Monthly Archives: June 2009

When you’re weary…

My dad always tells the story of the guy who got a flat tire on a lonely highway. Far in the distance, he could make out the lights of a farm house. He set off across the fields to go and borrow a jack from the farmer, and as he plodded on he rehearsed in his head how he would ask the farmer for this. He realised it was quite late in the evening. The farmer probably wouldn’t take kindly to being disturbed.  These farm folk are quite set in their ways and the farmer probably wouldn’t even open the door to him, never mind lend him a jack. By the time the man reached the front door of the farm house, he was fuming. When the farmer opened the door the stranded man shouted one sentence to him: “You can just take your jack and shove it, then!” and stormed off.

LOL! I can so be like that man! I have always had this propensity for painting scenarios in my head before anything actually comes to pass. I did not get stranded on a lonely road, nor did I need to ask anyone for help, but the last week or so I had tried to figure out the next valley that I thought God was bringing me to, and tried to see the good in it.

I had, what I thought, (and a nurse friend agreed) were swollen lymph glands. Then, last week I noticed an unmistakeable lump in my side.  I’ve been feeling tired lately. Full of tiny, unexplainable aches and pains.  OKKKK…I thought, so my next test would be a real battle for my health. I envisioned myself losing my hair…getting painfully thin…watching my kids and my hubby worry about me…blah blah blah. I know that God doesn’t delight in afflicting his children and that everything he does is redemptive, so I was trying really hard to keep my chin up and trust him, in whatever he does and wherever he leads me. I know everything works together for those who love him and who are called according to his purposes.

But I was scared. I was in a mental battle.  And in the midst of this niggling worry, I hit a real low emotionally.

I went to the doctor today. The “swollen lymph glands” are actually just knots in the muscles around my spine. The lump is a simple fatty deposit thingy. The aches and pains are probably just the beginnings of  arthritis, and I am really very well.  Talk about getting myself worked up over nothing!

The emotional low lingers though. As I left the doctor’s office, mentally exhausted and deep in thought, a lamp post jumped into the parking lot right in front of me and ding-ed my car badly. Sigh.

I am just a bit out of sorts and find myself missing Jenna and bursting into tears at odd moments.  I guess I should take the advice I wrote to a bloggy friend yesterday: We all get weary and feel tapped dry sometimes. Even Jesus got weary and had to sit down to rest. When he did though, he sat on a well. I need to go and sit on the well of God’s living water and allow his sweet presence to wash over me and restore my vision. Everything I need is in Jesus.

In his presence is fullness of joy.

Isa 41:17-18When the poor and needy seek water, and there is none; their tongue fails for thirst, I Jehovah will hear them, I the God of Israel will not leave them. I will open rivers in high places, and fountains in the midst of the valleys; I will make the wilderness a pool of water, and the dry land springs of water.

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To Phyllis

Thanks girl, for asking me how I was doing yesterday. And then, for replying to my perfunctory “I’m doing well”, with a flat out denial. You told me that no, you could tell I was not alright, so I promptly burst into tears and called you a “sharp” girl.  Thanks for making space for me to sit down next to you on the bench and tell you my woes. Even more than that…thanks for praying for me as much as I now realise you have been doing, despite the fact that you are going through such a dark valley yourself, being racked with pain constantly.

I realise you probably don’t read my blog. Still, I just want to put it on paper this computer screen that even though there was this part of me that just wanted to run and hide and not be vulnerable, you were the hands and feet of Jesus to me yesterday. I felt his soothing presence washing over me as you allowed me to open my heart and pour its contents out in your hearing.  You are one strong woman, Phyllis. You reminded me yesterday that it is a good thing to press in and allow the Jesus inside us to minister to others even when we are in the midst of our darkest trials. May he bless you for your faithfulness, and may you find your healing soon.

Love, Sumi

 

Yeah…so I had a low week. I have been facing a battlefield in my mind which is quite unrelated to missing Jenna, but it has triggered an acute case of  “the missing”  in me.

In the middle of this battlefield though,  I keep seeing glimpses of Jesus and of his faithfulness and I hear him telling me time and time again: “I’ve got it. Don’t you worry. Do you realise how much I love you and how much you can trust me? ”

So I bow and say, “Yes Lord. I will trust you. I KNOW you are a merciful God and you have my best interests at heart. I will walk through this valley if you want me to.” 

