Angels among us

6 Nov

I know God uses people all the time, often without their knowledge. Sometimes He sends angels to masquerade as people, and we probably don’t realize how often it happens.

One of my friends was an angel this week. My kids were in a bit of a pickle, and I was stuck at work. She dropped everything she was doing and came to their rescue. I hope they fell over themselves thanking her, but I’m not going to ask exactly how much they said thank you. A second friend was willing to help, but she was just as far away as I was.

My son and I are convinced that God sent an angel to our house once. There was a “neighborhood kid” that wasn’t allowed to go in his house because of some repairs or something, so he was stuck outside on a hot day. In spite of standing instructions to ask permission, Son just invited the boy in to cool off and have a drink of water. After getting over my initial irritation, I realized that taking care of a thirsty stranger was more important than my embarrassment about someone seeing our messy house. We realized later that none of us had seen him before or since, and couldn’t figure out where he came from. I knew this was one of those “if you do it to the least of these” moments.

There are times I wonder if I am being as helpful as I could be. Actually, I know I could always do better, but I wish I could do more to help others. I do have the opportunity to give back on occasion, but it seems those times are few and far between. While I would like to be one of those people that my friends know they can count on, somehow I usually seem to be the one asking for help. Maybe that is a product of being a single mother with one healthy child and one that has physical challenges. Regardless, I do what I can and have to allow myself to be good enough, not perfect. If God thinks I’m good enough, who am I to question?  After all, I’m not the angel.

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Teenagers

5 Nov

Teenagers.  Gotta love ’em. What else can you do? LOL Sure, I understand they have hormones raging and confusing the heck out of them, but that doesn’t make it any easier to live with them. Sometimes they’re the sweet children you used to know, and sometimes it seems like some creature from the underworld has taken over their body. Of course, when they want something from you they can flip the switch back to sweet lovable child fast enough it makes your head spin like that underworld creature.

 I think the hardest part is that when they get that attitude, they don’t listen to reason. They can’t comprehend that they might be mistaken, therefore everyone else by default is wrong. Attempts at correction, if not completely ignored, are met with irritated grunts and eye rolls.

Apparently the world is now supposed to revolve around them. Whatever they want is the only thing that matters. If your wish happens to fit in with that, fine. Otherwise, tough cookies. Well, again, that is unless they want something from you. Now I’m rolling my eyes.

While I have to admire their desire to become more independent, I do wish they would listen just a little bit every once in a while. Is that too much to ask? Apparently so. Communication is not exactly a high priority for the middle school set. Unless, of course, they are trying to be funny. Then the information is flowing freely, but it is strictly a one-way street.

 Yes, I know I sound cynical. That tends to happen after an evening of, “Did you do your homework?” and, “Would you two please stop fighting?” and, “Did you practice?” and, “Are you ready for bed?” and, “Is your homework finished yet?” and the ever popular, “Why are all these lights on?”

 It goes without saying that I love them, and would do anything for them. That is part of being a parent. That doesn’t mean I have to like being around them all the time, though. I didn’t understand the depth of God’s love and patience until I had my own children. I’m not sure I do yet, but now I have a slightly better grasp on His perfect grace and the sacrifice he made when He sent his son to the cross. I doubt I will ever fully appreciate it, but now that I have children of my own, I do have a better idea of what the “unconditional” part of unconditional love means.

I can hardly wait until I have two teenagers.

Hiccups

4 Nov

Hiccups.  They are usually not too much fun to experience, although in the right company they can be entertaining to watch.  I usually get them when I eat too much, and get rid of them with a spoonful of sugar.  I know, everybody has a trick they say works, but this one really does work for me.  Take a spoonful of sugar in my mouth, sit still, and breathe through my nose until the sugar is gone.

The word hiccup can be used to represent lots of things in life.  Things that are usually unexpected, not necessarily pleasant, and most of the time a bit disruptive.  As with the literal kind, I usually get them when I my plate has been too full. It could be the milk going bad, something taking longer than I expect, one of the kids getting sick, or dog hairs showing up on my favorite shirt when I’m running late.

Whether literal or figurative, we have all experienced hiccups, probably every day.  Think about it.  How many times do you go through the day where everything happens just the way you planned? Hardly ever, right?  So dealing with hiccups is a universal problem.  Some people handle them fairly well.  Other people, not so much. How your day goes is determined in large part how you deal with those little hiccups, or even the big ones that really throw you for a loop. 

So what do you do when you have hiccups?  Do you take them in stride and keep going?  Do you stop and regroup?  Do you throw a fit, grumble, then finally make adjustments?  I can’t say I always deal with them properly, but somehow the more you do it the easier it gets.  It also helps to keep things in perspective.  Is this really going to change what happens to me today, tomorrow, in a week?  Is this really going to affect my quality of life, or someone I love?  Is it really that important in the grand scheme of things?  Most of the time the answer is no.  Granted, it may not be what you wanted, but that’s life.  You play the cards you’re dealt and you keep going.  You can’t let life get the better of you, there is too much at stake. 

I’ve had plenty of hiccups this week, some small, some fairly sizable.  How do I deal with them?  I have to trust that somewhere in there God is up to something, and He has his reasons.  I know He’s not going to give me more than I can handle. It also helps if I stop and get something sweet, take a deep breath and relax.