Tuesday, October 30, 2007

submission, part 2

I’d read what the Bible had said about submission. I’d read all the books about Christian marriage. I was emotionally and mentally prepared. I’d come to the conclusion that should Mike and I disagree on a matter … oh, say, something like whether or not we ought to move to Sydney or Nepal … I would behave as an Executive Vice President … after having thoroughly voiced my point of view, then praying about the matter, and finally, finding that we still disagreed, I would then submit to his decision. No problem!
Read the rest of my post here.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

what's happened to me?!!

The day before our wedding during a rehearsal dinner game Mike was asked what his favorite characteristic of mine was. And I was meant to guess his answer. I hadn't a clue ... like many of the other answers, really ... my height? my hair? ... "Um, I don't know ... my eyes?" ... I know ... LAME! ... especially since my eyes are probably my least striking feature.

"No, silly. I told you the other day what it was."

I had another think ... nup, nothing.

"Your skin! Your beautiful smooth flawless skin."

ohhhhh ...

Red flags went up ... "Um, you know that my skin won't always be like this ... I'm certain wrinkles will come along."

"Oh, sweetheart. I know that. I love you no matter what your skin is like."

Hmph ... wrinkles ... I knew those would come ... but I definitely was NOT prepared for the onslaught of acne.

Ugh! It's rabid! I'd never had it this bad. Sure, an occasional zit here or there ... but never massive clumps of painful red irritation.

I had a good cry about it last night ... especially since I'd gone to the shop for the weeks shopping and had run into FIVE people I knew. I'd ventured out of the house ... not feeling particularly well yesterday anyway ... without any make-up to cover my blotchiness. It was very humbling ... five people I knew ... one, a minister at a nearby Presbyterian church stopped and had a chat with me in the checkout line ... saw me in my humbling state. But it wasn't just the encounters that brought on the tears, it seems to be out of my control. Mike loved my smooth skin and I could do nothing to bring it back.

I've looked at skin complexion diets and what I eat on a daily basis definitely lines up with everything. Is it my latex pillow? Is it ... gasp ... Mike ... oh, no! I'm allergic to Mike!

Saturday, October 27, 2007

submission is a dirty word

I'm beginning a new series of posts on submission here at Babble.

While I have much material already prepared, what would you like to see covered? Please answer here on this post.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

don't start knitting baby booties yet

Yesterday, Mike and I found out that we will soon be "parents" ... of a couple hundred college students at a local residence for University students. Not only will we get free room and board, but we will have such amazing opportunities to be right there among the students and minister to them in unique ways.

In the meantime,
  1. I've been searching for employment. Tomorrow morning I begin working at a craft store much like the large craft and fabric stores in the US.
  2. I overheard an employee at Fullers Bookshop in town make a phone call to a customer, "Hello, Mrs. X? Your book order has arrived. If you like, I can drop it by your home on my way home from work this evening. No, it's fine. It's on my way home, anyway. I just thought that you might like to save on the postage. Good, I'll see you this evening then." And that's why Fullers is my favorite.
  3. After some needed encouragement from Mike, the movers are speeding things up and I should have my shipment here in a few days... maybe. Who wants to celebrate Christmas with me a few months early?!!

Thursday, October 18, 2007

do not applaud me

I was always that friend. You know … that friend who friends went to talk to about their relationships. That friend who the guys hung out with because there was no danger of our friendship ever getting complicated with feelings. That friend who usually ends up as always the bridesmaid, never the bride.

I was the friend. I was the shoulder to cry on. I was the ear that listened. I was the heart that empathized.

Other people fell in love. Not me. And that’s the way I liked it.
Read my first Babble of the Sexes post here.

*Ack! I can't figure out how to do a double space between paragraphs on Wordpress!!!

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

no introductions needed for you ...

... but a larger chunk of the world has just been introduced to yours truly.

Over the past week, I've been invited to become a blogger on Babble of the Sexes. There I will write the same tantalizingly controversial posts that you're accustomed to reading here.

I hope you enjoy the silly bio I wrote.

Please stop over here, and introduce others to me in the comments section. It could be anything and everything ... like:

"She's not all there."

"Um, I dunno, she's tall...?"

