My tongue is in my hand…

Archive for the ‘change’ Category

Sometimes, I think about the blessings I have and I don’t understand. Material things that I don’t necessarily want or need. And then there are these other intangible things that I do want or need. And I feel guilty because I still have so much more than so many others. And I feel sad because I would give up so much to just have the things I really want.

I feel like I should be happy with what I have and do something good and cherish it all, because they are certain blessings.

And I feel like I should be working towards being the person who has what they really want. I have to keep the faith. I have to fake it til I make it, I suppose.

And I have this fear, underneath these other things…that the thing I crave the most is something I am not ready for, something I would mess up if I had it…

so I’m thinking, I should work towards keeping it, even though I don’t have it…I have to believe in the timing, the cosmic timing of it.

I am hungry and tired. Why do I feel that way so much?

My perspective is off this weekend. I feel this weird sort of feeling. I need someone to bounce it off of. I need that thing I always need. I just want to know that everything’s okay.

I guess I’ll just believe it is.

Sometimes, that means moving through the motions of a life, of a day, with my mind and heart far away. As if all of this life is just moonlighting for the real deal that seems just right beyond my grasp, that I get the smallest taste of every once in a while. (the sweetest taste. my most favorite thing. a moment that makes everything else fade away and…it’s too much to write even…)

And regret…regret is useless but tempting. As if it could change anything. Particularly anything a decade old. All I can do is trust this road that has managed to…to allow me some hope and prepare myself for the life I want…there must be a purpose in the blessings, the needs, the moments, the struggle. There’s got to be a purpose in the struggle.

I’m all stirred up and haven’t been able to pour it into anything yet (or onto anyone yet).

 

As a general practice, I try to keep some things private or vague when blogging, just because it generally seems like a good thing to do. But right now, I just want to be utterly and painstakingly honest. I just need to be. On the very off chance that my husband happens upon this, I’m sorry if I revealed more than you are comfortable with.  But none of it is your fault, or something you should feel or be ashamed of. It’s life. It’s just honesty.

My husband was laid off today (along with several other members of his shift and some long-time office staff and truck drivers who had 15 years + with the company). He has been at this job since January of this year (10 months). He loved this job. He recently blacked out at work and could not wait till the doctors cleared him so that he could get back. (It turned out to be a medication related thing, not a seizure as initially thought). Prior to that he was employed by a local school system in the mechanic and landscaping departments. He began there in August and was laid off in April due to budget cuts system wide (this school system is now closing schools, laying of principals, teachers, and all other variety of staff). Prior to that he was at a trucking company for 5 years. He was laid off due to decreased business/budget cuts. They have since continued to lay off long time staff, some within a year or two of retirement.

His first lay off happened in January 2008. We had just bought our home in October 2007 (3 months prior). Our daughter had just turned 2. We just spent the last of our tax refund on planting bushes around our property line in the back yard. He spent 8 months, until August 2008, unemployed. At first, I was just sure he’d get something soon. I didn’t ask anyone for help, I just used our credit cards to pay bills and figured we’d be back on our feet in no time, pay it all down and off and move on. Thankfully I work full time and was able to put myself and our daughter on my insurance (decreasing my take home pay). We didn’t put him on my insurance. It was another 50$ a paycheck and we figured he would get something soon enough.

Once he found a job,  he took a 4$/hr pay cut.  He was miserable at the job itself. He had to have emergency gall bladder surgery only a few weeks into the job and was out of work for 6 weeks. Thankfully, my mom worked for the same school system (she’s now laid off too) and was able to donate her excess of PTO to him, so we didn’t have to go without pay for 6 weeks. Also, thankfully as a state employee, his insurance had already kicked in.

He had that job for 8 months. He was laid off in April of 2009. He did not get another job until January of 2010. That was 9 months unemployed. When he found this job he had to take another 2$ pay cut from his last job. That’s an 8$/hr pay cut from when we bought this house. that’s a $1200/month deficit. He had this job 10 months. Only one month longer than it took to find this job.

I have received a slight raise since this happened. We had to stop paying credit cards. They are in collections. Every single bill is late. We have 2 credit cards and 2 loans we are trying to keep up along with my car payment, house payment, car insurance, power, natural gas, water, internet ( I need for work), cell phones (we don’t have a land line), gas for our cars, groceries, and clothing/medical/misc. We’ve both looked for 2nd jobs. I have applied for and been turned down for mortgage loan modifications and the Making Home Affordable program (bet your ass I’m trying again). Thankfully my mother in law watches my daughter when she’s not in preschool. Also thankfully, my mother in law covers Natalie’s preschool tuition, as she used to get it free when my mother in law worked at her preschool and though she doesn’t anymore, she has still generously and lovingly offered to pay her MWF preschool tuition.

