I love the look of baskets lined up on open shelves; some duplicates, others unique in shape or color. Each one issues invitations. Some say, “look and see what I hold within.” Others beckon, “fill me.”
I grew up hearing the phrase, “A place for everything and everything in it’s place.” This led to sorting and sifting and organizing in a way that compartmentalized life. Work was deposited in a basket. Family had a basket. Play and enjoyment was dropped into a small basket of its own. Jesus had a basket that we pulled out on Sundays, or at best a few minutes a day when we prayed; we certainly try to keep our spiritual life contained and isolated, but shouldn’t it infiltrate every space, every place?
And what of pain or illness? No matter how hard our attempts to close the lid of the basket we place it in, the contents spill over into every other basket in our lives.
Is there a basket big enough to hold all of ourselves? Wins, losses, employment, recreation, love, sorrow and joy, wellness and sickness? A God-created space that He fully inhabits?
A basket for our life. Whole, complete. Integration instead of compartmentalization. Yes!
Mary Oliver’s words spoke directly into my spirit:
In her poem, Primogeniture, Julie Agoo writes of a multi-purpose basket:
and put that burden down right here.
- What burdens have you set down or picked up in baskets?
- How many baskets have you split yourself into?
- Is there a special place for your pain or does it get hidden away?
- Can you imagine an integrated life?
- What would be the shape of your full-life basket? Can you describe it?
Here is the poem my heart responded with:
twig by twig
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Contributing Writer and Prayer Team
Karin is a handmaiden of the Lord, saved by grace, a worshiper, a poet, a broken heart, a lover of words, His work in progress on the Potter's wheel. She is hungry for truth and amazed by love. After five years in Africa, Karin and Rick (her beloved husband of twenty years), are back in rural Canada where chronic pain drives her to the feet of Jesus. She is powered by prayer, love, and many cups of strong coffee. She is the author of From Ashes to Glory (A Psalm a Day).