~~~~~~~~~ "We are here for only a moment, wanderers and sojourners in the land as our ancestors were before us. Our days on earth are like a passing shadow, gone so soon without a trace." I Chron. 29:15 NLT





Friday, June 23, 2006

Ambivalence

Ever since I saw a little piece about living life backwards I've thought it sounds like a good idea. Yet, I know better than to question the plan for life that has been given by the Creator. But it's fun to think of different possibilities:


The Life Cycle
I think that the life cycle is all backwards. You should die
first, get it out of the way, then live twenty years in an old age home. You get kicked out when you're too young, you get a gold watch, you go to work. You work forty years until you're young enough to enjoy your retirement. You go to college...until you're ready for high school. You go to grade school, you become a little kid, you play, you have no responsibilities, you become a little baby, you go back into the womb, you spend your last nine months floating, and you finish off as a gleam in somebody's eye. -Bob Benson- (I've also heard this quoted by Christian comedian, Mark Lowry )

Last Sunday, Father's Day, our daughter and son-in-law told us they're expecting another baby in January! Our daughter and her husband are humorously creative. We were eating out, and I thought she had changed their daughter's clothes because the toddler had soiled herself. It took me awhile to notice that she was wearing a new t-shirt and when I finally read the words on the shirt it said, "I'm gonna be a big sister." Wow! That woke me up. A few weeks ago I thought my daughter's tummy was bulging a little and wondered if she was pregnant, but thought, "Naw," and let it go.

How do we do this grandparent thing? I find my thoughts alternating between joy and sadness. I remember how I met our granddaughter's birth with trembling and anxiety, unnecessarily of course. But with every grandchild, which I know are such a joy and blessing, comes the reality that we're growing older. I guess having grandchildren teaches us to grow older gracefully, huh?

Recently, I saw Dr Phil's show about people who are unable to let go of stuff, which enlightened me to some of the reasons I have trouble letting go. Letting go means we're growing older, we have to relinquish dreams and ideas because we just won't have the time to do all those things for which we've collected stuff. It's also difficult to let go of the past...some stuff connects us to people who have come and gone in our lives, and some to our youth when we were productive and anticipated a future we've now lost. I'm slowly getting deeper into my housecleaning project. It's been difficult since I'm such a sentimental old fool, but I'm trying to make it easier by first getting rid of the stuff I'm least emotionally attached to.

Why can't I be more single-minded and focused? It's just like me to try and take on more than one or two things at a time:
a new grandchild, ridding my life of junk, spending one day or afternoon a week with our daughter and granddaughter, volunteering at our church library which we're in the process of computerizing, wanting to read four or five books at a time.... Added to these are the fact that I have to balance and limit my time and energy because of chronic pain and diabetes. I want our home to be picked clean and ready to receive this new grandbaby. Most of all I desire and need a quiet time for Bible reading, meditation, and prayer to focus on what's important in this process called life. As I continue to create order in my inner house and our physical home, I know the when and how of other areas of my life will continue to fall into place. So, maybe my priorities and focus aren't as misplaced or chaotic as I sometimes feel they are.

Some people I know seem to have established the important routines of their lives early, and I wish I was one of them. I was efficiently organized when I was doing the mother role, but the empty nest syndrome, being unable to work, combined with learning to live with health problems blew my established routine to smithereens. Hopefully, with some hard work, I'll be able to create a comfortable routine as my husband and I approach retirement. Life is full of surprises and adjustments. I need to remember to be adaptable.

I opened a devotional book this morning that I checked out from the church library, Face to Face: praying the scripture for spiritual growth by Ken Boa, and popped it open to this verse from Is. 46:4
"Even to my old age, You are the same, O Lord, And even when my hair is gray, You will carry me. You have made me, and You will bear me. You will sustain me, and You will deliver me."
What a comfort those words are at just the time I need them. Through every stage of my life God has been, and always will be, with me. What a harvest of comfort and encouragement there is to be found in the Bible. I'm still amazed after all these years of placing my faith and trust in God, how He watches over me by providing just the right words, people, and thoughts to help me through times of joy or difficulties.

1 comment:

{M} said...

Thank You so much for the beautiful quote, the compliment regarding my son and for reaching out and taking time to read my blog ! Hope you and yours are well!