At some point and time over the past few years, our water has been cut off, our natural gas has been cut off, our phones have been cut off, our tv service has been cut off, we had a threat of our home being foreclosed, and of my car being repossessed. I’ve bounced checks and overdrafted our bank account (usually just to get groceries to cover until our next paycheck). Last year, right at the end of the year, we were negative in the bank and I seriously rolled quarters to get us to the next paycheck. Not to mention the endless phone calls of bill collectors. Our parents have helped us. Our friends have helped us. Our church has helped us. No one has much though. But they are generous and gracious. With the exception of one. I won’t be that honest though. There’s just no need. Just to say, I do have it thrown in my face that I owe money. Not just by bill collectors.

Somehow, we’re still here. But I’m really tired. Every month, I am hustling our money around, bargaining and begging and I’m just tired. I have no long term plan. I’m just trying to get through a week. I have, though, rediscovered my love of bargain shopping, goodwill hunting, consignment, and yard sales. I really do enjoy those things. Mostly.

I’m just dreading what’s coming. Because we’ve been here before. Everyone I’ve talked to has said “It’ll be okay”. And at this point, I don’t really doubt that anymore. We’ve come this far. I don’t really doubt provision. I’m just tired. I just don’t know what will happen to me between now and the time that it’s “okay”. I just want to be able to pay my bills. All of them. On time. I just want my husband to have a job he enjoys, that is secure, that he feels good about, that pays him what he’s worth. While I’m at it, I want a job that I feel good about that pays me what I’m worth.But seriously…

I’m dreading his job search. Him being home, bored, bummed, and no longer medicated. He’s on a medication for his OCD/anxiety that is 240$ without insurance. He’s going off of the medication now, since he won’t have insurance. He thinks it will be fine. But I remember. And it’s not fine. I may go fucking insane. Or become a day drinker. Either way…

I know we are blessed. I do not for a minute deny that. That doesn’t mean I’m not tired.

I cried for at least an hour in the car today. Like a maniac. The only thing that really made me stop was driving to the coffee shop (Caribou) to meet a friend. I parked behind the dumpster and gathered myself. I wiped my face, blew my nose for the millionth time and put on makeup. Slowly. Then I downed a muscle relaxer and a pain killer that were prescribed to me for migraines by drinking water from my daughter’s sippy cup, as it was the only beverage in the car and that pain pill was big. I took a deep breath, checked my bloodshot eyes one more time and kind of wished I smoked so that I would have some eyedrops on me and stepped out of my car and spent the afternoon there. I never made it back to work that afternoon.

It’s funny, something like this doesn’t make you want to work harder to keep your job. It just makes you not give a damn. What does it matter? If they need to axe people, they axe them, doesn’t matter how many times you came to work an utter mess, or how many times you gave up seeing your kid’s thanksgiving program, or went above and beyond your job description. There’s no real formula for success, except figuring out how to enjoy your life regardless of the bullshit.

On the way home, I bought him a bottle of Crown and myself a bottle of Skinnygirl Margarita (never had it before). I called my girlfriends. I went to the grocery store and bought junk food and a dog toy. I got Chinese for our dinner. After I played with our daughter and got her into bed, I spent 28$ on Amazon because I needed to buy the book for book club and it was 4$ with free shipping if I bought 25$ worth of stuff. So I got a Christmas present for my husband and one for my daughter and some kind of luminous lotion for myself along with the book. I drank and made him a  drink and I watched Without a Trace and he played xbox and then I made cookies and cheese sticks and gave him a back rub and he’s sleeping and I’m typing the longest blog ever. And still drinking.

I forgot to mention. We got a check in the mail yesterday from Jason’s insurance company from when he blacked out at work. It was out of network for some reason, so instead of sending payment to the EMS, they sent it to him. $1200.00. For us to pay the ambulance company. I told him and my mom (who was over when I opened the mail) that we should put that shit in the bank, use it as needed and deal with the bill when it comes. It’s not like we’re worried about messing up our credit. They said no. I told them they need to get on my level. The insurance company put the check in my husband’s name, with no indication of what he was to do with it (he found out by calling this morning). I say, that’s your dumb fault if you write checks to people and expect them to pay whoever with them. Really.

