Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Kitty & The Move

Emerging from her carrier, Kitty cautiously took her first steps, trembling slightly, investigating the new apartment. She looked around, attempting to make sense of her surroundings.

It probably felt like Lewis Carroll was narrating her life: All the right stuff was there, it was just queer and out of place. I mean, from her perspective, even the windows had been moved!

That night, Kitty wouldn't leave our bed. She walked the perimeter of our bed and, with her paw, tapped Red Beard on the forehead whenever she heard a strange noise. At one point, she started licking his forehead. She also periodically knocked stuff off of our nightstands to get our attention. I don't think she laid down one time.

The next day, Kitty was determined not to be in a different room from her parents.

And that determination lasted the entire next week:

  • I would sit down for a minute to check email (or just to rest my feet), and Kitty would leap into my lap, immediately curling up to take a nap. 

  • I would walk from the living room to the bathroom, and she would trot right alongside me.
  • Red Beard would sit down to complete homework, and Kitty would sit on the stool beside him.
  • She wouldn't even eat without one of us standing there, beside her and her food dish.
She has relaxed a little bit now, but I share Kitty's story with you because I think it is a great illustration for our spiritual lives.

Remember recently when I talked about the fact that God likes us being outside of our comfort zones?

Well, Kitty has certainly been out of hers. And what was her response? Cling to her parents!!

When you or I are faced with changes or challenges in spiritual matters, we need to cling to our Heavenly Father. We need to find our rest and our comfort in Him. 

In fact, we should always be clinging to Him. In good times, in bad times, in seasons of change (and if your life is anything like mine, things are always changing!), the best thing we can do is cling to the Father.

He knows what you're going through and where your circumstances are headed. He is not interested in your comfort, He is interested in your spiritual growth. And no matter what you're going through...
"Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ." -Phil. 1:6
If you seek true comfort or rest, cling to the Father. ~ Mrs. D.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Where Did the Weekend Go?

So... we moved this past weekend. To be honest, it was the smoothest move we've ever had (4 times in 5 years). We actually had plenty of help, and we had everything boxed and ready before our help even arrived.

It only took about 2 hours total. (One hour for my Dad and Red Beard--two peas in a pod--to move our sofa, bed, washer, and dryer; the other hour involved the whole crew.)

Everyone ate out afterwards, and Red Beard and I went to bed that night feeling pleased as punch with the status of things.

And then we woke up to box land. Reality check: Your work isn't through, folks!
Our New Kitchen...

Our Laundry Area (Complete with Several Loads of Dirty Laundry)

Our New Living Room

You know those mornings after you move...We ate cereal out of styrofoam cups (because I couldn't find the bowls or the countertop). The cat, still upset that her world was turned upside down, spent most of the day under the bed.

Thankfully my parents helped us that next day or we wouldn't be as settled as we were by the end of the day. We even got the Kindle hooked up to the T.V. so we could watch a movie on Amazon Prime.

Much better, no? Yes, it's in color... I was much happier at that moment.

Anyhoo, I thought I'd give a quick update. Hope everyone is doing well. ~Mrs. D.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

MWP: Moving While Pregnant

It's finally moving week here at the Shore. We've got a nice collection of boxes and bags full of stuff. Red Beard will bring home more boxes from work today, too.
The living room collection.
And can I just say how grateful I am to have a thoughtful husband? Yesterday, even though he had mountains of homework to do, he took the time to help me pack. Basically, I pointed, he packed, and I labeled. And it took us less than an hour to do several boxes, matching the amount of boxes I have packed in the last couple of weeks.

=We have double the amount now. Amazing! :)
The cat is her usual helpful self.
Of course, in the process, Red Beard dropped my toothbrush, bristle side down, on the bathroom floor (yuck), and I accidentally knocked his deodorant into the toilet (whoops). At least we're even on that score.
Peace offering: He bought me a new toothbrush. :)
Moving always entails more than just packing things, too. You have things to get rid of--whether it's by throwing them away completely, donating them, or storing them for future use.

Yesterday, for example, we transported our "falling down" hutch to my folks' house for storage. (The "falling down" hutch derives it's nickname from the original time we moved it from my grandparents house to our apartment. 30 seconds into the ride, it fell out of the truck and into the street, decorating the pavement with glittering shards of broken glass from the shelves and doors. I always wanted a job as a decorator.)

A few months ago, Red Beard re-framed the doors and fitted them with chicken wire. I painted the molding on it a bright white. We spent a couple of afternoons fixing it up because we desperately needed more storage in our kitchen (and hey--we didn't want it to look dumpy).

But, even though we spent all that time fixing the hutch, we have no use for it in our new apartment. We will have plenty of storage in our new kitchen--heck, we might even have drawers big enough to hold silverware this time. So, unfortunately, the hutch had to go.

The same is true in our spiritual lives.

When God moves us to a different place--either a new church, a new ministry within the church, a new town, or sometimes just moves within our hearts--sometimes the things we used to do are no longer valid.

We need to be willing to put aside anything that God asks us to.

Let's say you used to be in charge of the children's Sunday school class at your old church. Maybe your new church already has somebody teaching in that capacity or God has simply impressed upon your heart to serve Him in a different way. You may have spent years creating lessons and you have plenty of experience, but God has something else in mind.

You need to be willing to set those former things aside, and follow where He leads you. God has to get us out of our comfort zones in order for us to grow. If we're comfortable, we're likely not relying on Him. We're trusting our own strength and our own knowledge.

Example: "If we have 5 points and a song, good posters for our youth events, and a really good praise band, we're sure to draw a bigger crowd."

Our goal isn't numbers; the church is NOT a business. If we can physically grow a church without God's involvement, what kind of church are we growing?

In a ministry setting, if you're living in a comfort zone, depending on programs or advertisements or videos or anything other than God's strength to grow your ministry, you need to move on. You need to cast aside those things which cause you to depend on your own strength and wisdom and not God's.

Scripture to Read...

1 Corinthians 1:17-21:
"For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel: not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of none effect. For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God. For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent. Where is the wise? where is the scribe? where is the disputer of this world? hath not God made foolish the wisdom of this world? For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe."
I pray that we would all remember to rely on God and not on ourselves.  ~Mrs. D.