Time Management

By:  Jana Greene

There is a commercial on television recently in which a husband asks his wife, “Honey, can I quit my job and start a blog?” and it comes on frequently.  I’ve no idea what it is advertising, because I always feel a little squirmy when I see it and forget to pay attention to the product.  Inevitably, it runs when my husband and I are cuddled up watching NCIS or the 20th special showing on Avatar on FX.

I quit my job and started this blog.  Although that was not my intention when I put in my 2-weeks notice.  I meant to take a little time to get healthier and reassess my goals and maybe do a little writing between interviews for a new, less stressful position.  But two days after my last day of work, I broke my leg and had a metal plate, pins and screws surgically implanted so that I could walk again.  This unforseen accident serendipitously allowed for more writing time than I expected.  I would, I avowed, write a book – which is at the top of my bucket list anyway, so why not knock it out?

Except – as I mentioned – I started this blog.   And I love writing for the blog!  I’m walking again, so I’m enjoying all of the domestic things I was too tired to do when I was working fulltime – cooking, cleaning, a little reading, spending time with my family.  And I’m blogging, sometimes for hours.  The days fly by at warp speed, and the days are good.  Because I’m walking again, it is getting to be time to seek financially gainful employment, not just spiritually fulfilling purpose.  I’m so grateful that I’ve had this block of time to focus on just writing.

So, I might not be posting  for The Beggar’s Bakery every single day.  I’d like to concentrate a little on writing an actual book.  I’m not that swell with time management;  if I’m going to do it, I have to make it priority.

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A big, fat THANK YOU to everyone who reads The Beggar’s Bakery.  The biggest, fattest thanks for my Most Excellent Husband, who believes in my writing; who believes in me, period.  It’s so cool to be married to my best friend and have his unwavering support.  I have to pinch myself most days to be sure it is all real; that I’ve gotten to write every day, that  my husband encourages me to blog honest, that my friends cheer me on even though I sometimes embarrass myself, and that God just keeps showing me such grace in recovery and in life.

I can’t wait to see where God  takes me next, and to share it here.

God bless!






The Shock and Awe of Forgiving Yourself

By:  Jana Greene

“Many promising reconciliations have broken down because, while both parties came prepared to forgive, neither party came prepared to be forgiven.” – Charles Williams

The gesture of forgiving someone else is often referred to as “extending the Olive branch.” How peaceful is that imagery?  The phrase conjures a picture of biblically attired individuals, stepping forward in dusty, sandaled feet and stretching out a hand to offer and receive a leafy twig in reconciliation.

Self-forgiveness doesn’t feel like that at all to me.  When it comes to forgiving myself, it’s not a peace-summit  olive branch that comes to mind.  It’s more like a flag raised on a bloody battlefield.

Part of the difficulty is that as long as I carry guilt, I can trick myself into feeling like I’m paying back some of the debt that I drove up in my sin.

That’s why grace is so mind-blowing a concept…it is undeserved,  given by God in love.

No martyrdom required.

The other part is that I forget that unforgiveness is a weapon of warfare.   Self-condemnation is my using the enemy’s bullets and firing at my own spirit. How long I suffer is up to me….the enemy will keep engaging in that battle until I surrender my sins at the cross and leave them there.  At the cross…where the war has already been won.

Regret for bad choices is healthy; it keeps me from repeating the past.  But hauling around self-condemnation and accepting it as collateral damage is not what Christ came to earth and died for.  Like many wars, He fought for freedom – but on the ultimate level.

Good vs. evil.  Life vs. death.

So, today – I am choosing to forgive myself.

And by doing so, I am choosing to drop an atomic bomb on the devil’s ammunition storehouse, so that he cannot use my past against me anymore and call it “friendly fire”.   A dusty, barefoot soldier raising a flag red with the blood of Christ, even though I don’t deserve to even carry it.

It feels like shock and awe.

It feels like victory.