Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Tension all out of whack

Usually I write of what is working.
What lessons I've learned.
How I'm making it through--
even when the making it through has been through fire.

But sometimes things just don't work.
Things don't get done.
I don't learn a lesson.
Whatever 'making it through' might mean
hasn't happened yet.

I'm not talking about life-and-death things,
No, those are different.
The making it through of those has always comes because I'm grasping by my fingertips to Him,
and He meets me in my weakness with His strength.
Always. His grace is sufficient.

I'm talking about the ordinary junk of life,
the junk that piles up and makes me feel tense
and crazy and no fun to be around.
AND doesn't always (usually?) make me race to Him
because I can handle it.
It's just a to-do list. It shouldn't stress me out,
shouldn't make me tense.
So why does it?

For example:
I pieced together a quilt for someone graduating from college,
wasn't satisfied with it (my son said it looked like the Swedish flag--
three times he said it). So I pieced together a second one. Pinned it, quilted it. Discovered the tension was all messed up. Felt so tense I wanted to scream.
Threw it down in a scream. Quilted the first (Swedish flag) quilt. Sigh.

We're leaving for the weekend early in the morning.
Discovered that my house needs to be company-ready while we're gone.
Miscommunication can be a pain.
I've been a poor house-keeper this year with my bum neck, broken foot, always dicey left leg.
(Should I mention that I'm more a Mary than a Martha, which might be another way of saying I'm a bit lazy?)

Moved all the annuals outside,
moved all the furniture in the living room,
now have back spasms
My own dang fault.
When will I learn to lift with my legs?
Oh yeah, I can't lift with that left leg...

That's the whiny story of my day.
I don't need encouragement.
I don't need exhortation.
I know all the answers.
I know God loves me.
I just need someone to come and
A. bind the quilt
B. finish cleaning my house
C. pack for the weekend
D. plant about a dozen plants
Any takers?

But then I get to thinking.
Sometimes it isn't the huge traumas in life that have us scratching our heads wondering where He's gotten to, it's the small ones, the piling up of stuff. Ordinary, I-feel-overwhelmed stuff. It's like the tension in US is all wrong. We might look okay on one side, but like my quilt, if you look underneath, we're a mess, a loose and pulled out mess. It's in those moments where we must cling, I think. It's in moments just such as these when we MIGHT be most vulnerable, and yet are strong. IF we trust and obey and keep on. Yes, keep on.

Though my day is nowhere near this desperate, one of my favorite short passages (one I've very likely quoted one this blog often!) from CS Lewis's The Screwtape Letters says, "Do not be deceived, Wormwood. Our cause is never more in danger than when a human, no longer desiring, but still intending, to do our Enemy's will, looks round upon a universe from which every trace of Him seems to have vanished, and asks why he has been forsaken, and still obeys."


M said...

I'll come and do B-D for you anytime! But you're on your own with A. And just to make my Finnish heart happy, please don't start a tradition of Swedish flag quilts...

Pamela M. Steiner said...

Some days are just like that...we all have them. You are brave enough to write about them. I just fuss and stew and sputter about them. I am glad to know that I am not alone in the universe...and neither are you. I wish I lived close enough to help you with your list. Somehow, the important stuff will happen with or without our being in control. God has His ways...

jeskmom said...

M--don't worry. This is the first and LAST Swedish flag quilt I will ever make. Next one will be Norwegian. Or maybe Swiss (my heritage) or maybe the flag of Wiley. If you design one, I'll quilt it!

M said...

Ooh, the flag of Wiley!! I should so design one!!