“Untitled” for my brother

“Untitled” for my brother

“Untitled” By Arman Sheffey
 
Trapped behind a shroud of fading smiles.
One false move from cracking and shattering to pieces.
Fumbling for the darkness in a world of light…
dying to feel something…
Something true.
Something real.
Something of you.
Something that’s got your fingerprints and mine intertwined and smudging the pages of our short story.
 
Dull lead scrapes sharp white as the college ruled lines keep the pain from spilling into the next chapter.
Yet the ribbon stays rested along the binding holding the memory on this side of the margin like the banks of a river holding water at bay for a season.
As time treads along the thread its all bound to come unbound.
But what then.
Will past give way to future?
Or will old charcoal brush against and stain the pages yet written?
How can I stay within these lines when yesterday pushes me to freedom?
My emotions ooze across the inches of boundary until My son’s jumping joy calls me to remember tomorrow.
So I accept an invitation to LIVE. AGAIN.
 fullsizerender
Pieces/Peace is

Pieces/Peace is

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Wind blows back tears
and stands at the gates to say “NO!”
Clouds roll
Leaves rustle
The October breeze mourns with the trees and cries out a reply to the echoing, “Why?”

It just is.

Ripped from Hope
by the greedy claws of despair.
No more moments to move closer.
What could be is now what was
as another whisper from cracked lips… Why?

Because.

Silence comforts like a warm blanket
as the noise of sadness gives way to emptiness.
A remnant, a reasonable breath of life remains reflecting on the pieces of me gone to sleep with the pieces of you.

And yet the merry go spins
The wheels on the road rebelliously turn.
A defiant bird chirps in the gloom of afternoon
And broken leaves slowly come to rest on the dying lawn moments before rain covers them all.

Peace is.

You Write The Headline

You Write The Headline

Today has been a roller coaster day.
Discovering that a loved one received a despair filled report from an oncologist is never a good moment. And yet God continued to send me joy and peace.
There was never a moment today, where I felt that maybe God is not in control of this one.

The honest truth is that I have had those moments from time to time when tragedy strikes. Thankfully they don’t stay long, as the truth arrives and I quickly replace the lie with God’s truth of his sovereignty and might over ALL things. Even cancer.

Yes, God is even sovereign over cancer. I don’t believe He is the God who gives cancer, but allows it and determines to use it to get glory. That is just what He does. He takes our worst nightmares and builds our greatest bedtime stories from them. Not every bedtime story is without real conflict, but they all have happy endings. If you are in Christ, you too must realize that no matter what your story has a happy ending, too. The ending we would choose and a blessed one are not always the same. The reality is, often they seem very different.

But that is why it is so crucial for us to keep our mind off of our own desire and keep our heart set on God’s glory. Our desired end is not promised, but His glory is. As we strive to see His glory accomplished we will be amazed at how our joy is born over and over again in the midst of unexpected struggles. Like mine today.

Simple pleasures and victories became the real story for today. Discovering a new schedule for increased productivity and a new mindset for achieving quality goals made the first 8 hours a success. Taking advantage of some dry erase markers, metal cabinet, and some focus I created my own ONE THING plan. It is based off of the concept I learned from the book, aptly named, the One Thing. It revealed the importance of narrowing focus to achieve greater success. I built a plan for my time in the day, giving the most energetic and productive part of my day to my one thing and then making time for my usually tedious routine stuff that have to always get done, making sure that at the end of the day, I plan what tomorrow’s one thing will be. #LovedIt

At home, I spent time with the family: eating dinner and enjoying some Mario Kart with my soon to be nine year old girl. Then had a tickle-fest with my 10 month old boy. #PureJoy

Then I began my church hours and applied the one thing concept to my tasks for Torch. Writing everything down adds such great clarity to what is most important and what can wait. So I began to work through God’s word and found a verse that lit me up. I had written it down months ago, but never really meditated on it until now.

“When all the people saw Jesus, they were filled with wonder. And they ran to greet Him.” Mark 9:15

It is a simple enough verse, but had me reminded of the impact of the presence of Jesus. When I recognize his nearness it lights me up. The people in this verse were struck with amazement, excitement, awe, and wonder. Then they ran to greet him. A day like today, I am so thankful that I even have the recognition of His presence and I am glad, ever so glad that he is near so I can experience His joy, the wonder of His presence, run to Him, AND honor him with a hearty greeting.

Today was a roller coaster. Today could have been derailed at the painful news that caused great concern. The concern drew me to prayer, drew me to His presence, but doesn’t get to decide my day. It struck me that I am in control of my story, today’s story.

Don’t agree? Hear me out.

God is always the author of my faith and oversees all. Satan can throw tragic events my way, but I get to decide which ones to focus on. I got the image of a newspaper like the Chicago Tribune or something. Life’s events are life’s events and they will report them. However, not everything will be recorded in each day’s issue. Not every story is given equal attention. Some story is the front page. Another is a byline in the classifieds. While yet another story is a two-page spread. God owns the paper, life itself is creating the content, but we are the editor-in-chief. We get to decide what news for the day gets to go above the fold. We get to decide what the headline is. We get to determine that, though tragedy struck, we will not allow that to consume the joy and wonder of God’s presence. We get to decide that the horror and fears of today don’t get to overwhelm the clear knowledge of God’s sovereignty.

Rather than my headline reading, “Loved One Fights For Their Life.”
My headline got to read, “God Provides Joy Amidst Sadness.”

glory tribune

We can’t stop the world from contributing articles to our story all day long, but we can as the editor-in-chief of our story, submit before God a story that is crafted to bring Him glory no matter what. Thankful to work for such an amazing owner.