Saturday, February 11, 2012

How Things Work

Several years ago I was the human resources manager for a major chemical company. One of my responsibilities was corporate training and serving as a change agent when we were acquired by an even larger company. The word came down that all of our production operations were going to be computerized and the workforce needed to be trained on the software systems. This was a huge undertaking. Many of the men had worked in the company for over 20 years and had never used a computer at all, even in their personal lives.

More than one employee came to me asking that we include a session on how a computer works, taking out the guts so they could understand it. That sounded like the biggest waste of time ever, having nothing whatsoever to do with the actual keyboarding and software skills. My trainer, however, had the same tinkering interest as the students. So he included a brief lesson on computer guts and processors.  I still don't understand why that was necessary, but it appeased the employees who were then less intimidated by the rest of the class.

Some of us need to know how things work. It doesn't matter what the end result is; we need to know the intricacies and science involved. These are the kids who take everything apart in order to put it back together. And we need those people in the world! They grow up to be surgeons, architects, mechanics, engineers and so many other professions that we rely upon for their attention to detail.

And then there are those of us who see only the goal at the end and how our part plays into achieving it.

I don't want or need to know how a cell phone works to text my friend. I don't care how an object weighing tons can stay in the air, just get me from one place to another safely so that I can hug my loved ones. The vacuum cleaner sucks up dirt, my watch ticks, the tv brings me the shows I like. Don't bore me with the details of how that happens.

My spiritual life is like that as well. I don't know how prayer works, I just know that it does. A positive energy is released. Of that I am sure. I don't expect God to reveal his inner workings to me, I just trust that the end result will be for the good. My job is to plug into my community, myself, and to Him. I let Him figure out the rest. That is, after all, the definition of faith. What the senses are unable to comprehend, the heart does. And God's will be done.

Psalm 50:14-15         Offer to God a sacrifice of thanksgiving, and perform your vows to the Most High, and call upon me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you, and you shall glorify me.

Faithfully yours,


Saturday, January 7, 2012

It's a New Year, A New Day, A New Life

We are all connected and everything we do becomes part of who we are. My behaviors impact my emotions, my physical health, my spiritual well-being. My environment is absorbed into a level of my soul.

My yearly ritual the first week of January is to do a home blessing. I tour my home top to bottom, cleansing, organizing and purging. On my weekly and daily cleanings I generally play upbeat music, but for the annual home blessing I'm in silent contemplation. Once I'm satisfied with my space I light a candle.  As is my home, so am I.

This year it was a particularly meaningful time because of how much I've changed. The move I had been planning to make to North Carolina to be nearer my parents didn't go as planned. Now I know I'll live in this home until I retire. I'm content with that and so are my folks.

I have been delivered from the quicksand of anger that I referenced in an earlier post. Indeed, my psyche is in the best place it's ever been.

My ex-husband remarried in October. As a result I was able to spend time with both of my sons. Healing has occurred among the principle players in various combinations. Around the time of the wedding I started reading a book that a dear friend gave me called Rain on Me: Devotions of Hope & Encouragement for Difficult Times by Holley Gerth. A scripture verse that I took into my heart was "I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with loving-kindness." Jeremiah 31:3

Do my actions align with someone who has been drawn with loving-kindness? Self-righteousness and compassion cannot co-exist. The battle is waged within me. I know which will win, but the struggle continues. I decided I needed to create the behavior before my heart could change.  Fake it till you make it.

Every night I go through my prayer list which always includes family and friends, as well as prayers of intercession. I added my ex's name and his new wife to the list. At first I said their names grudgingly, like the kid who doesn't want to clean his room but does it anyway mumbling under his breath the entire time. But I kept at it. Every single night. And throughout the day. When I see something that reminds me of my marriage I ask for God's blessing on a new marriage that doesn't include me. I've experienced the peace that passes understanding.

I'm bolder now than I've ever been. My environment is reflecting that change. I've dyed my hair red, which my friends have said is the "real" me. My kitchen has gone from off white to a striking mustard/burgundy. I'm comfortable saying Yes and No with great clarity and no guilt.

My home is ready for the new year. So am I.

Faithfully yours,