creative musings stirred as if roused from the grave. New life seemed to surge from deep within.

“Perhaps, just perhaps God will use me again.”

Thank you, heavenly Father. Thank You for being a God who creates and recreates. Always. Constantly. You never stop creating. Creativity is how You mend a tattered heart. Thank You for the creativity You place in me. Thank You for its healing power.

How has God revealed Himself through your creativity?  Care to share?

“Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.”  Psalms 51:10

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