An original prairie moter home, and a real one room school house rebuilt as it was.
Sarah Groves has a song called, "I just stepped into my own life" that I enjoy. Sabbatical, which is what my study leave really is, is about stepping out of your own life to view another reality, to take the time to see and sense someone else's reality, and to ask God to refresh the life you are living.
As I drove through or passed by cities whose names were only a dot on the map, like Wichita, Topeka, Omaha, Lincoln, or little towns where I stopped for gas I try to think about those who reality is defined by that location in the midwest, those values, those limitations. I am fascinated by these almost bygone towns with one intersection of businesses downtown. Some have died, some are thriving, all of them tell a story.
When I am around people whose work created enough money to create a dream like existence I am able to enjoy it without falling into envy because you find out we all have the same needs and heartbreaks and struggles to deal with. A lot on Lake Okaboji that was purchased for thousands a few decades ago is now worth millions, and the descendants of those first owners often lose family connection fighting over who it belongs to and who gets to cash in on the profit. Lots of good things in this world, but in the long run much of it is like chasing the wind.
The Pioneer Museum taught me the same lesson by collecting the outward things that people used decades and centuries ago, now collectors items long discarded like our first black and white TV or the old heavy typewriter whose keys we banged, and struggled with eraser pens or whiteout to correct. Nightmare!!!!
So now I am plugged back into my own life, starring at my office sadly in need of organization, and facing a new season of activity in our little version of reality. Have seen the life and places of others, mine is no better or no worse than theirs, it just is, and is my age, my health, my freedoms and limitations. Take joy from it, learn from it, step back into your own life and live it.