Thursday, March 13


The weather was great...for about two days.

Sunny. Snow melted away. Great for a walk. And another walk. And, did I really have to come back inside?

Lance enjoyed it too, of course (had to have an excuse to go back out, so I dragged him off into the woods, where there was still some snow for him to frolic in!)

Then yesterday came. Whiteout. Roads closed. Warnings to the affect of "don't go out unless emergency." Everything was canceled.

Lance & I suddenly suffer from cabin fever. We were fine before the great weather, but after tasting it in the air, feeling it on our face, smelling the attempts of new-growth, we just stare outside and wait for it to come back so we can go out again! Even if just to sit in the yard (his thoughts, anyway; I'd pull out a lawn chair at least)

About 7am this morning, Lance got me up (I think he is still on the old time) in order to let him out for a minute. Once I was back in bed, I was thinking about a few friends I know who are nurses, and despite the weather or closed roads, would still be going into work or just getting off shifts.

It got me thinking about two things:

1) My mom used to clean houses or offices for a few years while I was growing up, and one of the things she used to say was "no news is good news," and she meant it, too. She used to say that the only time a cleaner heard anything was if it was not done well, or something was wrong, so "no news is the best compliment you will ever get."

I thought that was sad, and have striven to make it right since then.

A few years ago I was walking down the street and passed a crew of men fixing the sidewalk. I had to pause and thank them. Not because I was very grateful for the block being replaced, but because I was certain they had only heard complaints until it was fixed and would probably only hear complaints until the next block on their list was fixed, too. And the next after that.

How we take these people for granted. Complain about the problems, but rarely thank them for a job well done!

I believe that no matter where I stand in whatever war we are fighting, that the men who are fighting it for us should be thanked. Whether we are even aware of how much they give or sacrifice, the only thanks they probably ever hear is when their family is thankful they come back. And aside from that, they probably have to deal with protesters and all sorts of other people who make them feel like failures or unappreciated.

What about the cops? Sheriffs? When busting down doors and dragging in drug dealers, who might even kick and punch back, do you think they hear a thanks?

Whether we ever have to deal with law enforcement, know any personally, or not. I think they deserve a thanks, too. I am sure they do not hear it enough in their job; in fact, if anything they have had to dodge fists, break down doors, been cursed at, etc throughout their day and if there is any highlight or thanks it is shortly drowned out in the rest.

Hospitals still run, EMTs are still on duty, and there are always 911 operators on call. Not to mention the well known mail-people, who travel out "rain, snow, sleet, or shine". All these people, that we depend on in emergency. In war. In time of need, no matter the weather. And yet, how often do we thank them?

Yeah, point one is to not forget to thank these people who have known all sorts of hardships, nursed our illness, etc and yet rarely get thanked enough. So when you pass another person, hard at work, do not forget to thank them. I am sure if they deserve it, and if they do not (there are always the few corrupt ones) then perhaps if they heard it enough they would change? We do not know what a difference simple gratitude could make in another's life.

2) Because we lived in a small town when I was growing up, we knew most people. And every year for Christmas my mom would sneak a small plate of cookies into our mailbox as a "thank you" for the mailman. A neighbor up the street, I knew, used to want to invite him in for coffee but because he could not leave his work, she thought up how to time it so she could run out and give him a nice warm cup of coffee at mid-day during the coldest days. She once told me that he was out in that horrid blizzard-weather to deliver mail, the least she could do was run down her short driveway to meet him with a warm cup (he always returned the tall insulated mug the next day, too). Over the years, he became a good friend of the family and even helped us out in a non-mail-related situation that came up years later.

He was faithful. Not just to his work, but to God.

Which leads me to point two, although it is almost two-fold.

First, about how truthful it is when God says He will "never leave us nor forsake us." These people are a small (albeit, sometimes, flawed) representation of who God is to us. In His faithfulness, His loyalty. His all.

Secondly, if by the same measure that whenever we sin, whether against someone or something else, we are actually sinning against God (sermon from Sunday, check it out here), then by the same measure, when we give our all, are we not also giving our all or doing our best to the Lord? And these people show us what it looks like to sacrifice, to be diligent, to give 100% and then give yet some more!

I have known some nurses to brave the sleet and un-plowed roads to drive to the hospital for their shift, and work a long twelve-hour shift, to brave the weather and make it home, possible getting nothing done at home but a few hours of sleep, before doing it all again.

Do we do that? Do we give our best in our job, and then give some more? Do we do what is asked and go beyond that?

Everyday, God never backs out, never fails, and is always there. Don't you think we could add to our praise and thanks by giving Him our best, too?

Wednesday, March 5

Someone "Gets" Me

Remember when I said that I "make stew" or think on things, sometimes for a good long time (months, even) before presenting them either in written or spoken terms?

Remember when I said I was thankful for pain? An odd concept, I know, but I like to think outside the proverbial box and be thankful no matter my circumstances.

Or what about those posts where after observing Lance, I realized there was a lesson we could learn from him? A dog, no less!

Well someone wrote an article that I think y'all should check it out! Perhaps it puts things into writing better then I can. Or perhaps it will just help someone understand a little more about why I do what I why I love to get out and travel and explore and try something new, when health allows. Or why I need solitude and am known to withdraw and observe just as often as interact in a group of friends. Or why it is that whenever I find there is something that scares me, that I then dare myself to face that fear and "get over it"; I can not afford to let fear hold me back! OK, maybe the article does not really explain all that, but it does have a list that pretty much summarizes me, and it explains each item on the list a little better then my overly-long posts have done.

So, click the link HERE and check it out! (especially notice how #5 relates to "thankful for pain")

Then get back to me with comments below! (all comments are screened, so if you don't want it made public just say so in the comment and I won't publicize it!)