"She used to post heaps of pictures, but I'm not sure what happened."


"Great blog! You might like to know that you can get 1/2 off on patio furniture here."

Lol ... whatever you want.

Monday, October 15, 2007

did i mention people?

Last week in desperation I applied for a job and was called in for an interview.

The vibe was relaxed and friendly. My interviewer had all sorts of questions for me about all the places I've lived. Oddly enough, he was fascinated by the southern states in the US. "Is it really as crazy as they say?"

"Um, well, it depends on where you go."

All the chit-chat now completed, he got down to the questions. We were rolling through them without a hitch.

"What is it that you want to achieve from your work?"

"I love working with people: meeting their needs, interacting with them, achieving common goals together."

"What would your family and friends say about you?"

"That I'm a good listener and that I would go out of my way to help someone."

"What is an area in your life that could use some working on?"

"Um ... err ..." Which do I say? "Can we come back to that one?"

As he asked me other questions, I answered "People, Customer Service, People ... Did I mention people?"

"Ok, now back to the question we skipped. What is an area in your life that could use some working on?"

"Um ... well ... perhaps ... (I should have thrown in a Miss Teen South Carolina 'such as') err ... (Oh! and then it occurred to me!) Administration! I could grow more administratively ... (gasp! my eyes got big with the realization of it all. I laughed out loud.) That's bad, isn't it? (laughter) This is an administrative job I'm applying for, after all."

I left the interview laughing and shaking my head. Ah, sure I could type in data from invoices all day as well as anyone else, but I wasn't fooling anyone, that job just wasn't meant for me. How much will I laugh if I actually get hired for it?!

Thursday, October 11, 2007

latest news

our newsletter update:

part one

part two


I have been meditating this week on criticism, confrontation, repentance, and restoration.

I had become weary of criticism. Like this quote from The Rare Jewel of Christian Contentment I was worn down and began to dread the comments (public and private) of a few.
You think it much if you have a friend who always makes bad interpretations of your ways towards him; you would take that badly. If you should converse with people with whom you cannot speak a word, but they are ready to make a bad interpretation of it, and to take it in an ill sense, you would think their company very tedious to you. ~ Jeremiah Burroughs
I have received criticism over the time that I have been blogging. These include such claims as:
  1. that I lack years of experience,
  2. that I share too much,
  3. that I share too little,
  4. that I acquiesce to the whingers, etc.
Last week I gave much prayerful thought to setting my blog aside (indefinitely) so that I might grow in knowledge and wisdom and experience. Who am I that I think I have anything to contribute to the lives of others?

I take criticism very seriously and used this past week to pray, search the Scriptures, and examine myself and my past writing.

I've seen how God has used this medium, especially the interaction with commentors, to grow me in so many ways. I have been humbled and corrected and encouraged. Some were thoughtful, gracious, and loving, while others were tactless and blunt ... but I heeded them all desiring the truth they spoke into my life, not resenting them for the correction they offered.

As I contemplated letting this blog go, I did so with dry eyes. Perhaps, i'd rather laugh than cry had served its purpose. It had run its course and like so many other blogs out there would die off into the cold cruel world of Google caches. I do not cling to the url in desperation, fearing my life force would be drained away if I do not blog. I could use the time to read more, memorize Scripture, open my home to other women, etc.

My husband was opposed to my throwing in the towel. Mike pointed out that as I share my life with others they have been blessed and encouraged and convicted. Has this been my mission? No. Please don't think me cold-hearted, but I imagine that if anyone has been encouraged through my writing that it has been by the grace of God working in their life.

I thought of my blogging as a conversation with friends and strangers. Sharing my life, thoughts, experiences, and opinions ... and I suppose in that sense anyone can be challenged and blessed, as I have been by reading of your own lives, thoughts, experiences, and opinions.

I do not view it as a platform to be heard ... as if I am somehow a prophet of all things right and true. "Be like me and you will live!" (I doubt anyone would read this blog anyway if I did have such an attitude.) I hope you do not have that view of me. Instead, I hope that as I share "Hey, look at what I learned!" you will grow with me.

I've never thought of this as a ministry. But perhaps God has used it that way in the lives of some.

