I was thinking of contrasts today. Chilly here and 90 in Africa. Raining here but snowing up the street. Contrasts. But weather related contrasts weren’t the only ones I was thinking of. I smile now — because the day’s over and everything got done that needed to get done — but I smile, too, bcz early in the day I was fretting about some of the “such things as I have” and the condition of some of the “such things as I have.” And, by the way, some of those “such things as I have” were not things at all – they were schedules, relationships, children, etc., etc.
Now, I’m generally pretty content with the “such things as I have” things of life — until I’m not. And when I’m not, I fret. I worry. I compare. I doubt. And then I must needs repent. Truly. It’s almost as if I can see a visible dark cloud hanging over me when I begin to travel down that path – and I know it’s not a path of faith and trust. I have to stop and literally tell myself that whatever it is I am fretting over is really not that important or I have to ask: is this really that important? Is what I’m concerned over really mine to carry or whatever? What I endeavor to say is: if I’m the Lord’s – and I am, then I needn’t fret over the things I do or don’t have, the schedules or the children or the relationships or whatever else I’m fretting about. For, if I’m the Lord’s – and I am, then I have somehow stepped off the path or somehow determined I can and do know what’s best for me or how things are going to work out or whatever. And one precious thing I do know is this: what a blessing to not know what’s down the road or to not know just exactly the details and order of the outcome of things in my life.
I am working at being contented with the “whatsoeverthingsIhavetoday” things of life. For, all of these tasks, all of these needs to meet, all of these relationships, expectations and interruptions are all part of the “whatsoeverthingsIhavetoday” that God has given me – both for my good and His glory ( should I be faithful to yield my heart to Him and to obey). I know I want to obey I know I want to trust Him – and truly, these are not just precious words to a favourite hymn: I know I want to trust and obey, for truly I know there’s no other way to be happy in Jesus, but to trust and obey.
I continue to work at being content… and I think of Philippians 4.11
Not that I speak in respect of want:
for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am,
therewith to be content.
I used to say: especially if that state is California… but I
try not to don’t say that very often much anymore. really.
So, let’s see… on the home front, we have turned another corner. We’ve made some practical adjustments to our schedule and day to day activities, juggled the dailies and reassigned chores and have set our minds to work, so to speak, so that we can be more productive each day. We had slipped into some pretty sloppy habits… with chores and schoolwork and playtime and bedtime all sort of getting mixed up and out of order. So, it was a necessary thing to talk over all these things and make an adjustment in our course. So, consequently, our rise ‘n shine time is much earlier again – as is bedtime.
I think I’ve gotten all the laundry done and I don’t see Timothy’s things coming through the wash now (except the items the different brothers absconded). I smile as I think of him… I could tell from his letter today he’s doing fine; happy to be where he is, and from piecing different notes together that he has sent to me and to some of the children, I’d say he is adjusting to life in Africa just fine. It’s a very hard life compared to here in America – there are very few amenities and fewer luxuries – those have likely already run out. But he’s where he’s always wanted to be and that’s just fine with me… Fine doesn’t necessarily mean easy – but like I’ve said before, I’d rather have him in the Hand of the LORD anywhere in the world than anywhere outside of the will of the LORD. I’d never want to spare him discomfort if it would mean compromising truth and trust in the LORD.
It’s all good.
It might not be all that noticeable, but I’m attempting to steer clear of hot topics floating in the blogosphere these days. Sometime back, my husband made a comment that we ought to have a strong conviction to work at charity in speech and so… I thought it fitting to recall what he said and to let those words sink down into these fingers and refrain from all the controversies. You know, years ago when I first started blogging… it was just simply a means to daily make notes of what was going on in our home, comments on mails I was receiving, websites I was visiting, and occasionally, comments regarding the ‘state of the church’ and some political going’s on. I just blogged informally for fun and info.
Nowadays, there are blogs are everywhere —great blogs everywhere— and that’s just it: great blogs everywhere (and not enough time to read them all – good as they are!). But there’s also another thing going on and that is the proliferation of blogs that are used to take potshots and sabotage others. I know we all engage in that to one degree or another (me included) from time to time in our speech or writing. But it sure seems there’s a lot more going on recently and it’s sad — O, it might be expected in the mainstream media, of course, but among believers, there ought to be a bit more discretion… especially when we’re dealing with things that are the “gray” areas of the Word — those things that are not clearly spelled out and yet are part of the Word – I think maybe part of the ‘he who has ears to hear, let him hear.” Sometimes those gray areas are what define us or distinguish us from others – either in the world or in the church – so we may bring up an issue, a trend or a topic – a book or an article or some other matter – share it, perhaps discuss it and then let it go at that. God knows… and He’ll work. I think there’s some value in discussion; but to continually dredge up and take part in all the ugliness of debates is really a poor use of time and space – both for the writer and the readers.
Besides, we all have so many “such things as we have” to deal with.