The caravan leaving for Missouri! :)
Paul & Lynette
We all have our own comfort zones....there are things that happen in life that may cause us to react...maybe over-react...because we "don't wanna!", or we feel overwhelmed with what God has brought our way. :) In a ladies' Bible study group at church, we've been studying what the Bible says about emotions and "controlling" our moods [it's actually giving it all over to God, and clinging tightly to Him]. This study couldn't have come at a better time for me. It seems like this year especially, God has been stretching my comfort zones to the max. I have a lot of examples, but if I shared them all with you I'd be writing a book. Instead, I'll just tell you about something that happened recently. As you may know from an earlier posting on this blog, some friends from SW Missouri [Jeremy & Jeanette Booher] and their family came for a visit last Saturday, on their way to Ohio. Their vehicle broke down as they were leaving our house!!! They rented a car and continued on their trip to Ohio. My inlaws also live in SW Missouri and know the Boohers. They agreed to borrow a large passenger van, with a trailer behind it [from some kind people in Carthage, MO], come up here to Belleville in order to take the Booher's back home! On Monday, Richard had come home from work with some news, "My parents are coming for a visit tomorrow." I was like, "WHAT?!?!?!? I've got to clean the house, finish the laundry, make a pumpkin pie.....ACK!" I was in a pitifully bad mood....and then calmed down enough for Richard to explain what was going on; his parents were going to visit with us for a couple of days (although Richard was going to be out of town one day--bummer)... when the Booher's would return to Belleville, my inlaws would take them home to SW Missouri, pulling their broken vehicle behind. I realized I was being selfish in thinking of myself and what I had [wanted] to do before thinking of others. I was so thankful that the Booher's were going to be helped out, and began looking forward to Paul & Lynette's visit. The kids were excited and I found I was not so worried about my house anymore; my house had little to do with anything! I returned to my private study about "moods", and asked God to help me remember the lesson I'd learned. It didn't take very long for Him to answer my prayer.
On Wednesday, Lynette, Ashlyn and myself had a lot of fun shopping in St. Louis while Paul enjoyed the zoo with the boys. It was a beautiful day together! : ) : ) I might mention that Richard had left town, and wouldn't be back until the next day. While driving back to Belleville, Paul (my father inlaw) told us that the Boohers were aiming to be at our house a bit earlier than planned. To make a long story short, there were a few obstacles with their returning the rental car and loading the broken vehicle onto the trailer .....then it was time for us to eat. By this time, it was already 6:15 PM, so I broke the news to the boys (Caleb cried) that we wouldn't be going to "Family Discipleship"--similar to an Awana club. I felt out of my comfort zone with having extra company without Richard at home, but ran to KFC , inviting the Boohers to stay for dinner. There were 5 adults and 6 children [including myself & kids]. Normally, this would totally overwhelm me with having a small dining room, but I remembered what I had been learning in the "moods" study, and realized that what mattered most was everyone else' welfare, not my house (is it good enough) or my comfort zone. I was thankful we were able to have another nice visit with the Boohers; I would never trade the 2nd visit for anything (the kids had a blast together too)!!! Then, the Booher's were looking for a motel. After hearing them compare motels and make phone calls, I decided that I didn't like the idea of them staying in a motel, and said they could stay here. While I was telling them this, I was thinking, "What am I doing?!?!?!? We have a small house!" I was again tempted to feel overwhelmed, but remembered what we'd been studying in the ladies' group. I felt happy/content with my decision to have them stay, and wouldn't have had it any other way.
I have a neighbor who reminds us all of the character " Rachel Lind" in Anne of Green Gables. She saw all the action that was going on at our house for the past- how many days, and came over with a bunch of cup cakes for us and our company. The first thing she asked was, "Is this a car rental joint or something?" She then asked if she could "take a seat" and made herself at home, chatting about how she had voted early, how much money she was spending on her grandkids for Christmas, etc., etc. It really was comical. It was obvious she was only wanting to know what was going on at our house. : ) : ) : ) See, Richard had rented a couple of cars a few weeks back when our van died on us...[ he now has a saturn]. My neighbor was probably very confused. : ) : )
......Ashlyn and I slept on the living room couch and floor...and then around 4 AM I couldn't sleep. I was worried about breakfast. : ) : ) : ) : ) : ) : )I never should have worried...it all worked out (of course)! We had cereal and banana bread that I had made at 4:30 AM. After we all ate breakfast, we saw how life continues to be interesting. During one of my guests' shower, a rusting pipe (we didn't know it was rusty) totally blew away inside the wall....causing water to seep into a section of Ashlyn's carpet. If we hadn't had the extra company, it may have taken a little longer to find this problem (?).... it was the company in Ashlyn's room who noticed the carpet was wet....What an ordeal! This past summer, the pump on the A/C unit quit working, and it had emptied gallons of water into Ashlyn's carpet. I'm so glad it wasn't that bad this time around!!! Paul helped me get the carpet and mat up, adjust the fans blowing....and before they all left to go back down to SW Missouri, Paul and Jeremy Booher, cut a big hole in Ashlyn's wall (ugh)....and discovered the plumbing problem was too big for them to fix [old plumbing problems;bathroom tile in the way]. I do appreciate what they did; it was not an easy job cutting our wall (they are very thick plaster/cement). So.....now I get to practice "Not being anxious for anything"...even though there's this huge hole in my daughter's bedroom wall, and her carpet is still drying out. : ) : ) : )
Yes, I'd say that I've been learning many lesson(s). I don't think the lessons have pulled me out of my comfort zone entirely.....so I'm a little hesitant to ask God what's next (and to pray for it to happen!).
You see....we leave in 8 days for West Virginia (for Richard's job). Richard will be very busy, we are taking our school work and making the best of it all!!! There will be no microwave or refrigerator in the hotel we'll be staying in. We are taking a cooler and a crock pot though. : ) : ) One day at a time.....one day at a time.... : ) : ) : ) : ) This arrangement will last for 12 days....then we'll be on our way to Indiana for Thanksgiving. I plan on writing about our interesting travel experiences on this blog. :) Not that I'm expecting bad things to happen... :) : ) : ) I want to be like an eagle; Jeanette Booher told me while she was here, that an eagle looks for storms to soar above (doesn't hide from the storms). I wonder if eagles have comfort zones? Hmm... Time to get off this computer. : )