Tag Archives: when suffering turns to gold

God has a Sense of Humor–Pt 2

In the first part I wrote that God has been turning a lot of things around on me lately.

I’m not the only one. My daughter has started dating the only friend of her ex-husband that she didn’t like.

I went out to dinner with them recently, and he was giving his first impressions of her. He thought she was depressed because he only saw her on the couch with a blanket. She didn’t speak to him or move, and he felt bad that she had no life or no energy.

His interpretation set up such dissonance in my head because even though I know there was some depression, it didn’t sound like her. My impression had been her hyper-connecting with his friends because she was unhappy and unfulfilled.

She got upset with both of us–feeling bad that he had experienced her like that, and saying I made her sound like she’d had affairs!

For the record, she didn’t, and I knew that, she was trying too hard to control everything, and make it perfect. But a whole picture took two days and three hours of talking to put all the pieces in the right gestalt.

Suddenly it came clear–he was the only friend of her ex-husband that she didn’t like, and didn’t want him hanging out with. She thought he was a bad influence, so she didn’t give him the time of day. Wouldn’t even get up or acknowledge him! That would have been consistent with who she was then. (Happily, not anymore.)

How funny that four years later, she thinks he is the only man in the world. Once she got to know him she began to see that he was much more than she’d thought. In fact, they are a lot alike–God is central in his life as well as hers and obviously brought them together. It’s quite a story, and I can just imagine God smiling.

I think he loves to delight us with surprises. And blow our minds over how much we don’t know! Ever been surprised by God’s graciousness overturning something you were sure you’d judged correctly? He just wants us to stay close.


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It’s About Time Science Caught Up!

I was excited to see a special report on sugar and illness on the news last night. It is about time! Health enthusiasts have known this for decades. And not just about Diabetes either.

Sugar Blues came out in the 70’s or 80’s.  And of course a lot of people pooh-poohed it. They didn’t want to know. But the “What-you-don’t-know-won’t-hurt-you mentality doesn’t change cause and effect. And we have seen the effects in our society–an epidemic of obesity, Diabetes, heart disease and cancer. (The auto-immune diseases have come more from the sugar substitutes.)

Thank God, finally science has caught up. Two different doctors doing research on it have labeled it a “toxin” –good for them.

I was trying to remember how long I have known about this, and then I realized that I wrote Tommy Tortoise Gets the Sugar Blues 36 years ago. It is a children’s picture book, I just published this year, about an animated tortoise who learns in school, from his caring teacher Mr Toad, that sugar causes cavities.

Tommy is sick, not wanting to know this, because he loves sweets. His life is ruined. Then he realizes that he has no teeth, so surely this doesn’t apply to him, which he happily shares with his mother. Feeling exempt from consequences, he revels in his new freedom, and loads up on his favorite food–sugar.

Yes, he has symptoms of irritability, difficulty focusing and paying attention, being especially tired, but he is too young to connect the dots, and consoles himself with eating sweets. Trying to hide any mishaps or problems from his mother, who is noticing anyway.

He gets sick and Dr. Owl comes to pay a visit, and finishes Tommy’s education about sugar (the cover picture). He also shares with him that treats don’t have to be bad for you, and brings him some to try. (Recipe is in the book–you can buy it at http://createspace.com/3731716).

The University School of Health, where I went to graduate school, was doing research on this forty years ago, but as typical for humans, we usually have to experience the pain of consequences before we learn. We are like Tommy, we don’t want to give up something we like, even if we find out it’s bad for us.

My daughter just called and told me that she gave the little boys chair to the baby who loves it. They were so excited about him getting books from the shelf and going and sitting in the chair, that they didn’t even mind giving it up. She said they probably thought they were going to get something better anyway.

Wouldn’t it be cool if we all were like that about giving up something we like! If we were so secure in God’s love, and so sure of His goodness, that we knew anything He asked us to give up wasn’t as good as what He will put in it’s place.

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lovelycrumbs.com A Perspective on Feeling Abandoned — To Love without an Escape Plan

If you felt abandoned by your dad,  you will love the pathos and triumph of this blog. I will print it here for convenience, but it’s better at her site.

“To Love without an Escape Plan”

I dial the numbers slowly. A bit of hesitation in my fingers. In my heart.

It’s later than I’d planned to call. But that is the way my life goes. Tucking in all the littles. Wrapping up the day.

And this night has brought with it a resonating ache. A friendship strained and stretched. The weight of it sitting heavy on my heart. Slowing my every moment.

So with this heart already opened raw… I speak into the phone.

“Happy Birthday, Dad”

He mumbles thanks and I quickly ramble off the information of an   e-card created just for him by the littles, our latest in emergency-room visits, a bit of uncomfortable chatter.

He, in his natural way, makes a joke about me only having ten toes. It is him in a moment. The soft bantering humor. It connects me to him as if once again my hands are little.

And then as quickly as it started it’s over and he’s gone. Connection disconnected.

He still doesn’t know how to stay. Not even on the phone.

I want him to know it’s ok. I understand it. Understand him. My heart feels the sadness in his voice. The helplessness.

He doesn’t know how to stay.

I’ve spent my whole life watching him leave.

Watching him. Wishing just once he’d stay. Just for a moment see me. Know me.

There are few things that drive you toward God like an absent father. 

Few things that leave the vacancy, the caverns of blackness. Of empty searching. Grasping.

Looking to be loved. Defined. Beautiful.

I spent half a lifetime wishing he’d died. Somehow thinking it would be easier if he’d had no choice. If he hadn’t walked away. And this last half so grateful to just love him from a distance. Knowing that it’s all he has to give.

Today is his birthday. A day for celebration. Joy. And for me it is filled with ache.

Not the same paralyzing pain of the little girl that waited for him, face pressed against the glass.

No this pain is sadness. The twisting, burning ache of loving from the outside. The sorrow of watching a heart withered, wrapped up tight and unmoving. A heart unaware of what it truly means to be open. To love without an escape plan.

A heart that has missed the joy of a daughter. The indescribable blessing of knowing a child as well as you know your own face.

And I want to tell him it’s ok. I understand.

My heart grieves. No longer for me, but for him. For all that he missed. All that will never come again.

I am well. Strong. Beautiful. Loved.

And he never need feel guilty. For I know how it feels to have a Father. To have the One who never leaves fill your heart. I know how it refines you to love with your Whole Heart. To be the child of a devoted mother. To be a committed wife. To have a child. To have three.

I love him. I love me. The bits of him that are reflected back at me. The parts of me that want to leave when the struggles begin. The pieces of me that can figure out how to do anything.

I am proud to be his child. Honored to have come from him.

He wasn’t there… And he is completely forgiven. Completely loved.

Because he never learned how to stay, I have learned how to fight for love. Because he was afraid of the work of loving, I am not.

Because he left, I know how to stay.

Everything is a Gift. Grace poured out into this fragile soul. I am here in this moment because he is my father. I am part of him. And I love him.

Even though he doesn’t know how to stay.

And birthday’s are for new beginnings…

for Grace.

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”   Jeremiah 29:11

Posted By Loxlia to lovelycrumbs at 1/21/2012 12:37:00 AM 00 AM

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