As of today, my husband and my mom got on my level. They said, in essence, pay bills with that shit. I said. Thank you. It’s about damn time.

Also, my husband finally decided to do without satellite. I grew up with only like 8 channels, so I’m okay with going back to tv minimal life. Between Netflix and Hulu, I think we’ll be just fine. Our daughter will be most irritated at first probably, but you know, she’s young, she’ll adjust. She probably watches way too much anyways.

He’s so bummed. I keep forgetting this is real. Like it’s a joke and I’m waiting for the punchline. He gets two weeks severance. He put in for unemployment already. I wouldn’t be surprised if there was a “Welcome back!” message when he signed on. I know he’s tired too. He did start taking online classes a few months ago, for wildlife conservation. He has time to catch up on classes now…

Things like this do make you shake off the rest of the world for a minute. Kind of a “Fuck you, I don’t give a shit what you think or want right now” kind of thing and that’s relieving sometimes. Actually my true self is very similar to this, I just have come so far from that true self lately. It’s kind of nice to be there again, regardless of circumstances. Because the truth of the matter is this: not only is there no formula for success (besides finding a way to be happy in spite of the bullshit), but there’s also no way to really walk the line between giving damn and not giving a damn. Pretty sure Reese Witherspoon told this to Joaquin already, In “Walk The Line” but you know, I guess I try most of the time to keep some kind of middle ground. But you know, I’m tired. I guess what I have to figure out is what exactly it is I’m tired of and what’s keeping me from letting it go…

In the meantime…we’re a single income household again. We’re a drawing unemployment household with an uninsured adult male not receiving the medication he needs family again. Oh fucking well. Gotta roll with the punches, right?

Growing up in a Christian church, there was always a lot of talk about putting God first, making God a priority, and about denying ourselves our “selfish desires”. I think these two things contradict themselves for someone who has accepted the love of God into their lives. If now, God lives in me as love, and God created me, then wouldn’t one of the best ways to get in touch with God be to get in touch with myself? To explore my desires, to indulge the things that pull at my heart and spirit? If God lives in us, then wouldn’t listening to our selves be listening to God? To do this, wouldn’t it take tuning out everything else at times, or most of the time? Shouldn’t we, with God in us, be the priority in our lives, with all other things coming after? If I can not hear myself, can not mend myself, can not refresh myself, can not address my needs, can not engage in the things that press on my God- designed, God-entwined heart, can not touch base with God within myself then how can anything else I do be in tune with God, how can I touch base with God anywhere outside of myself? But the church taught me for so long to deny myself, that it’s taken me years to understand that this was incomplete information, it was the beginning of a lesson that no one bothered to follow up on. I’m realizing that the things I do that perhaps no one else in the whole entire world (or my whole entire world) seems to agree with, but rests well on my heart, always serves me better than following anyone else’s guidelines for “the right thing”. Because my relationship with God is about me. Not anyone else (not even the church). Everyone else has to settle what they have to settle between God and themselves. I have to trust that God is handling everything else, whatever I forsake to indulge in the movement. Moving against the standards  set up by those around me is moving in faith. Even if it’s moving against the standards of the (imperfect, human run, though- most- likely- well intentioned) church. I have to trust that whatever time I spend with God, forsaking all else, will make me a better person for all else. And I have to spend time evaluating everything, sans the world- what’s working, what’s not, what have I learned, what do I need, etc. More time, just God and I. While, in the church, quiet time or devotions are encouraged, I’ve found that they are encouraged within the realm of the world – that you don’t dare disrupt any of the worlds in which you reside.  Christianity seems to expect you to tread so lightly in every realm of your life that you are constantly tangled up in the world and it’s expectations. Yes, by acting in and with love, we can honor God in anything we do…but when we’re suffocated by the standards and expectations of everyone around us, we are ineffective. Why isn’t this a constant conversation in the church?

