Archive for the 'Uncategorized' Category

18
May
14

A Life Worth Living

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I dropped my daughter off for a cousin play date at my brother-in-law’s house one March afternoon. Every time I see my brother-in-law, Peter, he insists on a hug, but he didn’t initiate one this time. I thought it was odd, but I’m not at all the affectionate type so I let it go. I certainly wasn’t going to initiate a hug, THAT would be way too WEIRD. I said goodbye to my little girl and turned back to my van to drive home.

That was the last time I ever saw my brother-in-law…the very last time I would ever see him, this side of heaven. A month later he died suddenly from natural causes.

REALLY wish I had that last hug.

On April 6, just days before Peter’s death, Dr. Rogers preached a sermon on John 4:27-42, about the ripe harvest and the urgency for evangelism. We tend to be lazy and think we have the whole rest of our lives to share the gospel. It isn’t until someone is old or sick and near their death that we finally get serious about evangelism. Truth is we don’t know what time we do have and the Bible tells us the time is NOW! We may not have another 30-40+ years ahead of us to share the gospel.

Peter died at an age many would consider too young—32. He left behind his dear pregnant wife with whom he was very happily married, and a 4-year-old son. It is a tough blow that stunned all of us. I am thankful for Peter’s solid faith in God and I am thankful for his example. Indeed he didn’t miss an opportunity to share his faith with others he met. He didn’t put it off until the eleventh hour.

At the hospital while we were awaiting the results of the EKG, Peter’s father-in-law commented that he never met a man like Peter—he would always talk about God, and he really enjoyed life. “Everything he talked about, he talked about with zeal.” It’s true, it didn’t matter what the subject was, nothing bored Peter.

Peter truly cared about others. As I said earlier he always insisted on a hug, and his was not a weak embrace—it was a firm and hearty hug. Walking in Philippians 2:4, he put others before himself. He was a servant—offering to help however he could, just to make another one’s life a little easier. He often pushed the swing for my daughter, so that I could have a break. I never asked for it, he just would take over. It’s the little things. He listened to you without interruption. He spoke tenderly and truthfully. He loved others deeply as 1 Peter 4:8 calls us to do—a love that originates only with Christ. You couldn’t know Peter and not also encounter the God he worshiped and loved.

I never grieved for anyone like I have for Peter. (Although my being pregnant may contribute to the emotions.) It doesn’t help either that I missed that last hug. You don’t really know what you have until you lose it. In a very small way, Peter’s death gave me a faint understanding of John 16:7. Obviously I do not intend to say that Peter’s spirit indwells or counsels me by any means. But his influence on me is greater after his death than it was beforehand. I had shamefully taken him for granted (as I do everyone—I never did very well at loving others). Now I aspire to the example that Peter lived, to love others and to share the gospel freely—for the glory of Christ. I fail miserably in these things—I am entirely dependent on the Lord for his grace.

I don’t intend to place Peter on some pedastool or romanticize his life. I am well aware that Peter was human, he wasn’t perfect. I knew him during some of his adolescent years—a rather dark and worrisome period of his life. But the Lord had a hold on him and his transformation is undeniable. God’s light shined brightly in his life.

Across the back of his forearms, Peter had these words tattooed: “Where, O Death, is thy sting. Where, O grave, is thy victory.” (1 Corinthians 15:55) Amen!

Our pastor is currently preaching through Philippians, noting how the apostle Paul desired to exalt Christ in all of his life AND in his death. Peter’s life definitely gave testimony to how great Jesus is and his death brought even further glory to Christ.

“He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot lose.” –Jim Elliot

All glory and praise to God.

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07
Aug
10

Dawkins on hold

I regret that I do not take more time to post more frequently. I apologize for the long silences. I desire to continue in my reading The God Delusion, but currently have neither the book nor the TIME to commit to the reading/studying/writing. I plan to return to Dawkins…sooner or later (hopefully sooner). Right now, most of my current reading is about baby food, nutrition, toddler development, discipline (look it up) and of course children’s books–stuff that is mostly too boring to write about here. For now, the most I can do is offer random posts about my own boring observations and thoughts, or publish things I’d previously written for other purposes.

15
Mar
10

Fair Is Fair, Right?

I recently obliged to a jury duty summons. Upon reporting the first morning everyone had to complete a simple questionnaire. One of the questions asked whether we had any religious, ethical, or moral beliefs that would hinder us from maintaining fair judgment on a trial. Check yes or no. I didn’t quite know how to answer. I wasn’t even sure what the question was asking.

Do they want to know whether I have any “moral, ethical or religious beliefs?” Who DOESN’T? (Or who doesn’t at least hold some kind of “right and wrong” doctrine.)

