October 1, 2010


New beginnings. New year.  New expectations.  Not only for my kids, but for me as well.

On the first day of high school English class, usually my new teacher would explain her rules for how we should 'turn in' (an old term for the now hip, relevant word 'submit') an assignment.  Most of the time, we did not have to type it, and that would be with a typewriter... (Does that nugget leak my age? It truly is a new technological era isn't it?)  Sometimes we could write on the first line, sometimes not.  Sometimes we could write on the last line, sometimes not. All my teachers had their own expectations for how our individual sheets of homework should look.  I think it gave them sanity to have some uniformity when they had to grade paper after paper.

Likewise, I find myself expecting certain things from my own student offspring.  The older ones type their work mostly.  I, too, like their work a certain way.  I don't like clutter. On their papers especially.  An assignment just looks nicer with uniform margins around all sides.  Margins?  The white space around the outside.

As a former yearbook editor and college marketing major let me tell you that the white space, the margin, on a page (any page.....book, newspaper, magazine.....) is JUST as important as the written word.  How can that be? you ask.  After all, it really doesn't DO anything......right?

Ah...but it does!

It makes the written word look better.  Simply put, our eyes are drawn to peacefulness, simple patterns.  If too many 'things' on a page compete for my brain's attention, my noggin takes my eyes and  they all 'run away' so to speak.

The last few days, I've been thinking about the 'margin' in my life.....my white, empty space.  It's disappearing.  (Would you pick up and read a paper or book with type all the way to the edge of the page.......everywhere? ) We need margin!!!  Time to pursue our own interests. Whatever they may be.  I love to write and read and my arms are sore from the backbreaking work of chiseling out time to blog.  Everyone gets a piece of me right now.  I don't begrudge that fact.  My life is His and He has called me to these endeavors, but this time of year the days leave me weary.  I constantly feel behind and ill prepared and I tend to get edgy when others can't SEE all the work to be done........or feel the obligation.........or help me.......without me asking.........

When others look at your life, do they see peacefulness?  Are they drawn, inexplicably, to you?  Or do they see a harried soul just trying to get through the day?  I feel like this more often than I should.  We all need time.......to rest......ponder.......play......laugh.......DAILY!  Ever wonder why the Lord RESTED? 
Like He really needed to rest! 
He did that to give us an example to live by!  He even gave HIMSELF margin!!  An empty day that made His work of 6 days even even that much more incredible!

Margin......Empty, blank space around the edges.........It's a good thing........


  1. This absolutely NAILED what's been on my heart lately Della. Without even recognizing it, I no longer have margins---and its so tiring! Thanks for the reminder and encouraging words. Love your blogging.

  2. Ha! Had to laugh to myself as I read this -- whilst I've sent my husband and chiclets to what was supposed to be a family event... except that when it was time to go, I gave my husband that I'm-in-the-red-and-the-warning-light-on-my-emotional-dashboard-is-blinking look. How thankful I am for your honesty and your encouragement, Della! You're so right. I need to look carefully at my life "paper" and rewrite it with margin.

    Lately, I've been "a harried soul just trying to get through the day." How I long to be peaceful!

    And, for the record, however harried you've felt... You always have a way of causing me, (and our friendship), to feel like I'm most important and valued. Thank you.

  3. Oh wow. I love this post. I just stumbled over here from Household 6 Diva for the very first time and my timing couldn't have been better. This really strikes a chord with me in the place where I am right now. Thank you!


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