Saturday, September 27, 2008

The Freedom I long for

If this year ends and I am not living freer than I was at the beginning of the year, I think that is a problem. I have no good excuse to stay in bondage when I have been given the Truth that will set me free.

I have started sleeping with my house temp. set at 77 which is NOT an even number or a multiple of 5. I have let go of that control. I also do not even look at the digital dial as I lower or raise the volumn on my radio. I just turn until it sounds good. More freedom.

While I am a firm believer that you never can know how you will react in a situation you have never been in before, after my Pastor raised the question 'what would you do if you knew Jesus would be coming to your house in one hour?', I felt my answer was pretty free. I would need to clear some places for people to sit, I would chill some wine and I would invite over people who need some Freedom Jesus as much as me. I would not want to lock up my kids or clean house or cook or change my clothes. I am ok with who I am and while I know I need improvements, I feel free to be who I was made to be without apology.

I was praying on the toilet this morning (my children have a rule to not ask me a thing while I am on the toilet so I throw up popcorn prayers there) and I prayed how I talk. I cussed in prayer. Not like 'Come the F on, Jesus, bless the sh!t outta me, Man!' but real me. The free me. The slightly angry, defensive, lover of my Savior, tryin my best me.

I was tempted recently to follow a posting trend to come clean about my faults and shortcomings but I just did not think that was the direction I needed. There is value in confessing your sins 'one to another' but I would just rather focus on where my freedom takes me today and where I want to try and go tomorrow.

Tomorrow I want to be able to listen to some slamin older favorite music and not flash back to swinging naked around a pole for money. Tomorrow I want to be free to forgive my loved ones that hurt me daily every. single. time. Tomorrow I want to take down another layer of defence and not want to fight for a change. Tomorrow I want to rest & be still and not keep looking over my shoulder. Tomorrow I want to be freer than I am today, no matter what it costs.

Thats what Im talkin about, baby.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Mark 7:24-30

Mark 7:24
Then Jesus left Galilee and went north to the region of Tyre. He tried to keep it secret that he was there, but he couldn't. As usual, the news of his arrival spread fast.
Right away a woman came to him whose little girl was possessed by an evil spirit. She had heard about Jesus, and now she came and fell at his feet.
She begged him to release her child from the demon's control.Since she was a Gentile, born in Syrian Phoenicia,
Jesus told her, "First I should help my own family, the Jews. It isn't right to take food from the children and throw it to the dogs."
She replied, "That's true, Lord, but even the dogs under the table are given some crumbs from the children's plates."
"Good answer!" he said. "And because you have answered so well, I have healed your daughter."
And when she arrived home, her little girl was lying quietly in bed, and the demon was gone.

I enjoyed church today. The set up was Pastor asking if we were told Jesus would be coming over to our home in about an hour, what would we do. I think I would put a bottle of wine to chill. I would not really worry about cleaning up because that would be hypocritical and He is Jesus. It is not like He does not know how my house often looks. I would clear some places for Him to sit and wipe down the table in case we sat there. No reason to get syrup all over Jesus.
I may also make beer bread. Because it is so fast and easy and it is fresh, hot bread.

So back to the verses in Mark. The woman was not only a Gentile and a woman, but was of mixed races, which made her even more undesirable. You gotta love a mom that risks going to a distant land that does not welcome her. Then Jesus calls her a (female) dog. *giggle*

It was shocking what Jesus said to her He but He wanted to see if she was for real. She was quick and persistent. She did not care what Jesus called her as long as her daughter got help. If she had gotten offended, she would have been no use to her daughter.

See, that's the kind of mom I want to be. No matter what names I get called, no matter if I am not accepted, no matter if I am not 1st choice, I never want my feelings to control my destiny. I do not want to get offended about something that is temporal and lose a miracle for anyone in my family.

I just thought it was a cool picture of a mom that I could relate to and a great lesson to remember.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

The Good, the Bad...and the Bitchy?!?

My oldest has a birthday coming up and we are planning a cupcake party. We will decorate cupcakes, play pin the cherry on the cupcake and have a cupcake eating contest.

She requested a cupcake t-shirt and we went on line and found some AWESOME ones that were a million dollars (that means 20ish in my world) and some $8 ones at Target. It said on the website they had them in the store so I went to Target.

While I did not find the t-shirts at all, (here comes the GOOD!) I found CUPCAKE bath & body products for .25 each! They have body wash, glitter lotion, lipgloss, bath salts, etc. It was perfect!!!

Here comes the bad, altogether I spent $65 on clearance items.

ANNND, the bitchy. I am in the check out line and look down at about where my 2 little ones would be eye level and there is a magizine that says 'How to be just bitchy enough'. Look right on the cover girl's left boob. Yep. Thanks Target.