Do they want to know whether these beliefs could hinder us from keeping a fair mind? How can they not?? Certainly they at least effect our opinion of what “fair” is.

WHAT IS FAIR??

That was the begging question in my head. I was stuck. I wanted to know by whose definition of fair I should answer the question. I can’t believe that we all could have the same standards of justice. It seemed like an impossible question to answer. Maybe I was obsessing over the word too much, but I was not going to pretend to know what “fair” is.

Of course I have religious, moral, and ethical views—-so does everybody to some degree. Of course my views effect my idea of what is fair—-that’s true for everybody too. How can anyone check no? Yet there is a “no” check box. The question assumes that the answer could for some be negative. Was I misunderstanding the question? Afraid I may be thinking about it way too much, I checked yes and moved on.

For the next couple days I waited in the hallway outside the juror’s lounge, trying to read but unable to concentrate. (I scarcely have the time to read at home and here I had two full days to waste and couldn’t turn a page. How aggravating!) Two seats to my left sat a woman who seemed to have a strong personality.  She liked to talk. Her voice could be heard the entire corridor. She talked to no one in particular, just anybody who’d give her their attention. She started out boasting how she tries to do one good deed everyday.

“But not to my kids” she quickly specified. “I don’t do good deeds for my kids. They don’t deserve it.”

(Is it a “good deed” if it is deserved?) I kept my mouth shut and let the woman proceed with her ramblings.

“My kids are annoying.” she went on. “My daughter doesn’t think I can hear her. She’s always yelling—-right in my ear too! My son is mean. He’s always shoving his sister and pushing her down. My boy is seven and my girl is four. He’s always pushing her down. So I push him down! Fair is Fair, Right?” She exclaimed, inviting our laughter. “He’s bigger than his sister and he pushes her down. I’m bigger than him, I push him down. Fair is Fair!” She thought herself so clever.

Some of the jurors chuckled or at least smiled at her logic. Was I the only one listening? Do they really think this woman’s logic is funny—-or were they simply amusing her? I was the ‘Angela Martin‘ in the room—-while everyone else smiled, I kept a somber face with a conscious effort to not show any scorn.

I understand my ‘sweet, adorable’ little girl will not always be ‘sweet and adorable’.  Someday she will be seven—-though I won’t need to wait that long before she begins to pull stunts to test my boundaries and push my buttons. And my reactions to my daughter’s behavior will not always be just or effective or good.

But this woman’s rationale disgusted me. I don’t know…if I were a seven-year-old and I shoved my little brother or sister, and my mom responded to my behavior by echoing it…I think I would learn that shoving is okay–after all, mom does it!. And I probably wouldn’t learn any other way of resolving conflict. I’d grow up to be an immature brat who gets what I want by shoving others around. There are enough “grown up” immature brats already. I wanted this woman to consider what she was modeling for her son but I dared not open my mouth. I’m a very new first-time mom who knows better than to share her inexperienced opinion.

The woman’s statements confirmed for me that human ideas of  ‘fairness’ are indeed flawed. Fair is fair, right?

Who knows what fair is—-already I met another juror who differs from me on the subject. Remembering the stumbling question on the questionnaire, I knew I’d checked the right box. The answer can only be yes. My guess, however, is that the woman checked “no” to the same question. Impossible.

There is only One who judges perfectly. There is only One who is truly just.

I don’t believe I over-analyzed the question. Maybe the people who wrote the question should give it more thought.

14
Jun
09

New Beginnings

09

My husband and I  have recently become  new parents with the birth of our daughter. I love being a mom, even with its challenges. It is amazing the tremendous joy and fulfillment our little girl brings. As a new mom, I have less time for reading and blogging…and whatever time I do have for reading, I page through mothering books. Not sure how often I will write here or even what form my posts will begin to take in this new chapter of my life. But I do not plan to disappear from the blogosphere completely.

(I also had to return Dawkins to the library, so I don’t know when I’ll ever pick up on him again.)

05
Feb
09

A Sign of the Times

Billboard 2009 (cropped)

Sweet relief for those who dread wealth.

I see this billboard on my commute home from work everyday. You know the economy is in recession when an advertising slogan attempts to give you peace about the threat of poverty. I at least found it humorous. I feel so much better now, knowing that I can remain poor the rest of my days, or at least until this popular franchise discontinues their rich beverage.

This would never make sense in a booming economy.

04
Dec
08

Where did I go?

I guess after a long silence I am supposed to explain to you where I’d been. I have no plans to close this blog, but I don’t promise to write consistently either. I haven’t had energy to get online, much less to read, and my brain is no more. Why? I’m pregnant. And that’s all I have to say about that.

04
Aug
08

Sketchbook

I just created a new page [Sketchbook] and posted some of my artwork. No degree, just talent. Take a look if you like.




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