Sometimes, I feel like the Christian church perpetually teaches the remedial version of faith, never moving forward, always waiting for everyone in their midst to grasp the basics of the religion, before they really get into the abstract parts. While anyone can gain from reviewing the basics, what do you do when it’s time to start applying the basics? Where’s the person talking about how sometimes, to put God first, you literally have to forsake all others: you have to stop working, ignore your boss, your job, your church, your parents, your spouse, your children, your debts, your home, your pets, your friends, your government, your responsibilities, everything: every standard, every rule, every expectation , all of it being worldly, and subject to seperating you from God, even with the best intentions.  And you have trust that God will take care of everything while you sit alone with God, with yourself, for however long is necessary, while you move where ever you are moved.

Who’s going to talk about how this may not necessarily be one big event or moment in your life, but that it may be a daily thing, a weekly thing, a seasonal thing? Why am I wondering if I’m the only person in the world who is in this place, who’s been here? Sure, someone’s read me a verse that says, you must forsake all others and follow Christ. Sure, someone will say that if the world hates you, it’s okay, because Christ has overcome the world. Great. Two sentences. Why aren’t we talking about what this looks like, how this feels, in real life?   Where’s the incessant discussion regarding this (instead of, perhaps, homosexuality- or something equally less important to our spiritual growth)? Why aren’t we evolving as spiritual beings? Why do we only expect people to be able to spout out Sunday School answers?   Where’s the discussion on the individuality of faith, of spiritual growth? Why do we all expect it to look the same on everyone? Why is the church afraid of getting messy with faith? Why does the church rely on black and white so much, why is it so fearful of all the gray that is the individual application of faith? Why do the standards of Christians get more specific than love God, love one another? Are Christians that dense that we need someone to give us rules beyond love to live by? The church is so wrapped up in setting and applying it’s own standards for faith in the world, that it has become part of the world that one must ignore to really hear God. Are the structures of the church impeding the growth of the church in regards to allowing and encouraging members to evolve spiritually?

Oh, people are good at saying they know faith is individual, but the actions of the Christian church do not support this. It supports conformity far more than it supports growth outside of conformity. It seems to have so low an expectation for it’s community of believers that it simplifies everything to boxes and lists and categories to keep from confusing anyone. It is a social and political organization, as well as a religious one, and it’s rare to find a church were you can escape these undertones and overtones.  Not to say I dismiss the potential and positive impact of being part of a church community, because I do believe people can benefit from being part of a group of people who care about you and care about others as well. I think church is, overall, a good thing to be part of. I just wonder, is there too much teaching in churches and too little discussion and application when it comes to the intangibles? It’s great that someone has studied the Bible and public speaking and can “teach me” about the Bible, and I gather good info and insight through sermons most of the time, and if nothing else, it gives me a chance to sit in one place, quiet, for an hour with others who are doing the same…it serves me well, no doubt. But when do we come together to discuss it? Bible study and Sunday School are another hour of the basics being taught with little opportunity for discussion beyond more basic answers….it’s like we’ve got everyone on the short bus of faith, perpetually. Shouldn’t we expect more from ourselves, from each other? Shouldn’t we be going deeper on a regular basis? Shouldn’t we be experimenting with love and faith and hope and joy and forgiveness  and then evaluating the results as some kind of community? Shouldn’t we be sharing more? Shouldn’t we be getting messier with our faith amongst one another (and in the world as a whole)?

I want to talk  in church, with my church families. I want discussions. Group discussions. Where we push ourselves and each other, where we get uncomfortable, where we question, where we discuss personal applications of faith, where we get confused and frustrated and show one another grace and mercy, where we seek answers, where we share insight, where we agree to disagree, where we intersect among our spiritual journeys, share stories, gather resources and reserves, where we let go of the standards of the world, of our worlds, where we evolve and move…where we practice among each other what we hope to practice outside of the church…unconditional love…

I’m so tired of feeling like I’m trapped in remedial classes every time I’m in church. As much as I love the people in the church, sometimes it’s like I’m suffocating;  we can’t keep breathing the same air over and over without it eventually becoming toxic. We’ve got to open up the doors, the windows, the emergecy exit- something. Come on guys. We’re capable of more, we should expect more, we should grow more.

We’ve got to do something, it’s getting crowded on the short bus and everybody’s laughing at us.

Disclaimer: I have not and do not laugh at those who ride short buses, nor do I condone such behavior. I just found it to be a fitting methaphor.

