Part 2–Why Oh Why?

Father in Heaven, lead all of us in these words and let it be Your message. In Jesus name, Amen.

 

So here we are again. Thank you for returning to your reserved seat at the table. I want to share with you all, the “why oh why” moments of this journey. As I mentioned in the last post, I will use sensitivity and discernment in my words.

 

So we left off with  Jeremy and I just coming to the resolution that our dream would stay just a dream. He would be returning home by the middle of the next week and we would take some time to morn and move forward from this terrible disappointment. Our kids were also disappointed, but since they could resume their lives as usual, complete with friends and prospects for new ones, they bounced back pretty quickly. I was grateful for that. I didn’t want my kids to feel the way I was feeling.

 

I remember standing in the shower one day and the water was streaming down. It was simply no match for my waterfall of tears. All the reasons for wanting this move flooded my mind as the shower and my tears flooded my face.

 

Images of pulling out my cane to use in public came to mind. Many of you know that I haven’t been overly comfortable using it in my outings. I’m fearful that someone I haven’t seen in a long time will see me using a cane and assume I’ve been “reduced” to having to use a white cane now. This would leave even more room for the pity train to pull on through and blow it’s whistle… loudly.

 

I heard in my mind the words of those who care for me, “do you want me to do that for you?”. Not ever wanting to hurt feelings, I would often step aside and let said person do what they thought I needed help with.

 

Always feeling like an habitual teenager asking for a ride to the mall, feeling like I’m burdening someone for said ride somewhere. Feeling like people see me as “disabled” in more then my blindness. The question was asked “whose going to take care of Cyndi?”, after we announced our plans.

 

Being overlooked in areas I would like to be involved with because someone assumes I won’t be able to do it or isn’t willing to possibly pick me up to do it. Being asked repeatedly if I  need help.

 

Now don’t misunderstand me. I appreciate everyone’s concerns for my well being. This is part of the struggle of having a disability. You kind of fight to have independence. Though that fighting leaves you exhausted and depleted. It is a cycle that keeps on cycling.

 

Moving to Florida had been our dream for over fifteen years for many reasons:

 

Warmer whether

More opportunities

Starting a new life

Using my cane in front of people who never knew I hadn’t been using it

 

and many other reasons that would take up far to much space.

 

I began reading the book of Job.Now I’ve read Job many times, but I wanted to really READ it. I took note of something interesting.

 

Job has forty-two chapters, thirty-five of them are filled with Jobs lamenting, frustrations, tears, depression, and alike. He had lost almost everything:

 

His children

His servants

His livelihood

 

But there were those who survived. (See Job chapter 1)

 

With each calamity that happened, someone said “and only I escaped to tell you”. He also retained three specific friends and his wife. We don’t hear much about his wife though. She simply told her husband to give up on God and die. Pretty harsh huh? I’ll do another post about Mrs. Job another time.

 

I found it fascinating That God just let Job morn for thirty-five chapters. No telling him “ok, ok, that’s enough”. No “how dare you question Me”. No “I hope you’ve learned your lesson now”. Nope, God allowed him time to grieve.

 

Job was a just and upright man. Many people scratch their heads at why this sort of thing happened to him. But make no mistake, even though Job was a Godly man, he was terribly confused and grieved by what had taken place. He questioned why he had ever been born.

 

Job 3:1  After this, Job opened his mouth and cursed the day of his birth.

 

That gives you a pretty good idea of how depressed he was. Even though I didn’t lose my children or my livelihood all in a matter of moments, I did lose what felt like my whole future in a matter of days. I was confused as to why God would answer this long awaited prayer only to have it come crashing down.

 

I had been very honest with God in telling Him that my response would not be pretty if the answer to our prayer to move was “No”. I told Him I would be upset, I would cry, I would probably question why. But ultimately I wanted His will to be done.

 

I would get over all those emotions in a short amount of time. I truly wanted Gods will because He sees all things and would see how this could not be the best thing for us. He has the telescope and I do not. I trust His answers.

 

But this… this I just didn’t understand. I fell to my knees and wept aloud. “I don’t understand this!” I wailed. “I asked You to close this door along time ago if it was going to be a bad thing!”

