a few thoughts on clean slates…


I took Latin in high school. It was one of my favorite classes. First, it was a favorite because the teacher was a hoot! She was lively and funny and said totally unpredictable things. She made us laugh and was well aware that sometimes we were laughing with her and sometimes one couldn’t help but laugh at her antics and stories.

It was also a favorite class of mine because I love words. Always have. Probably always will. I loved learning Latin phrases like “amor vincit omni” , “veni, vedi, vici”,  and “tabula rasa”. Yep. I love words.  Kind of ironic for a quieter soul like me to have so many words constantly in my head.  I think a lot more than I talk, but when I write, well, the words can come pouring out pretty fast.

So here’s the dilemma. I’m working on an essay. I love to write. I do. But it has to be limited to two pages, and I have ‘drafted’ enough to fill 10. No joke. No exaggeration. Not funny. Because it’s due at 11:59 and I’m not too happy about it at all because I really care what I’m writing about and I am so not good at editing. (But if you read my blog much, you probably know that <3…)

So why in the midst of being in a time crunch of writing an essay am I blogging? Funny you should ask. Because…I realized that some of the endings of my paragraphs looked like this afdhi; ghweiar; faheid; gfhaei;rhiaerfdjfas;djf;as;.  …and I thought maybe I needed a little reboot.(Ya think?) Yep. And so after making some coffee, browsing Facebook, taking a few photos of a bird and the blooming dogwood outside as well as cleaning the kitchen, I decided I’d do this–start over….open up a blank page….tabula rasa.


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So I did. That blank page looked so good and clean and fresh (except for my sarcastic title–ugh. I need to grow  up.)  The clean page was not full of my ramblings and connections that needed sorting out. It looked fresh and clean and new. It was a starting place.  My husband always says it’s way easier to build a house from the ground up than it is to repair and renovate an old one. It’s a constant decision-making time of choosing what stays and what goes. Writing can be like that. Gotta keep some of this, let go of some of that, and it takes time, and effort, and clarity of the reason why you’re writing in the first place. So… sometimes  starting fresh, or this ‘tabula rasa’ is a good good thing.

“Tabula rasa” is a phrase I learned in that Latin class oh so many years ago. I thought it meant ‘blank slate’…and a loose translation of it is. But do you know what one of Merriam-Webster’s definitions of ‘tabula rasa’  is?  Here it is : something existing in its original pristine state”. It’s not just a slate that has been erased. It’s like a slate that is so perfect that is has never been written on.

And, with reading that, well, I stopped thinking about this little essay and thought about the big picture beauty of tabula rasa,…I smiled because this day, this Good Friday…well, it’s all about ‘tabula rasa’.  It’s all about restoring what was lost, restoring to the beginning state. Good Friday is about freshness of life and a new start that comes out of the sacrificial death of Christ coupled with the resurrection.  It’s about forgiveness of sins and being made clean–restored.

The older I get, the more thankful I am for new beginnings…for letting go of past hurts and struggles, and moving on into the new. I’m constantly like a slate that needs to erase a thing or two. An “oops: here, a huge disconnection there, a misguided decision there…there are daily things I’d like to erase and get a re-do on. And the big picture beauty of Good Friday and Easter Sunday is all about living in the reality of being made new. “If any man is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away and behold the new has come.”  Today, am thanking God for that.

And now, I guess I’ve made coffee, browsed Facebook, taken photos…and blogged a bit… Am thinking it’s time to get back to that essay…

Blessings to You. “It’s Friday but Sunday’s coming…”




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