One cup of blessing


Good morning! I wanted to introduce you to my cup. This beautiful bright poppy colored gem was given to me for my birthday by one of my favorite people (you know who you are!) but it had been sitting in my cabinet, sadly unused, among the multicolored fiesta ware and my husbands ugly brown Mango cups (that he won’t let us part with). It was quite pathetic.

One morning (or evening-it’s all a blur anymore) I saw it sitting in there and being the simplifying guru (ha!) that I am, I thought, why am I ignoring this pretty reminder of my friendship and agonizing over which color fiesta ware mug to drink from each morning? I’m only ONE person. I only need ONE mug. So I chose THIS mug.

Every morning for the past month I have used this mug. Let’s call her “Poppy,” for my morning coffee. Each day “she” gets washed so I can use her again. Occasionally Poppy ends up in the dishwasher and I have to rescue her but for the most part she gets lovingly washed by hand and is waiting for me each morning.

Normal people usually don’t name their coffee mug but she is now part of my ritual and I find rituals soothing, predictable, comforting in this chaotic world we live in. I get up, I shower, I make my coffee (with REAL cream) and I go to work. On my days off Poppy and I spend more time together, although sometimes I forget her in the microwave. Forgive me! No should drink microwaved coffee anyway…

Rituals used to seem like wasted time to me. I’d think why do you have to do it that way? Just go with the flow! Go as the spirit moves you! But even God has set into motion rituals of seasons and time, day and night, birth and death, the rotation of the earth and the movement of the stars. Why should we be above all that? The ocean tides and crashing waves course through our blood (quite literally) and call us to ritual.

My husband was the first person I met who made ritual seem soothing to me. He had a routine each morning and evening before bed. He knew when to take out the trash (this still baffles me) and he remembered to feed his cats. Everyday. I was in a state of chaos and although this was foreign to me I was attracted to it (and him πŸ˜‰ ).

Then when I first started attending my church home the rituals were almost overwhelming. I just wanted the “meat” of the sermon, why all the fuss? Let’s just sing and get on with it? But no! The rituals help us to focus outward, on Jesus, to savor that time, to think about what it is we are doing and saying and bringing clarity to our worship. The prayers are a soothing balm, repeated and memorized and embraced. It is familiar now and comforting. Worship is now about God and not about me. Ritual is a way to focus ourselves onto what is most important because we don’t need to keep thinking about what comes next.

So I am now freed from my daily mug decision ( I know, rough life). In addition to the paring down of my morning “beauty” routine (just call me Esther) and the curating of my wardrobe, I can now get up and out the door in about 30 minutes if needed. It used to take an hour and a half. And I now have some time to help with the kids in the morning. And THAT is much more important than what color my coffee mug is.

Thank you Poppy. Let’s hang out a little longer this morning πŸ™‚

Have a fabulously simple day!

Liz πŸ™‚

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