 

My tears soaked my pillow, my words poisoned the air, my thoughts were consumed with the loss of our dream. It was simply too much. I had lost my neighbor, I had lost my dear friend, I had lost pets, I had been separated from my husband for almost a month, not to even mention anything else I was struggling with in my family. Hurtful words, surprising realizations, the list is long. All within a matter of just a few short months. It was just too much!

 

I was wounded, I was bleeding, I was shaken to my core. I wanted to know why God was asking me to go through all of this… again. I felt like I had been through enough and He should just answer my prayer for this dream to come true. I wanted answers as to why He yanked back our answered prayer!

 

Have you ever felt like this? Like God was being unfair? Have you just wanted to know why? Oh how these feelings plagued me, and if I’m being honest, still want to creep into my thoughts now and then.

 

Come back to your reserved seat again next week and I’ll share some lessons I’ve been learning from all of this. I am thinking about having a separate day for the recipes. Perhaps like Foody Friday or something like that. I would love your thoughts on that and any other thoughts you have.

 

Until next week my lovely readers, stay in Gods word and always seek His face.

 

God allowed me my 35 chapters

Well I guess after taking a break there was bound to be a little glitch. My apologies for the post that went out this morning. Here is the updated version for you… hope you like it.

Father in Heaven, may the lessons You’ve been teaching me be evident in these words. In Jesus name, Amen.

Oh my dear readers, how good it feels to be writing to you again. I have you all in my mind as I write this. I pray that someone will glean what God desires you to glean from this post.

You know now that my hearts dream and desire of moving south that appeared to be coming true, is no longer happening. Oh how my heart is broken over this realization. It bleeds and cries for this loss.

Some may feel like this is a bit extreme, but I’d like to give some context to why this has been so devastating. I will use sensitivity to others while trying to shed some light on my heartbreak. I have been learning a lot through this process and I hope it helps someone else too. I’m thinking this may be like a three part series. There is simply to much to put into one post. I want to respect my readers time and keep my posts reasonable in length. So here we go… part 1— Finding Out…

My husband had been in Florida for a couple weeks and getting a little stressed out with trying to find a place that would work for our unique needs. Not all rental homes accept pets. We have a cat and a dog. There were lots of apartments that were pet friendly, but this posed a problem for me. Depending on what floor we would be on, getting my pooch out to do her business and back to the right apartment would be a challenge.

For those of you who don’t know… I’m blind.

The last thing I needed was more challenges. However, if this what God was asking, then I knew He would work out the details. But alas, this wasn’t coming together as we’d hoped. Rent was higher then originally told to us. So we already started the first thoughts of this not working out. But we held onto what we felt like was a God sanctioned open door.

Then my husband began seeing aspects of the job that weren’t lining up with his “letter of intent to hire” had specified. He kept a positive attitude that it was just because he was new and had to go through that probationary period. But after conversations with others, he learned that not much would be changing. This too added another seed of doubt for our dream to come together. But we still held on.

The financial side of things began to rear it’s ugly head and we learned that some of the things we intended to get rid of to reduce our monthly output, was now expected to be held onto. Thus creating more bills then we counted on to make this work. Strike three. The realization of our dreams coming to an end was more then I could bare.

My family had been separated for almost a month by this point. I know some folks live this way on the daily, but we are not among this hardy group. I respect our military families a little more now. I wanted my husband and I to be living in the same house again. I remember saying to Jeremy not three or four days before all this happened that I didn’t care if it was here or there, I just wanted us all back together again. Hmm, if I had known what that would mean…

There was never really that moment of saying out loud “ok, this isn’t going to work. Do we agree that I’ll be coming home this weekend?” That conversation didn’t take place. We just somehow silently came to that understanding together.

I walked through my house looking at all the progress I had been making to prepare for our dream to come true. Boxes were stacked up in the dining room, art work was standing up against the wall together, my empty china hutch, my bare coffee and end tables in the living room. My heart sank and my tears rose up. I had an impulse to just lash out and start smashing the glass doors of my hutch. Y’all I was heart sick, tear filled, not thinking straight kinda upset.

