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The Winter of My Discontent

Have you ever been discontented with where you live? Or life in general?  Winter is good at that, by exposing the bones of a place.  Winter lays everything bare, and sometimes it is just a little too raw for me.  The sun even shines brighter in the winter, it is a fierce light.  It’s as if everything is on display, but naked.  Like the heavenly bodies are shining a bright light on the nakedness of the earth.  I get an itch in the winter that I cannot scratch, a sort of discontentment.  So today I took my camera with me when we ventured out for burgers and a coke for my birthday.  I thought I might see if I could capture the beauty of winter in Texas.  I thought I might look at my neighborhood and see if I could find contentment, even in the winter.  
I was not disappointed.
 As I look at these pictures I am overwhelmed by the good.  
This is my neighborhood…my home.  I get to live here.
And God saw everything that He had made, and behold, it was very good.
Maybe the secret is in the looking, really seeing, beholding.

Someone asked Abba Anthony, “What must one do in order to please God?”  The old man replied, “Pay attention to what I tell you: whoever you may be, always have God before your eyes; whatever you do, do it according to the testimony of the holy Scriptures; in whatever place you live, do not leave it.  Keep these three precepts and you will be saved.”

The Sayings of the Desert Fathers 




9 thoughts on “The Winter of My Discontent

  1. Thank you for sharing your neighborhood in all its winter lushness. Yes, lushness, because there is so much LIFE going on, isn't there? I am having a hard time this winter, in a new way, because of the drought we are experiencing. Do you have less rain than usual, too? It makes me sad for all the plants and animals that have to shrivel up and maybe die. They might not come out of their winter brownness. It makes me look at the scenery in a new way, sort of as a fellow sufferer.


  2. Beautiful pictures and post. I sometimes feel the same way. I don't know that it's necessarily a winter thing for me, although it may be. It does seem that every once in awhile I just get bogged down with the mundane aspect of life and having to repeat the same things over and over with no end in sight. But I have to remember that God is present in the ordinary as well as the extraordinary and what better time to seek Him than when things are still and quietly repeating? Each repetition can be a chance to go deeper. Your excerpt from the Desert Fathers fits perfectly. 🙂


  3. Yes things are lush around here…inside and outside. And yes we are dealing with less rain than usual. In the part of Texas where my family farms they are in severe drought. When I go home I cry. All my growing up life I lived around the seasons and from rain to rain. It was the life of living on a farm. I think living that connected to nature teaches a type of resilience that is missing when one is not connected to the seed time and harvest. It is a very vulnerable feeling to watch the flora and fauna suffer. And yes we suffer with them,,,,those who are connected.


  4. I think the leaving part of that quote can be applied to many things. Churches, friendships, houses, families, jobs, on and on. If we stuck things out in our current suffering, and if we persevered, just think of that. I have been chewing on this quote for a while now. Good stuff.


  5. I love that quote! I might use it on my blog 😉

    The photos are beautiful! I lived in the winter of my discontent for many years. We thought we were going to be moving back East, but it didn't happen. I had to learn to be content where we are now. It has been a LONG process.


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