Friday, May 12, 2006

Peaceful Dwelling Places

My people will live in peaceful dwelling places, in secure homes, in undisturbed places of rest.
- Isaiah 32:18

I love barns. I've been enamored with barns since I was a girl. The first book I ever tried to write was about a girl named Gwen who fell out of a barn hay shoot and broke her arm. In fact, the last time I read my story Gwen was still lying outside the barn, writhing in pain. Guess I never figured out how to inject the dashing, young farm guy (born only to save Gwen, of course) into my compelling story line.

Lately if I've had a really bad day, you can find me in a barn. Well, not just any barn. (I mean, yes, Pastor Parks, I will pull over and hang out in other people's wheat fields. But I draw the line at barns.) I like the one behind Freeman House the best anyway.

I was in the barn yesterday evening when my cell phone rang. It was my friend Tray. (Yes, Tray... as in 'cafeteria tray'. His Mom named him Tracy, but he hates it, so he goes by Tray.)

"Where are you?" cafeteria Tray asks.

"In the barn," I reply.


"That bad?" Tray asks.

"Yeah," I say. "Can you come over to the barn and bring your guitar and play me Shawn Mullins songs?" I ask.

"Yeah," says Tray.

So he does. We sit on the grass and lean against the barn and drink sweet tea and listen until the guitar coaxes all the stars above Freeman House out of hiding.

"Hey Brin," Tray says suddenly.


"Can we go inside now?" he asks.

"No," I say.


"Hey Brin," Tray presses.


"What's your deal with barns?"

"It's a peaceful dwelling place," I say matter-of-factly.

Truth is, I think we all need undisturbed rest sometimes. We all need a place where there ain't no rats to race.

I love that my God cares about seeing us in peaceful dwelling places and secure homes. Lord knows we need more of them.

And by the way, next time you have a bad day I'm more than willing to share my barn.

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