A Place by the Sea


-Artwork, photo and poem are the creation of d.f.a.v., all rights reserved, not to be reused without permission.


Said my goodbyes

Had the place cleaned

Packed up in boxes

All that can be redeemed.

Wept more tears

Over who I was then

Dealt with reality

I know where I’ve been.

It’s a journey I’m on

On a path still unclear

But just over that hill

Is a place I’ll hold dear.

A simple new house

For Jesus and me

To share in my heart

Until Heaven I see.

My heart house of stone

Remodeled silo I leave

Off now to a home

A place by the sea.

A simple little place

Unique to my needs

A heart house

For Jesus and me.

-d.f.a.v. 9/5/13


Not long ago I wrote about a somewhat childish thing I do where I imagine my “heart house” where Jesus comes and visits with me.  This house represents our relationship, it is where everything I am, good and bad reside and where Jesus resides in me.  I’d neglected my heart house over the last couple years.  It was a place the artistic part of me created from an old stone grain silo that was unique to me because it represented my uniqueness to God. When my left leg was amputated, for the first time, I could not imagine myself in it because even it wasn’t equipped to handle my physical needs.  Like I came swiftly to learn about the majority of the places in this world, the transportation systems, the entertainment venues and even the grocery stores my heart house was never intended for me in a wheelchair.

Recently though I’ve thought longingly about my heart house.  God has been incredibly patient with me as He’s let me adjust to my new lifestyle.  He’s not hurried me to accept the most difficult of unforeseen events such as forced disability retirement.  He’s held me when I’ve wept and mourned for a way of life that was lost to me because of another’s sin.  When the storms raged around me created by my own anger and pain He let me vent and pound my fists and scream and gently touched me and let me rest when the storms blew past.  Yet, we’ve not gone back to our heart house.  Of all the things losing my leg has cost me, one of the greatest has been this residence inside me, what some would call fantasy and proclaim to be “unnecessary” and even “unspiritual”.  But it was important to me.  It was my safe place.  It was a representation of my relationship with Jesus, everything about it and in it solely unique to the relationship we share.

Do I need this “imagery” heart house to live my life for God?  No.  I can pray without seeing myself there, writing out my prayers or face down on the floor before Him.  I can worship Him, proclaim Him Lord of Lord’s and King of Kings, the Alpha and Omega, the I Am all without my heart house.

But I miss it.  So I thought I’d remodel it to be the place uniquely me that was adapted to fit the “new me”.  The very first thing was creating a way to get me inside using my wheelchair so a new entrance had to go up.  Since then Jesus and I have visited there together again and discussed the “remodeling”.  Sadly I realized that the “converted” stone silo I’d been imagining my heart house to be couldn’t be adapted to really allow me to enjoy it, to be comfortable in it.

Truth is that heart house of mine was like my “old” life, it no longer fit me, accepted me, needed me.  Then one by one as I’ve revisited the rooms of my “heart house” with Jesus I’ve come to realize it’s time to let this house go.  Time to move on.  Time to rebuild, not remodel.  Reminding me once again of my favorite Scripture passage found in Ecclesiastes 3:1-8:

“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven:

a time to be born and a time to die,

a time to plant and a time to uproot,

a time to kill and a time to heal,

a time to tear down and a time to build,

a time to weep and a time to laugh,

a time to mourn and a time to dance,

a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,

a time to search and a time to give up,

a time to keep and a time to throw away,

a time to tear and a time to mend,

a time to be silent and a time to speak,

a time to love and a time to hate,

a time for war and a time for peace.”

This is my time to build, to gather stones, to mend, to heal, to uproot, to search, to throw away and a time to move ahead.  I carry with me the things that are the foundation of my life.  My relationship with Jesus.  My family.  My life experiences.  My hopes and dreams.  My spiritual goals.  My writing.  My artistic endeavors.  Only this time I’m not going to be trying to make these things fit with my new body and its new needs into a place not designed for them.  This oddly shaped peg is no longer going to try and force itself to fit into either a round or a square hole, but into the hole made for me.

“Off now to a home

A place by the sea.

A simple little place

Unique to my needs”


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