By: Darrelyn L. TuttThe rooms boasts a gathering of about 50 individuals plus workers mingling freely in between.Jonna is pointed out as the woman wearing a pink and white striped shirt seated in a wheelchair, a fairly large framed gal with a decided "left" slant in posture.Her face is lovely and her skin is appealing; there's a cleanness and beauty about it that gives me the want to touch it and trace it.Large blue eyes look curiously at me.I pull up a chair and sit down.Jonna is engaged in the middle of supper; hands are scooping potatoes and chocolate pudding simultaneously into her hungry mouth. I introduce myself and begin to share interesting tidbits about my day and life between her mouthfuls.She's responsive without speaking which, I've been told, is her "normal". But I've not one doubt, my friend, that Jonna is listening and following my conversation attentively.I can just feel it.Speculating that a stroke or two has been Jonna's "lot" and with a knowledge of forgetfulness being its matching counterpart, I pick up a spoon and take an imaginary bite with it and then place it in her hand. I'm not at all surprised to watch her memory return. Back and forth we repeat the process.A beautiful smile is my reward.-------A piano is situated near Jonna's dining table. I point to it and ask if she would like me to play. She gives me a very decided and emphatic nod of the head. My squeaky chair is pushed back and I make my way to the piano, but only to discover that it requires some little know how. Even with the help of young "technicians" surrounding me, we can't figure out how to make the right connections and, after ten minutes call it quits.Bugger and blast ... I'm supremely disappointed. The invitation to return and play is applied.I apologize to my waiting and watching audience now composed of more than "one" and return to my seat.Jonna has a "smiling" look and speaks a word to me:"Flute."I'm absolutely delighted by this wondrous discovery made through a single word.My friend has a love of flute and evidently played in her earlier days. Her eyes display life and empowerment in the suggestion.With immediacy the thought is cemented in my brain to locate a flutophone for our next visit.And I feel so ... gratified.Compassion and love are empowering and rejuvenating acts.Beautiful. Life-giving. Intimate.-------I read a short devotional, hold my friend's chocolate hand, and we pray together.I smudge her forehead with a lilac colored kiss and hug her sideways, and before I leave I hear two beautiful words:"Thank you."Maybe I'm reading too much into it but I don't think so:I think Jonna was fully engaged with me the entire time because I was fully engaged with her the entire time.And life is beautiful and God is good.Sometimes all we need is a spoon and a flute.------
SCARLET RED By: Darrelyn L. Tutt
All the promises I’ve broken,All the foolish things I’ve done;All the sins that I’ve committed,God has pardoned every one.Things I’ll do in my tomorrow,Things I’ll do in my today;Many things far less than holy,Yet God loves me anyway.
God will never ever leave me,And He never will forsake;What He’s promised to this child,That’s so laden with mistake.
He is merciful and loving,He is kindness through and through;His anger but a moment,God remaineth ever true.
So I stop and I consider,What the Lord has done for me;I’m humbled and I marvel,At His generosity.
For He took a scarlet sinner,And He touched a vile hand;And He holds and tightly grasps it,Making me to understand:
There is nothing, there is no one,That can take away or claim;The inheritance allotted,And apportioned to my name.
Every sin has been atoned for,Every secret brought to light;I am pardoned and forgiven,Scarlet red …. to holy white.-------"In whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace."Ephesians 1:7
By: Darrelyn L. TuttClara is attractive, fit, and fiercely independent;a voracious reader and inhaler of thought.Our first conversation is meaningful, thoughtful, and provoking with a mutual love of books linking us comfortably.Clara favors works of fiction and is partial to famed author Karen Kingsbury;she also reads the Bible with regularity.During our visit Clara is seated on a padded walker, with its seat-turned backward, but her normal residence is a faded blue recliner in the corner of "Living Room Street and Window".I learn that she loves open windows, fresh air, and chocolate chip cookies.------- Clara is homebound, but of a mind very sound, and employed with decidedly excellent virtues.Because of her I learn about resources that exist to support, enhance, and enrich the mind. Because of her I learn something new about my beloved haven called the Library.I learn that the Library assists my friend Clara and other homebound individuals with large volumes of books on a consistent monthly basis. Clara supplies them with names of her preferred authors and they supply her with hours of enrichment in response. A fair trade is made monthly with books transplanted and exchanged outside her apartment door in large canvas bags.It's a safe, effective transfer that works wonderfully for my friend,and it's better than Domino's Pizza.I LOVE IT! Benjamin Franklin, Andrew Carnegie, and Franklin Roosevelt would toss their hats up on this one!What a practical, concrete way to provide mental stimulation to homebound hungry minds, and what an enriching and empowering activity to participate in.Get involved, my friend, and expand your relational and mental horizons.Explore the options around you and become an active participant and contributing resource in serving others.Community needs you.Time to run ...I have a "cookie-run" to make.--------
