Friday, October 30, 2009
Today's my day off. I'm sitting in my overstuffed chair with a latte, my Bible, and my laptop (awesome combination) and I'm thinking of all the ways God has blessed me.
The Pastor and I are coming up on our 20th wedding anniversary in a couple months and, reflecting on where we've been and where we are now, I'm amazed at God's goodness to us in so many ways.
He has worked in our marriage in unimaginable ways, he's provided us with a family when we had no hope of having one, he's prospered us financially, he's grown me spiritually and personally....and the list goes on.
As I glance around the great room while I'm pondering this, I see:
Gloves on the floor
Magazines and Books that have been on the coffee table ALL week
Dishes on the counter
Clothes thrown over almost every chair in the living room
Laptops, glasses, throw blankets, shoes, remote controls
And MUCH more....
I have to laugh because there was a time not that long ago, where the perfectionism in me wouldn't have allowed for this. Granted, I'm still freaking out a little bit as a look around, but the point is that I was able to LET it get like this. That's some major personal growth for me!
My therapist would be so proud! My Mom would be appalled!
Friday, October 23, 2009
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
I've been slightly convicted lately about my attitude in my last post. Struggling with pride is never fun or easy.
Yes, it's true that The Pastor and I have been sued unjustly, our vacation to Disneyland was thwarted, and our camping trip was cut short--REALLY SHORT--like just out of the driveway, but I have to ask myself...so what?
I'm reading the book Same Kind Of Different As Me, in which one of the characters is dying of cancer. It's a true story and just thinking about someone else's situation that is incomparably worse than mine, along with some promptings of the Holy Spirit, has given me a little perspective on life.
Despite some financial and recreational loss, God has taken care of my and The Pastor's every need and blessed us beyond what we could ever imagine. I've been reflecting on things like:
"From the fullness of his grace, I have received one blessing after another." (John 1:16)
"He has given me everything I need for life and Godliness." (II Peter 1:3)
"My God shall meet all my needs according to His glorious riches." (Phil 4:19)
"Shall not the Judge of all the Earth do right?" (Genesis 18:25)
God is the righteous judge and the provider of all that we need. If you need a little perspective in your own life, I highly recommend you take a look at this book. Spending some time with it and with God, just might give you the attitude adjustment you need.
Thursday, October 15, 2009
"Mentsch tracht, Gott lacht." One of my co-workers has this sign by his desk and every time I look at it, I laugh (or sometimes cry) at the truth of it. It's a Yiddish proverb that means, "Man plans, God laughs".
In The Vacation Hokey-Pokey, I mentioned that we were having to switch to vacation plan B. In reality, it was vacation plan C. Our original vacation (Plan A) was a trip to Disneyland. Tonight instead of sitting in my parents living room, surrounded by moving boxes, we should have been at the Magic Kingdom riding Space Mountain and watching the fireworks show over Sleeping Beauty's castle. I had certainly made my vacation plan and Disneyland was it. Maybe God was laughing, because that's sure not the plan he had in mind for us.
Because of The Pastor and I being sued recently (and losing), we were forced to cancel our trip to Disneyland. We decided that even though we had an almost sure case to win an appeal, that in the name of good will and trying to make amends with our accusers, we would go ahead and pay the money.
I've got to admit, even though I thought I wanted to do the right thing, I've been wrestling all week with bitterness. Last week, The Pastor ran into the man who sued us. He told The Pastor how much it meant to him and his wife that we paid them and that all of their animosity towards us was gone. He also mentioned that they used the money we paid them as the rest of what they needed to buy his wife a Mercedes.
That's good news, right? That's what we wanted--as much as it depends on us to live at peace with one another. Perfect. Just what we wanted...a new Mercedes for Mrs. Plaintiff, a cancelled Disneyland trip for me. Hmmm, I might have to do some praying about this attitude of mine.
So anyway, we made plan B for our vacation and tried to have a good attitude. "Camping will be fun" we told ourselves. "Disneyland is overrated anyway."
Then the truck died and we couldn't do that either. Okay, on to plan C. When everything else fails what do you do? You go home to Mom and Dad. We packed the car headed to my parents house...the only catch is that my parents just sold their house and we showed up just in time to help them pack and move.
That brings me full circle to sitting in their living room surrounded by boxes and chaos. The cable company also accidentally disconnected the TV service early and with nothing to do, we decided to squish together on the couch and watch an episode of Monk on my laptop. Like salt in a wound, every so often a commercial from the sponsor would come on to show us how good life could be if we had their product...only in this case it wasn't a product, it was a destination. The sponsor...Disney.
I guess a little (or a lot) more prayer is in order from me. But for now, I better get to bed, the moving truck is coming early...
Tuesday, October 13, 2009
I've been after The Pastor to let me get a puppy and I've been pretty clear that I want it to be a girl. He thinks it's because I'm having a mid-life crisis and it's some sort of warped replacement for having another child. That's not true, and in fact, he has no idea that it's really because our house is becoming more and more estrogen devoid. I can't take all the Tim Taylor style grunting, burping, and obsession with bodily noises. To top it off, now that it's hunting season, it looks like our house has had a camo explosion in the living room.
Although I think my guys are pretty cute, I want all my friends out there who have a housefull of boys to know that I'm beginning to feel your pain and I'm praying for you!
Sunday, October 11, 2009
"You put the trailer stuff in,
You take the trailer stuff out;
You put the suitcase stuff in,
And you shake it all about...."
When The Pastor and I first got married, we tent camped. I've got to say, it was never my favorite thing. I can recall countless fights that stemmed from me forgetting to pack essential pieces of camping gear. I distinctly remember the words "Honey, where are the matches?" causing the panic to rise in the pit of my stomach.
After several years of this not-so-fun camping, I begged The Pastor to buy us a small travel trailer. I figured if we had a trailer, I could put the camping essentials in and they would always be there. It seemed like a relatively expensive, but effective way to solve a recurring argument. (Besides, I grew up camping in a camper and I don't care how nice your tent is, that "roughing it" thing is definitely for the birds) Little did I know how much stuff you still need to pack every time you go.
Over the years, our trailer has evolved and we no longer camp, but we RV. There's a huge difference and I laughed out loud as I loaded my espresso machine into our trailer yesterday for our vacation. The Pastor, who used to chide me for not being willing enough to "rough-it" told me that we better pack both TV's for the trailer (in case we needed them). Boy, how times have changed.
We spent a day and a half loading all the necessities of life into the trailer. We packed it all...bikes, games, popcorn, ice cream, clothes, books, firewood, etc... You name it, we had put it in.
Finally ready to hit the road, we pulled out at 1pm. As we turned out of the driveway, the truck died. We coasted past our mailbox and, about 200 yards from our house, came to a dead stop. At 2pm, we had towed the dead truck and the travel trailer back to the house, fielded questions from our neighbors as to what in the world we were doing, and began to unpack it all.
In case you're wondering...yes, I'm blogging this from the easy chair in my living room and tomorrow we are switching to vacation plan B, which does not include repacking the trailer. The espresso machine is too heavy to carry out there again.