Maybe I can blame them for the fact that my youngest is out playing in the rain singing 'Its raaaiiiining, its whooooorrrrring'.

Thats what Im talkin bout, bitches!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Im Blue/Abba dee abba dii abba dee abba diiii

So my mom's yorkie had 4 pups and she moved and could not take the parent and 4 pups to her new place so my newly widowed uncle next door took them but during the hurricane I realized he can still hardly take care of himself so I took the 2 pups that were not sold when they weaned off the tit.

Today we found the little girl's mouth was blue. No. Idea.

I married a dog lover.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Romans 8:1

I became a Christian while pregnant with the daughter that will turn 9 next month. I was about 25 I guess. Those 25 years before were chock a block full of some dirty, nasty, freaky sin. I even went through a phase where I purposely tried to rebel & sin against God. So when I became a Christian I had to accept some heavy grace. I had to set my mind on the Truth that Jesus loves me despite what I have done and He has made me so fresh and so clean and now I am a new person all together. No matter what happens, I will never deny that Christ loved me enough to take on every one of my sins and pay the full price for them until death. I have that Truth in a death grip that whitens my spiritual knuckles because I need that to survive.

Because I can hold on to that Truth, I find it easy to tell people who are battling guilt that there is no condemnation for those of us in Christ. I figure, He can forgive me, He can forgive you and us wallowing in that muck will do nothing but keep us from doing His will. Looking back keeps us from moving forward so leave that shit behind and let's GO!

So why am I now camped out in condemnation? The title of this post links to some pics of the aftermath of Ike. Galveston Island is where my love and I 'honeymooned' back in '99. I was pregnant with the oldest (NOT the first, we married between the 2).

There is a couple at our church campus my love and I like and they just got power back this weekend. Almost 2 effing weeks without power!!! There are people around here (my neighbor included-posted a pic of his house in an earlier post) that sustained serious damage! Our insurance company finally made it out yesterday and chances are, our damage costs will not exceed our deductible which means out of pocket because it is so minor. Then I look at what Ike did to Galveston and I want to cry.

I want to cry and I am so pissed I was such a baby about my 5 or 6 days without power! I think Katrina and Rita was easier for me because of how much my family sacrificed. We moved 10 people in from Katrina and 3 more for Rita, most of which were here almost 3 months. My girls were 1, 3 & 5 and we gave up their bedrooms and all 5 of us stayed in my room. It was hard. I also was able to reach out to other families affected and even offered childcare, friendship and practical support to some strangers that evacuated here and knew no one. I loved on people at church and prayed for people. Basically I did some works that alleviated my guilt for not losing anything other that some privacy at home.

I do recognize my reaction to our loss of power and water was probably so strong because I felt so out of control. I am really starting to see how much I try and control and how directly related my emotional well being is connected to it. I think I need to go back and face a little more of the abuse I experienced and maybe I can learn to trust God a little more. I want to learn how to let Him be in control and let go of it myself.

Can I just say I totally do not get that whole 'let go and let God' saying. What the hell does that mean? How in the world do I do that? When people say that I just get angry because I can not process that. Show me. Tell me in a step by step process. Lay it at the cross. That's another one. The hell? What?!? I do not GET THAT! Where is the translation for people like me? Seriously. You may as well tell me it smells like the color nine.

So if you read this, please pray for those affected by Gustav and Ike. And pray for me to let go and let God. That's what Im talkin bout.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

You know you are from Louisiana when...

you wear high heeled crocs! Yes. I know. But it makes sense now. See, when they first came out I remember thinking NEVEERRRR!

They were ugly, more than I like to pay for shoes and they were ugly. I heard they were comfortable but as much as I love comfort, they are ugly.

So then I realized that young children can put them on by themselves and if they accidentally tee tee on them selves, you can just rinse the shoes off!

Brilliant! All my girls got a knock off pair.

They were everywhere! Women wore them to church even! Now, usually they were the ones with the sparkly diamondy things in the holes so they were 'dressy'.

My aunt that lived next door wore them and when she passed away, I inherited my first pair. I loved her a lot and wore them often around the house. They were perfect for walking the girls to and from the bus, putting the trash out, burning trash, cutting grass. LOTS of things! They slipped on and off easy. You can wear them with or without socks and when they get wet or dirty it was no big deal! And they were comfortable.

Still, I never left the house with them on, well, not on purpose anyway.

Then we went on vacation with my sister and her husband and she had croc flip flops. They were not that cute (not ugly really but not that cute) but WOW they were the most comfortable flip flops I ever wore PLUS they can get wet and clean up so easy!

Still, for the money, they had to be something I would want to wear out the house which they were not. Until now!

I found these cuties and they are so berry comfortable and I can wear them outside without worrying about the weather or where I am walking. I can even walk the acre and a half gravel driveway toting the trash cans in them. Perfect for southern Louisiana!

