Saturday, August 22, 2009

Driving in the Dark

Last Monday night I went to a gathering of people talking about the future of LaFa, the 20-somethings ministry that I have been involved with for the past 6 months or so. We first met at someone's barn, then we traveled to another person's house in Stuarts Draft (a town I'm not very familiar with...smaller than Staunton, a lot of farmland). We drank coffee, talked, prayed, drank more coffee and talked some more and before we all knew it, it was 11:30pm. I, for one, had to work the next morning, so I realized I needed to go home.

Because we met somewhere else and then drove to the house, I didn't quite know what the best way was to get to the highway. I didn't have my GPS with me, so lucky for me someone offered to let me follow him, because he was headed to the highway, too.

If you know me well, you are probably aware that I don't like driving at night. I'd much rather do my long trips during daylight hours. It's not that I can't drive at night, it's just that I don't feel as though I see as well, especially with the constant changes between headlights blaring in your eyes and then full darkness ahead. As we were driving, I was able to keep a good distance behind the car I was following, and we were on our merry way.

At one point, I thought I knew where we were, and I thought I knew where we were going. I was surprised, then, when we turned onto a small (and very dark) windy country road instead of sticking to the "main drag". It was on this small and windy road that I realized something. Once-in-awhile, the car ahead of me would be around a bend or over a hill, and I wouldn't be able to see it. In those moments, even though I knew that the car was still ahead of me, I felt my heartbeat quicken and my thoughts go to, "What if he turns and I don't see him, I don't think I can get home from here..." Then I would see him again and everything would be fine.

The thing that I realized is that I'm like this a lot with my relationship with God. I'll be walking along, doing the things that I know are good and meaningful in my life. Then I'll start to recognize the path that I'm on, the experiences I'm having, the feelings I have, and I'll think that I know where I'm headed. Then, because God knows better than I what is best, he'll throw me a curve ball and take me down a dark and windy road with nothing but his light in front of me. I can't necessarily see my surroundings, I don't know when the road is going to turn, sometimes I can't even see the light in front of me and I have to just keep going, trusting that it will be there on the other side of the hill. When I am in times like this I feel the same way as when I was driving down the road late at night, "Is this really the right place? How will I get where I need to go if we go this way?" My heart quickens and my mind thinks about all the ways that I might have to figure out where I am, in case I somehow followed the wrong path or missed a turn (opportunity).

The cure for that feeling, I think, is quiet dependence: something I'm not very practiced at. I know God is at work in my life, and I know he is working all things together for the good of those who love him. I trust him to lead me where I need to go. I just don't know where that might be, nor do I know any sort of time frames for anything. It's okay, I tell myself, I don't need to have all the answers right now. Just keep following that light.

Sunday, August 16, 2009


This weekend was a productive one. I made a list and actually accomplished a lot of it! If I knew how to do the strike-through text feature in Blogger, I would totally put my whole list on here for you all to see what I finished. For now I'll just say that I cleaned my apt. from top to bottom (aside from vacuuming the upstairs, everything else is finished...including scrubbing the floors!), planned a menu of food to eat for the week, went grocery shopping, ran some errands, played a game of kickball with my church, and finished my laundry.

Things that weren't finished...
go for a run
repot spider plant
deliver tricycle
Algebra 2
Submit AP Calc syllabus
call Jason
Blog re: relationships (at least I'm blogging about something)
oil change

It's 10:30 and I need to work tomorrow...I'm going to bed and hopefully more of this stuff will get done by the end of the week.

Things that I did this weekend that weren't even on my list. *smile*
Long chat with Carolyn
break my garbage disposal (*sad*)
find and take pictures of 28/38 letters for use in my classroom

Friday, August 7, 2009

Morning thoughts

In the interest in resurrecting this blog, I'm going to try to be more regular in posting. Looks like I made it once/week so far..haha. We'll see if I can keep this up when the school year starts (work days start on Monday for me!).

Couple things...

I've been reading through the gospels as a sort of survey...reading them fairly quickly getting main themes and seeing how they relate to one another and being reminded of the main teachings of Jesus. All he did was teach. I noticed something this morning while I was reading in Mark.

On Wednesday night, at my kickball game, I was talking to another one of the teachers from VSDB that has two children (2 yrs and <1yr). She was talking about how, since we start work on Monday, she has been preparing her 2-yr-old by telling him, "On Monday, Mommy is going to work. You're going to go play with __________(insert name of babysitter, grandparent, aunt, uncle or whomever is taking the caregiving role while the mom is at work)". The child promptly responded again and again with "No mommy, no work. Mommy stay." She continued to prepare him by telling him everyday, maybe several times each day, I'm not sure.

The connection I made this morning was in regards to Jesus telling his disciples that he was going to be crucified and three days later he would rise from the dead. The first time it is mentioned in Mark, is chapter 8 verses 31-38. Jesus taught them that he was going to suffer many things, be rejected by elders and other leaders, and that he would be killed, three days later to rise again. After he said this, Peter took him aside and, like the 2-yr-old said, "No, Jesus, don't die. Stay here with us." Jesus' response was to rebuke Peter, because Peter couldn't see God's plan through his emotion.

Jesus predicts his death again in Mark 10:32-34. This time he tells them, "We are going to Jerusalem. I will be betrayed to the chief priests and teachers of the law. They will put me to death. They will mock me, spit on me, flog me and kill me. Three days later I will rise." (my paraphrase). This time the disciples' reactions are not mentioned, but I can imagine that they all sat around (or stood around) listening to this thinking, again, "NO! Don't leave us!" But Jesus had to leave them in order to make a way for them and all of us to access God. He had to die, because of all of the sin in my life that keeps me from being in a relationship with God. He had to die and rise from the dead to conquer that sin and death once for all.

That's my new perspective for the day. Stay tuned to read about my new perspectives on dating and relationships...something I've been thinking/reading a lot about recently...