A Room With a Couch

Drawing is not my forte, so ignore the messed up perspective.
Yesterday, after church, I spent some time wandering around Lancaster in a (somewhat) desperate search for a place... I stopped in some of my regular haunts, but none of them had what I was looking for. After one-and-a-half hours of futile searching, I returned home, still antsy and restless to find the room that existed in my imagination. Because I couldn't find my room in the real world, I decided to draw it. I got out my crayons (yes, crayons), and started sketching out my cozy nest. Afterward, I wrote this description in my journal:

"In my mind, there is a perfect, cozy room. It has a giant, cozy fireplace: big enough that you could cook a pot of stew in it. A stone fireplace would be best, but wood or brick would be fine as long as it's huge. On the mantle, there is a lovely painting or framed photograph, preferably something with bright, happy colors. Around the room, there are round wooden tables that hold lamps and photos and books. The hardwood floors are scarred by years of boot heels and are covered by hand woven rag rugs. Several bookshelves, full of everything from Shakespeare to C.S. Lewis to Ina Garten, line one dark purple wall. Yes, dark purple. Maybe with hardwood wainscoting.

"The most important part, though, the detail that would make or break this room, is the couch. The chairs could be straight-backed wooden affairs for all I care, but the couch (or, even better, couches!) are hugely overstuffed... so large that a person could disappear completely if she curled up in the corner with a good book.

"My room has a feeling of peace and comfort. Whenever someone enters the house it's in, he or she is immediately drawn to the comfort of this room. Music, conversation, and crackling fires are the only sounds that break the silence. One day, this room will be mine."

One day...


For those of you who don't get why my last two posts have had random number titles: it's advent - the beginning of the church calendar, the time during each year when we await the birth of Christ. Obviously, I'm already behind on posts, but I don't care and I don't think you do either.

Over the years, I've often wondered why we bother "waiting" for Christ's birth. It's already happened. What's the point in pretending? But this year, as I wait with some expectancy for a job offer, I am beginning to see the reason for this time of preparation. Sometimes we need to consciously slow down so that we don't miss the great thing that's coming. This measured approach to the Christmas celebration makes the day itself more meaningful and, in some ways, more joyous because we are reminded what it's all about. If we are mindful, our eyes should be wide open by the time Christmas Day arrives and no amount of consumerism or family angst or stress will be able to distract us from the joy of this season.

May all five of you be blessed with times of slowness and rest during this advent season.

The wolf will romp with the lamb,
the leopard sleep with the kid.
Calf and lion will eat from the same trough,
and a little child will tend them.
Cow and bear will graze the same pasture,
their calves and cubs grow up together,
and the lion eat straw like the ox.
The nursing child will crawl over rattlesnake dens,
the toddler stick his hand down the hole of the serpent.
Neither animal nor human will hurt or kill
on my holy mountain.
The whole earth will be brimming with knowing God-Alive,
a living knowledge of God ocean-deep, ocean-wide.

-Isaiah 11:6-9


"Because the poor are despoiled, because the needy groan, I will now rise up," says the Lord; "I will place them in the safety for which they long." Psalm 12:5