Map Musing

Greetings beloveds! What have you been up to recently? Are you back to moving and shaking again? Have you been out and about? Perhaps even travelling again? It’s been on my mind and what I’ve been musing about this week. Okay, maybe not the travelling itself… but the mapping and planning. We’ve been driving around a lot lately … no big trips, but we are constantly plugging destinations into the ol’ Phone GPS. The “Global Positioning System” (yes, I had to look it up) contains 3 parts… the space system that uses something way out there to find your position in comparison to the whole world, the control system, that makes sense out of all that space place data, and then the user component (that’s you and me) who plug in what we want to know into our little personal maps. It’s a complex system but ever so helpful — until it’s not.

Have you ever entered an address only to “arrive at your destination” and not be where you wanted to be? It happened to us once across the border. Somehow we got led under a bridge underpass and down a dirt road to a dead-end stop next to a big chain link fence. Not the address we were hoping for. Or entered a setting with no tolls or highways and get wandering in circles because the most direct route was avoided? Or like me, with no data coverage and your GPS is useless because it is missing one of the “space” or “control” components? I know, I know, some days the old method of paper maps folded out on the roof of the car and highlighted or sharpie markered routes were easier and better. Or CAA “triptics”. Or what were those big yellow spiral-bound map books called that everyone had stashed in the sides of their car doors? Those were fun.

Cartography is generally considered to be the science and art of designing, constructing and producing maps. It includes almost every operation from original fieldwork to the final printing and marketing of maps.  I have visions of great pirates marking islands on ships as master seafarers of old. Or trailblazers traipsing through thick forests hacking away at overgrowth. Did you read my post about Dashrath Manijhi? He was a trailblazer. (Read about it here) I think Google does it now. Art or computer — it is for sure a needed skill. When they were younger, our kids loved to create and participate in scavenger hunts and treasure mapping. They even dabbled a little in geocaching and finding treasures hidden there by someone else. There is value in knowing about maps and how to get to where you need to be.

If you are like me, you like to know the route. You like to see what’s coming and when it’s coming. You want to be prepared for obstacles and time delays. You want to be in control of your final destination. You want to have a plan. We all know that that is not always the case. Space, controls, and often the end users invariably make mistakes or miss something. We enter bad data and get unfinished or incomplete results. Sometimes this means we miss the treasure at the end of the rainbow. Sometimes it means we have great adventures and discover new things. I suppose it depends on your perspective on the journey. The road less travelled, or the predictable and safe route?

Don’t you love it when there are clearly marked paths with signage and direction? We know that our Bible is God’s handbook in life. We understand that God has “given us the Way” through His scriptures, lessons and promises. We read verses about preparing a place for us and knowing the plans to prosper you and give hope to your future. If we look around we can also see the landmarks that God has placed along the path: a chance meeting here, a phone call there, a “circumstance” that leads us in one direction or another. We have to look for them as markers though. And sometimes we drive by too quickly to notice them.

How many times have I prayed for myself and others that God would show us a clear path, a distinct open or closed door, a sign to know which route is the best. Often I am out of range or have little data available on that life GPS… and I don’t get my controlled and direct route marked out in yellow highlighter. So I wait. And I try and look around and gather my bearings and read the signs as best I can. Then, the only way to know is to move forward and see where the path leads. A great adventure? Or a chain link fence under a concrete underpass? You can always re-calculate, re-calibrate and turn around. The final destination may just take a little longer. It’s worth the trip. Happy trails, friends!

Word of the Year 2023

Greetings and Happy New Year my beloveds! Did you even notice I took a little sabbatical over the holidays? No worries… here I am back in your inbox for another week and another brand new year!

If you’ve been following along, you’ll remember that I no longer subscribe to resolutions or goals at the beginning of new calendars, but have adopted the practice of picking a #wordoftheyear. You are welcome to check past posts or my Pinterest board dedicated to such endeavours. Here are some links:

And so the time has rolled around once more for a new word to embody my feelings and actions for 2023. Are you ready for the reveal?! Here it is:

REFRESH

Perhaps many of you are feeling it this year as well. Refresh. Not “freshen” or “fresh” but “Refresh” as in — again. Here’s the definition I found in Oxford’s dictionary:

re·fresh

/rəˈfreSH/

verb

  1. give new strength or energy to; reinvigorate.” the shower had refreshed her”

Sigh. That’s where I am feelin’ this year is going to go. It’s the kind of revamp your computer and “refresh” your screen kinda thing. When you have too many tabs open and everything is slow and sluggish. Covid has done a big number on so many of us and I’m feeling we all need to hit the refresh button!

It’s like you’ve been working hard in the hot sun and you finally sit down for a second or two to cool off with a fresh lemonade… but it’s not always sweet. Sometimes you need a little spike to quench the heat. It’s the same in life. You need a cool-off that clears the palate without adding the fillers or sugar coating. A little shock value to reset and refocus. It’s only then that we can carry on with the hard work. It’s what I am manifesting this year. A refresh.

It’s shaping up to be a full year for the Mitton crew and some big changes are coming down the pipes: two of us have milestone birthdays, I am so going to dye my hair, and the kids are getting older and flexing their wings ready to fly from the nest. Will the hubby and I survive? Are we ready for the next stages? Will he like my hair? Refresh.

The Bible refers to this state of “refreshing” after an extended period of lamenting. The time of sitting in ashes and fasting is followed by a time of “getting up, washing, eating a good meal, dressing in clean garments” and moving on with life! That’s what I wish this year to be. There is a time for lamenting and feeling sad… reflection even. Then, there is a time to scrub yourself clean from the past and go out into the world ready to face the next step! Refreshed.

“REFRESH” photo by: Tadeusz-Lacota (Unsplash)

Are you with me? Will mittonmusings change? Maybe. Will life change? Certainly. It usually does — whether we want it to or not. I’m ready for the Refresh this year! Join me to see how it all pans out!

The Chosen

No official long drawn out post this week… but a happy announcement! Season 3 of The Chosen is showing episodes one and two in theatres! In Canada! That’s impressive…

I am pretty sure I’ve mentioned this series at mittonmusings before… our family is faithful followers and we are excited to see the climax of this story… when the followers of Jesus put their money where their mouth is and get down to the tough stuff!

  • The wait is over: The Chosen Season 3 begins in theatres November 18.
  • In this most emotional and consequential chapter yet, the honeymoon phase is over as the disciples begin facing the real cost of following Jesus.
  • The theme of Season 3 is, “Come to me all you who are weary and heavy-burdened, and I will give you rest.”
  • As Jesus’ followers face mounting internal and external pressures, they learn to find courage and peace no matter what’s thrown at them.
  • Season 3 begins in theatres November 18, and episodes will begin releasing for free in the Chosen app before Christmas

Click below to see all the details! Maybe we will see you there!

The Chosen in Theatres