Eyes to See
I walk along a dusty road in the heat of an early Texas summer and ponder the course of the last several hours. The day started out like any other. I appreciated the coolness of the morning, the absence of (too many) bugs, the delight I saw in Ms. D’s twitchy ears as she burst out of the tiny door to the RV. I made coffee. I sat and read a little Scripture, listened to some music, did some journaling, some stretching, and then got up to officially start the workday.
I was excited. The night before, I sat outside the trailer in the little fenced in area while Ms. D munched grass in the nighttime cool. The AC in the trailer, which I am grateful for but which is admittedly quite loud, was turned off and I could hear the night birds coo, a dog bark in the distance, a swish of a cool, damp breeze going by. My body felt flushed and purged by the blessing of an evening sauna. I have access to one while I stay at my friend’s house here outside of Austin – gratitude to her for letting me use it and for all her hospitality!
A flood of ideas came. I scribbled as I let my thoughts wonder. I closed my eyes and connected heart to heart with the Family of God.
“What say you?” I asked.
I knew that I would arise in the morning refreshed and ready to start working on a new design for the website and (internally, I jumped for glee) all that fresh B roll I had taken before while tooling around downtown Austin with another friend earlier in the week.
Nothing. Just a blacker than black screen. And silence. No familiar hum of whirling electrodes swishing into gear. Just dead space. Oops, I must have turned off the monitor or something…
I began pushing buttons. I turned it off and on. I brought it into my friend’s house cuz, I don’t know, maybe a change of location will help? I unplugged it and let a fan run directly on it for an hour.
And now there it sits on a chair next to the door, three pounds of plastic and metal and quartz filled with my memories, my writing, 3 hours of that blessed B Roll waiting to be made into what would have been a kickass video. My heart sinks. That’s it, I gotta get out of here.
So, I walk. I look for dandelions for Ms. D’s dinner later on. I watch for snakes in the Texas grass. I pad along the country road. I sweat and I swear just a little. And then it comes upon me. Their grace. Their wisdom. A clarity of a calling. A focusing in of a purpose.
I keep my eyes always on the LORD. With him at my right hand, I will not be shaken. -Psalms 16:8
With fresh eyes, He helps me to see.
I am about to start something new with this blog and with my work in the world, my creative work, my work directly with others. Hopefully I can help. But with what? What really do I wish to convey with this blog, in these pages, in these videos I am so excited to produce? How can I use my specific gifts to help others? And what are those gifts, exactly? As I walk along a Texas hill country road, the family of God invites me into a deeper discussion.
I am a traveler. I write about my experiences as I walk, ride, sail, pedal, glide, fly, and drive along the highways and byways on the planets surface (and sometimes above and below it). But what are those experiences all about anyways? Are they about the best pizza in town, tips on finding parking downtown, or advice on how to remodel an RV? The internet is filled with this kind of content, and it is helpful and relevant when you have to go somewhere, need to fix something, want to get something to eat.
Don’t get me wrong. I love pizza (and fresh NYC style is the best IMO). I love to find a deal. I love to teach people practical tips for this, that, and the other thing. But seriously, what gets me up in the morning? What encourages me to go on when all around me is telling me to quit? What gives me peace when all around me is utter chaos?
In their gentle way, they encourage me to consider these questions. What makes me tick? What makes my heart sing?
Press into that and you will have found the specific avenue in which to help others.
Suddenly, I stop and stare at the fluffy yellow head of a dandelion flower and realize.
It is you, Yeshua. It is you! It is that sweet spot of finding energetic evidence of your presence in my life wherever I happen to be and being able to express that out into the world for the blessing of others.
I realize that I love experiencing the Family of God, everywhere, in everyone. Not just when I am having adventures, heavenly or otherwise, but even in the silent times, in the quiet places when nothing seemingly is happening. Even on a boring Monday when I have a deadline to meet and a dirty trailer to clean.
I absolutely love finding those places of connection with the Family of God- Abba, Ruach, Yeshua- and feeling their compassion. I love coming into it, being surrounded by it. Being embraced by it.
Being encircled within them. Feeling safe and snuggly and protected by them. I love being in the wisdom and awesomeness of my heavenly home while at the same time being right here with feet firmly planted on the earth. But that alone is not quite it. There is another part of the equation. I also love to express that experience to others earth in all the ways I can so that they can experience it too.
