love thy neighbor

The kids and I had a good summer day yesterday. They all slept in until nearly 9:30, which gave me several focused morning hours to work on my piles. Two out of the three piles have disappeared, with all the papers and stuff being put in it’s place. I didn’t end up with nearly as much trash or goodwill bags as I’d anticipated. It was just a matter of putting things away.

One of the things I found was a notebook from 2017 or 2018 with nothing else in it except a fall menu plan for Sept/Oct/Nov. It was actually a good reminder to see that, “Oh, uh huh, yep. I’ve been here before”. Did I ever actually make the Butternut Squash and Kale Lasagna or the Barley Risotto w/Peas? Probably much to my family’s relief, no, I did not. But you know?

They ate and were fed consistently that year, along with every other year I’ve been in charge of that mission. That is something to be proud of, find rest and peace in, and most of all, be thankful for. It seems so cliche’ anymore to think the problem is me always trying to be God for my family, as obviously I’ve learned all those lessons by now, right? I do tend to keep thinking that God got me through the intense little years of childrearing, burning away the selfishness you never knew was there, demolishing self-reliance, and revealing my truest, deepest, and most always-present need.

It’s true that becoming a mother, more so it seems than becoming a wife, provided a refining and polishing in becoming less selfish and more self-giving. I find it humorous and even puzzling, however, that all this refining and polishing does seem to be making me into a person with much more clearly defined methods, preferences, and standards. When we were getting ready to go down to the beach yesterday, and the kids were all looking for towels, absolutely not were they about to take all my clean, neatly folded, and freshly put away bath towels. The beach towels? Yes. Those towels? No.

We’re works in progress, as they say. Whatever God’s teaching me now, he’s teaching me, and whichever way he’s leading me now, he’s leading me. Whatever it is we’re needing, he’s providing right now. Sanctification is an ongoing, ever-changing, often unnameable and unseen thing. A common piece of advice I’ve heard is that people aren’t things you should try to be fixing, or to put it most bluntly, you can’t fix people. This is true for me as well, meaning, I don’t need to treat myself as someone who needs fixed. Thank you, Lord, for who I am, and for all You are remaking me to be in this life.

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