Now rest assured that I did not act on this impulse. My hutch doors are completely in tact. In fact my glassware and crystal platters are safely back in place. I have more room in there now too since I purged so much in anticipation of moving.

As I unpacked each box, returning everything to it’s former place, a tear christened each knick-knack, forever staining it with my disappointment. I know this seems very extreme, but I will be explaining why in the next post. I just wanted to give you all the facts as it were for now.

Until the next post, I ask you to do a little homework assignment. Envision yourself with a life altering disability (if you don’t actually have one) and think of what it would mean to gain some independence  after a lifetime of dependence. This will broaden your understanding of this for next week. I know it’s difficult to do if you don’t know what it would really be like but I think our imaginations can give us a pretty good insight.

I look forward to sharing more next week. This has been life changing for me in many ways and I believe God wants me to share it with others. I hope you’ll come and grab your seat at the table. Blessings to you my valued and treasured readers.

 

It’s time for a break

Father in heaven, I know it’s time for this so I ask for Your presents to go before this post and help all of us reading it to understand the why behind it. In Jesus name, Amen…

 

I have some news I’d like to share with my table family here. I have recently shared with you that my family and I have dreamed of moving south for many years.

 

My husband and I have prayed and searched for Gods plans in this dream. God answered this prayer when Jeremy got his “dream job” with a company in Florida. We rejoiced in this news and quickly began making plans.

 

We searched on line for houses, we started collecting boxes, and we gently broke the news to our families that we were moving across the country.

 

My husband went down to start work right away with the plans for us to follow in a couple months after our daughter graduated and we tied up all the loose ends here.

 

But sometimes plans and dreams change.

 

Job 1:21  …the Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord.

 

God must have seen something down the line that we could not or maybe would not see. He has awaken us from this dream. He has put this back on the shelf so to speak, and so now I feel the need to search for Him in a new way. A deeper way. Reading… studying… and praying.

 

My dear readers, I need to take a leave of absence for a time. I’m not sure for how long but I feel that a month is what God is laying on my heart.

 

I need to evaluate what He is asking of me. I will be taking this leave from social media as well.

 

I have many christian women that I follow on social media and they have from time to time taken this type of sabbatical to reset. I feel that I need this sabbatical now. I so appreciate all of you and hope that you will keep your seat at the table and wait for me to return.

 

I will be checking my Email and responding as needed. I’m so grateful for all of you! Truly I am.

 

I want to find out what journey God has me on and for what purpose. I want to be able to fulfill that purpose and be a better writer and speaker and whatever else God may have planned.

 

I’ll see you all in a month. With tears I say I’ll miss all of you for this month. Keep the table set for me okay? I love you all!

Wheeew!

Oh my… so much is happening that I can hardly catch my breath. I will have a regular post later this week, but for now I just want to encourage you with this thought…

We make our requests known to God as the bible instructs, but let me just say that it does not mean that we won’t feel some anxiety over the prayer He has answered.

 

Not anxiety that it is the wrong decision, but just the prayer answered can bring some very big changes. But God will see us through all of it.

 

So with that I’ll send ya another message this week with more on this topic. I need to decompress a little from the activities.

 

See ya soon!

Oops, I Forgot…

Oh I did something yesterday in my post that I really don’t like doing. I’ve done it before and it has weighed on my conscience heavily.

 

I forgot to put the most important part of the blog piece… the bible verse!

 

As we discussed yesterday, we need to fill up on what God has to offer. He will not only give us a few bites, but fill us up completely and still have more for us to save for later.

 

We find this example in Matthew chapter 14…

 

Here we see Jesus healing the sick all day and when it grew late, He told His disciples to feed the people. They were tremendously confused as to how to do that with so many people and so little food. But of course Jesus never asks us to do something without supplying the means in which to do it.

 

Now picking it up in verse 20, the Word of God says… “and they all ate and were satisfied, and they took up twelve baskets full of the broken pieces left over.

 

Here is the example of Jesus not only providing what is needed but doing it in abundance. He does the same when we want to be filled with His word. This is our “eating until we are satisfied” time with God each and every day. There will never be a shortage of Gods spiritual food for us. So eat hardy my friends and saver every bite!

