Here we are, first few days into the new year. I don’t know about your house, your life, but 2011 seemed to just flash by.

Sometimes.

There were times of fun, time for laughter and love, teasing and life. Those times scooted by as though on wings.

There were also times when fear raised its ugly head, and there was the waiting. Wonderings and ponderings.

Questions asked, but never seeming to be for sure answers. Answers that arrived, later questioned. More wonderings and ponderings.

Sometimes we found sanctuary in our own back yard. Watching birds build their nests, then it seemed too soon after and in such a short time, tiny fuzzy heads peeked out, getting a first glimpse of a very big world.

It seemed like no time at all until they discovered wings, and followed a waiting mama … or was it their papa … who called them from a distance to come on out and fly.

And they did. Some toppling first into grapevines, then climbing out and perching on a top leaf, listened to the call that would come, and they would answer.

There were times of challenge for us too, and feelings of defeat. Brief, both, but there nonetheless.

There were times of hurry, and times when slowing felt mighty good.

Christmas past was a time for cutting back, especially way back on the hurry and scurry of fierce decorating, knowing family or friends would be here only for a few hours at most. And wanting to relax and enjoy, not be scattered. In mind. And in spirit.

It took longer in past years to put it all up and take it all down than we spent enjoying the lights.

This year, life itself and spending it laughing and praying, going and staying, being helped and helping others, all suddenly meant more. Much more. The reality that life really is a gift hit home. Our home. That life is a gift that needs to be shared, not taken for granted. Hit many homes.

And so it was for us.

This picture says much to me. I saw it some time back, I believe at a senior citizen’s event in Evart. Perhaps more than a year ago now, and I took a picture of the picture.

When I looked at again a few days back, it grabbed me. It was this past year in a painting in a photo. The praying and the prayer and the pray-er, all a beautiful picture to look at alone, but with the addition of the reflections “interrupting” the serene scene, I thought isn’t that really the way life is.

We make plans. Life happens in spite of them or because of them. For a baby bird snug in a nest, there comes a time when its called to try its wings. Not just try them, but to fly.

We are called too. What things would you do were you given the gift of time? And what steals your time away from the things you really would love to do?

Are there bright lights reflecting into your personal picture of peace? Mine too.

Let this be the year we begin things and follow through. It’s not too late if we’re still breathing to do some of the things we were born to do, the things we’d do if we but had the time.

This is the time.

I wish you well. Fly, little birdie, fly high to the sky and try those wings, and be who you were meant to be.

Let me know later, what it is you had wanted to do for so long. And did. At least gave it a try.

I’m going to test my wings too. Should I crash land, I’ll know maybe it wasn’t meant to be, but then again, maybe, I’ll take a lesson from that little baby bird, shinny up the grapevine that tripped me up, flop my wings again, and try again to fly.

A little birdie taught me that. And you?