September 26, 2016

Good Monday

It is a good Monday here in partly cloudy Phoenix. I am enjoying this good day from the respite of my office. I had a good morning at ACU, and now I am resting a bit before I head over to GCU for my second round of classes today. It is funny how my schedule always seems to work this way, but it does. Last fall, I also had a morning break between my 7 am and 12:30 pm classes. It was nice actually to have some time in between, even though I really didn't enjoy taking a 7 am class. LOL!

This year, my schedule is very similar to what I had back in 2014. I taught at ACU for one class and then at GCU for two classes. The only difference is that I have three classes at GCU. I have gotten to the point where I can easily teach 4-5 classes without too much fuss, but praise and thanks be to God, I can only do it with His strength and ability. I cannot do it in my own strength, I just cannot. I struggle with even the most mundane tasks, but when His power is ignited, I can truly do all things through Christ who gives me strength! Selah!

Thinking More

So this weekend was good for me. I accomplished everything on my to-do list, and I rested quite a bit. I didn't sleep well last night, but that was probably due to the fact that I fell asleep mid afternoon and slept for a couple hours. I thought I was getting sick, but in the end, I simply was tired. Go figure. I feel fine today, a bit groggy, but overall, fine.

It is weird, really, to think how a little thing like sleep or lack thereof, can ruin your entire day. I am feeling punchy, so as I down my eggs and my second cup of coffee today, I am hoping to perk up here soon. My prayer is to feel better, more refreshed before I drive over to campus in a half-hour. The time will fly by so hopefully the caffeine will kick into gear, and I will start to feel better soon.

Today is a good day for me, despite feeling groggy. I really have been thinking more and more about my desires, my wants, and my needs. I mean, I have been thinking specifically about what it would "take" to make me happy. You know, what would I need to have in my life for me to be happy, really happy? This is assuming, of course, that I am not happy right now (which I am). I guess I was thinking that if I won a million dollars in the lottery, would that make me happy? In truth, it would not. I started to think about happiness and what constitutes happiness, and frankly, I realized that far too much effort is expended on the "pursuit of happiness." In many ways, I fall victim to the pursuit of happiness all the time. I think I will be happy when I lose 20 pounds, get in shape, grow my hair out, get that full-time job, etc. Yet, in reality, I am very happy now, very content, very good in my soul, so to speak. So really? What do I need, want and desire that I presently do not have that would be a game-changer for me?

As I think about my needs, I realize that they are mostly material. This morning, as I was praying, I asked the Lord to take over the search process in regard to a job and a place to relocate. He is in control, of course, but I am finding that I am too focused on the search parameters to be objective anymore. I want, want, want...and that means that my will is more important than His will. No can do! I will not super cede His precious wants for my idle desires. I will not do it. Selah!

In this way, I guess what I am saying is that I have decided to accept His good gifts as they are offered -- rather -- than to deal and bargain with the Lord to see if I can get what I want or think I want instead. Yes, His gifts are more than enough for me.

My mind has been fixed on my situation here in Phoenix for now on three years. I had the opportunity to move to a different place back in 2012. I mean, I was working in a job that would have made it very possible for me to relocate to the Chicago area, to transfer with my company. I chose instead to leave this job and move into teaching instead of staying in the Pharmacy-benefits management industry. It was a good move, don't get me wrong, but I mean to say that I was position at that time that made it very possible for me to be able to move outside of Arizona. At that time, my parents were still in their home. I was in my rented town home, and while they didn't like the idea of me moving away from them,+ they would have accepted it had I been offered a big promotion in Chicago. My son wanted to move there to attend school, and I really liked the area where my company had their office. I was strongly pulled to relocate there, but the Lord prevailed on me, and I left this job for teaching, and well, the rest is history.

I had other opportunities to move as well. Right after my life hit the skids in 2009, the Lord pressed on me the idea of moving to TN, Chattanooga to be precise. I was ready to go, ready to leave, but I had no job and with the full care of my son in mind, I simply couldn't imagine packing up and going anywhere on my own. Little did I know that the Lord would provide a good career for me, and had I been willing to step out in faith, well, I could be living in TN and enjoying my life as a single woman.

I tarried here for many reasons, but suffice it to say, I am here because I refused to take the gift that was offered to me. I asked for more, and in this way, the Lord has kept me right where I am until I learned this lesson of gracious receiving. I have learned that when the Lord opens His hand, it is wise to simply say, "Thank you," to Him. When we dicker around, ask for more, or even suggest we are not thrilled with the offer, we insult His graciousness. We insult the Giver who gives so graciously to us, who is always thinking about what is best for us. I have learned this lesson the hard way. I tarried and right now, I am dealing with more difficultly than I could have imagined. I have a good life, for sure, but it is not without struggle. If I had moved previously, the whole issue of caring for my parents would be moot. A solution would be found that didn't revolve around me, I can assure you. My brothers would have jumped in, and well, a solution that would have worked for us all would have been discovered. Instead, this burden has fallen mostly to me, and the care and the concern are weighing on me heavily. Now, I am stuck and not free to go simply because of my responsibilities here at home.

What am I to do now?

Well, I think the answer is simple really. I must confess my arrogance to the Lord, beg for His mercy, and then relent of my stubborn and steadfast attitude that has wanted my way over His way these past few years. I must let go, and I do let go. I accept what He considers best given my situation, and praise be to God, I know He will do what is best for me. I know He will do what is best today and tomorrow and every day going forward into my future life. He is good, always so good to me! Selah!

This morning before I headed to campus, I did this very thing. I confessed my sin to the Lord, asked Him to forgive me, and I accepted whatever gift He had in store for me. I accepted the gift of a job (future), a home (future), and a life (future) as coming from His hand. I gave up my right to decide, to choose, to pick, and I accepted that He knew what was best for me. He knows what I need right now, today as well as what I will need tomorrow. I am content to let Him pick and choose the life that suits His purpose over a life that suits my purpose and makes me happy. Yes, I have decided to let my happiness resolve or revolve around Jesus, and in doing so, my happiness is no longer tied to any person, place or thing. I am resolved to be in love with Jesus, and to let Him make all choices, all decisions, and all determinations for my future life. His will be done, selah!

In Closing

This means that whether I stay or I go, am now following His will and that means that I accept the gift He has given to me. He knows what is best for me and for my future, so I let go of my pride, my hurt, and my need to be "right," in order to let Him reign in every area of my life this good, good day. He is worthy, so very worthy of all our praise! Selah, Amen! So be it, thy will be done.

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