Thursday, December 5, 2013

A snow day that didn't happen.....

This morning I awoke with childlike anticipation of today being a snow day.  Nope.  Maybe tomorrow.  However, it is collaboration day which means the kids can snuggle in a little longer and I can have a few moments of quiet time.

 It is on my heart to spend some alone time with God.  (Pause to silently berate self for not sticking to this aspiration on a daily basis....one day I will I promise myself...which leads me down the trail of "all you have is this moment, what do you mean one day?"   Practice what you preach sister!)  Okay, okay, back on task.....I tell myself I have until 7 a.m. to spend on laundry, dishes, whatever and then until 7:30 to spend some quiet time with just God and I....and after that I'll wake the kids. 

In the midst of this rabbit trail the word forgiveness weighs heavily on me.  I am so angry and betrayed feeling right now.  Yadyadayada...get over it I tell myself.  "People have it way worse" says my voice of reason.  And then that other voice..."you have a right to be angry and betrayed.  Feel it and work on forgiveness."  Wait...which is the voice of reason?

This all occurs in a period of a few moments.  As I type this I can see why being still, really and truly still is a challenge for me.  BUT...I want to feel God's presence.  I want to crawl up in his lap and rest awhile.   Rest.must.be.a.dream.....I must center myself.  I must be still.

I sit down to read at our beautifully refurbished red desk/table.  I love red.  I look at the Christmas tree lit up (no d├ęcor other than lights yet and I'm thinking of keeping it that way.  Simplicity is appealing.) I breathe in, breathe out, breathe in and begin....

I open Nathan's Bible (I can't even find mine in this dark house and I don't want to risk the noise of searching).  It is a time that I open the Bible and find exactly what my heart needs and I am inspired to dwell on it, write and pray. 

A little voice which is not my own this time is speaking.  "Momma, why did you put up the tree without me?"  Sweet Stella is awake.  I absorb a little of her joy as she finds Dophy, our sneaky elf, hiding in the tree.  This leads me down another rabbit trail of dear friends who do not do the elf or even Santa.  Children are children for such a little time and I love the magical fun.    I respect their choices but inwardly curse those who have told my children their own truth.  This makes me think of a conversation with my dear friend Stephanie last night over Santa.  Another child told her child Santa wasn't real and Steph was in a quandary and oh I sure do love that family.  STOP SARAH!  You really are scattered dear one, even in your alone time.  Back to being still...

I am feeling guilty right now.  Feeling guilty that I did not stand up for a friend when a coworker was blatantly rude to her in my presence yesterday.  Feeling guilty over the rage I have inside me at certain people.  Feeling guilty for suggesting a friend who is hurting focus on Thankfulness when I'm struggling with it myself.  Feeling guilty for unforgiveness, especially when I know who it is hurting the most.  Guilty that my Auntie is in the hospital and I didn't go see her yesterday.

Forgive me for my here and there writing today.  This is truly where I am, all over the board and trying to be still and KNOW THAT HE IS GOD.  What I opened to in Nathan's Bible (The Message), what I found bathed me in comfort...here it is....

A David Psalm....David 138

Thank you!  Everything in me says, "Thank you!"  Angels listen as I sing my thanks.  I kneel in worship facing your holy temple and say it again, "Thank you!"  Thank you for your love, thank you for your faithfulness; Most holy is your name, most holy is your Word.  the moment I called out, you stepped in; you made my life large with strength.

When they hear what you have to say, God, all earth's kings will say "Thank you."  They'll sing of what you've done:  "How Great is the Glory of God!"  And here's why:  God, high above, sees far below; no matter the distance, he knows everything about us. 

When I walk into the thick of trouble, keep me alive in the angry turmoil.  With one hand, strike my foes, With your other hand, save me.  Finish what you started in me, God.  Your love is eternal - don't quit on me now.

Father God,

My heart is so heavy.  You know this already.  I am deeply grateful for the blessings you have bestowed on me in all circumstances.  My precious family, the roof over our heads, warmth, health, friends, YOU, hope, beauty from ashes...I could go on for miles. 

I am calling out to you God.  I am crying out your name for my own sake and I am calling you on Nathan's behalf.  Please come close.  Please hold us.  I know you are before us, I know your are behind us and I know you are beside us and carrying us.  I cannot fathom how you do this, I just know I am thankful that you do.

