Truth in the Details

Guest post by Lisa Luke Easterling

I write my truth at my desk in the little office space off the kitchen, with windows all around but often closed to keep out much of the light. There is something comforting about semi-darkness, not to hide me but to allow calm for thinking.

I write my truth in my head nearly every waking moment, doing what nearly every writing coach and book tells the writer to do: to notice the details, the specifics, the things our senses only pull from our surroundings when we engage them. My senses are engaged. Always.

I love the way Anne Lamott puts it: “There is ecstasy in paying attention.”

I have often thought of myself as odd for paying such close attention to detail in my surroundings, in the people I encounter. I take people-watching to new heights. It makes it very easy to create character profiles when I have a million characters wandering around in my mind all the time.

But there is another value in paying attention, in looking more closely. In noticing. There is a validation of worth that is whispered or spoken or screamed aloud when our details are noticed.

Somebody cares enough to see who I really am.

Our truth is in our details, and our truth deserves to be told. Why else do we live, except to love and to adore the Creator for all of this—for every blessing, for every moment, for every detail—and how else do we express this living except through the tiny pieces of the whole, the textures, the aromas, the beauty of our day?

There is nothing ordinary about life. There is nothing mundane, nothing plain, nothing uninteresting in this beautiful journey we’re living out by God’s sweet grace. There is so much to see, to experience, to enjoy. And it’s all part of a story worth telling.

It’s time we told our truth, but we have to notice it first.

A charge Natalie Goldberg issues often is “Be here now.” Such a simple ideal, but it resonated with me many years ago and stays with me still, whispering from my spirit a call to stay in the moment. To notice every little thing.

I want to be here now, ever present in this moment, noticing and describing the details as though my very life depends on it. Because the memory of the life I’ve lived truly does.

God, please keep me present in the moment with a pen in my hand and a longing to share the simple, beautiful truth that is mine alone to share.

 

Lisa Easterling is a lifelong resident of the Tampa Bay area alongside her husband Steve, five children, and two grandchildren. A pioneer for home education in Florida, she has served in various areas of Christian ministry for the past 32 years. Lisa is a lifelong writer and creative writing coach, currently serving as Associate Editor for Write Where It Hurts. Her favorite place to write is near the ocean, and she particularly loves helping others to fall in love with words. Lisa blogs at www.writepraylove.com and can be reached by emailing blue@lisaeasterling.com.

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9 thoughts on “Truth in the Details

  1. I don’t know you, but I love what you have said here..So amazing how God uses the simplest of things to speak to us! Thank you <3

  2. Loved this, Lisa. Especially:

    “There is nothing ordinary about life. There is nothing mundane, nothing plain, nothing uninteresting in this beautiful journey we’re living out by God’s sweet grace. There is so much to see, to experience, to enjoy. And it’s all part of a story worth telling.”

    You’ve inspired me again today. Thanks so much!
    ~Vicki

  3. “Be here now.” I’ve been told that I spend so much time in the future that the present causes me to panic. You’ve given me much to think about.

  4. Exhale. Be. Here. Now. That is EXACTLY what God has pressed fervently in the cracks of my chaos this week. Thank you for the precious reminder, Lisa.

  5. I have learned so much from you over the last 14 years, (Man 14 years!!!) thank you for encouraging me, pushing me, comforting me and and at times kicking me in the butt when I have needed it. I love you so much, you are truly the big sister I always wanted. Through you, I have learned that family isn’t made up of blood, it is made up of love.

  6. You are so right, Lisa. There is nothing ordinary about this amazing life that God has created for us. Each one of us has been given so many blessings, and so often we fail to recognize them. The older I have gotten, and the more I focus on God, the more in-tune I am with my surroundings. And that is very exhilarating!

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