Every blessed week once in awhile I make mistakes that force me to remember that in my own strength I am nothing.
This week is no exception.
(Except for the part where I made two mistakes.)
Mistake Number 1:
I had some really fun video of my two students on the first day of school.
As I went to upload the videos, I accidently deleted them instead.
So the very big and fun (and really funny) first day of school will only be a memory for those of us who were here.
My thought was that I would just "re-enact" the 1st morning on the 2nd day of school.
Only, my best laid plans changed the face of my youngest student.
I took The Girl to her scheduled orthodontist appointment to get (what I thought would be) her expanders adjusted.
The doctor wasn't happy with how slowly her teeth are moving, so he switched the plan, and an hour and a half later, my baby came out with braces.And she looks the same, only different.
The metal brackets have filled out her face; they changed that sweet baby face into a portrait of an older girl. Both beautiful, but different.
Maybe its just me...but I felt like she aged a lifetime while I read a magazine in the lobby, unaware of the change set before me.
I didn't anticipate the emotional road I would travel over such a small thing...but for some reason, it doesn't feel small in my heart. Even though this course is what's best for her, I'm gonna miss that snaggly toothed grin.
My kids are growing up...and I am helpless to stop it...and I deleted the moment before all the change had begun.
Mistake Number 2:
If you know me in real-life, or have read the blog for awhile, you might know that I love pinto beans. I was so excited because I recently purchased a brand new electric Cuisinart Pressure Cooker, under the recommendation of a dear foodie and friend, The Carpool Queen. She told me that this machine would revolutionize my bean baking. She is wise, that CPQ.
I bought my machine of quick-cooking pressure, exactly one week ago today, and have used it about as many times.
My MO has been to set the cooker on the glass top stove top while it does its cooking. I've done this for years with my CrockPot because....well, I thought it would make for less mess if anything should spill or boil over.
Hindsight says it was a stupid idea.
Today in an attempt to boil water for macaroni (my little brace-face requires soft food of the non-bean kind) I accidently turned the wrong burner on. I didn't realize my mistake until the fire alarm sounded and thick, acrid, plastic-smelling, smoke filled the downstairs.
In attempt to take make things easier, I doubled the work. (Not to mention expenses.)
Lest you think this post is complaint, I want you to know that nearly every week every once in awhile I'm reminded that I am not in control. As a matter of fact, I'm the antithesis of "control." I'm meant to be helpless. Consider this quote:
Throughout the book of John we see people coming to Jesus because of their helplessness. The Samaritan women has no water (see John 4). Later in the same chapter, the official's son has no health. The crippled man by the pool of Bethesda has no help to get in the water (see John 5). The crowd has no bread (see John 6) The blind man has no sight (see John 11).
We received Jesus because we were weak, and that's how we follow Him. Paul told the Colossians. "Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in him" (2:6) We forget that helplessness is how the Christian life works.
(Paul Miller, The Praying Life, pg. 55)For years I have tried to hide it, deny it, stuff it, fix it, control it, lose it, and talk around it.
I like to think I'm in control; have all my courses in check. I like to think that there is nothing I cannot accomplish, or secure.
Honestly, I like to think I cook my beans and my macaroni too.
Today I was reminded that I can't.
I cannot stop time; or have things done my way; or keep things that I desire...and often those things that I really think are good and rational plans can sometimes be folly waiting to be born.
And every once in awhile, on the days when my eyes are open and my ears strain to hear...and the stench of plastic is a vivid reminder of the chaff God is burning in my life...I remember that by myself I can do nothing. (John 5:30) And I will never be alone.
Will I make mistakes? Of course!
Will I wish I "would've, could've, should've?" Absolutely.
But the real question is: Will these things drive me closer to a God who cares deeply for his children?
Or will I allow a prideful desire to keep up appearances, and wear myself out fighting in vain for control I do not own?
Lord... save me in spite of myself.
(and if at all possible, save my appliances too.)