BE PRESENTBy: Darrelyn L. TuttOne of my goals is to be fully present and engaged in the moment.-Snapping pictures for Facebook while engaged with loved ones is becoming unacceptable to me.-Sneaking peaks at my phone while engaged in conversation with another is rude and lacks courtesy.-Being absorbed with a phone instead of a person is wrong.The results of being partially present are showing up:-Attention span is decreasing.-Intimacy is being stifled.-Imagination and creativity is hindered.-Intelligence is robbed.-Conversation is superficial.-Suicide rates are intensifying.Community is robbed of true community when true "presence" is missing.-------Technology is wreaking havoc in our relationships, senses, and sensibilities. Its impact must be addressed in concrete, deliberate, and practical ways.We have choices and options,we need to consider them.LIke you, there's a life I want to live, and that life involves whole-hearted and invested presence. I want to be fully present "in the present" with my loved ones.Leaving my phone behind is part of the journey, and the art of "disengaging," I am learning, is an extremely rewarding one.Join me on the journey ... of cultivating healthy community.Consider some rules of engaging and disengaging, and then act on them, and live out the life-giving difference.Be present.------
JARS AND JOLTSBy: Darrelyn L. TuttI'm a passionate individual. Hot-wired and hard-wired with intensity and the desire to do and become "more", there's an internal drive at work within me that seldom tires, wearies, or slows.According to my online dictionary passion means "relentlessly compelled and intensely driven."Impassioned individuals understand the need to perform with an intensity level that makes volcanos erupt and lava spill out. We look for challenge, strategy, and implementation and come heavily enforced with curious and mysterious qualities of enthusiasm and energy.-Passion dispels lethargy and determines destiny.-Passion utilizes and connects itself to every available resource in its expectant pursuit of a positive outcome.Impassioned individuals have a tendency to jar, jolt, and send a shock of electricity through the shoulders of those they come into contact with. Sometimes the jolt feels threatening, scary, and unnerving but generally it produces and ignites a healthy spark in a burned out heart that's very wanting.-------Since I can't be with you but very much desire to be, try to imagine yourself brushing up against me.Feel an emphatic, electrical charge empowering and coursing through you,excitement penetrating you,a pulse beating stronger in you, desires awakening within you,and an emphatic, positive pulse beating inside of you.This is what I desire to be to you, beautiful friend, and this is what I'm repeatedly told I contribute.-------Like you, I've experienced my share of tough stuff and crazy hard stuff.We all have! -Devastating relational break-ups.-Painful vocational hiccups.-Untimely financial backups.-Or a painful health diagnosis that tells us we'll never get back up.Bugger, blast, and Ouch!We all must do battle with the rippling effects of mess-ups, heartaches, and difficulties.We all must determine whether we'll get up or give up.Nobody but you is responsible for the activity you choose, but my vote for you is cast in the positive.I'm decidedly for you.Keep going ... no matter what!-------Like you, I've made massively stupid choices,entertained wrong and hurtful voices,and gotten side-tracked and derailed more than once.But like you ...I keep getting back up and looking for ways to prop others up knowing that in the end, it's the hard stuff that gives others courage to engage and face their hard stuff.It's the hard stuff that God uses and chooses to reveal Himself.And this thing called journey becomes strangely beautiful when we "show up"and choose to not give up.Because the possibilities are endless ... when God is with us.Entertain and be energized by the possibilities, explore the "more" you were made for and settle for nothing less.Life is short ... own it.Jars and Jolts.--------Darrelyn L. Tutt / Life Experience Coach + Motivational SpeakerSpecializing in Small Group Dynamics605.450.8587
WHEN THE CAGE IS GONEBy: Darrelyn L. Tutt
he left her weaknot expecting her to fly,but wings grow strongonce the cage is gone,and she left him in the shadewith her wings in the sun.-atticus-----Atticus is speaking to fear and the weary wing of its caged reality. We have to learn to fight back and leave the narrow "man" cage of fear in order to experience liberation.God is the only "being" worthy to fear on earth.Fear of man will lead us the wrong way every day!Emphatic exclamation on this statement.If there's any one thing more detrimental to spiritual growth and more cancer corrosive to the soul than the fear of man, I haven't found it.Fear of man is spoken of by God repeatedly because He recognizes our desire for his approval and the sense of identity we either lose or gain based on his response.We lie, cheat, deceive, project, pretend, and do a thousand false things to be approved by man. The fear of man is hard-wired and genetically woven into our DNA.And as a result, it's something we must come to grips with and master. ------The only way to get a handle on the fear of man is to grow in an increasing measure with a fear of God. Healthy fear is intended to drive us away from sin and into the loving embrace of a forgiving and cleansing God. Healthy fear puts God in the driver's seat and removes man from it.It's absolutely liberating and life-altering!"The fear of man bringeth a snare; but whoso putteth his trust in the Lord shall be safe."