Thursday: 19Dec13--Time to stop writing before I get blown off the balcony!
Plus, I'm thoroughly distracted watching our new friend, Tim, do his kite/sail surfing out in the bay. How does that dude do that and live to tell about it? Ya gotta be a bit crazy to do what he does with such skill.
Amazing! He was moving so fast I couldn't even capture a picture!
This wonder woman I'm married to had a hard time watching it all due to the stiff wind. 'Tis been a good day here. L o n g walk on the beach. Reading. Writing. Purpose-filled pondering. Even a couple of welcome phone chats with some special people in our lives. Resting is taking place.
Wednesday: 18Dec13--indeed! Life by design.......!!!
This is Day Two of planned time to write on the mentoring project, and some other writing with deadlines. Slipping quietly out of bed, making some coffee, stepping out on our balcony, I was startled by the quiet beauty. And...lol.......not to be too personal, but...standing there, in December, in tshirt and jams @ 68 degrees...I'll take it, with deep thanks to all those who have made this possible.
The full moon is beginning to set @ 5:15am. Woke up with a very special couple on my mind who are in the midst of a private adoption. Memories abound here from our own adoption moments. What grace to have the daughter we have.
6:10am. Amazing. Simultaneous sunrise and moon set. The beauty of the moment is truly breathtaking. What a way to begin this day!
6:43am. Look carefully. The moon is being swallowed by the palm tree. :-)
7:43am. The office. When not staring at the changing clouds.
8:57am. Time for a break. Time to go chase some rainbows.
Humbled by the sacred privilege of even being here.
Some mornings, upon awakening, the strangest thoughts circle in my mind. Why? How? Don't know.......
Today the concept of distance was filtering through the fibers of my mind. Distance can be measured in more that just inches, feet, yards, miles, etc. Distance can have emotion and attitude attached to it. Places can be at a far distance, as well as relationships, emotions between you and someone else.
Would closeness then be the opposite of distance in both time, space and relationships? Except when hot and sweaty, closeness is a good thing. :-)
Then I read on a factoid this am, while checking for some crucial emails, that today celebrates one very significant happening with regard to spatial distance. 110 years ago this very day, the Wright Brothers, with Orville at the controls, though primitive they were, flew for 112 feet on the sand dunes of Kitty Hawk, North Carolina.
The persistence of those two men, and their feat, that was way more than just some hair-brained imagining, changed our world that day. 1/47th of a mile. Who knew!
Thinking back over my own older lifetime, my father was 4 when this took place on December 17, 1903. I was 27, in 1969, when Neil Armstrong became the first man to step onto the surface of the moon on July 20 of that year. Who knew?! I read an article this week stating that Mars is the next conquest. Who knows...........?!? :-)
Sitting here on the first of three planned "writing days" during this time out, I'm watching jets come and go from the Maui airport. Not a bad view for inspiration to write. Still hard to believe this magnificent gift of time and space is ours.
Our time is now half way gone from being here. Checking in, Maui to Denver is 3,284 miles. That's 17,339,520 feet. We will be doing it non-stop on our return flight.
Getting down to the business of writing on the mentoring project, I salute the Wright brothers. They inspire me to dream even bigger than I've dared to dream about intentional, deep-change, whole-life, transformational mentoring.
2014 is going to be a significant lift off from what Leadership Design Group has been, is currently and will be about in the coming months. What has seemed almost impossible alone, is taking shape with the welcome addition of others on the team. Not only are dreams soaring.......so are my active hopes.
Monday--16Dec13--Confession is good for the soul.......
It has been a year!
Little did I know just how much we were in need of time out to catch our breath and renew from our souls out. It's not been a bad year, at all. But the fullness of it has, at moments, almost been too much.
Some years have been hard. Some have been less full. Some, I'm more than thankful are behind us. Some started grand and ended, well, unusual. :-) However, this year has been more than expected.
Before we left home a few days ago, a friend asked me why I was blogging so much this year. Here's the skinny on that.
Turning 70yo a couple of years ago, I just thought it would be a kick to every year do something every day for a whole year. No harm in that. Creative fun in that.
So, here we are at Day #350 in 2013. 15 days to go until another year begins. Never in my wildest dreams could I have imagined blogging from Maui. Grateful are we, to the max!, for this immense privilege.
Has me wondering what I might choose to do daily in 2014. I was thinking about this when we took a sunrise walk on the beach today. No clue right now. I do have an inkling that this next year to come has some amazing promise creeping over the horizon of our lives.
When I proposed to this remarkable woman who has been my wife for going on 47 years, me, in my youthful arrogance boasted, "Marry me, and I promise you never a dull day!" Some times she, with a mischevious smile will ask, "Is this one of those days...?" It's definitely been one of those months.
I look forward to not just tomorrow, and to Christmas week as a family with our remarkable daughter, but to the year to come, with this precious wife. As our plans, hopes, dreams are lifted up and unfold, we are already confident it will not be a dull year. With arms wide open, "Bring on 2014...!", was part of my early morning, sunrise prayers.......
Mid-day we took a walk around the grounds of where we've been staying. This is a picture of the classiest lady this side of the sun watching the hula dancer you see below. Who knew you could dance to Christmas music. Why not?