God has used this blog as a tool to grow me spiritually, intellectually, and emotionally. I doubt he's through with it yet. Be gracious with me, friend and stranger, as I try to heed your insights and wisdom. Come to me with the grace God has shown you.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

my spidey senses tell me ...

Mike and I were watching Spiderman III with some friends this weekend and I think we were making donkeys of ourselves cuz Mike kept piping up ... "Ugh! He's not LISTENING to her! Dude! Don't give her ADVICE ... she needs CUDDLES!" (I can honestly say that I am well-cuddled.)

Me: "If you've got relationship issues, don't go hang out with your best guy pal. You'll end up KISSING him!" (I was right.)

It is easy when newly married to assume you are an expert on all things pertaining to love and ignore your own issues. Mike and I goof up but I will say that both of us are sensitive to the other's needs and are determined to make things right.

In the film M.J. did not feel Peter Parker listened to her or valued her feelings. She became quiet and internalized her disappointment. With the tension building, she sought release in a guy friend.

It's so easy to give your husband the silent treatment.

Mike can tell you that I often become silent. He's learned to read my face. When I think that I have successfully planted a blank expression on my countenance, he points out that it's my angry face. (I should really practice in a mirror.)

But I'm not silent to punish Mike.

If I'm quiet or reserved more often than not I am thinking of my own sin. And what I personally can do to make the situation better. I'm not in a bad mood. I'm just concerned. I may not even be able to communicate my thoughts much less what it actually is that is bothering me at that point.

Mike, longing to right any wrongs, is quick to list off possible reasons I might be troubled. No ... no ... no ... yes, maybe, I suppose you're right.

Then we are able to work through the problem. We apologize to each other for specific wrongs we've done to each other and come up with a concrete plan to fix the situation. Too often people merely say "Sorry" and leave it at that. What are you sorry for? What will you do to make it right?

It's not my job to play the Holy Spirit for Mike nor is it his responsibility to play the role for me. I made the decision before I got married that I will not nag Mike. Many commentors have balked at my choice to not make my blog a venue to reprimand husbands for their failures.

Are you the type who apologizes by saying, "Honey, because you've been such a hard person to live with and because of your many bad habits, I have not been a good wife."?

Can you not recognize your own sin?

Linda Dillow, author of Creative Counterpart admonishes wives to :
  1. Learn to totally accept your husband. You, too, are a sinner. Christ accepted you.
  2. Get rid of the plank in your own eye.
    Matthew 7:3-5 Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, 'Let me take the speck out of your eye,' when there is the log in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye.
  3. Give your rights to God.
    Ruth Graham wrote: I pity the married couple who expect too much from one another. It is a foolish woman who expects her husband to be to her that which only Jesus Christ can be: always ready to forgive, totally understanding, unendingly patient, invariably tender and loving, unfailing in every area, anticipating every need, and making more than adequate provision. Such expectations put a man under an impossible strain.
  4. Discern positive qualities.
    Philippians 4:8 Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.
  5. Ask your husband's forgiveness.
    Matthew 5:23-24 So if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar and go. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift.
  6. Verbalize your acceptance. -
    Ephesians 5:33 (Amplified) And let the wife see that she respects and reverences her husband--that she notices him, regards him, honors him, prefers him, venerates and esteems him: and that she defers to him, praises him, and loves and admires him exceedingly!"
For those who desire to speak the truth in love to your spouse if you know he is in sin, I recommend part III of The Excellent Wife by Martha Peace. The entire section is about submission. We know our husbands are imperfect (and so are we), so how can we as women who long to honor the Word of God in all areas of our life respond to the sin in our husbands' lives and yet maintain a disposition of respect?

Monday, October 1, 2007

quirky award

Mark from DasGanze.com had to laugh when he was included in SaidatSouthern.com's weekly roundup.

Me: Lol! I didn't realize you were in the "t" camp.

Mark: I still have trouble remembering which is which. Is emerging the one with the dodgy theology or is it emergent?

Me: I use the Music Man equation.

Mark: Do tell!

Me: Pool which starts with P which rhymes with T which stands for TROUBLE! ... So emergenT = trouble

Mark: Congratulations on receiving my "quirky" award of the day!