Monthly Archives: April 2007

My small group is in the process of digging a little deeper with each other and these were the questions sent to reflect upon, though by no means the only questions or with any necessity to respond to any of them. But I did because RIGHT NOW it was important for me to reflect upon them for me, not just for my small group.

1. Where are you in your walk with the Lord? Does He seem close, or far away? Why? How?

He’s only as far away as me remembering to talk to Him. He seems close by, but I often fail to include him in what I’m doing because I’m just not thinking about Him. I wish I could keep Him closer in my consciousness. Hopefully some of the steps I’m taking below will remedy this situation.

2. Where is your faith right now, does it feel strong, or weak? Why? Can you share an example?

My faith right now is both strong and weak. I am always vaguely afraid that I will have the rug pulled out from under me and discover it is all a big virus of false belief in something that doesn’t actually exist. On the other hand, I am frequently reminded that I DO BELIEVE and that I have reasons to believe that make sense. It is hard for me to stand on faith alone, somewhat like standing on a log above a river. I’d rather a full rock outcropping to stand on, jutting out above the river’s rushing waters.

3. How are you feeling about your relationship with Jesus? Good? Bad? Why? What would you like to change?

My relationship with Jesus could be closer, but it feels good. It’s distant but comfortable, maybe too comfortable. I want to know Him better but I need to take the steps to make that happen. Specifically I plan to spend more time reading the Bible and I have decided to apply to Seminary to immerse myself in that relationship, with an outcome leading to God’s calling for me. I am SO EXCITED about this I can hardly stand it!

4. Do you have a mountain in your life at the moment? What is it? How can we pray for you?

Mount Trust blocks my view at every turn. Or maybe it’s Mount Lack-of-trust. It all boils down to fear. When you find out that you cannot trust the people in your life that you implicitly trusted, it becomes a world fraught with fear because it can happen again with anyone in your life, and you don’t know who.

5. Is the Lord asking you to do something that scares you? What is it? How can we support you?

He’s asking me to get to know Him better and He’s asking me to help other people get to know him better. He’s calling me into some form of ministry, possibly intertwined with writing. I’d like more clarity but I am willing to wait and see how it all plays out. “I am the Lord’s servant.” – Luke 1:38

Also, John 7:16-18: Jesus answered, “My teaching is not my own. It comes from him who sent me. If anyone chooses to do God’s will, he will find out whether my teaching comes from God or whether I speak on my own. He who speaks on his own does so to gain honor for himself, but he who works for the honor of the one who sent him is a man of truth; there is nothing false about him.

6. How’s your prayer life? Are you spending time alone with the Lord? How is that affecting your life?

I pray a lot throughout the day, but I get distracted easily and forget what I am doing. I need to be spending more time reading the Bible, memorizing scripture. To this end I have made some changes to my Internet Home Page to bring me face to face with the scriptures every time I go online. As this is all day long most work days, this should help monumentally. Just making the change felt good.

7. Does the Lord have a theme in your life right now? What is it? What are you learning?

Patience and Waiting on the Lord. Not making wrong decisions in order to have made a decision, but waiting to make the RIGHT decisions. I’m learning to seek God’s will by keeping still and listening for when things fall into place in the way that tells me “This is Right, this is Good, this is Truth, this is why I made you wait, this is of the Lord.” And then, having the courage to make those decisions and follow-through on them.

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I am applying for Seminary to study Christian Spiritual Formation and Discipleship, and this song describes how I feel, pretty much exactly:

Just Showed Up For My Own Life

Spending my time sleep walking
Moving my mouth but not saying a thing
Hoping the changes would take by working their way from the outside in
I was in love with an idea
Preoccupied with how a life should appear
Spending my time at the surface repairing the holes in the shiny veneer

There are so many ways to hide
There are so many ways not to feel
There are so many ways to deny what is real

And I just showed up for my own life
And I’m standing here taking it in and it sure looks bright

I’m going to live my life inspired
Look for the holy in the common place
Open the windows and feel all that’s honest and real until I’m truly amazed
I’m going to feel all my emotions
I’m going to look you in the eyes
I’m going to listen and hear until it’s finally clear and it changes our lives

There are so many ways to hide
There are so many ways not to feel
There are so many ways to deny what is real

And I just showed up for my own life
And I’m standing here taking it in and it sure looks bright

Oh the glory of God is man fully alive
Oh the glory of God is man fully alive


There are so many ways to hide
There are so many ways not to feel
There are so many ways to deny what is real

And I just showed up for my own life
And I’m standing here taking it in and it sure looks bright

~ Sara Groves


Commemoration

In 1966, 41 years ago today, my mother was at a birthday party with my older brother, a party for one of his preschool buddies. The cake had just been served with ice cream and my mom was enjoying her treat, when… *BAM* time to go to the hospital! Apparently I wanted some cake and ice cream too because I wanted out right then! She was rushed off to give birth to yours truly. I have always wondered what happened with my brother. Did he have to leave the party? If not, how did he get home? Was there someone there to take care of him? It’s very unclear to me, and while I’m sure it doesn’t matter, it leaves me with this vague picture of how that day went, and I’d like it to be more clear.

