Have you ever found yourself in a time in your life where you are stuck between the proverbial rock and hard place? I would guess that most of us have been there at one point or another. I am not sure if I am there yet or not but it seems that if I am not I will be there soon. As some of you know I am not currently employed anywhere. Additionally, most of you know that I am a teacher. Well the school year is literally days away here in Michigan and for the first time in several years I do not have a school to report to Tuesday morning. Tonight I took my son to his 6th grade orientation. As best as I could I got through it. I tried to focus on what he needed to know and not dwell on the emotions that kept trying to take a hold of me. It was hard for me to be in the school building. I miss the anticipation that comes with the start of a new school year. The joy of seeing faces that you haven't seen all summer, the anxiousness that the new year brings about, and the busyness of being sure that everything is set for the first day. All of these things are missing this year and I don't like the emptiness that is left in it's place. I am usually a person that speaks his mind but it seems that this blog is the only way for me to express my thoughts and feelings lately. For the first time in a long time I have thoughts of worry creeping into my mind. My wife has always gotten frustrated with me because I tend to have the attitude that everything is going to work out and I don't need to worry about it. I am trying to remain positive and keep that attitude because deep down I believe that God does have things in His control and I have nothing to worry about.........
.......but Satan seems to be hitting me hard with worry this week. The month is almost over and a new month is coming and we all know what a new month brings. So what do you do when you are faced with the temptation of sin, and I believe that worry is a sin (Matthew 6)?
The best answer that I have come up with is to turn it over to the Father. So I pray that I can overcome this worrying and put my complete trust in the one who created me and says not to worry. I ask that you lift my family and I up in prayer right now though as we are facing a lot of uncertainty and are continuing to strive for complete trust in Him. It would be greatly appreciated.
Matthew 6:25-34 (NIV)
Friday, August 15, 2014
Today started with an early morning wake-up call from my alarm clock, aka, my cell phone. Aggie (my 3rd child) and I were leaving early to head to Indianapolis to my grandfather's home. We had a good trip down. We averaged over 70 mph and about 29 mpg on the trip. I won't give the exact stats on the speed because I do know that some law enforcement people read this blog sometimes. I will state that I was getting passed on a regular basis though. We arrived at Grandpa's shortly before 1 pm. We visited for a while, before he had to leave for some plans he had, then we went to get something to eat. We ended up taking a trip down memory lane and eating at the same place we had eaten at when we were basically snowed in at Christmas time a couple years ago. Aggie remembered it. The boneless wings and pizza were delicious. We then went back to the house for a little r & r. Aggie watched tv and I snoozed. We then decided to go on a little outing to a family amusement place. We did a round of miniature golf and played some games. We spent about 2 hours there having a great time. Afterwards we made a stop at a local DQ on the way back to Grandpa's. Now we are just hanging out. Aggie is getting ready for bed and I am watching a little Little League World Series action while blogging. It has been a good day. I don't get to spend enough time with each of my kids 1 on 1 like Aggie and I got to today. Logan and I probably get the most 1 on 1 time because of all the coaching I do for the teams he plays on but the others don't usually get dad to themselves for any length of time. I must try to do something about that from now on.
We saw this car in the parking lot of the bowling alley next door to the place we went miniature golfing at. This Lamborghini has a handicap license plate but is no where near a handicap spot. It was actually closer to the road than the entrance to the bowling alley.
Monday, August 11, 2014
GOOD MORNING VIETNAM!!
That is the first thing that comes to mind when I hear the name Robin Williams. I don't really know why it just is. It is by far not my favorite film of his, that would be Dead Poets Society. Mr. Williams is probably my all time favorite comedic actor. I remember the days of Mork and Mindy fondly. Nannoo Nannoo. The reports that his death is due to an apparent suicide are saddening. Why does someone who has so much choose to end his or her own life, is something we hear a lot of in situations like this. But did he really have all that much? Sure he probably was well off monetarily but obviously there was something missing from his life. We will probably never know for sure what that was but we do know that he was dealing with depression.
Depression is a terrible thing. I know, I am dealing with it now. Feelings of inadequacy, feelings of uselessness, feelings that I am not good enough, and so on. I think we all have these feelings at different times and at differing degrees. According to WebMD and estimated 19 million American adults struggle with major depression. Statistically speaking, you probably talked to someone today that is dealing with depression.
To go back to what I said about something being missing. What do you think that thing is? As many of you know I am a man of faith. I have a strong faith in God. Do I always rely on it like I should? To be blunt, absolutely not. I believe that as a Christian my faith is tested every day. Satan is constantly bombarding me with temptations, doubts, and other things to get me to question that faith. I am in a spiritual battle. We all are. We are all creations of the one Creator. In that creation we were made in His image. We were made by Him for Him. In His infinite wisdom he gave us the blessing of free will. (some days I think it is a curse) The one thing that I think is missing in many peoples' lives is a personal relationship with God and His son Jesus Christ.
I know it has been quite awhile since I blogged, for many reasons, but this week I was having a conversation with a good friend of mine about some personal battles I am dealing with and he said I needed to start writing again. I agreed but wasn't really motivated to do it. Then tonight I read the news of Williams passing. I decided that writing good be good therapy tonight so I sat down at my computer and began to type. I realize I am rambling a bit but here is what I am getting at. You need to have a personal relationship with your Creator!
See, when you have a personal relationship with God you are never alone. If you believe in Jesus Christ, confess your sins, repent of those sins, and accept Him as your Lord and Savior you receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. That gift is priceless. In Romans 8:26 we are told "In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness..." Depression is a weakness. I don't have to deal with that alone. I may not know what I need, or even exactly what the underlying issue is but because of my personal relationship and that gift of the Holy Spirit I can reach out to God in prayer through the Spirit and as the verse continues "We do not know what we out to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express." I find it awesome that even though my feeble mind can't always make sense of a situation I can go to God in prayer and He will answer me.
Do I have all the answers? No. I am in no ways a biblical scholar or an expert. I am just a simple man struggling each and every day to be the man God wants me to be. I am not perfect and most days lately have been failures by me to do my part in this relationship. But, as with any relationship, you have to work at it. So I will continue to work at strengthening my relationship with God and with His help I will battle the issues that I am faced with and I will survive and be stronger for it. But it will be because of Him, not me.
In closing, Romans 8 finishes with a powerful couple of verses (38 & 39) "For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, not anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord."