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Tuesday, September 7, 2010

boring times

i can't sleep- again.
i keep thinking about job and his choices. he's my favorite old testament book to read when crap hits the fan. when my life feels like it's unraveling.
5 or 6 years ago january i decided to adopt job's attitude toward life. whenever inconvenient things happened i decided i would "praise God" for the moment. i figured in doing this, i would trick myself into actually believing on a deeper level that these moments were crafted by God to make me a better person.
it wasn't easy at first. my first reaction was more caustic, but after a while, "praise God" became a little easier and a little more second nature.
it must have been january because my first outside use of the practice was after the pro-life march. my big brother, fr. kevin got a flat tire while driving my family back from the pro-life march in down town atlanta. he was driving the blessed trinity high school van/bus and i decided i'd carpool with him. he took a corner too tight and busted one of the back right wheels(there were two of them). i blurted out, "praise God".
"WHAT?!?!" he exclaimed.
as he limped the van/bus to the nearest free place i thought that it would've been wiser, in this situation, to keep my new found practice to myself. and even as i said it, i felt like it didn't fit. i didn't believe my own words.
we found a parking lot and parked the van/bus. the kids got out as fr. kevin called for a tire company to come fix the flat. we all sat in the parking lot, coming up with games to entertain the kids. stacking rocks, tossing them, spotting helicopters, counting cars, whatever we could think of.
as fr. kevin begins his second and more dangerous deployment my mind goes back to that time.
it reminds me of the part in the pixar movie UP when russel tells karl that he enjoys the boring times with his dad. the times that aren't hyperscheduled, the times that just happen.
i know fr kevin's mind must have been frazzled, but the time we spent in that parking lot on the corner of spring and 17th is now a fond memory. i now believe my own words of praise for that moment. how's that for twisting a bad situation into a good one?
so, now, with jedidiah, i wonder how God is going to twist this. first it's my job(pun, heh heh). first i must "praise God", even though it may feel like a foreign language and i may only mouth it.
i wonder how the kids will look back on this. how will i? how will chris?
we have simplified our lives- no scouts, no homeschool co-op, no sports. will they look back on this "boring" family-centric time and love it?
i hope so. this thought helps me to unfrazzle my brain, so that i can make some room to store the memories of this time.


  1. What a great story and an amazing lesson. Liz, you confess to no patience, but trust me when I say you model it daily. Having a family with the logistics yours has, as you know from growing up in one, is not easy. There are MANY rewards and the fact that you still find the lessons, positives and take time to appreciate those is far more than many with no kids or one kid can state!

    Hindsight is 20/20 and in everything looking back, we will discover why God makes the choices he does. I still believe that one day, God will use this time for you to help another young lady (who may not have the spiritual relationship you do) to get through a similar situation. When that day comes, you will understand more about His plan!

    Thank you for sharing so deeply....

  2. Lizzie, I know my kids have enjoyed it so much because we have been able to hang out together so much more! I think your kids just enjoy being together and haven't missed the scheduled stuff so much! I like the spontaneous trips to LIFETIME, the lake, & the park the we are able to do! Love you lots and I hope JOB continues to give your strength! Love Regina

  3. You and your kids will look back and remember feeling so loved and cared for in such a time of uncertainty. They will remember how their parents put their Faith in God knowing that He would provide! And when in their life these instances arise -some bigger some smaller- they will look back, remember the way you handled it, remember that closeness, and hopefully make the same amazing choices for their family!
    Make sure you take pictures of the kids (esp the little ones) hugging your belly as they are so young they may not remember it all. That way no matter what happens they will always have a pic of them and their brother!
    Much love Elizabeth!! I have some meals to bring you.

  4. Oh (((LIZ)) how I love you ! Everytime I read your blog I smile and I sometimes cry. But I always learn something new thru your words.
    We have known each other a long have been such an inspiration to us over and over and over. Your Faith is so strong. I strive to be as Faith filled and as patient as you. You and I know God placed us in others lives....

    Everytime now when I am drowning in my self pity missing my husband and asking why God why did my husband have to deploy I think of you and tell myself I need to be more like Liz, she never complains and she is so darn positive. Your story today really struck my heart and I am going to TRY to do waht you said when something goes wrong I am going to say "praise God" more often....
    God Bless you dear friend and God grant you His peace and Grace


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