Lady Wisdom or Lady Folly

I am addicted to sugar. It’s better than booze and drugs, but lets relate and not compare here. So, I am throwing in the towel, taking the plunge, going off the deep end and am going to deal with this the only way I know how.

Enter in glittery Jesus with snazzy background music!

Who’s the guy who takes away the sins of the world? ….Jesus

Who’s the guy who catches me when I fall?…..Jesus

Yeah!…and guess who is going to bail me out of this mess!?……same Jesus

It’s time for lent. What a coincidence! Wait…..this Christian doesn’t believe in coincidences, but believes that God is a master at bringing the universe together for his children babies and that includes ME! So lent is sort of a weird thing to me. I’ll be honest. I feel like people do it to just do it and feel all spiritually without knowing why or how they are doing what they are doing. So usually I don’t participate for that reason. I don’t even know where lent started or why. I just know its the 40 days pre cross. It’s not even biblical. I also know that God reveals wisdom when we seek with our hearts, so maybe this year that knowledge will be revealed. And maybe not. I have been google searching though, today, just a little.

So drum roll please……..cymbal crash!  CRASH

This year I am going to do this. I am going to sort of fast for Jesus. Why? Because I do all things for the glory of God. The bible tells me to do that. (1 Corinthians 10ish look it up, it’s good) So I will jump on this lent bandwagon and throw sugar off the back end. I will do this in the name of Jesus because he is my savior and he is who rescues me when I make messes.

I keep thinking of Paul, also in 1 Corinthians….I’m in Corinth today, my thoughts just keep jumping to this book. Which, my friends, is NOT coincidence. THAT is the nudge of God. So I am fearfully going to listen to that nudge and surrender my love of sugar and also read 1 Corinthians again tonight while researching lent.

OK, 1 Corinthians 9…at the very end Paul talks about beating his flesh. I am going to hugely paraphrase, my apologies to the bible scholars in advance, but I will quote it too just so it’s there,

Therefore I do not run like someone running aimlessly; I do not fight like a boxer beating the air. 27 No, I strike a blow to my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.

So here he isn’t speaking of actually hitting himself, but of self discipline. Or maybe he was a cutter. Maybe when he spoke about the thorn in his flesh he was LITERALLY speaking of a thorn. Mystery solved! I’m spreading rumors, sorry Paul. We all have faults and thorns. I’m not judging! Anyways. We must stay disciplined. We must stay sharp. We must deny ourselves desires of our flesh and wants of this world. If I give into my flesh, engorge on what I want and give into temptation, then who am I worshiping? My God or myself? I will choose God. I will deny myself. Physically speaking I will do this with sugar. I will keep myself sharp and keep this temple of my soul healthy. Breaking my flesh to strengthen my soul.

As I was reading “The Best Yes” today by Lisa Terkeurst I was “coincidently” reading a chapter with the same theme. Proverbs 9. It compares 2 women, wisdom and folly. It is so so good. So good I will paste these goodies too!

Wisdom has built her house;
    she has set up[a] its seven pillars.
She has prepared her meat and mixed her wine;
    she has also set her table.
She has sent out her servants, and she calls
    from the highest point of the city,
    “Let all who are simple come to my house!”
To those who have no sense she says,
    “Come, eat my food
    and drink the wine I have mixed.
Leave your simple ways and you will live;
    walk in the way of insight.”

Whoever corrects a mocker invites insults;
    whoever rebukes the wicked incurs abuse.
Do not rebuke mockers or they will hate you;
    rebuke the wise and they will love you.
Instruct the wise and they will be wiser still;
    teach the righteous and they will add to their learning.

10 The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom,
    and knowledge of the Holy One is understanding.
11 For through wisdom[b] your days will be many,
    and years will be added to your life.
12 If you are wise, your wisdom will reward you;
    if you are a mocker, you alone will suffer.

13 Folly is an unruly woman;
    she is simple and knows nothing.
14 She sits at the door of her house,
    on a seat at the highest point of the city,
15 calling out to those who pass by,
    who go straight on their way,
16     “Let all who are simple come to my house!”
To those who have no sense she says,
17     “Stolen water is sweet;
    food eaten in secret is delicious!”
18 But little do they know that the dead are there,
    that her guests are deep in the realm of the dead.

So we have 2 women. Both call out “Let all who are simple come to my house.” They are in the same location and asking the same things. The difference is Wisdom has prepped, practiced and self disciplined herself. She is ready. There are no short cuts there. She is living. She is fruitful. I love this. I am Lady Wisdom, not perfect, never said or will say that, but teachable. I am prepping my body, heart and mind for eternity. I am kicking the sugar to the curb in the name of Jesus. Squishing my wants for His will.

It was sugar or social media. Ha…I can’t get out of bed without social media. Real talk. I choose the easy way out really. After all, I am not Jesus.