That's what I'm talkin bout baby!
ps..that is my love's feet in the first pic with mine and yes, he is wearing 2 different flip flops. He could not find their matches. Next I am buying the Lenas for my winter pair.

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Better is one day in His Courts

I was able to go to church today. I was not sure how that would be because my church has been serving the community and being the hands and feet of Jesus like crazy and I could hardly take care of myself.

Only a few cords into the first worship song and my world was made right. As soon as I turned my face towards my God, the grime and guilt for not being impossibly perfect washed away as easily as the dirt and sweat did during my first shower after 3 days with no water and power.

So many people that I looked at as powerhouses for God said some of the same things I did. A friend even confessed in a hushed tone that she only made it through each night because she was taking Zanex and was concerned she was addicted.

I laugh at her addicted and told her I drank at night hoping to usher in sleep and when that did not work, I chased the alcohol in my bloodstream with strong coffee until the 2 drugs mixed and countered and fought against each other until I added more of one or the other in a crazy dance that had no real rythem.

Everywhere I went, the conversations revolved around one fact; power. Do you have power? When did you get power? Who do you know that has power? I go to a megachurch and during service we were asked to raise our hands if we had power back. Only about 40% of us did. Then those who did not have power were asked to raise their hands and to look around the massive sea of hands raised was almost like getting hit in the stomach. This would be day 7 for them. My mother and brother are included in this group.

I alternate between walking around without turning on the lights because after the first 2 days when you keep flipping switches and getting nothing you learn to stop, and turning on anything and everything whether I need it or not.

Here I was trying to go green and most of the time now, that is all out the window. I turned on 4 lights to make my coffee this morning. Absolutly no need but it is almost like I am trying to make up for the light I missed out on. I turned the a/c lower than I normally have it on and I tried to make brownies on the stove (damn you Pancake Puffer!!!) and told my daughters I could not do it because the heat was making me angry. Then I put them in the oven and forgot to set the timer and burned the crap outta them. So sad. Burned brownies is sad.

I saw a friend who is a counsiler and asked when the PT SD support group was and she was like, yeah, we all need that! At least I am not alone in my crazy. I know I was up close and personal with Katrina but I did not loose everything I owned. Good thing because this experience may very well have been harder for me. I am starting to feel a little back on track though and at least now I remember that better is one day in God's court than a thousand elsewhere.

Thursday, September 04, 2008


small tree down across my driveway
lots of work for my pool boy
this is what it looks like under a tree
Tree on and through neighbor's home. They had evacuated.

Pecan tree uprooted in my front yard.
Tree snapped in my back yard. I walked out my back door almost into the tree

The pictures do not come close to capturing the power...
I went out during the height of the storm and the wind was moving me where it wanted me. It was insane.

The View 3 Hours from Home

Perspective. I must like the word. I use it often. I feel it is educational to see things from another view. I teeter between the prideful/humble thought that my perspective is not possibly the only way or the right way.

I recently began fasting on Mondays for the orphans everywhere and as my flesh curses my will, I remind myself my slight hunger pains in perspective to what some African orphans feel must be a joke.

I lasted 3 days at home with no power and water before I left. 3 days, only 2 nights, and still I fought panic attacks, pity parties, whining, complaining, not to mention I got drunk.

I drove 3 hours to my sister's home and am so pissed at how the people here are acting. I know Rita got Lake Charles good. I see the PT SD rage through people around New Orleans at the mention of a serious hurricane. I had Rita victims move into my home so I am sure that is here too. I am just frustrated that everywhere I go in this town people talk about how bad they have it. Limited menu at McDonald's, delayed delivery trucks at grocery stores, the inconvenience of having to evacuate for the day the storm hit. They have power! They have water! And supplies and gas!

At home people lined the shoulders of the roads for MILES to wait H.O.U.R.S. to be allowed to fill gas cans only. Not you tank to your vehicle but the small portable gas cans. Friends and family that are not getting paid as they sit home with no power can not keep filling their generator with gas when no paycheck is coming in even though we are being told it will take weeks to get power back.

Then I realize what I ran from is better than the best days some of the children I pray for have. My heart breaks as I think of mothers trying to offer their babies comfort as I tried to offer mine in the heat and in the dark. My heart breaks that my weaknesses and sin surfaced so fast in the slight trial we are facing. My heart breaks that only now as I sit clean and in a house with A/C in front of a computer drinking my gas station coffee that I get the idea to look up. To look up to where my Help comes from and see a different perspective.

I am still tired, physically and emotionally. I feel like once I get a little more sleep, a little more coffee, a little more of my meds and spend a little more time with Jesus reminding me He will forgive me for being such an ass and He loves me anyway, I will be ok. I mean I am ok. I am better than ok. I can just be better. I can change my perspective.