The other day, I was shopping for flowers, at Lowes, which is one of my favorite things to do, when low and behold, to my amazement, I ran into some very retro patio chairs. The memories immediately started flooding in. I remember, as a kid, my grandparents having chairs like these on their porch when I would go visit. It seemed every time we pulled up to their house, one, if not both, of them would be out on the front porch, sitting in those chairs with a glass of tea, enjoying whatever season we were in at the time. I remember a great aunt we visited often, in Arkansas, having a huge wrap around porch and those chairs were scattered all over it. She too, with some other relative or friend, would always be out on them when we pulled up. It seemed as though all the, what I though were, old people of that time had these chairs. I don’t really remember thinking they were all that cool back then. I don’t even really think I though too much about the fact that someone was always in them. I don’t think I really gave them too much thought at all.
I do know that when I found them at Lowes, I immediately wanted some for my own front porch. However, I controlled the urge and came home without them. Usually when that happens, I leave the store without the great find, I tend to forget about it and live without whatever it was that I thought I couldn’t live without at the time. This time is different though, I have continued to think about those chairs. I think I relate them to a slower way of life. To a time when people sat on their porches for extended periods of time enjoying the outdoors, enjoying their kids, enjoying their neighbors, enjoying friends who just dropped by, just being still and enjoying.
I think, for the most part, we aren’t the typical American family. We do things a little differently than most of the families we know. I’m a stay-at-home mom, we homeschool, we don’t get involved in every extracurricular activity, we pick and choose carefully what we fill our lives up with, we eat dinner together every night, we have “Family Night” every Friday, and we read the Bible together. Even at that, we are running crazy!! Always things that need to get done.
I think some would say I was born in the wrong decade, but I long for the stillness, the simplicity of yesteryear. Relationships that were built on those chairs with tea (although mine would probably be pop or coffee) and homemade cupcakes, cookies or sweetbread. I have been labeled “The Sweet Lady” (as in sweets, story for another day), so I tend to have the homemade goodies around, just not enough time to enjoy them like I would like, with all the people I would like.
I think I will buy those chairs and give myself a constant reminder to slow down, to enjoy life more, to enjoy Jesus more, to enjoy friends more (old and new), to be Jesus to my neighbors more, to just “Be still and know that HE is God”.
(When I was a kid, these chairs always seemed to be red and sometimes rusty even. Who knows, maybe everyone had them because they couldn’t afford anything nicer, but, to me, there is beauty in those old chairs.)
Thank you, Jesus for always showing me what You want from me, for always loving me and nudging me to do Your will. Thank you for Your Word, no matter the situation, there is always a verse to fit. Help me to slow down, to enjoy the blessings all around me. Help me to see through the world and into the person You have changed me to be!!
“Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.” Romans 12:2
Who knows, maybe someday you can join me for sweets and a drink in these chairs on my front porch!! Won’t that be fun.
Counting it all Joy!!