Saturday, July 09, 2011

(Unedited) Writing Project #3

She ran in to Wal-Mart to pick up a printer cartridge, but as often happened, she found herself taking the circuitous route to the needed aisle, winding her way through the Baby department. Today she looked at car seats and swings and toys. Checking the labels for the ages, 0-3months, 3 -6 months, 6+months. She imagined what toys she would pick out for her baby – today it was a son she was imagining, so her fantasy purchases were either neutral or boy colors and characters – Winnie the Pooh, trucks, tractors.

Not too long ago, people watching her might think the purchases were for her own child, but now, 4 days shy of her 50th birthday, people would think they were for her grandchild. It was cottonwood season; the white fluffy things were all through the atmosphere, so if anyone caught her with teary eyes, she would make some offhand remark about allergies.

The emotional pain she felt took on a physical sensation, such that she found her hand unconsciously rising up to her heart. Anyone watching her might thing she was having a heart attack. What excuse would she make up to cover that?

Really, she was having a heart attack of sorts. Just not one that medicine could treat. Her heart was under emotional attack and she had no defense. There was no weapon she knew to wield against these assailants. She was a helpless victim.

She’d read articles about how many infertile women cried when their periods started because once again they were not pregnant. Every 28 days, she found herself anxiously looking for traces of her cycle’s beginning; evidence that she was still able to conceive, if any man would ever find her desirable enough for a relationship.

Afraid she’d run in to someone she knew, she found her way to the printer supplies and bought the required cartridge and proceeded to the checkout. By the time she left the store and got in her car, the tears had welled up. Fortunately, it was dark and so no one would see her crying. She wouldn’t have to use the allergy lie and could save it for another day.

Friday, July 08, 2011

Friday Funnies

1.  When I was in high school, I worked at church bingo pushing the refreshment cart through the aisles.  The ladies referred to me as "pop girl".  Yesterday, at the nursing home where I work, I was pushing a cart filled with incontinence products when a resident referred to me as the "Attends Lady".  So, is this a promotion or a demotion????

2.  While distributing the aforementioned incontinence products, the following conversation took place:
  • Resident:  "How long 'til you retire?"
  • Me:  "About 20 years."
  • Resident:  "Holy sh*t!"
  • Me:  "That's what I say to myself every morning."

Thursday, July 07, 2011

Sitting on Abba's Lap

"Fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge" so says Solomon in Prov 1; fear being respect and humility for God's ultimate authority and great power.  I understand this.  But it wasn't until I stopped living in fear of Him and started seeing Him as Abba/Father/Daddy that I started becoming comfortable in His presence (BTW, this is still a work in progress).

Yes, He is the King of Kings and Lord of Lords and I approach Him as I might the Queen of England - head bowed, small, shy curtsy - but sometimes I just want to run up to Him, climb in to His lap, and be shielded in His strong, giant arms.  Where is the fear of the Lord in that?

Tuesday, July 05, 2011

Thoughts on Thinking

"I think; therefore, I am" said DesCartes.

So, if one thinks a lot, does that make him alot?  Not really.

I think a lot.  I have a lot of alone time with which to think.  I think too much.  And I find out I am not much; not much of anything, really.

I think about all I am, all I've accomplished, all I need to accomplish, all I want to accomplish and I find...not much of anything, really.

Solomon said, "vanity, vanity, all is vanity.  He was more on the money.

Sunday, July 03, 2011

(Unedited) Writing Project #2

Outside of her faith, there was nothing she could identify that was right. Not her job, not her home, not her finances. Certainly not her social life or relationships – she had none of either. She merely subsisted. Her goal each day was to survive until the next, but it was getting increasingly difficult to do so.

The times at home alone were the hardest. Despite her dissatisfaction with her job, at least it filled her time for 8 hours each day. But when alone, she faced the blank sheet of paper that was her life and filled it with scratches and scribbles of unorganized and unconnected thoughts. Like graffiti on a wall, her mind and heart were marred with anger and discontent and self-pity. She tried to distract herself with exercise, eating, reading and daydreams but after what seemed like most of her 50 years, these old coping mechanisms were no longer working. They were overwhelmed by the thoughts of sadness, regret and resentment. Like a tsunami of emotions, they tossed her about, one thought crashing into another, slamming her in to walls of memories and disappointments. She was drowning and no one about her seemed to notice or maybe they just had more important things with which to be concerned.

Those she loved and who loved her were involved in their own lives, with their own struggles. No one had the time to rescue her from the ocean of grief from which she was trying to escape. They were too busy trying to keep themselves and their families afloat until they found solid ground themselves. And there was her greatest fear – if she was drowning and their child or spouse were drowning who would they save? If she and their child or spouse were in a burning building, who would they save? Their loved one, obviously. And she was not the loved one – not to anyone she knew.

She’d had great parents. Sure they’d made mistakes, but all parents do. She’d always known they loved her and her sibling but they’d expended so much effort trying to parcel out there love to each of their children in equal portion that she never knew what it was like to be greatly and uniquely loved. Faced with all their children drowning at once and unable to save them all, her parents would probably let them all drown because they could not bear the unrescued ones thinking they’d been loved less.

But it was easy to focus on what was not going right - there were so many items from which to pick.  Her faith was right.  How could faith in Jesus be wrong?  It just wasn't very strong and she was afraid it wouldn't bear her weight much longer.  Somehow, she'd lose her grip and tumble into the dark abyss.

Saturday, July 02, 2011

Love in Small Letters

I have many people who love me. But there is no one who LOVES me - or even Loves me. I know there are many who have few, if any that love them. And I know comparisons are prideful, egotistical, joy-killers. But even without comparing my lot in life, the desire for LOVE doesn't go away. When I go to church or women's group or (fill in the blank) I see people who are LOVED, hear sermons on LOVE, but I don't ever experience it personally.

Yes, I have Jesus' LOVE. But so do all the believers around me. And they still have the LOVE/Love of other human beings.

The Word says I'm supposed to be content in all circumstances, but I confess I'm not. It's like being forced to eat something I don't like. "Barb, eat your Brussels sprouts. There are starving children in Bangladesh." I might eat the Brussels sprouts, but I still don't like them. Again, when I'm at church, etc it's like sitting down at a meal to a plate of those damned Brussels sprouts while everyone around me is eating steak. Then I'm criticized for not enjoying my meal.
love lets me come to the meal with my despised Brussels sprouts.
Love would eat one or two sprouts with me. We'd make faces as we chewed, and encourage each other while we struggled to swallow.  We might even laugh about it. Brussels sprouts would still taste just as bad, but their horrible flavor and sulfurous odor would be more tolerable because of the companionship of a fellow sufferer.  A burden shared is half a burden...
LOVE would skip their steak and fill their plate with sprouts and sit down with me. Jesus did this when He humbled Himself to become a human being. He forsook all the honor, power and privilege of His Godliness and took on the manly being.  Heck, Jesus took my Brussels sprouts and gave me His steak.

I have His LOVE. But aren't we supposed to be like Jesus?  Aren't we supposed to love/LOVE/Love like Jesus? Where is my human LOVE? love times 100 never equals one LOVE. I'd like just one LOVE.