This (like most things here lately) is for my personal reference later or never, or whatever. I feel like the more I record right now ( and I feel like recording random things), the freer my mind is, so:

Compliment: dinner was good

Good call yesterday- Disney store instead of dollar store for b-day gift

Unfortunate comment that wasn’t a joke yesterday- you should eat only half a cookie, I’ve lost weight, you haven’t, we’re going to the beach soon

Thankful that- stayed up with Nat last night and watched a movie (she couldn’t sleep) while I slept

First (and basically only) conversation this morning- where are the clothes I want (that I told you nothing about but need right now) and put them in the dryer for me, isn’t the picture she drew in her cousin’s b-day card cute, the dog chewed up my shoe – I need new ones, the house is a mess, look at it, it’s a mess, you need to do something about it. love you, bye.

I feel like maybe I’m not, or haven’t been paying attention to parts of my day or life that ultimately matter, that I’m overlooking something crucial on a day to day basis for whatever reason (peacekeeping, too busy, too tired, too oblivious,too confused, too thrown off guard, too anxious, too whatever)… and then I’m looking back and realizing that maybe the things I was overlooking were important, changed my life, changed me…by not paying attention to certain things, I’m apathetically allowing things I don’t want in my life, or allowing my life, my day, my self to be steered into places I don’t want to be…I don’t know, it’s just a little theory….I obviously am in need of a variation in approach to my daily life and various things within my daily life. Just some trial and error here. I’ll see if writing seemingly useless, random, petty, odd, personal info about my days and interactions will matter… Maybe because I don’t have as much time to decompress and evaluate as I used to…I don’t know…just gonna try it. Beware: more trivial, possibly dull, and nonsensical things to come…

I woke up earlier today to try to start my day off with peace and not anxiety. In theory, I like the idea of starting the day with quiet time, a devotional. But I feel like the only way to do that is to write, on here. I feel like my mind wanders too much otherwise, like I will just fall asleep, or give in to the anxiety.

I hate waking up anxious. For most of my life, I have not had that problem. I remember a particular time in my life where I always woke up peaceful and joyful. This is what I keep in my minds eye, what I want to achieve again. I don’t believe that my circumstances should determine my daily attitude. I can be peaceful, even if there are a lot of stressors.

My problem lately is that there is too much. Too much to do, too much left undone, too much stacked up in corners or closets. Too much of people wanting me to do things in their timeframe. I decided two things last night: at home, I’m going to take care of one accumulated thing at a time. Yesterday it was a bag of crap I had taken from my car and thrown in a closet. And I’m not going to let myself get overwhelmed feeling like I need to handle everything right now, or criticizing myself for letting it be that way.

I also decided that work stuff is going to happen on my timeframe. Even if that means I have to set up a timeframe to coincide with someone else’s, I will create and claim my own timeframe as well. I can’t wake up worrying about work or go to bed and dream about it. It is by no means my fault that the system is set up so that everyone has to hurry up and wait for services they need. I’m not going to feel like I have to handle everything right this second for everyone (this applies at home too). I just can’t. I can’t feel that way. I’m not going to beat myself up about it. I’m going to do the best I can do. Before I took this position, they stated they had problems keeping people on this team, in this position, so I know it’s not easy, but I also know if I stick with it, that will be more than those others did. I just have to do what I can- if that gets people upset, oh well, I can’t do this everyday, this can’t be my priority.

That’s what was good about Natalie being sick, I didn’t feel like I had to do anything but be “mom” for a few days. With my job changing, and more of my friends having children and being at home moms, I am feeling the strain of being a professional and a mom more than I was before…I wouldn’t not be either, so…I don’t know.

I’m so tired- physically tired. It was a rough weekend,  sleep wise. And I’m so bad at time management. It frustrates me sometimes. Of course if we didn’t have so many Yankees around here, everyone would know that in the South, nothing ever really starts until at least 15 minutes after the time it was allotted to start. Unfortunately, most of the people I work with are from NY/Philly and don’t understand this concept at all. *sigh*

Jason’s truck is still in the shop.  I have taken several hours 3 days in a row to help him get it, it’s a huge inconvenience and undesired but necessary use of precious funds.

I think my timesheet was due yesterday and I forgot about it completely due to Natalie’s 2am-6am ER run to find out she has strep…*sigh* again

Hopefully I can turn this in today and still get paid friday. If not, that would suck. But I feel apathetic. Sometimes I’m just tired of holding all the little pieces together…granted, timesheets and paychecks are not “little” peices…grrr…I have non of it done. Not a bit. I hate timelines and due dates.

