Tag Archive: Mother

A field left fallow

For a year, I took a hiatus from writing here on this space.  It was something that I needed to do for the sake of learning about what God had been prompting me to do with my life.  It has been both the most interesting and most difficult year of my life with regards to the development of my character and direction for my life.

I have both missed terribly and at times not even noticed that I was in fact not writing.  The dichotomy of being a creative being and someone who has been working hard at being consistent at not-so creative things is a weird one.  I know that I needed extra space mentally, emotionally, and most importantly spiritually this past year.  My creative life has been used, but my writing has been like a farmer’s field lying fallow for a season.

The concept of a field being fallow is one where the ground is tilled and ploughed but not seeded.  Some equate that concept to being stagnant or wasteful, but after a little time learning how to tend our garden (and now the youth group that I work with at our church), I recognise the importance of letting the soil rest before planting again.  The ground has to be ready to receive the seed, and it must be nurtured enough to be able to support the growth that may come.  Otherwise, it’s a useless and fruitless endeavour.  I recognise now, how important that is.

After my mother’s passing four years ago, I saw with regret all of the work that she wanted to still have done.  It was daunting and overwhelming.  There’s never enough time or enough people to accomplish the work.  There are always ones who need love and care, and there is always service to God in which to be immersed.  I still wince when I think of all the things that she could have accomplished had her time here been longer.  If I am to make the most of my time and efforts, I need to take care of myself like the Apostle Paul said to do…

“More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish so that I may gain Christ, and may be found in Him.” — Philippians 3:8-9

So I, in this past year, have had much that I could have written.  Some, I know that I will regret never scribbling down.  Some, I know that I am better off for not having spent the time.  However, I do know that for where I am now, there is a smouldering that is not an all-consuming fire to be creative and write.  The embers are still there, waiting to catch flame, but I need His lordship ever more to use it for His glory and purposes.  There are too many other things and people that need me as both worker and soil to be ready to grow God’s fruit and not sow my own thoughts and feelings.

So, today on what would be my mother’s 73rd birthday, I recognise that it’s time to start planting seed again.  My prayers are that if He deems me worthy, that good stuff will grow in the future.  Perhaps I will have another 30 or so years to be able to invest in fruit that doesn’t rot or spoil.


There’s a lone orange glow coming from the back window.
Rays like a weakened sun, coming through the frosted panes.
Lonely, aching light straining to illuminate, fighting against the night.
My restless spirit keeps knocking books off shelves, rattles the screens,
making my heart race against itself in a search for clarity.
I am thinking of you now, more than I have in the recent months.
Wide-eyed and hoping, full of designs on what the future could be.
Yet, you always carried the past with you like Rodrigo Mendoza’s armour
and it took your breath  away over and over with each labourious step.
So often you were that orange light glowing, comforting and encouraging,
almost brilliant against the darkness around you.
When you finally stepped forward and accepted that you were forever new,
we had no idea that one day the steps you took were to Kasese and back.
Your arms were wider and more open than anyone’s ever could.
But, at times your light was so muted by the baggage that you would never leave behind
that I always wanted more for you, just so you could receive that joy.
Maybe then you would understand that you had no need for the daily reminder
of being less than white and bright, pure and needing no restitution, no penance.
Here in the wee hours where the shadows dance, I wrestle with that myself
The sun will rise tomorrow, and so did our salvation so many years ago.
But, there is a heaviness that robs me of my full-throated breath
just like your enfeebled steps serving to keep you from singing and dancing
at the thought of the rich blessings coming in Easter’s morning sun.
I so often am overcome with the understanding I have of the isolation
and such agonising vulnerability in the face of being stripped bare and left bleeding.
It reminds me that you had so much missing from your joy.
You never really could burn as brightly as your heart wanted.
You never got to throw back your head and let your soul unwind…
until you gave up the ghost, and it was given back to you freely.
I want to learn that lesson, so hard to win before I meet you there.
To not identify with the weight and suffering in Friday’s sacrifice
from the merciful and tragic tree in skull’s hill’s passion play
without accepting the grace of redemption in Sunday’s surprise
from the transformation left behind the stone rolled away.


2:53 am
8 April 2012

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