First France, then that moment when church hits you where it hurts.

Hello friends.  First, in exactly 4 weeks I'll be on my dream trip to France. More specifically, I'll be in Paris. I will be exuberant for the next few weeks as I countdown to this trip. We have been planning and preparing for over a year, and I am finally in the last few weeks! I've got a page in my bullet journal (glorified list book) of things to do/buy before we leave. I've been reading through endless posts on what to wear in Paris in the summer. Apparently Parisian women don't wear bright lipstick, don't spend much time on their hair, and they like to wear sundresses. So not that different from what I usually do in summer. I finished my Joan of Arc bio, and can I just say that her trial was ridiculously unfair. I was going to add a book on Normandy and D-Day, but I'm opting for a documentary instead. Next weekend, we will sit down with our friends that we're traveling with and work out our plan for things to do and see. This week I'm making a list of places to go which will include at least one top chocolatier and the Shakespeare and Company bookstore besides the obvious must-sees.  Plus I get to do a practice packing session to see what other clothes I need and how much room I'll have for gifts to bring home. OHMYGOSHI'MSOEXCITED!

Okay. Now that I got that out of my system, I can tell you about this particular point that really spoke to me at church this morning. Actually, it wasn't even a point. It was a sub-point. It was the baby point that stuck with me all day. So we've been going through 1 Timothy. As our pastor worked his way through today's passage, he said "The way we struggle with others is often the way we struggle with God." I don't know what was said after that because I started a little internal dialogue that went something like this:
            Hmm. I wonder if that's really true. What's my biggest struggle with people? Trust issues. Obviously. I struggle to trust that people are going to follow through, keep their commitments, be honest and accepting of who I am, not who I should be. Whoa. That's totally my struggle with God. Pastor Will was right. I'm still in a mindset of waiting for the other shoe to drop. For the rug to get pulled out from under me. Again. I withhold trust and hold onto cynicism because somehow I think it's better to expect the bad thing to happen (I know it's not better). I've got contingency plans to put into action when the inevitable bad thing happens. Who does that?!? I do that. That's who. 
In the last few months, I've felt a space between me and God, and I couldn't put my finger on what was filling that space. Or I should say wouldn't put a finger on it. I've had some things going on in my life, and instead of leaning into Jesus, I pulled away. I was frustrated to be put in the position I was in. It wasn't fair, and I was powerless to fix anything at the time. It's so much easier for me to work through something that I did to myself. It's so much harder to have the consequences of other people's choices foisted upon me. And so I pulled away. I pulled away from people, and I pulled away from God. I don't mean that I went into a hell-raising bender. I just...stopped. Stopped pouring myself into Jesus. Stopped looking for Him and to Him. In my frustration at my powerlessness in various situations, I turned to distrust and anger.

Distrust and anger are like the really fun "friends" you call when you're mad at your dad. They take you to the party you shouldn't go to, get you drunk, then leave you alone without a ride so they can hang out with other people. Then you have to call your dad to come get you at 2am, and you have an awful hangover in the morning. Or at least that's how I imagine it. That never happened to me. Really. I've watched Lifetime movies though. I know how these things play out. In my metaphor, I got to the point where I'm alone at the party and have to call Jesus and be all "So...yeah. I messed up. Can you get me out of this place?" And He's all "Of course! I'm already parked in front of the house because I put a tracker on your cell phone ages ago. Let's get Waffle House and talk this thing out."

In other words, church was really good today.

Oh, and the last few updates...let's see. Tommy is home from camp. He has this knack of being exactly like me in certain ways so that's super annoying right now. Matthew is about to lose his other front tooth so he'll be on a soft foods diet soon. Charlotte's soul is starting to shrivel up from not seeing her friends on a regular basis. I do not understand my extrovert daughter sometimes. Jon is building me long, beautiful bookshelves to go in my library. I've decided I don't want to call it a school room anymore. From now on, it's my library. It's been raining and storming a lot so we haven't been able to go to the pool which is sad. Sad for us. And that's about it. Until next time...


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