God, please use our circumstances for your glory.  I trust you will, even if I don't 'see' it.  We are walking in the thick of trouble and I know you will get us through.  I know you will save us.  I know you will strike our foes....unforgiveness, doubt, worry, frozenness (again, I could go on for miles). 

I cannot wait to see what you are doing with us God. Literally, I cannot wait.  Please open our hearts and eyes to feel you and to know, beyond all doubts, it's gonna be okay.

In your very precious name I pray,

Amen.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

The beautiful truth of the muck

 I want to write flowing words of gratitude and joy, but if I did do that in this moment I would be putting on a mask and guarding my authenticity.  How can I find peace and be real if I live in a state of hiding? 

 My heart is a bit full of muck right now... I'm struggling to see past the muck and into the beauty.  I do know it's there, tonight though...I am going to allow myself to be so very real and share my heart as is.  I know God is doing His healing as I grieve.  I believe I am growing through these uncomfortable times and that the end result will be used to glorify God.  Tonight though...I'm just not feelin' it. 

What do I feel?  Heavy.  Burdened.  Angry.  Afraid.  Betrayed.  Hateful.  Unsure.  Insecure.  Void of options.  Broke. Raw. Unmotivated.  Sad. Guilt ridden.  Insufficient.   And oddly enough, thankful. 

Thankful.  thankful.  I'm thankful for the hope I feel in what is to come; the ick feelings are for the uncertainty of now.  I am only going to allow myself to feel the ickiness for a little while and once I have welcomed it in I will kick it out in the cold....for now though it is a part of me that I must search out and speak to in order to be whole.  I hope that makes sense.  It does to me, and I guess that is truly all the matters.

Some of life...

A phone conversation with my Daddy lately goes something like this...
(He calls me by pushing auto dial on his phone and I answer...)
Me:  Hi Daddy.
Dad:  Hi there.  Who have I got here?
Me:  It's Sarah.
Dad:  Who?
Me:  Sarah
Dad:  Sa-va?
Me:  No, this is Sarah.
Dad:  Oh...Sa-va.  Which one have I got here?  (this can continue for a good bit)
Me:  How are you?
Dad:  As long as I'm standing, it's a good day  OR not so good, I'm in trouble here  OR  Do you know where I am, I really do want to go home (he is home), I don't care for it here.

This is just one little variation.  And God bless, I love this man with my whole heart.  I love to have his big, warm hand wrapped around mine.  I love how he tells me he sure does love me (unless he thinks I'm not me, in which case he does not say anything but 'thank you' because he is happily married and his wife wouldn't care for him saying something different.)  But I hate this Alzheimers.  It says horribly ugly things sometimes and it steals the expression from my Daddy's eyes and replaces it with a lost, afraid and blank gaze.  I HATE IT.  I adore my Momma.  I adore how tender she is with my Daddy (even when she believes she is not).  I love how she protects his dignity when he cannot.  I love her love for this man.  I hate the weariness I see in her eyes, the slowness in her step and the hard truth that I cannot change this.  The yuck muck.

Marriage....home life....blah blah blah.  Home is still my favorite place to be and these magnificent babies (okay, they are 12 and 8) but always my babies and precious husband bless my heart immensely.  Struggling we are but we are finding a new normal.  I hope it's a temporary normal until we find our real rhythm and connection again.  Just when I begin to forget that we are struggling right now I remember. Reality  can be so painful and from the pain can come beauty....I guess that's more of the beautiful truth of the muck.

Tomorrow we are attending a very significant meeting.  It's one with old friends who are no longer friends.  Through our past relationship, my very definition of friendship has been drastically changed.  Stinks.  Praying for resolve.  Praying for peace and for nothing but truth to be revealed beyond a doubt.  In this I feel like I am sinking in muck....still searching for the beauty.

I am stressed and Christmas is coming.  I 'should' not be feeling stressed and so then I add guilt to the mix.  Why not?  Family drama is lurking.  Geographical boundaries are sometimes needed but always wounding.  Praying for healing, conviction and peace.  Ugliness.


As we are smack in the middle of the muck this verse comes to mind....
Jeremiah 29:11  'For I know the plans I have for you', declares the Lord, 'plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.' 

There my friends is the beautiful truth of the muck.