Friday, July 30, 2010

Today, life sucks

I don't even know where to start.

I stopped at Big 10 Tires today to have my car checked over in preparation for my road trip to NC on Monday.  The diagnosis:  I need an alignment and two new tires (because the tires are wearing unevenly because they are out of alignment).  That is the bare minimum I need in order to get to NC safely.  But in addition to that, I have a transmission pan leak and I need my rear brakes adjusted.  AND THAT IS WHAT IS SO MADDENING!  I just had my 60,000 mile service done less than two months ago, I should not have problems with those things two months after they were just tended to!  I shelled out enough money that there should not be any problems with my car.

Of course, money is a concern - I am just making it with a part time income.  And I was already wondering how I was going to pay for my dog's yearly shots and heartworm medicine next month.  I guess it is a good thing I have a birthday coming up.  There's nothing more fun than spending birthday money on necessities.

What hurts the most:  missing out on quality family time because I have to spend tomorrow getting second opinions to make sure little inexperienced girl here is not being taken advantage of by car guys.  My little niece's voice over the phone saying, "No Aunt Katrina, you have to come" just twists the knife.

To only make it worse, this is what is running through my mind:  "If only I had taken it in a day or two earlier like I had planned...I would probably be able to go tomorrow."  "If only I had gotten my tires balanced and rotated regularly, my tires would have lasted more than half their lifespan."

So if car woes, lack of money and missing family time wasn't enough, I add a dash of guilt because I think that I could have avoided all of this.  And I probably could, if I took care of my car like I should have, getting my tires rotated and balanced regularly.  I hate that I had to learn this lesson the hard way, but I guess now I know.

Conclusion:  yeah, today, life sucked.  I'm glad tomorrow's another day, and that in a month, my car stuff will be resolved.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

A funny thing

I have to preface this story with a little background. It is not that
often that I "dress up" (even remotely), nor wear perfume or smelly
lotion. In the past, when I have dressed up, I always seem to put on
some kind of scent. I guess it is a habit now to wear something smelly
when I dress up.

So I am getting ready this morning and decide to "dress up" a little
since I would be going to a bridal shower after church service. Per my
habit (which seems weird to me because it is totally unintentional), I
decided to put on my Victoria's Secret lotion (probably my favorite
scent, not that I am familiar with many for it to be a legitimate

Flash forward to the shower: I was there for a few hours an every now
and then I would smell something nice and think, "Oh, that smells
good, I wonder what it is" then my thoughts would return to the
shower. It could have been the candles burning or any other of the 30
women in the room, but I was not that concerned about figuring out
what or who it was. Finally, I am driving home, by myself, and realize
"Oh, it's me that smells good." : P How silly...

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Weekend Revelations

So it is finally coming together in my mind and I think reaching my heart as well.

Chapter 7 in Traveling Light by Max Lucado, I read a perspective that has become ingrained in my thinking and has been working on my heart - in a good way.
We ask God, "Where is the path?  Where are you taking me?"  And he, like the guide, doesn't tell us.  Oh, he may give us a hint or two, but that's all.  If he did, would we understand?  Would we comprehend our location?  No, like the traveler, we are unacquainted with this jungle.  So rather than give us an answer, Jesus gives us a far greater gift.  He gives us himself.

...everything changes when your rescuer appears.  Your loneliness diminishes, because you have fellowship.  Your despair decreases, because you have vision.  Your confusion begins to lift, because you have direction.  Please note:  you have not left the jungle.  It hasn't changed, but you have...because you have hope...because you have met someone that can lead you out. ...Jesus doesn't give us hope by changing the jungle; he restores our hope [by changing us].
And that is what God has been doing in me, restoring my hope by changing me.  (I did not even realize how hopeless I felt.)  What I have learned:

The destination is not the point or the goal, and not even the journey is the point or goal, but Jesus is - Jesus is the goal, the prize...and I have already attained that.  :)

My jungle is developing my team of ministry partners, being unclear as to what step to take next, and not knowing how or when I will ever reach my dream of doing full time minsitry.  This jungle may seem like a period of waiting - waiting for the day of which I dream - but it is a period of walking with my LORD, as is all of life.  I do not want to be looking forward so much that I miss what he has for me right now, that I miss more precious time with him.  He is my hope amidst the jungle, and even if I am "lost" in this "jungle" for a prolonged period of time, I have already been found in the most important way - by my Hope, my Guide - and so long as I am with him, that is all that matters - I have all I need and am not truly lost.

Bottom line:  Life's value is not defined by our actions, but rather, by our relationships.  Living is not constantly looking toward the future; living is enjoying and taking part in the present.