We went up the coast for a few miles to get some dinner. The day had been quiet and cloudy. Great for reading on the beach, watching whales spout, and hearing kids giggle at boogie boarding in the gentle surf. What stunned us best was heading to the beach in Kehei to watch the sunset, right down to the last pop of brilliance.
Saturday: 14Dec13--hanging out with the locals. What a good day!
This day began meeting up with our great niece, Megan Wolohan. Judy's sister, Marjorie, had a daughter, Bonnie, who had a daughter, Megan. Got all that. Thus this wonderful young woman is our great niece. We met her at the biggest farmer's market on the island. Looked like we were the only true tourists, as the rest were having a great time with old friends.
As you can tell, boarding here starts early. This little guy could barely walk, but he could scoot along on his own skate board. We will be back next Saturday to stock up on local produce after our daughter arrives from Texas.
Away from the tourist venues, one can get a better picture and sense of what life is really like on an island. Tourism is the #1 industry, but these are still real deal people here trying to make a living. My guess is that stories, both good and sad, abound with them. The honest friendliness, and their attention to answering questions was exemplary.
Another place we will return to is Grandma's Coffee House, way up on the side of the big mountain, looking west, and just a couple of miles from Oprah's huge estate (yes, that Oprah!). The breakfast was amazing. Locals streaming in and out. You won't find it in travel guides, but we'll be back next week.
Megan teaches three through six year old children at the Maui Montesorri School. This is her first year, and she loves it. We were extra impressed with what all she does with these children.
At the farmer's market we visited with one of the families from the school. Their youngest son is in Megan's class. Just a bit of fun to hear them bragging on her.
This picture is of a banyon tree on the school grounds that grew up out of a monkeypod tree. We two are dwarfed by it, as you can tell.
We got a solid tip for a waterfall hike from the dad of Megan's student for this next week. Doing the "non tourist" things helps us gain the rest and refreshment we've been needing. So blessed are we to be here...........!
Friday: 13Dec!3--on our own, the adventure continues.......
As this extravagant grace-filled time out continues, we went adventuring today. All the people we knew and met at the Open Table Conference have departed. It's just us. What truly amazing moments have filled our souls in this first week.
We, carefully, oozed down a road that went through lava fields, along the ocean. Around one turn we found the Keasala'i Congregational Church which was founded in 1832. The current church was built in 1862. Reading a translation of Hebrews 12:1-2 from the Hawaiian language, brought home the intensity of what these people endured and built here. Reading these words in The Message later today impacted me with all these early settlers went through.
This is a hieroglyphic carved out of lava depicting family life on the island. It rests in front of the pulpit to keep people reminded of their commitments to each other, and to all who visit.
The solitude of the place "spoke" volumes to us. We "felt" the peace as we absorbed their history. We "heard" the Spirit whispering in the brush around the grounds. We "saw" the honoring love still evident for their elders in the cemetery. We "tasted" the grace of a remote place still offering God's love to all who pause awhile in this sacred space.
Thursday: 12Dec13--what does it take to nurture one's soul?
As too often happens in our western culture, and especially my participation in it, when momentous moments take place, I can (maybe you, too?) just close the page, end the chapter, finish the book, walk away from the film, the play or the experience and not take time to ponder what has taken place within me, around me, even within others.
No so this moment in time.
I'm reminded, again, that time, taking time, making time, however one may generate time, spend time, it takes creative intentionality to have time for the kind of reflection that nourishes the soul.
It's a myth that we don't have enough time. It's a truth that we stuff too much into time. It's a hope that upon returning home from this needed time out will find me more focused on what I do with my own necessary, and welcome, times of reflection...and thus nourishing and strengthening the relationships that mean the most to me.
I need to be more intentional about reflection time.
Wednesday: Checking off another "bucket list" item for our lives!
So some people are as crazy as we are! Younger. Didn't see anyone older. From all around the world.
Here we were shivering in the windy cold @ 4:30am, way before dawn, at the top of Haleakala Crater on Maui. Our younger friends from Alabama, Jeremy and Carrie Carver, drove us up there to experience an amazing moment together.
We were the second car through the gate at this historic National Park. Jeremy is my kind of man. Let's get up and get going!! We did.......yawns and all.
The stars in total darkness at the top of the tallest road in all of Hawaii...oh my! Never have my eyes feasted on the universe like this.
And then, ever so slightly, slowly, dawn began to break on the eastern horison. Peopel from around the world began to gather in a 360 degree windowed wind break.
As the glow of a new day grew in quiet intensity, so did the chatter of multiple languages. And then, as if a conductor of the chatter signaled a pause, a rest in the musical languages of our world, a silence engulfed the moment from the smallest child, to Judy and me as the oldest there.
The gradual intensity of the orange line growing on the distant clouds gave way to a pinpoint of brilliant sun piercing the darkness. By quick count, close to 200 people broke into spontaneous and sustained applause.
One could not help but wonder if the Creator of the universe was smiling down acknowledging this encore performance, for this happens every day up there. As the rising sun illuminated all our faces, there was an awe that easily reflected the Creator's glory. Never to be forgotten by any of us.
Still soulishly stunned as this day has continued to unfold...........