Brain Fart

The older I get, the less I remember.  Yesterday, I received an e-mail from an old college friend on Facebook.  She asked if I recalled who she was.  Thankfully, this time I did.  However, more and more, I find myself struggling to remember.  I have been teaching for over 20 years, so there are a lot of names and faces in my memory.  The class of 98 was having its reunion this past  year, and the reunion organizer asked if I knew where Danny Diaz was.  I had to laugh.  I have taught soooo many kids named Danny Diaz.  It’s sort of comical, really.  Will the real Danny Diaz stand up please….

Thankfully, my Abba Father does not have a bad memory.  He chooses to forget and forgive my sin because Jesus went to the cross for me, but He knows my name — the details of my life are not fuzzy in His mind’s eye.  He counts my tears in a bottle.  The very hairs on my head are numbered. He has hemmed me in behind and before and has laid His hand upon me.

Yet, there are days when I get weary and forget His faithfulness — nothing seems to be happening.  My prayer list is getting longer, and I am dealing with the same set of unchanged circumstances after knocking on heaven’s door diligently.  Has God forgotten?  Maybe He is too busy with that Haiti thing to worry about my stuff?

This past weekend, my pastor pointed us to Nehemiah.  He was busy trying to build something for God, but the enemy kept coming against him.  Nehemiah had to build with one hand and fight with the other.   This one verse in Chapter 4 stuck out to me:  “Do not be afraid of them.  Remember the Lord, great and awesome, and fight for your brethren, your sons, your daughters, your wives and your houses.”

I am going to try to get my brain in gear so that I don’t forget His power, His faithfulness, His purpose.  I am working on putting this passage from Hebrews 6 to memory:

God is not unjust.  He will not forget your work

and the love you have shown Him

as you have helped His people and continue to help them.

We want each of you to show this same diligence to the very end,

in order to make your hope sure.

We do not want you to become lazy,

but to imitate those who through faith and patience

inherit what has been promised.

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Lessons Plans

I am no longer teaching at the high school level, but when I did, one of the requirements was generating weekly lesson plans.  Kristen, a former student who is now in a teacher ed program, was lamenting having to do this on her Facebook status this afternoon, and I was reminded about how much I loathed the process myself.

Invariably, something would happen that would make my very well-laid plans go awry — a fire drill, an unexpected assembly, boisterous teenagers disrupting the flow of things.   I learned quickly that planning was basically a “looking ahead,” but that I needed to hold my plans loosely.  No lesson plan could predict that I would have a student in the third row whose mom would pass away that week.  No amount of planning would prepare me to deal with that.  There are no effective teaching strategies that will help a child in crisis digest that a gerund is a verb used as a noun ending in -ing.  Seriously, who cares?  On days like that, your plans get tossed.  Sometimes, life just happens.

Since late December, my hubby and I have been traveling back and forth from the East coast to visit his ailing mom.  She is slowly inching her way toward heaven.  We have no idea how long we will be on this journey, and making plans has really become impossible.  I recently found myself telling a close friend that I would do my best to be at her bridal shower, but I wasn’t sure what tomorrow would bring.  My husband has basically been living out of a suitcase.

How do you plan to lose your mom?  Work, church responsibilities, social events on the calendar all seem rather unimportant when you are walking on this road.  Life is sometimes a messy teacher.  There are no parallel outlines that uniformly highlight the salient concepts.  Sometimes, you just learn by wading through the messy content yourself.

Yesterday, I was reading Mark 14, and this one phrase about the woman with the alabaster box stood out to me — “She did what she could….”  Sometimes, the richest lessons are lived out when we throw aside our pre-conceived notions and plans and just act in selfless love.  My husband is living an alabaster life daily as he sits at his mama’s side.   I don’t want to be the disciple who misses the eternal perfume of the sacrifice because I am obsessing over the temporal cost.

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