[god in the yard] @llbarkat’s closing thoughts

god in the yard, pastel, art

Written by L.L. Barkat

L.L. Barkat is the author of God in the Yard: Spiritual Practice for the Rest of Us and the upcoming Rumors of Water: Thoughts on Creativity and Writing. She is also Managing Editor for The High Calling and creator of Every Day Poems.

June 10, 2011

god in the yard, pastel, art


Sometimes people want to know. If they were to come to my yard, would they find me out there still? Sitting on the red sled, sipping my tea?

I don’t want to disappoint anyone. I want to be the writer on the red sled. Braving the mosquitoes, dodging the rain. But I’ve moved on.

After the sled came an art pilgrimage. In the midst of the pilgrimage came a book of poetry. Beyond the poetry was a crazy idea to publish other poets. Like the seasons of that outdoor year, my life keeps turning. It is different, yet it is the same.

The thread that remains is a conviction that we need to be open to what comes.The journey really is ours, even as it tangles and twines with the lives of others and the church. To me, one of the saddest things is when Christians try to copy the lives of others—others they deem more spiritual. There are myriad books and programs that try to point the way. I had hoped mine would not be just another one of those in a long line of prescriptions.

To my great delight, I think it may have worked out. As I watched this blogging project, and how each writer uniquely played with the ideas, I felt a sense of relief.They feel free. Free to participate and not to get-it-right or perfect.

If you have read God in the Yard, you’ll know this is where I landed. That the Christian life is about participation, not practice that tries to earn an audience with God.

I have deeply enjoyed this journey with each participant. It makes me feel free.


  1. Llbarkat

    Thanks again, Dan, for hosting this. 

    And I love that you were willing to put my art with this post. I didn’t know I could do abstract art, until the pilgrimage. I think so many of us don’t know what we are capable of until we agree to… just begin. 🙂

    • @bibledude

      This was a great project L.L.! Thank you for writing such an amazing book that brought so much out of the participants (and readers)! I hope that it inspires others to create (like you did with the art you shared here, and in so many other ways)…

      Thank you.

  2. Megan Willome

    I deeply appreciate the idea of seasons. It’s one I’ve held on to for a long time.

  3. Anonymous

    L.L., I have really enjoyed participating in this group blogging project as well.  A lot of time I write book reviews or do superficial author interviews, but I loved the connectedness we got from you as well as from each other.  That made this special to me (and I really want to do more group blogging with BibleDude.net.  Hint, hint, wink, wink at Dan & Crystal.)

    I already enjoyed sitting outside talking to God and have sine I was in my teens.  But something about God in the Yard made my experience richer and more real.  Thank you for this book and thank you everyone for all your insights.  I didn’t comment on everything, but I read it all.

  4. Laura Boggess

    Yes, yes. I just keep learning from you. You simply inspire me to do just that–be open. What a blessing it has been. Going through the book again through these eyes of the others really opened me up too. Thanks, Dan, for organizing this little party. It sure was fun.


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[god in the yard] @llbarkat’s closing thoughts

by L.L. Barkat time to read: 1 min