Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Just for a season...

This summer felt hotter and longer and more unbearable than summers past.  I could blame global warming for my increased heat exhaustion, but that wouldn't really be fair to nature.  All summer I kept thinking, it's only 65 degrees in Dublin today.  The heat was taunting me.  It was a physical manifestation of the climate of my soul: oppressive, scorching heat that left me dried out, weary, and in desperate need of some rain.

When it's over 95 degrees for two months straight, cooler weather seems impossible.  You begin to doubt that cooler days ever even occurred.  The heat lays waste to everything.  Grass dies.  Flowers wilt.  Lakes evaporate.  Even the asphalt seems to melt.  Waiting for God's timing can have the same affect.  Doubt creeps in.  Frustration rises up.  And slowly things begin to die.  Ambition withers.  Pride burns.  Selfishness dries and cracks.

And then, like every time before, the season changes.

It happened this weekend.  I was driving to Arkansas in the hopes of opening some doors for Dublin.  I was tired of the heat and tired of the waiting, wondering if it would ever end.  It had been 100 degrees a few days earlier.  Not on Saturday.  Saturday was only 75 degrees, cool and refreshing.  The temperature spawned a dangerous thought, maybe summer is almost over, maybe the end is in sight.  But is it here to stay?  Will the relief last, or is the weather teasing?

And what about the waiting?  Will it go out with the heat?

I had a coffee meeting with a preacher friend of mine in Little Rock.  I was encouraged by his enthusiasm for our vision and his urgency to explore the possibility of a partnership between our team and his church.  On October 10th I will be presenting myself, the team, and the work in Dublin to a larger gathering of the church family.  Another dangerous thought, maybe the waiting is almost over, maybe the end is in sight.

I am trying to remain cautiously optimistic about October 10th.  I don't want to set myself up for another disappointing let down.  Instead, I am delighting in this changing of the seasons.  I am delighting in the cooler weather, in the encouragement of a friend, and in the opportunity to share this work that God is refining within me.  I am finding peace in the assurance that God's provision is not mine to achieve, it is His to bestow.  And when I take God out of this limiting realm of time, and see Him in His eternity, I realize that I have already been given everything that has been promised.  So I will rest in the waiting.  It's only a season.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Root, root, root for the home team...!!!

Mooly said, "Take me out to the ballgame!"  So we did.  The Rangers were playing the Yankees, Mooly's second favorite team in the American league (her two favorite baseball boyfriends, Derek Jeter and A-Rod, play for the Yankees).  PLUS they were having fireworks after the game.  Who can say no to that?  Not us.

Mooly got us tickets behind right field, way down there...
At first, they seemed like great seats.  We could see all the players, and there was a good chance we'd get some home runs hit our way (even though I think the girl sitting in front of me, the one who brought her baseball mitt, would probably have knocked me out if one had come our way).  But let me tell you, it was HOT!  Too hot to handle.  

So, after the 3rd inning, we moved.  Way up here.  So much better!  We could feel the breeze outside the stadium.  We could see the entire field.  The only downside was that it was impossible to tell if a ball hit our direction was a home run or a caught fly, but the crowd usually gave us an answer pretty fast.

Mooly spent most of the game looking through her binoculars.  Once, I asked her a question about how a particular pitch looked up close, she said, "Oh, I wasn't paying attention.  I was watching A-Rod."  I'm pretty sure that's when Daddy gave her this look.

We did our very best to be good fans.  Mooly bought CrackerJacks.  I had a pretzel.  We yelled, "CHARGE!"  We did the wave.  We boo-ed.  We woo-hoo-ed.  Then the 9th inning came and went.  Tie game.  We stayed.  10th inning.  We stayed.  11th inning.  It was past midnight.  I had to get up early the next morning to go to a Red Cross Coach's certification.  So we left.

We did listen to the game in the car on the way home though.  In the bottom of the 13th inning, Nelson Cruz, the first batter up, hammered the first pitch he saw over the fence.  Walk off home run to win the game!  We woo-hoo-ed in the car.

I was very, very tired the next morning and I did NOT want to get up and go to my class.  But I did.  The teacher never even showed up.  And so it goes.