Being thankful for what you didn’t ‘order’ – Even when the only constant is change

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By: Jana Greene

Life is just really weird and hard sometimes, isn’t it? Life with an autoimmune disorder is almost too weird to deal with.

I stayed relatively well all during our recent Trip to DC last weekend (PRAISE BE) but I am now battling a 101 degree fever and raging sinus infection. The Ehlers Danlos Syndrome is reacting with widespread inflammation and pain, because that’s how it reacts to damn near everything (weather changes, fighting the common cold, allergies, Tuesday … really, it ain’t picky.)  My post surgical shoulder is especially peeved right now.

So after a trip to the doctor this morning and a shot of antibiotics in the hip and a 10-day course of oral anti-b’s; ice on the shoulder and heating pad on my rear….it occurs to me that…

Thanksgiving is TOMORROW. And it’s the first year I won’t be manically cooking and cleaning, entertaining my loud daughters and playing inappropriate games like Cards Against Humanity with them and their bfs after supper. No raucious and noisy discussions or leftover pecan pie.

Things will be quiet tomorrow. We don’t have any turkey or trimmings, and I’m feeling too sick to even care. I guess I could pop open a canister of Salt & Vinegar Pringles, but that’s just not really the same.

Everything keeps CHANGING, you know? Kids grow up. Limitations hamper plans. Traditions change – and I dislike that especially. When I became a single mom years back, the girls and I made so many new traditions – it never occurred to me that those too would morph and change as the girls grew up and  became adults.

I’ve battled health issues since I was born – literally – but the older I get, the more intrusive and limiting it makes everything, and I’m NOT okay with that. I keep telling God that I’m not okay with it, and he just keeps reminding me that His grace is sufficient, and I know that to be true, so I’m trying to deal and tell myself ‘suck it up, buttercup!’ There are so many people with SUCH worse health issues, and they manage to stay chipper and accepting, and I’m over here being a whiny ass and honing my pity party skills.

So, I guess I’m going to try harder to flip the mindfulness script right now, because these things are true:
*Made it through a wonderful mini vacay to DC with My Beloved.
*Did not even ONCE have to wear my knee or ankle braces (a staple for EDS patients, as our joints tend to subluxate regularly) Minor miracle in and of itself!
*I can still practice thankfulness on this blessed Thanksgiving, even if the house is quiet and I’m in pain. I’m so proud of my girls and that they have their own lives and travels and loves. Cards Against Humanity can wait.
* Above all else – I have the right to be thankful. For heating pads and antibiotics. For being married to my best friend, who just keeps selflessly caring for his sickie wife all theses years…. he shows  o sign of stopping loving me.

*For big fat kitty cats who love to cuddle – especially when they know you aren’t feeling well.

*For these gorgeous, amazing daughters of ours who are paving their own lives with their own traditions.

*Im thankful for my faithful readers, who know I’m a little crazy and a lot in love with Jesus, and who read my musings and complaints and STILL keep coming back to read more.

I hope I can bless you, as you bless me.

Happy Thanksgiving to each and every last one of you. I’m thankful none of us have to do this crazy life alone.
God bless us, every one.

The Ugliest Election Ever (or ‘The Sky is Falling but God is still in the Throne”)

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By: Jana Greene

What a time to be alive.
From Wikileaks to any-source-is-a-news-source, literally everyone can be an expert about any subject.

Distrust the media.
Distrust the ‘sources.’
Distrust the talking heads and their agenda-laden propaganda.
And trust God.

That’s right. Trust the invisible being whose name is Love, who manifests not in sound bites and slick campaign ads, but whose modus operandi is love and only love.

In a world where truth has to be mined from mass bullshit, trust only the One whose golden truth is not merely surface truth, but deep, permanent, abiding truth – tested through the ages.

“What a time to be alive,” we almost complain, inconvenienced by the glut of corruption and half-truths and non-truths that we are expected to wade through to convince the world we are people of faith.

But “What a time to be alive!” say I.

Never had here been a time in which we reject the nastiness of politics-as-usual and to tell people what our God is really made of. Is He a man, that He should operate on the scum-sucking base-lines of the talking heads? Or a King whose victory had already been declared in the Heavenlies and manifest though us in the most glorious of trickle down economics – a grace so rich that no man should ever run a deficit?

What a time to be alive!

What an opportunity to take imperfect, humanistic agendas and turn them into truth tales of hope, because ALL WAS LOST, but just before it seemed too late, WE the People elected to trust God instead of the mere body politic.

If – in the tale of The Ugliest Election Ever – We the People stopped worshipping of the low-blow, bickering, blaming, smear campaign believing, two-party system Golden Calf, and lean into God instead of man.

Never had there been such a time as this, it’s true.

God, open our eyes. You are our only hope. Let we – your representation here on earth – not spend these hours running around like Chicken Little, shrieking in every Facebook post “The Sky is falling! the sky is falling!” But instead be a force of calm, reassured that no matter who sits in the highest platform on earth is still only earthly, and You are still, forever on The Throne.

I’m not saying it’s easy to stump for God. My Inner Chicken Little is very loud and persuasive. Maybe the sky needs to fall for a little while. Maybe Abba can use the falling sky to awaken His people to spread the Good News that all the pundits leave out of here doomsday news reports.

There has never been such an opportunity as this to tell the world that there is an antidote to lies, corruption, politics-as-usual.
I’m not sure what the world would know what to do with that – calm assuredness that Love Wins, but I’m ready to see what it would look like.

We are called to run on a platform of truth, confident and steadfast….to (coin a phrase) ‘act like we KNOW something. Because we DO.

Distrust the media.
Distrust the ‘sources.’
Distrust the talking heads and their agenda-laden propaganda.

And trust God.

what a time to be alive!