Hello friend! Pull up a chair, we have so much to catch up on. Would you like a cherry lemonade slush? Amy’s recipe is the best. We added some ginger ale for fizziness. Mmmm, refreshing! Especially after the heat we have experienced this summer, hasn’t it been hot?
Can you believe school starts in just 23 days? No, I haven’t gotten school supplies, yet. My Chris was telling me the other day that the average family spends over $600 per child for back to school. Can you believe that? Yeah, we pull that average way down for sure.
This summer, we have had so many plans to go new places and create new things–like Grand Canyon, a back deck and Kylie’s backpack.
Yes, the material is cut and ready to be sewn. All the pieces are placed on the dining room table. And the instructions? …laying there, making about 20% sense to me. I am hoping Chris can decipher them and help us. I think engineers like to read instructions. Me, now? I would rather look at it and figure it out–and hope it works out. My way doesn’t always turn out so well.
Don’t you wish life came with instructions? Oh, yeah, I know…the Bible is our instruction manual and all. But I guess the place I struggle with most is how to apply the crazy life and find the appropriate instruction IN the Bible for such life. I also was never very good at the matching tests of questions and answers. Sometimes, I feel like closing my eyes and picking at random.
My good-ness it has been a year I have been fully unprepared for, my friend. What do you do when…
your dear friend has a major stroke?
the jobs you hoped for didn’t come through, but there are still bills to pay?
your health takes a turn for the worse and you realize you need to get to the bottom of it before you have a major incident?
your summer plans take a sudden u-turn and get cancelled?
you get hurt, feel rejected, forgotten and thrown away like so much manure?
Yes, I guess you are right, manure does help things to grow. So spread it around, huh? Yes, that is what I’ve been doing. Taking the fertilizer that has been my life and spreading it around, asking Jesus to make good things grow from it.
You know, you’re right, I have much to be thankful for…family, friends, life. And I am. I am thankful. Thankful is what makes me get out of bed every morning. As my friend, recovering from her major stroke said the other day, “Sometimes the hardest decision every day is just getting up.” She’s right, you know.
As for instructions, I am thankful for the Engineer that is the Holy Spirit, who not only reads my heart but can apply His apt Word to it. Sometimes the solutions don’t seem to add up or make sense, not now anyway. But someday, they will. There is no reason to try and explain it all away and tie it up in a neat package with a bow.
Sometimes people forget your phone number, your birthday and hate your very life. Sometimes people fail to tell you the whole story and you meet with them over coffee and you try to prayerfully play the matching game–without all the choices and details–and you lose a friendship. Sometimes every single thing that seems like it oughta work out and save the day, it doesn’t. Sometimes a baby dies before she even has a chance to be born. Sometimes we experience the loss of abilities that we used to have and wonder what life will be like now. Sometimes it seems like those who said they’d be there, aren’t. It’s just plain disappointing and painful.
Where are the instructions for those kind of things? I feel, once again, like as I read my Bible, I can decipher only about 20% when it comes to all this heavy life. I need the interpreter and the engineer…
Oh, it is worth it though. Sometimes, I have seen God work in a way that never would work in everyday life. He takes His extraordinary measures and applies them to my ordinary. Sometimes, we do the hard work and actually take back some ground that was stolen. Sometimes, we are given the gift of one very good friend, who understands you. Oh, and if there are TWO? Well now, that is a blessing. Sometimes, being silent and making something beautiful is like a salve to the wounds. Sometimes, pouring it all out in angry speech to God just clears the air. He knows anyway. Might as well just pour it all forth…get it out on the table, like the pieces of material for Kylie’s backpack.
Then we read through the instructions with the Engineer and He shows us the way to piece it all together. He is very good at showing us a piece at a time. And He’s all about making things new, making a way in the desert, giving hope to the hopeless.
Yes. Sometimes the hardest thing we do is get up every day. But we do. And we learn to love. We choose to show up. We choose to get in the yoke with Jesus. We learn how He works. It’s about as refreshing as this lemonade. I find that it makes me glad. Glad of heart and glad of soul.
Oh friend, thank you for stopping by today. Thank you for listening. Sometimes…well, you know, sometimes…sometimes we’ve gotta know we aren’t alone. I am glad to know you are here. God has bound our hearts together. For that, I am glad.