Thank you for allowing me this extra tidbit. After all… THIS is the real meal!”

Hungry or Full

Father in heaven, I pray for every person reading these words and the person writing them to be directly from You oh Lord. In Jesus name, Amen.

 

Hi Folks! Glad you’re back at the table for another spiritual and physical meal. I do hope you  get spiritually fed here as well as enjoying the recipes.

 

Have you ever been to a wedding, banquet, or feast of any kind?

 

When we attend these types of events, we fully expect large amounts of food to be served. That’s just how it usually goes right? We sit and visit with other people at the event. We sip on coffee or juice…

We eventually start to pivot our heads in the general direction of the food table. Glancing back and forth, hoping not to appear starving or impatient. Then of course, everyone begins the head pivoting and it soon looks like some sort of off balance tennis match. Mouths watering and conversations turning to “I wonder when they will start serving dinner?”, the sound of rattling dishes and pans being situated on the food table restores hope to the guests.

 

It is now time to get in line and you’ve been speculating on what hides beneath those shiny silver pan lids.

 

Chicken… mashed potatoes… pasta salad… green beans and carrots…

The possibilities are overwhelming when you are this hungry!

 

As you stand there, plate poised in one hand and the other ready to grab hold of that serving spoon and start dishing… you are grievously disappointed to see mere crumbs littering the bottoms of all those catering sized pans.

 

What in the world!!!

 

Friends this is how we sometimes handle our time with the Lord… He has laid out a feast of wisdom and guidance and love for us each and every day. When we only take a minute or two to hear Him or read a quick verse on the fly, we miss the feast and walk away with crumbs.

 

Now don’t get me wrong, all scripture is good and useful. But God wants to give us the depth of His words like a banquet spread out for us to fill up on. Spoon up big helpings of His grace and mercy. Heap on the mountain of forgiveness and love. Overflow your plate with scoops of joy and dip that into a dollop or two of cheerfulness.

 

Just as we would walk away from a banquet table that only offered crumbs disappointed and still hungry, we sometimes walk away from Gods banquet thinking we are full but quickly realize we are still hungry for Him. Don’t walk away hungry… let God fill you with His spiritual food and sustain you each day with what you need to be filled.

 

Let me offer you a filling hardy meal to serve your family…

Red and White Goulash

1 pound ground turkey

 

1 pound elbow macaroni

 

1 large can crushed tomatoes (28 oz.)

 

1 bottle tomato juice or V8 juice

 

1 medium onion

 

1/4 cup brown sugar

 

 

Brown turkey meat in skillet. Cook macaroni as directed. Drain both. Dice onion. In dutch oven combine meat, macaroni, crushed tomatoes, juice, onion, and brown sugar. Cover and simmer on medium for about 30-45 minutes. Get some soft tasty rolls, spread on some butter and… mmm mmm so good! Fill up.

It’s been a wild ride so far (Part II)

Father in heaven, I pray for Your presents to be here and leading as we are reading. In Jesus name, Amen.

Ok so where were we… oh yes… waiting for the decision.Analog wall clock at 9:15

I wanted to believe that Jeremy would get this job, yet I knew there was a real possibility that they would hire someone who didn’t have to move across the country to work there. My fear and my faith were facing off as it were. Have any of you seen the movie “Facing the Giants”? This is indeed one of my favorite movies. It’s about a Christian high school football team that has been on a losing streak and the kids along with the parents are getting fed up with these results. Fathers of star players are trying to convince the assistant coach to take over and boot out the head coach. There are, of course, many other things going on in the movie;

Financial struggles

Infertility

Broken down vehicle

Unending home repairs

Faith struggles

And the list goes on.

Even if you don’t care for football, this movie has such a valuable message.

The head coach, Grant, questions his purpose in his job, his home, his life, and what God wants of him. The janitor of the school enters Grants office one day in the midst of is faith struggle and tells him a story of two farmers…

There were two farmers that desperately needed rain. They both prayed for rain. But only one went out and prepared his fields to receive it. Which one had faith that God would send the rain?

Grant answered and said “the one who prepared his fields to receive it”. Then the janitor asked Grant which one he was.