My dad apparently didn’t rush off to the hospital as he’d learned from the first baby that these things take time, so why rush? My mom was a bit less than thrilled about this obviously because she mentioned it to me. Why bother remembering it if it didn’t bug her, right? I think that in those days the dad was not in the room when babies were born anyhow, and knowing my dad, he probably figured what was the point in being there if he was just going to sit in a waiting room chair for hours. I really don’t know. Asking him would just bring on the tears and the “woe is me, i was such a terrible father” routine, so I doubt I’ll ever ask. I’m less than impressed with the big show of contriteness. Perhaps if he wouldn’t make it out like HE was the victim to feel sorry for I would be more forgiving, but frankly I was the one who was ignored most of my childhood, so an apology and request for forgiveness would go further with me than the big sob story.

The next chapter of the birth story is a little disturbing. I was a Rhesus baby, meaning my mother had developed antibodies in her blood to my blood cell type when my brother was born. (During any pregnancy a small amount of the baby’s blood can enter the mother’s circulation. If the mother is Rh negative and the baby is Rh positive, the mother produces antibodies (including IgG) against the Rhesus D antigens on her baby’s red blood cells. During this and subsequent pregnancies the IgG is able to pass through the placenta into the fetus and if the level of it is sufficient it will cause a Rhesus D positive fetus to develop Rh disease. The mechanism is maternal anti-D IgG passing through the placenta to the fetus causing destruction of fetal red blood cells. Generally Rhesus disease becomes worse with each additional Rhesus incompatible pregnancy.) The effect on me was her blood cells were trying to kill off my blood cells. (Rh disease (also known as Rh (D) disease, Rhesus disease, RhD Haemolytic Disease of the Newborn, Rhesus D Haemolytic Disease of the Newborn or RhD HDN) is one of the causes of hemolytic disease of the newborn (also known as HDN). The disease ranges from mild to severe. When the disease is mild the fetus may have mild anaemia with reticulocytosis. When the disease is moderate or severe the fetus can have a more marked anaemia and erythroblastosis (erythroblastosis fetalis). When the disease is very severe it can cause morbus haemolyticus neonatorum, hydrops fetalis, or stillbirth.)  In 1968 the US began vaccinating women for this, but prior to then, when the baby was born and noted to have anemia or jaundice, there would be a blood transfusion required to try to fix the problem.  Now, one must remember (or be told) that in 1966 babies were still whisked away immediately by a nurse. No tender bonding period with mother and father in a nice comfy birthing room back then. So, given that i was born jaundiced (that means i was all yellowish and sickly looking) I was extra quickly whisked off and my mom wasn’t given the chance to see me at all, nor was she told what was going on. I suppose this wasn’t completely foreign to her since it was common, but it went on for longer than usual. She was in the hospital bed writing out baby announcements (how organized of her! gee!), when my dad came in the room and said “I wouldn’t send those baby announcements out just yet….” and then left again. My mom was freaking out. My dad isn’t a bad guy, he’s not malicious in any way, but he’s clueless sometimes with a capital C, and thoughtless in the “not thinking” way, not in the selfish way.

As it turned out, the transfusion went well, I became a nice pink healthy baby, my mom got to send out the baby announcements, and all’s well that ends well in the birth story of me. When reading over the Rhesus information however, I suddenly realized how lucky I was! Lots of babies died or developed severe retardation. 

As a child I was pretty small. My stepmother used to think I was being malnourished because I was so little and skinny. But I don’t think it had anything to do with the Rh disease, just genetics. Besides at 12 I grew and grew (I have stretch marks to memorialize the fact) until I stopped at 5’2″ making me a giant in comparison to the other kids in my 6th grade class.  In those days wavy bottom platform shoes were all the rage. When I was entering 7th grade I looked everywhere for something without the height because I didn’t like being so much taller than the rest of my classmates. Turns out I was the same height as everyone else in that year, and my fuss was all for naught (as usual.) By 8th grade everyone else had grown past me and I became the shorty I am today. If only I could have stayed skinny though! 😦

Today I am thinking about my mom and what she had to go through more than I am thinking about myself and turning another year older. Must be one of those developmental things.

Tonight my husband is making me his (IMHO) “WORLD FAMOUS BAKED MACARONI AND CHEESE”. I couldn’t believe it when I found myself asking for macaroni and cheese for my birthday. (“Who are you and what have you done with me?”)

Last night my lovely daughter gave me this very cool mug for my birthday. (WHICH I JUST TURNED UPSIDE DOWN TO SEE WHO MADE IT, ONLY IT STILL HAS/HAD COFFEE IN IT!!!!!!!!!! o m g! what a dork!)

I think gift cards are the gift of choice these days. So far I have received a Starbucks card, a Fred Meyer (a Pacific NW store that sells … well, basically everything ….. food, pharmacy, clothes, shoes, jewelry, electronics, furniture, tools, plants, etc.) card, and an Applebee’s card.