-Proverbs 29:25Our redemptive rights and "child rights" are sealed and securely tied to God the Father through Christ His Son, and realized in us by the Spirit.The less we care what others think and the more we "mind" what God thinks, the more powerful, profound, and purposeful our lives become.So today ...when we're in the process of making decisions, let's deliberately and consciously dismiss man from the equation and think only of what God would have us do. Then let's do it!And let's see if our wings don't wonderfully take flight.------
By: Darrelyn L. TuttRun with me.See with me the beauty of our King!Set your goals high and your dreams great ...Extend the tent pegs and pursue with me, in fervency, the Lord God Almighty.The One who was,who IS,and who is to come.The Lord God Almighty.God is a wondrously worthy object of pursuit, my friend.Make no apology in your intention toward Him.Let it be whole-hearted, furious, and strong.Little Shulamites are blessed ...and receive great blessing.-------Countless interpretations abound on the Song of Solomon and I could care beans about all of them.I'm fantastically aligned with the heart of the Shulamite and totally engaged in her passion and zeal for the one her soul loves.For myself, I desire to be so emphatically engaged in the pursuit of my "Lover" that I haven't a thought or time to philosophize about it.------God derives great pleasure and satisfaction from an ardent and earnest pursuer.God looks tenderly on the soul that desperately desires and aches for more of Him.Indeed, it's Him who's doing the compelling, is it not?This truth should fire the soul up a degree hotter. Fan the flame and keep it burning.Whew ... let the flame burn hot!-------Last night I experienced the glory of a sunset.A curiously colored rainbow situated herself suddenly, and in a moment, to the right of an idle white cloud, and I stopped and felt myself every bit the Shulamite.I adored God and I saw Him on Kiwanis and 22nd Street.Mmmm ...From creative artistry to love for man, God knows how to "do" it.He knows how to paint the heavens and provide colorful relief to us at just the right time and in just the right way and I think we were made to come undone.At least I was ...God doesn't do things in a little way;He never has and He never will.The story of redemption, my friend, is the most passionate and openly expressive declaration of love you and I will ever know or experience this side of heaven.The Son of God took a beating for us,and a bleeding for us.And then God brought His Son into glory ...and I think He must like a little of the "Shulamite" shining through.Make a run for Him.Do it openly, expressively, with fervency, and without hesitancy.Read the story of the little Shulamite ...and move passionately toward the "Lover" of your soul.------ "I am my Beloved's, and His desire is toward me."Song of Solomon 7:10
By: Darrelyn L. TuttI'm more interested in how you're living out your Monday than if you sat in a pew on Sunday.So is God.------The heart that undergoes a bypass is not the same.The Surgeon has had a very personal dealing with the patient and the surgery has produced and forged an entirely different and intimate sort of bond.This, now, is how it is in my walk with God.My heart and face blush crimson at my perception and conception of the great Physician's scarlet love. How liberally He has poured Himself over me, into me, and through me.How deeply He has loved me ...with an everlasting love.The blood and His love mingling through.------Christ's love compels and provokes a deeper love,a tender compassion,an emphatic embrace,an active, passionate, ardent human love transferred to the broken, beaten-down, bruised, and desperate, defying the critique and graceless thoughts of men, in palpable, life-giving, healing ways.Love is deep and strong and true.It is open, free, and expressive.Love is "lostness" in the love of Jesus and being found in captivity with Him.Love is bound up in the scarlet thread of redemption and liberated by the unending flow of crimson blood. It heralds itself through an open show and identification with all those it comes into contact with.It is not prejudice nor private.It shows itself in highly demonstrable ways; in its life and service to others,in its rhythm of love for Christ.-------It's the work of the Surgeon to transform and restore the patient, and the results become "God evident."Is your heart beating for Him?How deep is your love on a Monday?------
WALK IT OUTBy: Darrelyn L. Tutt