I think there should be some kind of test you can take and how you are expected to meet due dates and timelines should be determined from a variety of factors including not only external responsibilities and stresses, but also internal factors- if people knew how hard I try and all the little things inside that stop me, they’d be so proud of what I can do. Instead, I just look like I can never get it together.

I just want a week of days by myself, doing nothing for anyone.

I think I hate my job.

I really do. I really think I hate it. But it was the best move I could make, as my previous position is no longer going to exist come July due to budget cuts and funding…still a bad fit for me. My supervisor stated it was a good fit…maybe she doesn’t know me as well as a thought…or maybe I’m becoming discouraged to easily. All I know is it feels like math. I don’t get it. It doesn’t make sense, it’s too much at one time. I feel lost.

I want peace in my day. I don’t want to be on anyone else’s timeframe. I want to figure out how to do that. I feel like it’s going to require earlier mornings…

Also, my dog is driving me crazy. He’s scratching at the vacuum cleaner. Why?

I feel a little better starting like this. I think the key is making the anxious thoughts wait. Deciding- I will not worry about the bank account or bills right now. I am not in the mood or able to deal with it right now, so I’m not going to sit and obsess about it. I will pick a time and address a few things at a time. Tonight. I will address some part of this tonight.

After I drop Natalie at school, I will address work related issues- not before. This morning, I will just prepare for my day. I will not jump into it “like a drunken idiot”, as a friend of mine said about their own habits. I will eat breakfast, write, make Natalie’s breakfast, pray, clean up breakfast, shower/dress, make lunches, kiss and cuddle Natalie, talk to her, sing with her, feed the dog, take him out, play with him. I will take her to school where she will have a egg hunt and I will purchase some of her school pictures. Then I will address my day. I will do the same with work. While working, I will not address finances. While addressing finances, I will not address my social life. When I’m writing, I’m writing. When I’m praying, I’m praying. When I’m eating, I’m eating. When I’m with Natalie, I’m with Natalie. When I’m addressing something like cleaning or bills, then that’s what I’m doing. I will only multi task if I decide it benefits me, not because I’m freaking out.

I will not try to manage every aspect of every (or any) situation all at one time. One thing at a time. On my time.

So, everything that makes me anxious- Fuck you.

So, I’m gonna get started on this now. I don’t want it to take me forever. I don’t want to obsess about it. I just want to say it.

First of all, after some internet research, I found an article/blog that was just what I was looking for regarding health care. I don’t really care about people’s crazy fanatical fears, nor do I care about anecdotes, or even, all the “scary, hidden aspects of the bill that will make us suffer F O R E V E R.” I just wanted a little data.

Like, what’s up with all these other industrialized countries that have been doing this whole universal health care thing for decades? How’s that working out? Seriously- how’s that working out?

Finally, I got some data (as mentioned and linked above), and feel happy. It basically says that though universal health care is  not perfect, neither is what the US has now,  and still, universal health care is a better use of our money and resources, given we manage to implement it well- maybe modeling it after other successful programs? Like, maybe some other country did something we can learn and grow from? Maybe? And, data shows: it will in all likelihood not be the END OF AMERICA!

So, aside from the data that made my search fruitful and facebook status worthy, I also got a great string of quotes from the comment section.

52: “You have omitted how much people pay in taxes for these entitlements”

Have you considered how much we pay NOW for the uninsured? Do you think that if a homeless person goes into the ER and receives treatment it is just free?

It seems to me that in a “Christian” country to allow multitudes to go without adequate healthcare for apparently the sole reason of wanting to avoid even the appearance of ‘socialism’ (i.e., purely ideological purposes) is immoral. Posted by: slpage | June 15, 2009 5:08 PM

53 #52, I find it amusing that you would be ok with stealing from your neighbor to pay for your health care. Government is not charity or compassion, it is force. Forcing your neighbor to pay for someones healthcare is not christian, it is theft. Posted by: frodo | June 29, 2009 10:12 PM
55 “Government is not charity or compassion, it is force. Forcing your neighbor to pay for someones healthcare is not christian, it is theft.”

Horsefeathers. We are a society. We, as a society, decide to use our combined resources to provide certain services. If we, as a society, decide that healthcare should be one of those services, it is not theft anymore than universal policing is theft. If you choose not to support society, you are more than welcome to leave.