My mom stopped by my work yesterday afternoon to bring me a card and a present (earrings) and some money (woot!). I’m not entirely clear if she thought my birthday was yesterday or if she was just trying to be on top of things. She’s well known for missing birthdays altogether until a week after the fact, so being early was remarkable. She’s also 70 years old and getting a bit…. well, confused and forgetful. When I’m around her I definitely feel like the parent to her child. It’s kind of sad for me watching her become the person that I need to take care of and knowing that she can no longer take care of me if needed.  On the other hand, she’s always there for me when I need a temporary financial influx (she loaned us the money to buy a house.) So I guess she does still take care of me in some ways. But I have to help her figure out how to get places and remind her what she’s doing and who people are and what’s going on. Her father died with Alzehimer’s Disease and I expect she may too which I am really dreading. And worse, I’m severely afraid I too will end up in that limbo of being alive but not being able to remember who my loved ones are or why I love them.

Anyway, today is not a day to be maudlin, today is a day to celebrate my being here and being alive and being well-loved. So, HAPPY DAY!

p.s. I have noticed that I am practically incapable of writing a SHORT entry. I should learn how, perhaps I would post more often!


It’s supposed to get to 80F here today. 8-0!!!!

So yesterday I got blinded by sunlight (a big problem in Oregon apparently, the first place I’ve ever heard of that has traffic jams due to sun) and had to buy some sunglasses.
40f7_2
They kill me! I look like I’m trying to channel Jackie Onassis! Who knew enormous sunglasses would ever come back in style? The plus side is a) they are very comfortable, and b) they fully cover my eye area so I don’t have bright light coming in from the sides or whatever. I think I look quite chic in them! hahaha!

And, since we have a hot tub, and are filling it back up this weekend, I realized I need a new swimsuit and ended up with this:
L07-27213 NAV copy
Which I think is just so cute!! Put together I look very retro… heehee. Wasn’t my plan, but there ya go, that must be what’s in style because that’s what is available. 🙂


“Wise men talk because they have something to say; fools, because they have to say something.” — Plato

I’ve been trying to decide today which of those categories I fit in. I generally feel that I have a certain amount of wisdom to impart. That being said, I sometimes post here or chat with someone just to say something, not that I have something to impart. However, I like to think I’m usually saying something because i have something to say.  A timely story on this topic has me irked:

In my guild (in World of Warcraft) I am generally a bit quiet, I don’t get to play as often as many people, I don’t know everyone, and I don’t know the guild master (GM) very well at all. He has just returned to that position after a hiatus of some length at which time a really great couple of guys took over, but recent circumstances led them to stop. One quit the game altogether because of real life and another game capturing his attention. The other stepped down because of the pressure plus real life stuff.

The guild has been going through some turmoil as of late due to a change in the way the game is set up to play for people at the top level. An expansion came out that really changed everything. Some people love it, some don’t. A bunch of bitching and moaning commenced about people feeling left out or ignored and unimportant, and some people left the guild (including my daughter) amidst some harsh feelings toward the guild as an entity. Okay, fine, that is going to happen when changes come along. Nobody is going to be happy all of the time, and some people aren’t going to be happy most of the time, and some people will have no problem most of the time. It’s the nature of people in response to change to feel uneasy, to feel protective of what they have, to want to feel important.

Anyway, our new-again GM has made some changes recently to the set-up of the guild in order to delegate some of the responsibility to the lower levels and not have to make all decisions personally or as a council of officers. More changes to a group of already unsettled people. My M.O. is to kind of sit back, let it all settle out a bit, and then see where things are going. I will step in to make observations as I see a need, but otherwise, I just don’t get involved in all the drama. My play time is short enough without all that crap.

All this to say that last night a decision was made by a lower level person that didn’t hold up at all with the rules as they have been told to us time and time again about something. It was a decision that I felt was perhaps hasty and not well thought out. I knew it would ruffle feathers. So, I sent a private message to the new GM asking if the rules had changed and pointing out that it was bound to cause problems for some people who have been on the effected side of those rules to see them suddenly circumvented by one member who was recently given some power. I pointed out that those same rules had been very frustrating for me, not to complain, but to give an example of why some people would be mad. After all, he’s been out of the game and the group for a few months. 

Today he posted on our guild forums a post about belly-achers and complainers being about 5% of any group, and that when changes are made they inevitably float to the top of the pool. That he wasn’t going to put up with those types. That it was HIS party and he would see fit to uninvite anyone who wanted to carry on that way, in order to keep the party fun and going.

Was I one of the 5%? I don’t know. I sent him a message via email today asking, with the message that I don’t complain, I observe, and if he didn’t want my observations that was fine, i’d keep them to myself, and if he didn’t want me “at the party” to let me know. We’ll see. I’m not so sure I want to be at his party in any case… the host is kind of a jerk if you ask me.

There are other parties going on besides his, and I can find my fun elsewhere.