This story has stayed with me and challenged me to ask which one I am. I began putting that question to the test. I opened my closet doors and began pulling out and bagging up all the clothes that would be too warm to wear in Florida. I began sorting through dishes and décor to down size for moving. I gave away an antique phone that I dearly loved to a friend who had her sights set on it for some time. I knew I wouldn’t have a place for it at my new house so I handed it over to its new owner.

We purged, we bagged, we tossed, and we waited. Monday came… no call. Tuesday came… no call. We prayed, we sorted more items, and we continued to wait. We kind of started to think that if they really wanted to hire him, they would have done it by then. However, I found myself telling my daughter to not lose faith when she brought this concern to my ears. “God’s timing is not our timing” I told her. Did I believe it myself? Yes… I did. I kept telling everyone who said I was getting ahead of myself by purging, that I was “preparing for rain”. This had become my mantra. It had become my banner.

I woke up Wednesday morning with a strong impression from God that today was the day. We would have our answer. I felt God asking me if I would still love, trust, and follow Him if the answer was “no.” I evaluated this so I could be completely honest with God and myself. “God” I said, “I will be heartbroken and very upset if the answer is no. But I will still love, trust, and follow You.” You see, God can handle our tears and frustration, as long as we still trust that He knows what’s best. So, I was honest and told Him my feelings. I felt His “fair enough” type answer and I sat down on the floor and continued sorting through mugs and other dishes that were in the bottom cabinet of my hutch.

At 9:30 a.m., my husband came out of the bedroom and sat on the floor beside me. “I got the call” he said. Turning to look at him, I paused with a mug in my hands. “I have bad news…”

Shoulders slouching and releasing a sigh, I turned away from his face. A heavy pause lingered in the air between us.

“We have to leave Michigan.” He said.

Snapping my gaze back to his, I said “You got it?”

“I got it.” He replied.

Bursting into tears I said over and over again, “we prepared for rain, we prepared for rain… God sent the rain!” I knew what would be coming in the months ahead. My daughter graduating, her grad party with over three-hundred people, packing, moving across the country, and all the other stresses in-between. This roller coaster was about to descend the hill and round some sharp curves, jostling us all about. But ya know what? God fastened our seatbelts.

You see my dear readers, when we completely trust God and align our desires with His, whatever He decides to lay before us will be ok. Even if the answer is no. It’s never a no out of some sort of punishment or God trying to keep something good from us as the serpent tried to convince Eve was happening. (Genesis 3:4-5) The serpent tried to make Eve believe that God was deliberately keeping something wonderful from her and her husband for the sake of being selfish. That is not in God’s character. We must trust and believe that when we ask for something, that He will answer with what is best for us when we want what He has that is best for us.

wooden door slightly ajar revealing bright light on the other sideWe asked God for this opportunity once He opened the first door. But we also ask Him to shut any other doors if it wasn’t going to be good for our family. As heartbreaking as it would be, it would be more heartbreaking to act outside of God’s plans for us and have it bring us to our ruin. God already knows the end from the beginning, so as I’ve asked this question before, why not trust the one who already knows how it will turn out?

When a new movie or book comes out and we know of someone who has seen or read it, don’t we usually ask them how it was? If it is someone we trust and they tell us it was awful and the ending was even worse, we would probably forgo seeing or reading it right? Why waste our time and money? So, trust the one who knows something far more valuable… your future!

Revelation 3:8, “I know your works. Behold, I have set before you an open door, which no one is able to shut, I know that you have but little power, and yet you have kept my word and not denied my name.”

No one… NO… ONE, can close doors that God has opened. We may feel worry or concern, but when we have that trust in God, we can have assurance of the best answer to our requests. Trust Him… just trust Him!

Well Let’s see what we have to munch on after reading, shall we…

So, I will probably be drinking more smoothies living in a much warmer climate. This is one of my fav’s…

Peanut Butter & Banana Smoothie

1/2 cup milk

1 ripe banana

2 Tbl. peanut butter

1-2 Tbl. chocolate syrup

6-8 ice cubes

Place all ingredients into a blender. Secure lid and blend for about one minute. Pour into a pretty glass and grab a straw. This makes a great light lunch or 3:00 p.m. snack. Enjoy!