On Dandelion Days and Shoreless Seas

by | Mar 12, 2012 | Uncategorized

The sea casts her white diamond shimmer in early morning sun under a string of sailboat sillouettes. All of creation awakens to her peace. Our children run a stretch of time along her crystal coast. Those dandelion days scattering seeds that float through years like parachutes falling from cerulean sky.

And the mothers, we stand on shore linking arms under their drift.  Pray in the wait, wear their downy crown of spores, watch for ships return on the horizon.  We hold on to those dandelion days, place them in the locket of remembrance around our heart.

Those seeds germinate and multiply through days that swelter, freeze and hang hammock in steady breeze and He sends shepherds to cultivate the tender places.

A shepherd dressed in lapis blue and gold dangling beauty from her wrists.  She carries the crook of a Catholic school principal.  It lies beside her chair at home now but a shepherd never stops tending to her sheep.

When she enters the upstairs room of reunion among those who ran barefoot on sandy shores of childhood, they wander like sheep from their places around the white linen. Return to her familiar embrace.  Because sheep follow the voice of the one they trust to love them.

Aren’t we all sheep in need of a shepherd?

Our kids trade pink bows, high tops and plaid jumpers for boots that push pedals and hands that steer wheels to destiny now.  They bow their heads low in circle before raising a fork to the mouth, offer thanks to the one Holy God without prodding from the crook.

Their spontaneous words under boisterous laughter and conversation invite a holy hush, a sacred invasion among mothers seated nearby. We wipe our eyes in unison. 

Because in the worry of wait along the shore – while navigating balanced diets, after school activities, and harsh words spoken during recess – we remember that His love over them, over us, is a shoreless sea.  And these lambs we watch grow into sheep; they will carry crooks of their own.

Give ear, O my people, to my teaching;
incline your ears to the words of my mouth!
I will open my mouth in a parable;
I will utter dark sayings from of old,
things that we have heard and known,
that our fathers have told us.
We will not hide them from their children,
but tell to the coming generation
the glorious deeds of the LORD, and his might,
and the wonders that he has done.
Psalm 78:1-4 ESV


Counting gifts with Ann for Multitudes on Monday:

  • For spiritual mentors.
  • The gift of pastoring a parish of people who still love us like family, even though we live four hours away now.
  • For generous friends who give a beach house for a weekend of celebration.
  • Safe travels for the teenager’s first long distance drive behind her parents.
  • Peace along the journey, for this mothers heart.
  • The pelican that shows up to pose for pictures while I sip coffee with a friend.
  • A drive with sky like paint brush of violet blue.
  • Waking up to shimmering ocean and the caw of seagulls.
  •  For the friend that came along, her sweet spirit.
  • The bag of fudge and the way it tastes the same to her even now.
  • The pizza they ate for lunch at the Catholic School and the way it still smells the same and makes their heart happy.
  • The envelopes from friends with checks inside for her mission trip to Jamaica.

Also linking with On Your Heart Tuesday, Playdates with God, Just Write, Miscellany Monday, Cup Half Full, Soli Deo Gloria.


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  1. tara // pohlkotte press

    dandelion days….what a perfect title. I am in love with it 🙂 Love your pictures, and that you had such a great trip! Welcome “home” 🙂

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Thanks Tara. I had to take a nap tonight just to have the energy to do the dishes after dinner! I am so exhausted. Think the time change has something to do with it. It was worth it, we had so much fun.

  2. Theresa

    You capture this heart of a mother so well. These days and hearts we want to hold on to, yet more beauty multiplied in letting them go.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Thanks Theresa. I’m in a surreal season that seems to be uncovering new layers of life to learn about. And the beauty in them continues to unfold.

  3. Paula

    Sounds like the reunion was fun. I’ll look forward to hearing more. As always, I feel like I got to be with you as you look through the camera lens and the lens of life. Thanks for always sharing your heart. Love you.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      We had a great time Paula, but not enough. It went so quick and we are exhausted today along with the time change. I had fun taking photos and the weather was beautiful.

  4. Barbie

    Beautifully written!

  5. roseann elliott

    Shelly…must be the theme in hearts today…i speak of this march of time…beautiful post as always…oh yes…dandelion days…blessings to you…

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Ro, I am just getting started on reading blogs. It’s been a busy, tiring day but thanks for letting me know about the sacred echo. Love it when God does that.

  6. Laura Boggess

    Oh, this makes my heart squeeze up just a little bit. What beauty to have such love, such memories, such joy. Thank you for blessing me tonight, Shelly.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Laura, you do that to my heart on most of your posts. Thank you. It is an amazing thing to visit a place where you once lived, to see it with new eyes. It’s really a gift actually.

