Lately, easy things have been difficult and I slog through the day, feeling like I am beating a path through a thick jungle with a machete.
I cherish my days away from work, I count them off, savor every hour. Four, three, two, and now I have just tomorrow. Herding cats would be easier than trying to capture my thoughts right now. I ache for the simple. I ache for things to slow down.
I hunger for nature even more than food. I need to hear the trees speak, hear my own heartbeat and feel it slow to the rhythm of the bigger picture. But trips are like a far off dream, and the motor home sits silent and empty on the storage lot.
Care giving takes its toll, and the rubber is meeting the road again. And I know it is no accident that other circumstances have come into play, all of them conspiring to create the "perfect storm." My job is stressing me out big time, and I am in the beginning stages of that time in a woman's life known as "The Change" BIG LETTERS.
It goes by many names, and no one wants to talk about it so I won't either. Suffice it to say, it feels like a black shade has been pulled down on my life.
And yet, even with all this going against me, I know this season of my life is an opportunity. A divine appointment. A chance to demonstrate love without getting anything in return. A chance to put my faith into action.
Care giving is extremely humbling simply because of the times you fail. Day after day we are tested. Day after day there are opportunities to succeed or fail at loving.
Just the other morning the clouds parted and God allowed me to feel a tremendous sense of peace, even joy about what we have been doing for the last year and a half......I was pumped up, I was ready to deliver a sermon on the Beatitudes to anyone who would listen.
And 10 minutes later her Mom got up and irritated me to the point that I retorted back to the sarcastic thing she said. Most of what she says is sarcastic but I know that. I should have been ready. And of course her timing is always impeccable.
How can a woman who can't remember anything you said 3 minutes ago, remember you hitting a pole with the car and doesn't hesitate reminding anyone who will listen? I guess when you have practiced negativity and denial your whole life, it comes easy, that's how.
I really don't know how Elaine does it, and yet I do.
We laughed when she got up and I told her how fired up I was, how I wanted to preach a sermon and then Joyce immediately showed me how far I still was from the Kingdom of God.
I am happy to say that through all this, we have kept our gratitude. Our peace. And in spite of it all, there are a hundred little moments a day where I will absurd moments of joy.
At the library......out by the garden.....sharing a laugh......kneading bread dough.....watching the cats antics.
And getting into the Word can always take me home when I don't feel I can take another moment.
I can honestly answer the question that Paul Chan throws out in his book, "Crazy Love." What are you doing right now that requires faith?
Everything, simply everything.
“If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners love those who love them. And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners do that. And if you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, expecting to be repaid in full. But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful. Luke 6:32-36