Monday, December 22, 2008

Merry Christmas

It's almost noon on Monday morning...just days before Christmas. I have been up since 5:00am doing odds and ends of piddly stuff...wrapping gifts, packaging up little pumpkin gingerbread loafs and caramel corn I made during a domestic fit earlier this week. We are shortly leaving for Illinois (just outside of St. Louie) for a week of Teague togetherness. I love my other family...they are warm, generous and almost all as hyperactive as Troy. So I've brought a few books along in hopes that I will able to find a quiet corner somewhere in brother-in-law's spacious home. I think there are at least almost 20 Teagues (and a few tag-a-longs) that will be spending Christmas together this year. We alternate holidays. Troy and I have learned to compromise over the past 17 years. This year...as with the past seven years...Christmas has been made sweeter with the addition of our son, Josiah. I can't tell you how much fun we've had this holiday season. We've been poorer than ever, but I can say that we've seen blessing after blessing come our way in the past few weeks. It's moments like these that puts everything in perspective and truly spotlights the true meaning of Christmas. So, despite the fact that Troy has already had to call the locksmith to unlock our Ford's faulty automatic lock this morning (don't ask) we feel truly blessed. It's about the Giver all good things. Merry Christmas!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Change Upon Change

I apologize to those on facebook who, expecting just a brief passing note, find themselves in the muddled mess that are my thoughts. I thought I was just giving a link to my blogspot on blogger and I think have managed to import all these...ramblings (for lack of a better word). Good grief!

I had a job interview just a few weeks ago at our National Office. It was really a nice opportunity for me and also part-time which would have allowed me plenty of time to do my homeschooling stuff. I really enjoyed my interview (as best as one can enjoy one of those things), but realized rather quickly that I might not have the energy to handle it. So here I sit...again...but I have to say that I am sitting in a better seat. For some reason I don't feel that frantic rush to find something to help us financially. We are still broke. It's just that I think my faith has been given a little boost. There have been a few blessings recently that have let me know that God is still in control. I was reading one of my early blogs (when I was in heart failure the last time, but didn't know it yet). It was on my "myspace" page and it made me a little weepy. The bizzare thing is that I was right in the middle of planning a mother's day banquet or something. I was just so sick...and yet kept right up with what I needed to do. Crazy girl.

Why do we do we (and of course I mean that in the broadest terms) do much of this thing called "life" on our own? Is it not enough that God created the heavens and earth....I mean really! I am often amazed at my own ingenuity and wherewithall. And when I say amazed I am not in the least impressed with myself. I am just amazed that I have the gall to think I can do a better job with my life than God. I always think I have to fix things...and when I decide I am not going to try and fix things I sit around and worry about the ineptness of the Creator of the universe. Not literally, but you get the picture.

There are going to be some changes for the Teague family in the next month or so. We are torn. It will be a good situation for us in some ways, but will also shut the door on other possibilites for a time. We have lived the last few years in limbo...not knowing what the coming hours hold for us. We feel the urgency of the times but are unsure where we fit anymore. So once again I am asking again for God's hands to lead and guide us. And to bless us with that peace only He can give.


Monday, December 8, 2008

To Start Over Again

This has been a week of mixed blessings. Sometimes I feel that if I shut my eyes tight enough and then open them again slowly I will look at a life that seems more familiar to me. Not that my life has been anything but strange and kind of "made for a tv movie-ish"...at least in the past 12 or so years. Sometimes I don't feel as if I recognize myself, at all. Where did that quirky, spunky and kind of dreamy girl go? What I have discovered, however, in my trials and traverses is that God is still in control...despite me. This week has started out like many others. We are still wandering around an unfamiliar country. Occasionally, we see some sort of tree or rock or brook that seems familiar, but at closer look it is only a facsimile of something we once knew....So we wander on. My husband and I have been on a self-imposed furlough from something that was once so much part of us that not an hour went by without some sort of reminder of the life we had chosen or was chosen for us. It is very easy for those in full-time ministry to lose themselves in projects, people and causes. Suddenly (or not so suddenly) those projects, people and causes take the place of a deep and personal relationship with the Savior. What happens when those things are stripped away? What is left. If you were given a chance to start over again what would it be that you take with you from your former life? Those are some questions we've had to ask ourselves. And sometimes the answers aren't attractive or even very hopeful. What I have found is that the church world at large is not very forgiving to those who "should know better." After all, we used to be one of those who would plead from the pulpit for participation in our pet projects. We would cajole and persaude ....after all, if folks weren't going with the program they probably had some "issues." We have not shown mercy when it was mercy that would have made the difference. We have not shown hope when it was hope that would have made the difference. We have not followed after that one. When the pursuit would have made the difference. If we could start over again we would know that it's more about the person sitting in the pew than it is my opinion of what they should become. It is more about being that "hand extended" than it is about the Easter choir runs without a hitch or the children's carnival has plenty of workers. Sometimes it's someone like me...who should "know better"...that needs that hand. Someone who is just trying to find their way in an unfamiliar country.
I realize I have been fairly cryptic in my thoughts tonight. I wish, I wish, I wish I could reach out to those like me and some others that I know. Those who have spent their lives serving and found themselves maybe a little burnt out or a little hurt. In our case we were waylaid by the unexpected. Our lives had to change for a while and we realized that we weren't very well suited for those changes. It's tough enough when a young couple faces what we have in our marriage...infertility, chronic illness and traumatic injury. Troy has spent the past 12 of our 17 years supporting me through one health crisis after another....And not once did we stop our work. Not once did we postpone a candlelight caroling, or mother's day tea. Not once did we set another date for a revival or potluck dinner. We fed the hungry and clothed the naked. We mourned with the widow and cried with a grieving parent. So what was left when it stopped for a time. A family that needed to find themselves again...A family that needed to heal...And a family that needed God's mercy as much as anybody.
We still haven't found our way out of this "undiscovered country" (and yes, I am a trekkie). Not because of choice. There are many days I cry out "Lord, just point me in a direction!" And He reminds that just because He is preparing me for something (not quite sure what it is yet) doesn't mean that I am excused from those things He has commanded all of us to do. To show kindness and mercy to those around me....to tell others about His grace and love...to grieve and rejoice with the hurting and the hopeful alike. He wants more time with me...He wants me to forget my "to do" list and He just wants me. If I could start over again. That's would I would do.
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