Abba. Ruak. Yeshua. Family. This is the space where I can learn and grow, where I can create… poetry, prose, videos, emotional spaces, spaces online and on the planet.
As I look around me at the trees, the cars, the soil, the birds, the skyscrapers, the food trucks (love ‘em), the homeless people, the drug deals, the dead computer, the Amazon delivery guy, the little gnats on the window, the parts inside me that cry out in despair …
These new eyes look steadfastly at Him within all this. Yeshua’s eyes. Big, green-blue, deep, penetrating, powerful. I see Him within the grass, within the pizza stand, within the homeless man sleeping, within the river meandering through the gateways of the city, within the graffiti riddling the underbelly of bridges, within the couples strolling, a shirtless man playing guitar, my feet walking.
The eyes of the poets of the Lord see these things. And expressing what those eyes see can be healing for others. Why? Because doing it right puts a person right smack dab in the middle of the heart of God!
So here we are. Computerless but with new, sparkling, deep eyes…His eyes… in which to see. With fingers to type (on a friend’s computer LOL) and with a will, a desire, a vision, and a mission towards wholeness for all God’s children.
May everyone have eyes to see the Living God and his goodness in every living thing. And may all who see be blessed.
So…the little computer sat in the corner all day yesterday. Truth be told, I was too sad to even attempt to try to turn it on. But after a while, I felt compelled to. I brought it back into the RV (again, change of location may help? LOL) and something welled up inside of me. Something had shifted, I could feel it.
Perhaps it had shifted inside me or in the atmosphere or both. I don’t know. But I knew that something had passed, a weight, an oppression had broken. I pushed down on the power button and left my finger there. I was afraid to look at the screen, to be witness to an ongoing blackness where living writing…in addition to several sources of income…had flowed. But look I did.
And again, I felt an energetic shift.
Then, hallelujah! That little green ACER symbol flashed before me but this time, instead of abruptly turning off, that darn computer kicked into gear!
What had happened? Was it the humidity? Was it just a fluke, a kink, a cross connection that got loosened at the subatomic level that caused the thing not to come on that morning after so many attempts ?
I honestly don’t know. But I do know that in this moment now, I am grateful.
Am I grateful that my computer seemed to be dead in the water all day yesterday and for the agony and suffering that that brought on (or that I brought on my myself) because of it? Well, no. But I am grateful for the Family of God and for the FACT…the absolute FACT, my friends…that God makes everything for good!
I don’t know the why’s and how’s of what happened yesterday. All I know is that because of it and because I decided to take the time to step into God’s goodness around it, something within me shifted. I have a deeper clarity of purpose for this new venture online and I sincerely hope that all will be blessed because of it in the months to come.
See you on the road,
Nikki Lyn Pugh, aka The Gentle Healthy Traveler
REFLECTION & PRACTICE:
When the Family of God encouraged me to “Press into that and you will have found the specific avenue in which to help others,” they were talking about that thing or things that that “make me tick,” and those activities, art forms, subject matters, and courses of inquiry that “make my heart sing.”
The amazing realization is that stepping into those things and creative activities that we are most passionate about really is the avenue to how we can best help others! So…
What makes your heart sing? What makes you tick?
Reflect on these two questions for a few minutes and record your ideas, thoughts, and inspirations in a notebook or journal.
Hint: you don’t have to limit yourself just to words. Try your hand at painting, drawing, singing, or even dancing it out! Whatever form you use to express your response is going to give you more insight into the question that just keeping it in and “thinking about it.”
Next, put your reflections into practice.
How can you express what you discovered about yourself (what makes you tick, what makes your heart sing) in another way? How can you take this to the next level for yourself or others? It may be spending some time learning more about the subject matter, taking a class, volunteering, or simply spending more time with the Family of God encountering about it.
When in doubt, ask the Family! Remember that they know all about you from the beginning to the end and they delight in you no matter where you are on your road to wholeness.
NOTE June 2023: We are working hard to get the new Gentle Healthy Traveler site up and running as fast as we can! That being said, I apologize if any links do not work or some of the text on the main page or on this page may be off. Be sure to stop by again soon for a more stream-lined experience and thanks so much for your patience! Also, if you wish to be added to the mailing list during our “construction phase” please email me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you can God Bless!
Do you have questions about your health? Ready to make a change or just wanting to explore your options for living your best, most vibrant, on purpose, God-centered life? Drop me a line! I would love to chat with you!