Sunday, February 27, 2011

What Does Holiness Look Like?


While I'm on a posting binge, some thoughts of mine from a few months ago:

We pray for holiness and revival in our lives.
And yet we don't know what it is we are asking for.

Holiness is not a sudden state of being; a confident feeling of glory, an overwhelming knowledge of the Presence of God. Holiness is simply being LIKE GOD.

And where shall we go to find out how to be like God? We ought to go to God Incarnate, walking about the earth in our frail and limited human form and watch what holiness is and what holiness does when the sinner presses in, when the sick and needy reach out to touch, when the hypocrites sit round, and then what Holiness does when the multitudes depart.

Read the gospels and you will see holiness in human form in action. You cannot yet be like the glorified God who sits in the heavens. Your life will not look like His. But your life should look like Jesus of Nazareth moment by moment as you live in holiness.

The Husband Who Isn't What You Wanted


I know, I know... I'm not married so I don't know anything about marriage. I know I don't.
But, quotes like this are too good to pass up.
And if you, married person, resent me posting marriage "stuff" on my blog... just think of it this way: I'm posting it for myself. Because really, I am. :)

"You're just going to need to get rid of the idea that marriage will make you happy. It won't. Once the initial high wears off, you'll just be you, except with twice as much laundry.

Because ultimately, marriage is not about getting something -- it's about giving it.

....The bottom line is that marriage is just a long-term opportunity to practice loving someone even when they don't deserve it. Because most of the time, your messy, farting, macaroni-and-cheese eating man will not be doing what you want him to. But as you give him love anyway -- because you have made up your mind to transform yourself into a person who is practicing being kind, deep, virtuous, truthful, giving, and most of all, accepting of your own dear self -- you will find that you will experience the very thing you wanted all along:

Love."

Tracy McMillan, on the Huffington Post: "Why You're Not Married."

Mine to Do... and Not Mine to Do

Seriously?!

I just spent my four hours of rare quiet, unscheduled time on a Sunday evening emailing a bazillion legislative updates, because I need to leave for my day of prenatals at 7 am tomorrow.... and most of the "updates" pertain to stuff that MUST be done/figured out by the legislative committee tomorrow while I'm ignoring my emails and doing prenatal visits and preparing to drive back to Jefferson City to sit through a meeting I'd desperately like to escape from instead.

Sometimes I wonder if my clients have any idea of how much work I do just to be ABLE to serve them legally. Not how much work it is to serve them. Just for that right or ability to be mine....

Sometimes I wonder if they have any clue how much I'd LIKE to "rest more" or "take it easy" sometimes when they tell me to!

And every day this year I'm trying to be very conscious of what God has given me to do, and what He hasn't told me to do. I'm trying to ignore the stuff that isn't mine to do no matter how loudly it screams or how the tyranny of the urgent wants to run my life.

And I'm trying to do the stuff He wants me to do no matter how much people don't understand why.... And I'm trying to do it even on Sunday nights when for once I could go sit outside and listen to the spring peepers and the last thing in the world I want to do is sit here and write long, long emails about legislation.



Friday, February 18, 2011

Domesticity!

I knew I needed to work on taxes and birth certificates and charting and bill-paying and email-answering the whole long day today. (As is the case, pretty much every day, in addition to catching babies and a whole array of other things in my life.)

But today was my first almost whole day at home since I don't know when. A week ago, probably.

I couldn't bear to not fulfill at least a few of my domestic desires. So, I cleaned the kitchen and washed a mountain of dishes with Ruth. And that still wasn't enough, so I decided to roast a chicken with garlic and herbs overnight in the slow-cooker... And put some oats on to soak for a healthier breakfast in the morning. And I really, really wanted to bake something ... like this amazing-sounding lemon pound cake recipe that I've been drooling over on Natalie's blog. But, as usual, it needed to be sugar-free, and coming up with 3 cups of sugar substitute might kind of change a recipe a little too much. So, I opted to bake a Walnut-Raisin Spice Cake with Lemon Glaze. It took nearly an hour to put the batter together, but I wasn't disappointed with the results - it's definitely the fluffiest cake I've ever made, AND ranks up there among the most moist. Who wouldn't love it? My brother, Sam had asked me to bake "something yummy" all day. There's always satisfaction in seeing the smile spread over his face as I hand him a big slice of semi-healthy, really awesome cake. :)

So... I didn't get quite as much paperwork done, but I had a much better day!
Even if I did paperwork/replied to emails 12-14 hours a day, 7 days a week, I wouldn't get it all done. So, I am trying to feel less guilty about just doing what I can and then being reasonable and saying, "Ok, ten hours of that is enough for today. I'm going to help my family for a few hours or cook dinner."

One of my goals for 2011 is to be okay with not getting everything done. To be okay with saying "no" to things I really want to/should do, but absolutely don't have time for.

On days when I "just say no" to things that I honestly do NOT have time for, I feel so much better! Those are rare days. Hopefully, 2011 will have many days like that!

Sunday, February 6, 2011

A Right Estimation of One's Self



Humility is a right estimation of one's self. Not more, not less than what one really is. Humility is the willingness to be known, to be talked about, to be thought about, and to be treated just according to the truth. Poor, lost, wandering souls... only of any value because of a kind and merciful God took what was worthless and redeemed it!

Humility is living in the constant awareness of the importance of other people - their needs, their struggles, their hurts, their joys and dreams, their lives. If I am humble, my life and wants and rights will not be so important.... because I see myself for who I really am - very small and unworthy!

- Some thoughts from Matthew Henry and Steve Gallagher, put into my own words. :)

Saturday, February 5, 2011

I Wonder What Jesus Did?

I've GOT to spend more time soaking up and savoring the Words of God for my life....

But how? People matter. God loves people. Even when Jesus tried to escape the multitudes and they found Him and asked Him to help, he stopped and helped. He touched the sick ones and he made them well. He fed the hungry ones. He taught them. He loved them. He never rebuked them for coming to Him or told them to go away and stop thronging him.

My life is consumed by people. People call me all day long. People send me sometimes hundreds of emails in day. There's no way I can reply to all of them. People stop by the house constantly. People, people, people... My life is filled with serving the needs of people, and on the side, trying to voluntarily show love to a few who haven't asked.

I don't know what to do. I wish I did. I love people and I love serving people. People have done so much for me. I'm so grateful for all of the people in my life.

But... I still don't know what to do.

I imagine this is how mothers of little children feel. The constant needs, around the clock....

I wonder how Jesus felt. I wonder how He decided when to reach out and heal one more sick person when He was trying to leave to go somewhere and pray? I wonder what He thought when He went to the other side of the sea and all of the people showed up there and wanted Him?