Saturday, July 17, 2010

Looking Back

E. does one thing at a time, completes it, and moves on. I know 9 out of 10 mornings I'll wake up to him bringing me coffee, and when I shuffle out to the living room I'll find him in his chair with his Bible and books open. He lives by a rhythm of habits and principles. I love this about him - mostly. Generally I'm pretty creative and energetic, I like juggling several things at the same time, it entertaining. He expects me to be overscheduled, busy with people and verbalizing some new plan of how to start something. E. would describe me as creative and a bit of a tornado. And he loves that - mostly.

Looking back on this time last year I had not been feeling myself for several months. I was almost always exhausted and often close to tears, but most frustrating - I didn't know why. I would push myself, however, I remained perpetually behind in all my tasks. They were not done even close to satisfaction, and personally, I struggled deeply with feeling the failure of it all.

Our summer trip was amazing, it obviously wasn't because of my good organization. In fact, despite my struggles and disorganization our team filled in the gaps. It was beautiful and humbling.

In God's providence it took several more months and visits to the doctor, to figure out I needed tyroid and ADD medicine. By the end of January, I was feeling better, in February, when my husband walked into the kitchen, and I was full of plans, projects and life, he proclaimed, "YOU'RE BACK!"

There was a lot, lovingly, left unsaid in those two words. E. was working lots of hours and balancing a crazy schedule with his 3 jobs. However, he would help out around the house, and only twice complained the entire year about me being perpetually behind on every front. It wasn't unusually for me to wake up to an empty house because he had decided to drive K the hour round trip to school on days he had to work and I didn't, just so I could get a few more hours of sleep. The list would go on for quite a while. In short, he served me, he loved me, he wasn't angry or put out. Honestly, after a few weeks, I would have struggled to stay civil, he didn't. His attitude never regressed to "look how much I am doing". He says that just normal. You do what needs done. E. decision to walk by principle first and not by feeling still baffles me even after 20 years. It makes me feel safe. It challenges me to do the same. It speaks truth to me about God's nature being primarily active, not reactive.

Looking back I am so thankful for God's provision. He did not come when at first I called out, he waited, for what seemed like a very long time. What I thought I wanted Him to do was to fix me so that I could do my thing and get my stuff done. He didn't, I couldn't. It is much easier now, looking back, than it was to walk through it.

Elizabeth Elliot said, "Remember it is because He love us that He waits. Immediate intervention would abort the far greater thing He has in mind. Trust Him for the greater."

I've thought a lot about this last year and if I would change things if I could go back. I wouldn't now. I've learned to a greater extent some value lessons.

1. Waiting is an activity. It is worth practicing.

2. Life is not fair, sometimes others pull more than their share to serve you. This is good for false pride. I have a lot of false pride. Ouch! Hopefully a little less now.

3. "We" should always precede "me" in a godly marriage. This fosters not only joy but happiness too.

4. There really might be a thing called ADD, and with a little medicine, the 400+ books and projects I've started, I might actually finish a good deal of them some day.

5. What other people think about me and my life needs to be kept in proper perspective. Especially, if they are not the people closest to me, who really know me. Others opinions, although valuable, are not necessarily helpful or well rounded.

6. At the center of anything important is relationship.

7. Trusting Christ brings joy.

8. Praticing joy brings happiness - for me I do this with mental memory stones. There is a lot to be said about the hymn - "Count your Blessings".

9. I am not perfect, I never will be, but I am progressing.

10. God knows what I need better than I do, I remind myself - I can trust Him. Hard times, whether mild or grave, work the same way, I suspect, it grows belief in the person of Christ to save. Christ is our Prince, we are His bride. He saves us in so many ways. I now have one more memory to add to my collection. This past year makes His words in Hebrews so sweet, 'when you are faithless, I will remain faithful, for I cannot deny myself'. My heart ebbs towards faithlessness, it is God's strong arms that pull me towards himself. He alone is Good and True. His arms never fails and His loves always accomplishes its intent, He is always there to save.This is primarily for HIs Glory, however the collateral blessings brings our best. This is a little mind and heart twisting.

It is all about HIM.

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