Tuesday, February 10, 2015

I Surrender

No Chester has not killed us and there is not an ongoing appliance revolt! I am in fact still alive and for the most part doing well!  Now naming of the appliances and emptying of Chester aside, I am struggling in this game called life. And that my friends is why I have not enlightened anyone with my comical and/or ridiculous life stories recently.  To be completely honest, I am just really struggling with a situation.  I tend to be spiritual, but not necessarily religious and sometimes that means life is just HARD.  Maybe life is just hard anyways.  I think, it probably is.

If only life were as simple as the board game!

At Bible Club (Remember Bible Club is what we affectionately named our Bible Study group) last fall our focus was to become "One in a Million" (meaning one in a million is how many people God communicates directly to and we were to aspire to be  the "one").  To someone like me, that message was very daunting because I honestly am not that close to God.  I talk to him a lot while running (in my head) and I pray about things that really bother me while I fall asleep at night (also in my head).  Sometimes I do ask for his help when I am challenged by my kids and that is usually in my head too unless I cry out, "God, I could really use some help here because in case you haven't noticed things are not going well here." and that is usually after the shit has already hit the fan so to speak.  So I have limited God experience. Very limited.

So I have been struggling with a recent experience and I guess am finally ready to go public with it! You see, after Bible Club one night I had a real heart-to-heart with God (in my head still, but it was a longer conversation and I asked him to touch me in a way that would only be explainable by HIS presence so that I would feel like "one in a million"!)  Long story short, he did and I end up sponsoring Deny an orphan from Haiti, who like me suffers from hydrocephalus, and I know that this was GOD working in my life.  There are just TOO MANY coincidences in the long version of this story for it to be otherwise explained.  And so now here I am all RESTLESS again and confused.

And annoyed that's what I am.  I am annoyed with the American lifestyle (rich, selfish and materialistic) and the daily activities (soccer, swimming, watching television heaven forbid) because these things seem so trivial and unimportant.  I am frustrated with my kids because despite my attempts to teach them otherwise, they still believe that real problems involve Kindles, Pokemon cards and other material stuff.  Don't they understand that people are starving, and homeless, and suffering?  I try to explain it to them, but it is out of their realm of understanding because they live the GOOD life (a life of EXCESS) where they have more than they need and they never go to bed hungry unless they didn't finish their dinner.  Our kids are blessed and they don't even realize how good they have it.  I know they are young to understand these complexities, but still it leaves my heart heavy.

Eureka!  I might be making progress though! Tonight at dinner we were playing a fun "would you rather game" at our favorite place to eat out in Spring Lake Pruebelo (By the way this place is fabulous; You get great food and amazing prices. On Tuesdays kids eat free!  And they have $1 rootbeer floats everyday!)  So while playing this super fun game, one of the questions basically asked if you'd rather help someone else and get a little for yourself, or get a big jackpot all to yourself. And you know what!? All 3 of our kids chose to help someone out and take just a little for themselves.  This warmed my heart greatly!

Anyhow,  the other night I wasn't so lucky.  The other night the flood gates opened and I blew up like a volcano and right at the dinner table too.  I didn't say everything I wanted to say (which would be a complete repetition of this post) but I did point out that just once I would like to have them thank me for the meal I prepared instead of immediately complaining about it or refusing to eat it.  I noted that fighting with each other as they join the dinner table (which was the current issue at hand) was disrespectful and unacceptable; To fit the mood, I went ahead and addressed the issue in truly dramatic fashion.  And then I started crying, said I was too upset to eat and walked away from the dinner table.  SILENCE FOLLOWED.  And while I can't prove it, I am pretty sure quiet conversations were had about my eyebrows.

And I went into our bedroom and started running a bath so that I could run away and hide in my bath tub like I often do when confronted with bad situations and completely exhausted (both of which applied to my situation).  In an act of sheer desperation, I said out aloud, "God what should I do?" and He quickly answered, "you have to go back to dinner" not out loud, but still he answered me.  And that was not the answer I was looking for people.  I wanted to hide in the comfort of my jetted bathtub (yes I am spoiled too) and pout and throw my own little fit. I felt I deserved it.  However, after my God moment, I put on my big girl pants and my "happy" eyebrows and headed back out to the battlefield that was my dinner table.  I really do believe the quote up above "families who eat together stay together"  and I guess this story boils down to my basic and fundamental desire to have an enjoyable meal time with my family once daily. 

So coming full circle, I feel I really need to go to Haiti-God is calling me there to spread His word. "Veronica buy a ticket so you are fully committed to this crazy thing. Go to Haiti and hug Deny in person." I hear words like these in God's voice almost daily.  Crazy as it sounds, I could actually go to Haiti to volunteer at the orphanage where Deny lives. They have a real bonafide volunteer program and would welcome my service!

Now admittedly there are some complex family issues involved in this-I am super simplifying this story.  Out of respect for my family, oh and so this story doesn't become a full length novel, I will avoid the details and leave it as a somewhat crazy volunteer dream that I can't seem to forget. And I do realize it is kinda crazy, but as my friends who are adopting from Haiti have said, "thanks for supporting our crazy GOD dream".  So here it is-- my very own crazy GOD DREAM. This post is my full-length answer to the brief question, "why aren't you writing lately? It's because I am wrestling with this one A LOT and it has distracted me from writing.   It is because I can seem to get the picture of Deny in his Christmas outfit out of my head.

I will just ask for your prayers as I wrestle on with my God Dream and leave you with this final quote,

PS: At work we do weekly Grace Cards. They are a fun deck of cards and each card offers helpful life quotes or lessons on them.  The intent is to help guide you through the game of Life.  My card twice during this same time period that I have been wrestling with this crazy Haiti Dream has said, "Surrender is the key that unlocks the door to grace".  I surrender!

PPS I know I sounded like I was atop a soap box for part of this; I don't have everything figured out anymore than the next guy or gal, but I was just sharing a glimpse of the feelings and beliefs I have surrounding this.

Vern Out

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