57 “I find it amusing that you would be ok with stealing from your neighbor to pay for your health care. Government is not charity or compassion, it is force. Forcing your neighbor to pay for someones healthcare is not christian, it is theft.”
Isn’t it odd that compassion must be forced on Christians?

May I suggest reading 1st John 3:17

– If you don’t have your Bible handy it reads thus:

“But whoso hath this world’s good, and seeth his brother have need, and shutteth up his bowels of compassion from him, how dwelleth the love of God in him? ”   Posted by: Drew L | July 5, 2009 12:45 PM

You’ve got to love anyone who can use the word “Horsefeathers” in any conversation, ever. That truly enhances the awesomeness of the quote. Commenter 55, we would be friends, I can tell. And commenter 57! Yes, America’s Christians are odd, aren’t they? Now, Commenter 52-thanks for provoking 53. This wouldn’t have been possible without you! 53, well, you know- at least you know where you stand (even if it is in some horsefeathery place) .

For the record, I do understand people feeling afraid. Fear and apprehension are normal when you embark on something that is new, that is big, that is kind of out of your control. So, regular uneasiness or even lack of knowledge I get, and I don’t mock. I’m not saying I understand or fully support everything about the bill. But it’s the over the top, selfish, self-righteous, loud, whiny, pessimists that jump to conclusions and make up “facts” that drive me insane.

Now, having ran my brain through that, I think I’ll end this here and pick it up again, as it’s already long enough, with all the quotes. And I wanted to write about the quotes, they made my night. So, I’ll build off this. Maybe tonight, maybe in the morning. (I don’t think I have more than 2 readers anyways ;P)

I hear the most from God when I am most extremely broken. The broken where you aren’t even angry, aren’t questioning, aren’t trying, aren’t asking, aren’t doing anything but being broken. But that makes sense, since that kind of broken is so extremely open.

Not that I don’t hear from God otherwise, but perhaps I am listening most at those times…the why is not the purpose of this post. The purpose is the what. What was said today. By God, to me. I talked, and cried and listened and wrote and cried a little more and talked a little more, and read, and listened, and settled a little in the truth of it.

And moved a little, and rested a little, and loved and prayed and hoped and practiced focus and made peace with my prayers; the words, the movements, the pulls, the incredible, the intense, the promise, the now, the past, the future.

I take to heart the communication, the promise, the love story. I take to heart the promise. The promise is presence. The promise is love. Not Hollywood love-LOVE. THE LOVE. The ultimate Every Thing. And all that goes with that, all that implies. I don’t even think it can be explained with words alone. It is so much more, and it is so completely individual.

Here it is:

“Remember, everything is ultimately about our love story.

Don’t be so heartsick sweetheart. I know what you need. It’s all in the works. It’s all happening. Have patience. Keep hope. Transform that perceived loss to hope-possibility-promise. Listen to me.

I know your prayers before you finish forming them in your core.

I know your heart, your hope, what you cling to, what you reach for

Your aches are open here

Your life is exactly right, as it is to be right now

Everything matters, everything has meaning

I know.

Don’t be discouraged. Don’ t let hope hurt you. That is not it’s intent. Don’t let hope break you, discourage you. Don’t hand your hope over to anyone who will distort it.

Listen to me.

To my promise, to the beautiful.

Take all those moments that are so completely right and weave them around you, they are my promises to you, they are the fruition of persistence and belief.

Keep moving with me. Keep believing.

Keep your eyes on my love for you. Nothing, No Thing else, and you will understand all the movements of my light.

You will always have material to write, don’t worry about that.

Beautiful child-this is our love story. Please, don’t forget.”

The last two lines make me cry every time because I never speak, even in my prayers, of the fear of not having material to write, of some deep seated fear of too much good and not enough bad leaving me inspiration-less.

So now is the part where I have to keep this in the front of my heart, like a shield, to reflect off everything else. That’s so much harder than it sounds.

There’s a line of prayer my grandfather used to pray at his dinner table, that my Dad then used in his  prayers at our dinner table, that I, without even realizing it, began to add to my prayers at my dinner table (and other places as well).

Please continue to lead, guide, and bless us

Even for all the specific needs that exist, that I lift up, I think, ultimately, those three words cover it. Lead, guide, bless. What it doesn’t say, it implies. Love, trust.

Over the past year or two, I’ve thought a lot about God as an artist, of life as art, some big mural mosiac of mixed media that spans all time and space and creation…I’m getting the feeling that the next movement in this line of thought has taken seed…