A lightning bolt

A lightning bolt

I talked about my struggles with my temper a bit in my last blog. As a kid there was a lot of family strife and it boiled out of me when I couldn’t take the stress of it anymore. How did I find patience and peace? It was a long process that took years. 

My poor anger habits were ingrained. When I look back over the years I see baby steps away from that poor habit. Patience was a level of maturity I hadn’t attained in some areas. Anger has a way of making a shaky conversation take a nose dive. It wasn’t until I had a child that I started getting a bigger grasp of my anger issue. You think it’s easy to control…ummm not. Pops out at the most inappropriate times. At the time I was married and for sure he knew how to push every angry button I had. I could see myself losing control, but I couldn’t reel it in for the life of me. 

It wasn’t until after my divorce that I had an epiphany. Whoever controls my anger controls me. WTH! That can’t be right. The more I thought about it the more disturbingly real that statement became…and it was in my own head so it was a rowdy conversation. 

Once that lightning bolt of realization settled in I promised myself that I would not allow my anger to control me again. I’ve struggled through some situations. I know I’ve lost it a few times, but I’ve come a long way from out of control. 

I’m not going to say I don’t get mad, but I decide what my reaction will be. Do I confront the person? Do I wait till emotions have cooled down? Let it go because it’s just not worth an argument? Do I plot justice (might possibly be called revenge but that sounds so negative)?….sometimes justice is fun stuff. 

Point is get a grip on the emotions so YOU are the one in control not someone else.

-G.

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Finding the right acorn

Finding the right acorn

Recently I was re-reading a book that I enjoy. It’s real life practicality stands out to me. This is my second time to read it and new items stand out like never before. Probably due to where I am in my life and what I want from it. Expectations! They play a huge part in our lives. We expect one thing and get something completely different. It can be good, bad, ugly or indifferent. 

I read a line that compared our lives to a weekend. An eternity is a significant amount of time but when you stack up a lifetime it’s a weekend. I’d like to say my weekend is sunny and bright. Full of love and fun….oh please you know there’s a thunderstorm up in the middle of that day along with a big freaking fight somewhere. That’s real life or the reality of “the weekend”. 

How do you weather the storms? How do you come back from a fight, especially with someone you love? If you read my last blog you know I talk about my thoughts on a Proverbs 31 woman. As I study and mature in the word I’ve realized that you have to love that person more than yourself. That’s a big deal because self likes to pop up in a fight and win! 

I’m the competitive sort and that goes for about anything. A fight with words…oh I got this. Got it so well that the other person walks away wounded and annihilated. I’m talking about people I care about! Just think how I deal with those I don’t. Not pretty but true. God says I’m supposed to treat everyone with love. Ep 3:17 being rooted and established in love. This is an area for me to work on obviously and I have been for a long time. I’ve struggled through dealing with anger since I was a kid. Although it took until I was an adult to get a true grip on it. Not saying I don’t get mad because I do. Many times what we mistake as anger is really disappointment. Got to be able to recognize the difference. 

One of the things I decided for myself after my divorce was to make the decision to get back in church. Partly for myself but also for my son. I had not been raising him with any of the fundamental knowledge that I grew up knowing. I felt like I was failing in my duty as a parent to raise my child to know God and to know the word. Finding a church is like finding a prized acorn in the middle of the forest! 

Some may think I’m odd or maybe you’ve never had this kind of experience, but I listen with my inner self to know when I’m in the right place. I’m talking about church still. We attended my grandparents church for awhile but it wasn’t the one God was calling me to. Finally after a series of events I came to be in my current church one Sunday morning. The pastor was on a mission trip, the person preaching wasn’t really my style but you know what that’s where I was called. I came back the next weekend and heard the pastor. My son loved the church AND this wasn’t his idea of fun – we kept attending. Finally I prayed ‘if I’m supposed to join this church God just make it clear so I know’…fyi I can be slow to pick up his clues. Preacher starts preaching and it’s about being a part of the church – hello got the message loud and clear. 