Chris entered my life some 25 years ago and made imprints in my physical life that have carried over into a healthy practice and discipline still “walked out” today.Our relationship began with a simple invite to become her walking partner.Had you known me at that particular time, you would’ve observed that I was not in peak shape nor had I ever entered into a regimented physical discipline.I’m not sure what prompted the invite but I grabbed ahold of it observing it had clearly been a productive discipline in Chris’s life.How hard can walking be, right?I’d like to speak to that question:By the third block of our five mile course on our first day I was ready to call it quits. I recall looking at her out of the corner of my eye hoping she was humoring me.She wasn’t.Welcome to the world of speed walking.Too proud to assert my weariness I managed to complete the first day’s walk which, in hindsight, I still consider a monumental feat.Blisters lined my heels and toes.Sweat permeated my entire frame.Breathing was heavy and laborious.These symptoms were consistently mine for the first month of our walking regiment which consisted of five days a week, no exceptions.I stayed the course.--------Why did I keep walking?The foremost reason was that I enjoyed time with Chris and the budding intimacy that was being developed in our time together and because I possess one of those natures that’s motivated and driven to achieve. The need to be challenged sits in me like an empty tank ready to be filled.Chris happened to be the pump.Her consistent presence in my life was a daily motivator and challenge to me.I continued on because of her.Within about two months, my stride was equal to that of my friend and through the process I began to eat less, walk more, and enjoy a wonderful new friendship.Chris’s walk greatly influenced my own and her invitation to a walk challenged me.-------Praise be to God for the individuals who spark challenge, life, and vibrancy into our lives and evoke healthy challenge and change as a result.Their worth is inestimable and it is to these individuals I attribute three life lessons:1) A walk has the power to change a life.My friend would have laughed at the idea that a simple invitation to take a walk could impose life changing and health altering consequences in my life.But it did.That walk also fostered an intimate friendship that I deeply needed in that period of my life for which I will ever be grateful.A simple walk has the power to do that.We each have the power to contribute something life-changing and meaningful to another. God has wired us for community in this way. Extend your hand and heart and welcome someone new into your world. Deliberately explore and engage in new life experiences!-----2) Respect and invite challenge.Don’t resist the challenging stride of another even if it looks initially impossible.Take one step toward a challenging individual and tap into new arenas of personal growth.Resist the urge to walk with people of the same gait; you won’t progress or develop muscle this way.You’ll be amazed at what an individual’s stronger stride contributes to your own.You’ll find yourself totally empowered even if you're a little threatened in the beginning.Hold a challenging hand and develop a stronger stride.Engage with a stronger "strider".------3) Blisters become strategic life developers.Those nasty blisters are just no fun but they’re part of the walk. If your walk looks anything like mine, you’re familiar with blisters, bobbles, and burns.Persevere and be encouraged if you’re dealing with them, my friend; they symbolize perseverance, movement, and progression.They're a healthy, though very difficult, part of the journey.Keep on walking ...You'll arrive somewhere life changing!---------If you're looking for connection, challenge, and meaningful contribution to your journey, feel free to contact me.I’d love to meet up with you, support you, and inspire you.Yours on the journey,Darrelyn L. Tutt / Motivational Speaker + Life Experience CoachSpecializing in Small Group Dynamics605.450.8587
By: Darrelyn L. TuttAfter "Ulmer" things grew calmer.It's good to see the sun again.-------The historic "Blizzard Ulmer" has finally died out leaving residue from her fierce system behind:Insurance agents scramble to keep up with unceasing customer "cell" traffic.Flood victims are reeling and dealing with housing issues.Sump pumps are running overtime in busy households.Work schedules are being readjusted.Roads are being restored.The city's water issues have been tapped and maxed out. Meteorologists are recording and reviewing the sweeping historic effects of Blizzard Ulmer with an excitement beyond recording; making new discoveries and rewinding and rewatching the curious weather patterns in her wake.-------Storms affect us profoundly.This is their nature.While it's difficult to see the value of a storm while experiencing it,its aftermath can wield a priceless and invaluable wisdom, both in regard to weather and our personal lives when we face our storms in a responsive and attentive manner.God utilizes storms for our good and His glory and, through them, He teaches us about His unchangiing and stationary role in our storm and in our story.And the storm tells a story about God's glory always!It's really quite a wonder ... and much bigger than a Blizzard Ulmer.From the storm:-We learn all that we don't know.-We grow in our assessment of resources needed for future storms.-We work together to restore and effectively participate in restoration and community.We positively take the gleanings of the storm, however disastrous they appear, and offer them up to God and see what He might do with them.And out of the wreckage and with a little bit of time erupts something God-sized that we could never have imagined. God delights in doing the impossible in our storm and in elevating His glory so we see Him.God is, after all, in the eye of the storm, and with His eye on the storm every moment.For storms that come and storms that go and all we learn of Him,we give Him praise.God is the "calmer" of the Ulmer ... forever and always.-------