Monday, April 21, 2014

The Saturday

Saturday was a bit of a rough day around here. The family and I were preparing for a large Easter gathering the next day and there was much to be done. This is a busy time of year for most families and ours is no exception. We left a lot till the last minute.

Everyone had lists, and no one really wanted to be there to do the things on those lists. I was having quite a bit of pain that day and had to pace myself so I could get it all done. I find that very frustrating. So much to do and every so often I have to just sit there. Rest. Think about all the things on my list while I sit there not doing them and watching my people do their work. It causes some grumpiness among the ranks I think, to see mom sitting a lot when everyone else is working diligently, and it certainly makes me more irritable.

Even with this tension, the work got done and for the most part, good attitudes won out. But there was a tension, a frustration. I kept having to remind myself that I was determined NOT to ruin it all with my grumpy, frantic, rushing around, ‘getting ready’. I started down that path a few times and then stopped. I hope the family would say I did better this time.

It was not a joyous, happy, carefree Saturday, this day between Good Friday and Easter Sunday. I thought about that a lot, during my resting periods that day. The Saturday in-between, what a horrid, awful, heartbreakingly dismal day that must have been. Hopeless, utterly.

Those people who had truly believed Jesus was who he said he was, who had given up everything to follow Him, were they deceived? Was he really just another man? It seemed so. They’d taken up their crosses and followed…a man, a regular, human man. The confusion. The sorrow. The wondering, where to go from here. It was all a sham, a lie.

We have the hope of Easter. We have the end of the story. We are the Resurrection People, to borrow a phrase from Ann Voskamp.  They were not. They didn’t know. They were truly and utterly hopeless; the Saturday People. I thought about them, on my Saturday of Frustration, how hard that day must have been; those long dark hours between Jesus saying ‘It is finished,’ and his resurrection.

Then on Sunday I heard the idea of The Saturday People of today. They’re still here among us. Still hopeless, still let down, still waiting on yesterday’s promise. Still unfulfilled. And that made me so sad. It also made me so very thankful to be among the Resurrection People. It makes me want to go and find them all, the Saturday People and tell them there is HOPE. HE IS RISEN! HE IS ALIVE! Come, let me introduce you to my Savior, my Hope. You don’t have to live another single Saturday. Not one.

Come, let me introduce you to the One who came to seek and save the lost.

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Please Lord...

Lord, make me an instrument of Thy peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
Where there is injury, pardon;
Where there is doubt, faith;
Where there is despair, hope;
Where there is darkness, light;
Where there is sadness, joy.

O Divine Master,
Grant that I may not so much seek
To be consoled, as to console;
To be understood, as to understand;
To be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive;
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
And it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.

Prayer of St. Francis

Friday, April 4, 2014

Happy Birthday, Ruthie!

Dear Ruthie,

You don’t get to choose the family you’re born into, but you do get to choose the family you marry into, as they say.

I’ll admit that having you and Rachel as sisters in law, sweetened the deal as far as becoming a Staalsen. I’m continually thankful that God brought me into this family. (I wonder if Rosa felt the same about the three of us when she married in? Or perhaps those three crazy Staalsen Ladies we were a deterrent! Haha)

You helped me get ready on my wedding day. 

You loved my children like they were your own.

 You’ve been there for me in so many ways over the years; a listening ear when I needed one, a girl to laugh with, a sister to roll my eyes alongside as our husbands got injured yet again on those darn bikes, a fashion & decorating consultant (the world thanks you for that one) and simply a friend.

Not all sisters in law can say they are also friends. I am so very glad we can.

I could go on and on about the ways you've enriched my life and that of my children. You and Dan have poured into them since they were babies and I never once had to worry or be concerned about what they might learn or hear from you. I knew I could always trust you would give them a loving, godly example. Do you know how rare that is?

I love you, Ruthie and I wish you the happiest of birthdays!