PARTIAL DISARMAMENT FOR THE HOLIDAYS
November 28, 2012
Happy Thanksgiving late and Merry Christmas early to all my cyberspastic Doodleheads out there! What a totally unexpected time I’ve had since last we met here on the hallowed pages of the Desperately Doodling Debbie blogspot. Exactly one month ago this very minute I was doodling away about how time flies and how broke and tired I am at this last-kid-in-college stage of life and how maybe I should be concentrating on doing the good works God put me on this earth to do instead of whining about not having enough money for a trip to somewhere more exciting than home. Then exactly one month and a day from this very minute I was walking to the car to pick up one of my nannied children from an after school activity, slipped on some wet pavement, and went SPLAT! And CRUNCH went my left wrist!
I won’t disturb you with the gory details, because frankly, it makes me cringe to remember them, but let’s just say bones aren’t supposed to look like that. Anyway a couple of days later my wrist was screwed back together and I am now on the mend. Let me tell you, the irony of it all makes me smirk and sometimes chuckle, but mostly laugh hysterically. In one short day I went from shaking my head at the swiftness of passing time to shaking my watch to make sure it was still working. That first week of sitting around with my arm elevated, unable to do the simplest things for myself, moved along at the rate of a nearly desiccated slug. Oh, but doesn’t the Lord know how to use those slow times in our lives?
Goodness gracious, I have been around the world and back with the Lord in the last month! First I felt guilty for causing so much trouble for so many people. My busy husband suddenly had a lot more to do, my nannied family had to enlist folks all over town to take over my duties, friends cooked extra food for us, my daughter had to employ her babysitter a little more for Charlie, even the dog had to be more patient about going in and out the door. It was just weird to feel so worthless in every area I had come to regard as my “ministry”. As I sat in my chair, this modern day Martha heard God say, “Debbie, Debbie, you have been worried and upset about many things. I’ve told you and told you to sit down like Mary and listen to me. Now that’s all you can do for awhile. Get with it!” So I did my best to listen and here’s what I heard:
I am blessed beyond measure with a family and many great friends who love me.
Sometimes I need to be the ministered unto instead of being the minister.
The world will not fall apart without me. (This was particularly difficult for me to comprehend. REALLY? I’M NOT THE ESSENTIAL INGREDIENT IN KEEPING THIS WHOLE LITTLE UNIVERSE OF MINE SPINNING ON ITS DESTINED ORBIT??)
Every body part really is important for keeping the whole body functioning at its optimal level. A physical lesson with spiritual implications, just as Paul taught.
And this last one came to me about a week ago. I was enjoying my morning gab session with God over breakfast. I generally end up with tears dripping into my oatmeal for one reason or another and this morning was no different. I was bemoaning my lack of tangible “works” thus far in my life, groveling in that habitual feeling of worthlessness that has plagued me since childhood. I opened my “Jesus Calling” devotional by Sarah Young for the day and read these words: “I am pleased with you, my child. Allow yourself to become fully aware of my pleasure shining upon you. You don’t have to perform well in order to receive my love. In fact, a performance focus will pull you away from me, toward some sort of Pharisiasm. This can be a subtle form of idolatry: worshiping your own good works. It can also be a source of deep discouragement when your works don’t measure up to your expectations.
“Shift your focus from your performance to my radiant presence. The light of my love shines on you continually, regardless of your feelings or behavior. Your responsibility is to be receptive to this unconditional love. Thankfulness and trust are your primary receptors. Thank me for everything; trust in me at all times. These simple disciplines will keep you open to my loving presence.”
Whoa! This Martha, who is more of a Martha than the original ever thought about being, has some more sitting with Jesus to do. I doubt that I’ll ever be a Mary, but maybe someday I can at least be a Marthy. Either way, Jesus will love me, this I know!
As a first step in my newfound sitting and listening adventure, I will not be posting a doodle entry in December. I am allowing myself a little more listening time during the hectic Christmas season. (And yes, this goes against every bone, broken or not, in my body. Following the schedule of events in my head is what I do!) But whatever. I have to start somewhere. Have a very blessed month and check in again in January!