And I praise God for all the sweeties in my life that he has so graciously surrounded me with. For real people who love me and pray for me and allow me to cry on their shoulders once in a while.

Phyllis is not the only one by a long shot.

Status Report

So, I am on summer break – and now that the school yearbook is a wrap I can start to feel like it! I say start to, because it will take a while for this poor house to get on a level where I can feel like I am truly on holiday.  It is showing the accumulated neglect of 9 months of teaching.

I have been so busy I don’t even know where to start blogging again, but I realised I needed to sit and write here at my computer again when I commented on a friend’s blog last night and started spouting all kinds of stuff that didn’t even have anything to do with her post. LOL!

Soooooo…here’s a quick status report from me:

1. Did I mention I am on break? Woot!!!

2. I cleaned out the pantry today, and my kitchen feels like a happier place already. Tomorrow I will hopefully tackle the fridge to get rid of the science experiments growing in there. 🙂 My bedroom is a disaster area, with books all over the floor. I am pricing them for a homeschool curriculum sale coming up on Saturday. I had sorted them yesterday, but ran out of price stickers. So they stayed on my floor in their neatly sorted piles for hubby to stumble over in the dark when he came to bed last night. I’m just kidding, I was a good girl and cleared a nice path for him but if he veered off course somewhat in the dark he might have tripped. Praise God he has a sure sense of direction.

3. I am tickled pink that I managed to figure out SOMETHING, anything, on Photoshop. I couldn’t figure out the very basics before, but I was working on the yearbook in tandem with a lady who is a Photoshop guru. I decided I simply HAD to copy her and try to make the lovely photo collages she was doing, and thanks to some great Youtube tutorials, I DID it!! The endless possibilities photoshop offers has me salivating and I can’t wait to learn more. I made the photo collage header for this blog last night – d’ya like it?

4. Shutterfly (where we made the yearbooks) offered me a free photobook, and I spent much of last night putting together a little memory book of Jenna. I had to redeem it by today, needless to say I went to bed LATE last night! I placed some of Jenna’s favorite clothes over the scanner and used my new found photoshop savvy (whoa, that sounds good 😉 ) to build the pages for her photobook. I’ll share a few at the bottom of this post. It was bittersweet rummaging through her things, and I discovered all the precious cards that many of you, my wonderful blog readers sent last year for Jenna’s birthday.  They moved me to tears. Such sweet, thoughtful words from people whom I had never even met…almost a year later, they mean more to me than ever before.  Thank you, all. I’m missing that girly tonight.

5. I am reading through the book of Isaiah. The final chapters of Isaiah are some of my favorites in the bible, but I have never read the entire book chronologically. I LOVE reading about how redemptive God is in everything he does. That is what this book is about for me – even God’s judgment is always redemptive, with a view to purifying and refining his people. His mercy always triumphs. No wonder David expressed that he loved God’s judgments, that to him they were sweeter than honey and more precious than gold. He knew that everything in his life, even the trials, worked together for good. If he yielded to God’s correction in his life, and allowed it to do what God intended, he would find his heart’s desire realised: He would dwell in the presence of God.
One thing have I desired of the LORD, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the LORD, and to enquire in his temple.

6. A friend’s house burned down on Sunday while she was at church. She got home to find everything gone, and her little dog dead. I am slightly consternated (even if that isn’t a REAL word, it sounds nice, so I am going to use it) about how to help her. I realised after Jenna went to heaven that few people really understood what it was like to lose a child because they hadn’t gone through it. Likewise, I don’t know what it is like to lose everything to a fire, because I haven’t been there. If any of you have dealt with this, or if you know someone who has, could you please give me some advice on how I can best help my friend? What would her most pressing needs be right now? How can I make things easier for her? Please share any advice you have, and feel free to point me to helpful links.

I’ll stop there. Boy, I am really out of it as far as blogging is concerned. 🙂

Here are some of the pictures I put in Jenna’s photobook:

bigfish2 copy

This was Jenna’s favorite shirt. You can see the glitter that she managed to get all over it in the bottom of the picture. 

 
sleeping beauty 

I scanned in a sweater I bought for her on our last shopping trip together. She couldn’t get enough of its softness, constantly rubbing her cheek against the ‘fur’.

 

purplediamond copy

Couldn’t resist this one…Captain Underpants!!! Jenna called it canteloupe-a-pants. Tee hee!