To read the story of our precious Harlynn Renae, start here and follow the "next" links at the end of each post. Thank you for coming and sharing with us in this journey.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

My Friday Fling

Yesterday I was anticipating the Beth Moore conference held here in Fargo. I won tickets from the radio (Thanks Life 97.9!) and I was so excited all day long and couldn't wait! I was going to meet up with another gal at Taco Bell across the street from the Fargodome for dinner before the conference started. I beat her there by about thirty minutes and decided to pass the time by sending my husband a text message. I flipped open my phone, arrowed down to my husband's name in my contacts and sent him a text that read, "I love you babe!"

I sat there in Taco Bell, and saw the several other women who chose the same fine dining before going to see Beth Moore. There's nothing like burritos and Bible study, right ladies?! A few moments later my phone rang, and it was Brent. He told me he was headed out to a friend's for dinner and wanted to know which debit card to use to buy some chips beforehand. While he and I were talking, my phone beeped, indicating that I had received a text. We said our goodbyes and after I hung up and checked my inbox to read my new message. The message read, "Who is this?"

It was from my contact list name "Adam Basement Guy". I got that horrible sinking feeling in the middle of my gut. I knew what that meant. That meant I had mistakenly told someone else I loved them. That person inquiring as to who I was, was the guy who gave Brent and me an estimate to fix our basement of its water seepage problems. I had just told the basement guy I loved him. And....I called him babe.

Oh. My. Word.

My face immediately flushed and I called my husband right back. "Brent, I tried to send you a text message telling you I loved you and then -" He cut me off and said, "Yeah, I got that text...."

"Wha....You did?"
"Yeah, why?"
"I sent it to two people then. And one of them is Adam the basement guy and he sent me a text asking who I was. I am so embarrassed, what do I do?"

Brent laughed at me. He told me to explain something about "you did an estimate for our basement and that text was meant for my husband." I hung up with Brent and decided I would only tell it was a wrong number and not reveal my identity. I texted Adam Basement Guy back by saying, "That would be a misdial on my part. Very sorry."

Though my face was still very red, I was relieved that was all the explanation I would need, and the embarrassment of further revealing myself had been avoided. That is - until I received another text message back. It read, "Humor me then?"

I can't blame the guy. If someone told you they loved you - even if it was a mistake - you would still be curious. Here's the deal. This guy has my number - somewhere on file - in his office, and possibly in his brain. If he thought it looked familiar and if he was curious enough, he could easily track down who the text came from. Time to fess up.

I texted back, "I'm very embarrassed. You did an estimate on our basement. That text was meant for my husband Brent." I swallowed a little piece of humble pie with that reply - considering that's what my husband told me to respond with in the first place. Moments later I received a text back that read, "It's ok Val."

Oh. My. Word. I had still tried to avoid revealing my identity by telling him my husband's name and not my own. It didn't work - he figured it out. Still embarrassed - but thankful that my husband did in fact receive the text that was meant for him! (Even if he did have to share it with another man.)

We went on to Beth Moore and what a blessing! That woman is such an encouragement, and inspired me to live more boldly in my beliefs. I don't want to give away her entire message, but I will tell you that I have never seen a more genuine spirit...never seen a woman more desiring to serve her heavenly king. Beth is an incredible speaker, and definitely someone I could share some latte time with. If you ever get the chance to see her, or do one of her studies - take advantage of the opportunity! You will learn so much about yourself, but more so, about your Father who created you with a divine plan and purpose in mind. I am still soaring on the wings of eagles after this weekend!

So go see Beth. Go do it. In other news....If you ever get a text message from me that says I love you - it's probably genuine, in a platonic sense of course. If I ever call you babe - you know my fingers are playing a little texting prank on my pride. Or I'm really impressed with your work in my basement.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Weather or not

When the sun doesn't shine, I tend to get a little weather-depressed. I realized today, though, it's not the lack of sunshine that depresses me, it's the threat of rain. Just the threat. If it rains, I'm okay with that. But when it merely threatens, I find my mood to be as dull as the clouds, and about as heavy. Either rain or shine, but don't just hang there, looming your gloom.

This morning started out with some sunshine. I love waking up to the bright light of the sun. It's reassuring and comforting. As the day went on, the sky started to turn gray. Ugh. There's the threat. I hate it. The clouds just hang over you, being non productive, and taunting your plans. "Come and play. I might rain, I might not, but I'll enjoy tormenting you just the same."

Earlier this afternoon we started to get a light rain. A soft, gentle, but steady rainfall. I felt a sense of relief as I saw the rain falling. At least the weather was doing something. I opened the front door and hung out of the screen door - just listening to the light tapping of the raindrops as they hit our ash tree out front, and watching the splat as it hit the driveway. The neighbor's roof had dry spots yet, and I turned my head to the living room to tell Brent to mute the television. I just wanted to hear the rain. The quiet reassurance of productivity. No more threat, only promise now.

I showered and cracked the window open in the bathroom so I could still hear the thunder. As I finished up and headed upstairs, I rounded the corner and saw my sty of a bedroom. Do you ever get that immediate wave of frustration? It hit me - hard - as I stared at the laundry and unmade bed. UGH. Sometimes when one little thing gets me frustrated, I get another wave - of everything that's ever frustrated me. I sat down on the bed and thought, "God - why are we such slobs? What is the purpose of all this stuff, and this huge mess, and what's the meaning of life, and.....This is one of those times where I could really use that whole direct line of communication thing..."

Soft thunder.

"No seriously. I need to know it's you, and I need to know what I'm supposed to do to get over these bumps in my road."

Really loud thunder.

"Oh. Hi there. I'm listening."

The rain - and thunder - started to intensify. I opened the windows and shut off the lights in the house so I could hear, and see, what the storm had in store. I love watching the raindrops splatter once they hit a surface. I love listening to the plickity plunk as it hits the window, and the tapping as it hits the pavement or concrete. I love watching it fall, straight down, with purpose. I love the smell of the outside when it's all wet. I love hearing the thunder and being reminded of the power in a storm. And in the one who created them. I love knowing that it will end, and when it does, there will most likely be a rainbow. Beauty all over again.

I hate the mere threat, and the loom and gloom of the possibility of a storm.

When the sun is shining and the weather is fair, I don't have a thing to worry about. I can go on about my business and live care-free. Fun in the sun. I tend to be more upbeat, more relaxed, and a tad silly. All in fun. When there's a storm and I'm in the middle of it, I can react accordingly, take care of whatever needs tended to, and power through until the storm subsides. I can hunker down and steer my survival mode to salvage whatever resources are necessary.

When the sky is gloomy, and merely threatening to storm, it's incredibly daunting. How bad of a storm will it be? Will it storm at all? Do I need to prepare? What could I have done, what haven't I done, and what won't I do? When will it start, and when will it end? I'm just waiting. Sitting and waiting. And for what, I'm not sure.

Whether the sun shines, or the rain falls...whether it's the gloominess of anything in between, I know my needs, my cares, my frustrations - they're all being taken care of by God. No matter the weather - in storms of life, or clear, sunny days - I'm cared for. No amount of frustration, responsibility, failures or accomplishments will stand in the way. No cloudy sky can separate me from the love of Christ. And even if the weather does change the course of my day - or my life - every storm will end. When it threatens to storm, and when I start to feel that eerie sense of defeat or doubt, I can rest assured know that Christ has already overcome. Every storm and every threat is already overcome.

Hallelujah, and amen.