What I didn’t expect was that when I went to join that my son would decide that he would too. I was saved and baptized at 8 years old, but I had neglected my duties as a parent. I didn’t think my son was saved. I got a surprise that day because he was making a public profession of faith, because he’d asked God into his heart well before that day. My feelings of failing fell by the wayside. I was ecstatic that somehow God had taken care of my son even when I felt like a failure. Even when I felt like the crappiest parent in the world! To some this may not even rank on your list of bad parenting but to me it was huge. Fortunately he grants me Grace and mercy even when I don’t deserve it. Romans 10:9 

Now that I ponder on this: finding a church, the person to have a lasting relationship with, meaning to life, satisfying career – it’s all like finding that one prized acorn. The odds of getting it right are staggering! Especially if you think you can do it all on your own. I know for a fact I need my posse, friends, family and faith if I’m ever going to get anything right. That could be a depressing thought but I swing the other way – full of positivity! I’d rather have people alongside me supporting and cheering me on than to have nothing. They can also act as a voice of reason if I get a little too crazy! Just keepin’ it real.

-G.

*Photo by Tim Ernst

Solid rock

Solid rock

Solid rock woman – that’s how the preacher described my grandmother. He passed out stones to my grandfather, mom, and aunt as a reminder to the kind of woman she was…you know a Proverbs 31:10-31 kind of woman. 

This is something I can only aspire to since I’ve already failed once in a marriage. How do you come back from failure? I’m sure I’m not the only one that wonders if you can be successful at another relationship or marriage. 

As a type A personality I want to be successful in all things: relationships involve more than one person. More than hearts and flowers….there is a bunch of stuff that is just hard. When there are two people it’s supposed to be easier to survive what life throws at you, but you’ve got to be working in sync together. 

I read a book a couple of years ago about finding a Boaz not a Bozo. A good read that holds true for when you’re searching for the right man. Ruth was like my Granny – solid rock material. Fortunately for me and my failings it says in Ephesians 5:25, 27 that God’s grace covers what we are not and makes us what we are in Christ. This is good for me because I FAIL ALL THE TIME!!!! As a type A it takes a lot for me to admit that but that’s a step in the right direction…admission.

Later in the evening after the funeral I was sitting at my grandparents table in the seat I always sat in for meals. Laying in front of me was the stone that had been given to my grandfather. I couldn’t help but pick it up. It was so smooth just like a skipping stone would be if I were looking along the creek bed. It fit in my hand perfectly, and I could picture all the ripples my grandmother had made in my life. She had a significant impact from beginning to end.

My hope is that I can create ripples that are  impactful to the lives around me or to those that I come in contact with from day to day. I may never see the fruit bear from my efforts, but I have an opportunity to plant a seed. 

As I read Proverbs 31 and thought about what it took to be a woman of noble character I realized that it takes maturity. Mental maturity not necessarily age. Recognizing your own value and what you bring to the relationship…again it’s two people not one. Being in the word. How can I attain this aspiration if I’m not learning and growing spiritually? Can’t because I would be all about myself. Self is lonely and tiring. Self gets old pretty quick and then you seek something to fill the empty spaces. I don’t want a Bozo to fill those spaces I want a Boaz. Waiting is the tough part because I’m not the most patient person…an understatement lol

I’m talking about relationships but it could easily be that you’re waiting on something else. WAITING bites! Maybe other things need to fall into place or trust needs to build. Whatever it is the waiting is just as valuable an experience. Hunters know this – waiting silently for the right moment is essential and it might take days or even weeks to get the right animal. OK I just compared a relationship to hunting that’s funny stuff right there. “As the lioness stalks her prey”… please use a British or Aussie accent as you read that for the best sound effects! Still laughing!!!

Enough! You get the point and hopefully you’ve been educated and entertained. 

-G.