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Tuesday, July 28, 2009

How cool is that?

It occurred to me today that it would be crazy to go another day without dedicating a post to all of those that have prayed for us, networked with us, cared about us, bought a meal for us, bought a few beers for us, and truly loved us through this difficult time. It's been interesting to see those that have risen from the crowd with heartfelt care and concern that before this, had only been casual acquaintances. And of course, for the die hard friends, they've seen us through all kinds of crazy but this one was a little more dicey for sure.

As people, we're meant to gather. In these busy times, sometimes we get distracted and isolated. Technology has made this gathering possible during our daily chaos. Without Facebook, Twitter, email and text, we wouldn't have had the opportunity to feel the love and prayers from so many. We would have remained home alone and more than a little afraid. With the ability to reach out, we created a circle. We watched so many step up and offer and ask to be a part of our circle. We saw them join hands with us and with each other. We heard and felt them pray for us and raise us up. When we gather around a cause it's electric.

We must always remember that nothing can be accomplished alone. If we continue to nurture and feed this wonderful circle it will serve us well and give us the chance to serve back to your needs.

We must fight our counter intuitive nature to retreat during times of challenge and change. Helping each other actually feeds us, changes us, helps us to grow, thrive and be the community God built us to be.

Thank you. Thanks to those that simply read this blog and pray for us, those that email to check on us, those that bring great food and wine over and dine with us, those that continue to help my guy build his business with referrals and networking. To all of you, we say thanks from our heart. We know God sent you to us. How cool is that?

Friday, July 17, 2009

Freaky Flashback

As I looked through some archived posts thinking about my next addition to Lessons from the Recession, I went all the way back to something I wrote in 2005 before I knew what a blog was and before I knew a recession was in our future. I gotta tell you, I was a little freaked out.

I went back and read it again. And then one more time, shocked and amazed at how much from this piece played out for our family over the last year, 4 years after I wrote it. Proving once again that He's in charge and He's preparing us and loving us for whatever is in our future. We must learn to pause, shhhh, listen.

I believe - Sept 2005
What do we believe?
What do I believe?
I believe that being honest with others is a lot easier than being honest with yourself.
I believe that out of tragedy, God will prevail.
I believe that it sometimes takes a tragedy to set things right again.
I believe that in times of tragedy we find our strength, we find our fear, and we find each other.
I believe that our emotions are our best friend and our worst enemy.
I believe that most people are inherently good and we often screw each other up unintentionally.
I believe that if you watch the things you don’t like in your children, you can trace it back to what you don’t like in yourself.
I believe that understanding change is a whole lot easier than changing.
I believe that if we looked in the mirror more and at each other less, things would get a lot easier.
I believe that the more you know and the more you have, the harder it is to find the things that matter most.
I believe that our deepest pain can teach us the most if we listen to it and try to understand.
I believe that being a parent is the hardest job I’ve ever had.
I believe that marriage starts out as an art and later requires more science and a respect for both.
I believe that in the absence of purpose, the soul begins to spoil.
I believe that there is a line we cross when we finally understand that our parents don’t know everything and crossing that line frees us, changes us, and scares us.
I believe the trees are more interesting and beautiful in the winter when we can see their architecture and their soul.
I believe people are more interesting and beautiful when we can see their architecture and their soul. Unfortunately, we don’t always show it until we are in pain and vulnerable with our leaves and covering stripped away.
What do you believe?

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Faith rewarded

I've spent weeks thinking about how to write this post. Mostly I've spent weeks trying to figure out how to best describe the feelings associated with the final days of my guys decision on his job. If you remember, he had the polar opposites on the table, Big Fortune 500, big salary job or the tech start up.

There were deadlines and decisions that needed to be made. Pressure and fear about making the right decision. With the tight timelines came the fear of spending enough time praying for guidance in this huge decision and always being sure that He was leading. Fourteen months of searching for the job only to realize that deciding on the job was more agonizing than the search itself.

With another push from the big company to interview again, gave us time and space, and some clarity that actually looked like muddy water.

When he finally accepted the start up, our hearts were sure, but our brains were scared.

My guy said, "Do you mean I'm turning down a huge salary to take a risk on a start up?" Partly asking himself and partly seeking approval and reassurance. I replied, "Yea, I think you are."

We walked around in a bit of a daze. Afraid to celebrate that he had a job. What if it was the wrong decision?

It felt a bit like accepting that meeting request on Outlook as 'tentative'. Not really completely sure of anything. Mostly exhausted from the uncertainty.

Then came Sunday.

We rose for church like many Sunday's before.

I was anxious to be in the presence of my Lord and Savior. I longed to feel safe in His presence. I really wanted to escape the reality of uncertainty.

We sat in our usual section. I sat anticipating the music to swallow me up if only for a moment or two. Then there it was. The message. The message was on ........ FAITH.

My heart melted and I had a rush of emotions that had me wanting to laugh and cry all at the same time.

I had this vision and true feeling as if I was sitting beside my Father and he was putting his arm around me, around us, saying, "It's OK. You've done good and it's going to be OK."

For the first time in fourteen months really, I exhaled. I allowed myself to lay my head on His shoulder and I sobbed. I sobbed with love and faith and understanding. Understanding for the first time in my 43 years of what faith really means... is... stands for. The kind of faith that you truly don't know the answer and you get up and keep moving forward anyway.

Faith in what you can't see.

At the end of the service our pastor asked all of those that were faced with a challenge that required pure faith or those that had just made a decision on faith to stand and allow him to pray for them. (Is He good or what?) In that moment I had this picture of our Lord reaching out to my guy in a real man's hand shake. The kind that embraces with both hands firmly. A sign of love and mutual respect that says, "Good job, I'm proud of you, my Son. You've made a good decision and I will continue to love and care for you and your family. You're a good man."

He is a good man. He's my guy and he has a career to be proud of.

No paycheck yet.

For that we continue to have FAITH. And generic crackers, bluegill and Crazy 8.