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The Weekend of Beauty From Ashes

I am a thrift store $1 picture frame hoarder. I repaint them and frame everything. One of the frames fell and broke, no heartbreak there because it was only $2. My son picked it up, he is 8, and said “Don’t worry mom! I got this. I will make beauty from the ashes!” This was on Friday. It set our theme for the weekend.

…Then came Sunday. I feel like I get stuck in those stupid revolving doors sometimes. I just keep circling. Just as I am about to step outside, that stupid door spins too fast and throws me back inside. Seriously.

I know I NEED to love. I know I NEED to throw away my resentments once they poke their little heads up and say “Yo! I’m here again!” But so often I just keep spinning…in the stupid glass revolving door. I can see the light, but I get stuck in my darkness which turns to shame when I see my son carry on my same behaviors. Monkey see, monkey do.

We often have karaoke parties at the house. Not our doing, not my house. Karaoke tunes are thrown against the walls and reverberate their squeals of pain, which creep under the cracks of all of the closed doors. There is no running away, especially when it is dark outside. (Trust me, I tried and running in the dark didn’t end well.) This is not a favorite past time. I would love karaoke if I could escape it or if it were an option. Usually these unwelcomed parties leave Eli and I locked in my room with some version of Harry Potter on the tele with volume cranked to 30. It is my small attempt to make the unwelcomed circumstance better. Because after all, we can’t control our circumstances, only our attitudes towards them…biting and cringing on my own words here. I’m such a hypocrite haha! Then I scan the rentals and apartments in the area and get depressed because to live in California, in our town, you have to have handfuls of cash falling from your pockets. I then realize I am stuck, and I sink into my dark spot where I lose my words and become a robot. and I HATE IT! I’m such a freaking baby. Pity parties are my specialty. And for the record I would never move out without my husband in tow, I would miss him terribly and be lost. It’s just a fantasy I play out in my head.

Well let me tell you…NOT MORE! NO MORE! I won’t sit there, in the dark anymore! That devil sneaks his way into my mind, and now I am saying no. This new found inspiration came from the 8 year old.

This time, the vice president of the pity party council said “NOT ANYMORE!!!!” Eli went upstairs, grabbed his guitar and my husbands laptop. He plugged in his amp, blasted some of his favorite Jesus tunes and sang, danced and strummed his little heart out. I emerged, pissy faced, from my pity palace and saw Eli wide eyed, crazy smiling and laughing and singing alone. I felt bad because he was alone, so I became the 1 woman audience. He said, “Mom! Guess what! I can play as loud as I want to because they can’t hear me over their own music! How cool is that!? Beauty from the ashes!” and I thought to myself “that stupid phrase I always say when he finds himself in an ugly situation, he is now using on my ugly situation for the second time this weekend. What a wonderful world it is!”

Then I walked into crazy loud karaoke room and saw my husband finishing up the sewing project Eli and I started this weekend, that I was too burnt out on to finish. In all the craziness, he was sewing. Yes, sewing. HA! I know…totally crazy!

So I smiled and went back to Eli and praised God for using Eli to pull me out of that stupid glass door. Then, I laughed at how small and insignificant my problems are in the shadow of the cross. My ego surrendered and retreated. Actually she was more crushed with humility.  And I was free from myself.

The only thing powerful enough to squish down my resentment is love. In memory of the beautiful MLK, he says “Love is the only force capable of transforming an enemy into a friend.”

Love wins.Heart Redemption is here.

Today I will choose to love hard instead of holding that resentment.

The cool thing about those circle glass doors, is that they are glass. You can see through them and to the other side. This is hope. It is setting my expectation, that I will get out. I can see it. All I have to do is make the move and step into love. The sunshine of love.

Insert your rant: “I can’t stand _____ people! So disrespectful. All they do is _____ and don’t do _____! How were they raised!? Someone needs to teach them….blah blah blah.” …..and on and on it goes.

Pause.

Now in doing so or venting against a particular person or action, aren’t you doing exactly what you can’t stand? By calling them disrespectful, aren’t you being disrespectful and unloving?

Just a thought from today.

I think we are most often like those we cannot stand. We are, I am, most like the people who drive us, me, crazy.

And why?

Because we are all human and although circumstances on the outside appear different, the core issue is the same. We are all the same. Made of the same junk.

You never know what is behind someone’s plasticity.

We are the same as our enemy. We are our enemy.

…so then why have enemies? Why hate?

Enemy

Fighting has never solved a problem. It has only temporarily crushed the weaker into submission. But just as a seed grows into itself, so again will the hate.

I will choose to love. I will choose to show up. I will choose kind words. I will trip, stumble and apologize. But I will keep showing up. Loving takes practice for me. It does not come naturally. Every day I have to make that choice. Will you?