03 September 2012

boundaries in pleasant places

Stone wall
{image credit: dynamosquito}
One semi-disguised blessing of this first trimester: it has forced me to acknowledge limitations. Like most of you, I imagine, I find limits less than agreeable. I want to do everything, and under normal circumstances, I can. So I'm glad that in recent weeks I've had to bow to my own weakness and give up on certain goods.

On days where I can do little but put some laundry through and pull together a semblance of dinner, I am reminded of truths I usually try to forget-- that I live within the boundaries of my own mortality. That I am frail. That my worth isn't defined by how much I accomplish in a day. That God has each moment planned and each is perfect in His mind, whether or not I choose to see it that way.

The things I've had to relinquish vary. One: saving money! I love bargains and am willing to go out of my way to get them . . . until several weeks ago. Currently I want to go to exactly one grocery store, then get in and out as fast as possible, bargains be darned. You say the apples are 50 cents cheaper several miles down the road? A pity. And forget sorting through bins at the Amish stores I typically frequent. Once I'm not feeling sick anymore, I'm sure I will go back, but right now? Can't. Handle. It. Too many people and too much stuff.

Farmers Market
{image credit: Frank Kehren}
At first I felt sort of bad about this. Actually, scratch that, I don't think I did! I was too sick to feel guilty. :) While our grocery bill is higher than it could be, and I've not gone to a yard sale for ages, penny pinching is rather low on the list of priorities right now. As Jared says, "You don't need to be Super Coupon Lady. You can just be yourself."

So I'll pay a dollar more for the mushrooms. It's not going to kill me.

Another funny thing I've needed to accept-- also in the money-saving department I suppose-- is throwing away food. You have to understand, we never do that. Leftovers get eaten for lunch, are frozen for later, or make a quick dinner on busy weekends. Tossing perfectly good food is like putting dollar bills in the trash, I have said to myself. Of course, do you know what I've done more of these past two weeks than in the previous two years of our marriage? Toss perfectly good food. Some things, I just can't stand to look at. Like green bean salad . . . gross. Or zucchini quiche. Ugh, giving me nightmares. I still enjoy green beans and eggs in general, so why these particular dishes were wigging me out, I've no idea. But into the trash can they went.

The list could continue. Sweeping all the corners, answering my emails promptly, getting together with friends, babysitting other people's kids, daily exercise, organization projects, artistic endeavors, preserving summer produce, caring for my flowers. Those things have sailed out the proverbial window. I have to sleep instead.

I suppose this is how God often works with his stubborn children (of which I'm decidedly one). I don't listen when I have a choice not to. So after a while, He just doesn't give me a choice. I really cannot deceive myself, now, into thinking that I have control over my life or that I can give my days meaning through impressive actions. (Not much impressive going on around here.) It's obvious: I am weak. Only the Lord is strong.
The Lord is my chosen portion and my cup;
you hold my lot.
The lines have fallen for me in pleasant places;
indeed, I have a beautiful inheritance . . .
I have set the Lord always before me;
because he is at my right hand, I shall not be shaken.
(Psalm 16:5-8)

1 comment:

  1. Good words. Very helpful as I go off to bed at the end of a day when I feel like I got very little done. :-) But I realize that I did what I did by the grace of God. And that's enough.

    I smiled reading about where you're 'at'......so many similar memories. I'm very happy for you. A person is growing inside you. And it's a blessing to begin feeling the impact of a new life. Even as it gets you in touch with your weakness. And feels very gross at points. Ok.....at most points.