Thursday, November 23, 2006


Like Tevya, from "Fiddler on the Roof", I like tradition. But since the death of my mom twelve years ago, our family traditions have change dramatically. They would have changed anyway - everything does. People move out of town, weather or illness keep people at home, family situations change... But things were forced along more quickly than they would normally have occurred without mom. I mourn the loss of the Thanksgiving traditions of my youth. The new traditions don't measure up at all. And so I look forward to heaven, where new traditions will be established, and if they change it won't be cause for mourning, but for new dancing.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Lifestyle Budgeting

I love Friday nights. Friday nights are filled with the hope of all that I will accomplish over the next two days of freedom. I start to plan everything I will accomplish over the weekend. I wake early on Saturday mornings and start to check things off my list. It is then that I discover that I'm trying to fit 50 hours of activities in to 48 hours of time...not including sleep. Then I give up and take a nap.

This happens all the time in all areas of my life. My eyes are bigger than my stomach, my wants are bigger than my checkbook, and my plans are bigger than my calendar.

Why do I do this to myself?

I was recently reading an article about Martha and Mary (In case you didn't already guess, I'm a "Martha"). There were references to "Tyranny of the Urgent". Finally there were some questions at the end of the article, one of which asked "When was the last time you found yourself frantically busy? Could you have avoided the rush?"

Even after having thoughtfully read the article, I still answered that I could have avoided the rush if I were more organized. Apparently the ideas of wisdom and discernment in daily activities escaped me. I still don't choose what Mary chose - "the good part, which shall not be taken away from her".

As I consider my constant quest for order and organization, I've often felt it was some defect in my character that I've been unable to achieve this goal. At other times, I've felt it was God's curse for some past sin that I haven't been able to remember (and therefore repent of). Now, however, I'm thinking this may be God's blessing.

Just like He confused language during the building of the Tower of Babel, He's kept me from attaining order to the degree I'd like to keep me from believing I can achieve things apart from Him.

Funny thing, though, is that I never considered myself a goal-oriented personality. I thought that if I were, I'd be some high-powered, wealthy executive. This is a dangerous stereotype, I guess. Just because I don't look like what I think a goal-oriented person is, doesn't mean I'm not one. And even if the goals look like they are "Christian", they can actually be distracting me, taking me away from the One I aim to please.