Sunday, April 30, 2006

"Only Two Grew Back!"

Ok. Well, it is another bread co. Sunday night. Sitting on my left: "Studley McCool." In front of me: "Busty Sinclair" aka Ms. Mark. Oh dear. I'm all choked up. Surrounding us, law students. They are popping out of the woodwork. It is kind of creepy. Actually, bread co. might be a good place to get legal advice on a night like tonight, as apparently, they are all studying for finals. Although, I'm told that a law student could be disbarred for dispensing legal advice before passing the Bar exam.

Well, it is a silly night. Our Iranian friend is two seats down, but won't make eye contact. I'm a little disappointed. Especially as Jenn was interested in employment. Sorry Jenn, I have failed you. Maybe he wasn't sincere in his job offer. Music: I am desperately in love with Neko Case and her latest CD, something about a fox and confessional. (Confusing and forgettable title). But the music is haunting and smooth. I could make it the soundtrack of my life, it's so good. My only complaint: too short (35 minutes does not constitute a full album in my book, Neko.) Well, I think it is time to wrap up. Thought for the day: Up is relative.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Ambivalence

is my middle name. Ha! Well, work is fun again this week. At last the caseload has reached the intensity that makes me know my purpose in being there. The time flies by each day as I try to meet each child where they are and bring them one step beyond that place. At last I find purpose again, in making my office a sanctuary, a safe place for people to touch the hidden places in their hearts and leave knowing they have been honored in vulnerability and that healing can come.

In my own heart, impatience reigns supreme. Work draws me away from the place of disconnect within. My brain feels not quite linked up this week. Words come slowly and jokes come out wrong. Extra coffee needed just to focus. Wish, wish, wish. Sometimes it is easier to look outside than in. I find that my dazed mind and hungry heart are very satisfied to focus on the ever-present and mundane documentation, due end of month! Yes! Hooray, distraction.

What is the perfect time for my dentist appt on Friday? You've heard it before, tooth-hurty. yep. 2:30.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Coffee Talk

I'm sitting at the Delmar Bread Co, across from Tanya, in what has become a common Sunday evening occurance. We sit and soak in the coffee as she plans lessons, I read my book, (or update blog as the case may be) interspersed with conversation.

Today I sit and watch lightning flash as thunderstorms roll in. We had interesting conversation with an Iranian gentleman, who asked me if I would like employment designing web pages (because I have sooo much experience with such things, ha!) He also gave me stock tips (emerging international markets) and we discussed handling the pain of children who don't listen, and then are hurt by their choices. Very interesting. Clearly he needed to talk today.

My mood is light as I watch heavy rain fall. It feels really relaxing to let my mood determine my path today and not be bound by obligation. Sparked by the sermon at church, I was thinking further about defensiveness and a lack of love towards others. The most likely reason for this self-protection is to save oneself from pain. The problem with this (in unhealthy extremes) is that it reflects a lack of faith that God is over situations and is good, and that God is greater even than the pain that can result from interrelational misfires. God is good, and he allows us to hurt. He can use hurt for even greater good. (Relatively safe thoughts to think over a cup of coffee under a cozy lamp.) Much more difficult of course, in real life interactions.

If God is over us, then we need not fear what man can do to us. If God is over us, we need not fear that our own mistakes will subvert his greater plans. If God is over us, we need not fear.

Monday, April 17, 2006

Reaching Out, Pulling In,
Standing Up, Falling Down

Well, the air is cool and the sky is grey and promises of more spring (despite our weekend summer-interlude) are in the air. This makes me happy. One week between heater and air conditioner is not enough.

Mom and Dad left after stopping in for Easter. Larry, unfortunately, hated them, and is far happier for them to be gone. Mom saw lessons of unconditional love in Larry. Larry saw his peaceful home disrupted in Mom. We'll keep Mom and lose the cat.

Why is it harder to be loving, gentle and kind than to be sarcastic, jokey and indifferent? It is so much riskier to bare your heart. The Bible tells us to guard our hearts (what exactly does this mean?), yet Bible speaks much more frequently about showing love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, gentleness..... The world tells us to take care of ourselves and the underlying message is "if you don't, no one else will." Look out for numero uno and if others don't like it, they just need to move on.

It seems that God calls us so much more towards extending our hearts in loving, gentle care for others rather than pulling inward, working hard to ensure our own heart's safety. Is it possible that one path leads one onward and outward to greater good and glory, and the other towards isolation and solitary bitterness? We are the Body of Christ, called to show God's love in this world. Not just 'world' in general, but towards the individuals placed in our path. Is it possible to love without vulnerability? (I'm guessing not.)

None of us love perfectly, yet God's power is made perfect in weakness. God, I cannot love. I need you to do a mighty work in me.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Ahhh.... much better.

Taxes done and mailed. Food to eat and groceries in fridge. Happy Larry. Happy Heidi. What makes the difference? A simple four hours, that's what. Actually, today I took a half-day from work since it has been "Quiet City" at work (maybe all the kids are on Spring/Easter Break). This morning I got to revel in the beauty of my "Favorite Park in the World" and take care of dumb, little things. I didn't go to work till three in the afternoon. I felt so fresh at 7 when it was time to go home, I barely knew myself.

Ok, and anyone in the STL metro-area, take note. I have been observing that for the last three years, my supervisor always takes the second week of April off work. I have also observed that I feel pangs of envy EVERY TIME because it also happens to be the first week of consistently gorgeous weather. I'm just saying, plan accordingly.

This time of spring makes me want to just run away from responsibility and be one with nature. It's all the good things: sunshine, fragrant air, flowers, green grass, fluffy clouds, blue skies; without the bad: mosquitoes, baking heat, killer bees, summer traffic, lethargy.

Since I like the song in my head right now (began in HouseChurch tonight), I'll try to pass it on to you:

Hold To God's Unchanging Hand

Time is filled with swift transition
Naught of earth unmoved can stand
Build you hopes on things eternal
Hold to God's unchanging hand

Hold to God's unchanging hand
Hold to God's unchanging hand
Build you hopes on things eternal
Hold to God's unchanging hand

Trust in Him who will not leave you
Whatsoever years may bring
If by earthly friends forsaken
Still, more closely to Him cling

When your journey is completed
When the valley you pass through
Fair and bright the home in glory
Your enraptured soul will view

Monday, April 10, 2006

I've Got Better Things To Do

Today feels unsettled, like all-you-can-eat hotwings for lunch. Actually I had an egg mcmuffin for lunch. Maybe just an egg muffin, because there was no mc, it was home-cooked. Need to get my affairs in order. Need to polish off those tax returns, dishes, grocery shopping, cooking, people stuff, work, meetings, etc. BLAH! Ok, don't need to update blog. Bye.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Very Cute Baby Alert!
This is baby Alex, at about two months.

Monday, April 03, 2006

Quiet Night

Antsy again. The moon hangs mysterious over a cool spring evening. The storm winds have blown through, electricity is restored and I sit at home under a cozy, wool blanket and watch my enemy flicker at me, time-killer, the TV. I hate TV. So why am I watching TV tonight? 7th Heaven. Sappy, saccharine, sad that I am right here, right now. I don't like this show. I don't not like this show. I am completely indifferent. I want to be swept up into something epic and instead I'm eating reheated stir-fry and watching 7th Heaven.

I turn it off before the final10 minutes (which would have wrapped up all three plot lines!) and call a friend. Now I am online. IM-ing Tawa and Tina and thinking about taking a spring-eve's walk. Thinking about doing laundry. Not doing laundry. I think I will take a solitary walk under a moonlit sky and just listen to the breeze and think and pray. That sounds best of all.