  7. Elana McClure

    Beautiful, as always, it brought tears to my eyes! So good seeing all of you this weekend, only wish it hadn’t been such a busy one for us. How quickly time is flying by, cannot believe that Murielle is driving and our boys are teenagers, and Breana is now 6, didn’t I just have her?
    Where has the time gone? Love your blog, keep us the good work.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Oh Elana, so glad you are reading along. That is such encouragement. The weekend went entirely too fast for us. We didn’t even get a walk on the beach. It was so nice to worship with you on Sunday, to hear your beautiful voice and remember the faithfulness of God in our lives. And yes, our children are growing up way too fast. It is surreal on most days.

  8. ashleysuzannehaupt

    I don’t know what is more beautiful, the words or the pictures, but they are wonderfully harmonious! 🙂 So nice to “meet” you.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Oh my, humble thanks to you for such lovely words. It is a pleasure to meet you as well.

  9. Alyssa Santos

    gorgeous writing — thank you.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Alyssa, thank you and so excited that you joined our community here. Thanks for following.

  10. sixgoodfigs

    What a beautiful place Shelly. Loved your list. And bless your friends for their generosity to you – an opportunity to build memories together.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      So thankful for the people he sends us along our journey of faith and ministry. None of the people in our lives are there by coincidence. He brings us all together, divinely, for his purposes. Always enjoy your thoughts from the place you call home. Thanks for the snapshots of life abroad.

  11. nacoleat6inthesticks

    ooh, Shelly,

    just gorgeous writing. i will have to read again and let my mind chew on your poetic words a bit–oh, how you weave them all around me and mesmerize. thank you for this beautiful gift. i loved the list–oh, you are a writer, indeed, girl! i admire this and the quiet, precious spirit i see in you.


    • Redemption's Beauty

      Nacole, thank you so much. I am touched by your words and thankful you stopped by and left a comment. It is all grace, inspried by Him – truly. I write on holy ground most days.

  12. Diana Trautwein

    There’s nothing quite like a gathering of women friends who are sharing similar journeys. And to do it in a place of such beauty? GRAVY … and grace. Thanks for this.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Yes Diana, I agree. And we seem to settle into who we are as our kids grow and change before us. Worry a bit less about things that don’t matter in the scheme of life. And it is gravy and grace, for which I am so thankful.

  13. kulasa

    so beautifully written….

  14. Tereasa

    You have such a way with words. I am always blessed by the beauty you paint across the page. I could feel the dandelion dust as I read this post, both on my skin and in my heart. Blessings!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Your kind words bless me, like words from His lips. Thank you!

  15. Stacy Pelzl (@stacypelzl)

    You paint pictures so beautifully with your words Shelly. This is my favorite… ” we remember that His love over them, over us, is a shoreless sea.” Beautiful picture!

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Stacy, thank you and it is great to meet you. I see you on twitter now and then.

  16. Stefanie Brown

    Your words eloquently paint a picture that invites the reader from the start. While reading, the aroma of school pizza swirls, the scent of sea air beckons and the posed pelican welcomes. God has gifted you amazingly, my friend. Thank you for sharing his “gift” with us.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Stefanie, your words – what every writer hopes to hear. Thank you dear friend. You are such an encouragement to me. Hope you are feeling better.

  17. Joan

    Your heartfelt words encourage my spirit and bring joy to my heart each time I stop your place. I just love your writing. Indeed, we are all sheep in need of our Sheppard. Blessings to you, Shelly.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Joan, I am touched by your generous words. Thank you and so glad you keep coming back. It is a pleasure to connect with your heart.

  18. Denise J. Hughes

    “Our kids trade pink bows, high tops and plaid jumpers for boots that push pedals and hands that steer wheels to destiny now.”

    Oh, this got me. I have an 8-year-old pushing pedals and a 16-year-old steering wheels. Sigh. Shelly, you have such a beautiful way with words. It’s a blessing to follow your writing journey. ~ I wish we lived closer. It would be lovely to visit over a cup of tea.

    • Redemption's Beauty

      Oh Denise, my head is bobbing back and forth saying yes. I wish we could do that too. Do you plan to attend any blogging or writing conferences this year? I would love to meet you in RL one day. I am a tea drinker too. It sounds divine.

  19. Denise

    You have such a lovely way with words.

  20. Dolly

    dandelion days…you paint so beautifully with your words…so glad that you were able to go away and celebrate…so restful and lovely…thank you 🙂

    • Redemption's Beauty

      We had a wonderful time that we will hold in our memory bank for years to come I am sure. Glad to have you joining the journey here Dolly.

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