Thursday, January 31, 2013

January 2013 Journalling

1.What is your number one goal this year?

To publish a book.

2. What are you most grateful for?

            My salvation.

3. Are you content?

            Yes, I am happy and blessed.

4. What is your best memory of last year?

            Our daughter’s wedding.

5. What was the last major accomplishment you had?

            I was published in Barnabas in Summer 2012. My first article. I feel legit.

6. What possession could you not live without?

            My coffee pot.

7. Can people change?

            Only by the grace of God.

8. What is the last “good” thing you ate?

            Raw vegetables with dinner.

9. What is your current favorite snack?

            Bbq chips, but they are verboten while my husband and I are trying to watch what we eat.

10. What made you smile today?

            Playing with my puppy.

11. What’s your favorite accessory?

            None really, but I’ll say my watch because it’s practical.

12. What are you reading?

            With Every Letter by Sarah Sundin about flight nurses during WWII.

13. What did you have for dinner today?

Breakfast for dinner. A breakfast bake with shredded potatoes, ham, veggies, cheese and eggs, with toast. Have I mentioned I like eggs? I eat them every day. My husband says they’re my favourite fruit. Chicken fruit. And yes, my cholesterol is fine, thanks for asking.

14. What did you get done today?

            I went to work an hour earlier for CPR recertification.

15. Who last called you on the phone?

            Gillian, from church.

16. Who are you in love with?

            That’s easy. Gary.

17. What are you looking forward to?

            Planning the Secret Agent Themed DVBS for this summer. I have been finding great ideas on the internet. I’ll probably be in charge of the snacks again.

18. The best part of today was finally getting a diagnosis and pain control. I’ve had pain on the right side of my face since Monday. I’ve been to three doctors in three days, had a CT and finally found out I have shingles. Not good news by any stretch, as I’ll be off work for a month since I’m contagious and I will have a diagonal line of pustules on my face and more excruciating pain, which may linger for months to years, I’m told. But at least I know what I’m dealing with and the pain is manageable now that they’ve given me drugs.

19. My current favorite website is Pinterest. It’s something I could do to distract myself from the pain without having to concentrate. I have boards for all kinds of recipes, way out of proportion to how much I cook, a bucket list, places I’ve been, home decor, helpful hints, party planning, and a prepper board called, TEOTWAWKI which stands for The End of The World As We Know It.

20. What was the hardest thing you’re dealing with?

             Fear of the pain and disfigurement of shingles on my face.

21. Today, I’m wondering if I will get a rash with my shingles, or just the pain. It would be nice to avoid the pox since it will make me contagious.

22. I crocheted my first granny square since I was a teenager. It all came back to me. Now my daughter wants me to make her a blanket.

23. What made today unusual?

            I’m still off work, going to the doctor again, for more pain medication and to find out when I can go back to work.

24. What are you looking for from life?

            Hard to think long term today when all I want is answers to my pain syndrome. They’re thinking now that it’s not shingles since I’m ten days in pain but no blisters. I have to see a neurologist now and maybe get more tests done.

25. What is your favorite thing to drink? Coffee; freshly ground, fair trade coffee beans. Black.

26. Today the temperature was minus 10C. There’s about five inches of snow on the ground.

27. How much did you spend at the grocery store the last time you went? $134.00

28. Today I went to see the neurologist. I would like some answers as to what is causing my pain, what can be done about it, and how to prevent or treat it should it recur. Apparently it's not a migraine or shingles, but some kind of trigeminal neuralgia. More tests planned.

29. What was your last major purchase?

I guess it was our t.v. when our old one died.

30. My house is a home because of my library. Books make a home.

31.Today I went to the dentist to make sure my pain didn’t have a dental reason. Apparently I'm dentally perfect.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Here Comes the Bride-Groom?

Who doesn’t love a wedding? A beautiful bride, an elegant gown, a love-struck groom grinning (or crying) as he watches his bride come down the aisle. Tears during the vows, sore facial muscles from perma-grin after all the pictures. Flowers, food and fun.

Our eldest daughter was recently married. While it’s never easy to let them go, it was a joy to see her marry a fellow believer.

Scripture begins and ends with a wedding. The first one was the model of the final one, because marriage represents Christ and His bride, the church.

The church is represented in various ways in Scripture; it is a building, a family, a loaf, a body, a soldier, a city, jewels, branches and sheep, among others.

But the loveliest image is that of a bride; loved from eternity past, wooed in the present and kept into eternity future. She is a pure virgin, espoused to Christ. In spite of being marred by sin, because of the sacrifice of our Bridegroom we can be presented, “faultless, without spot or blemish.”

The Lover of our souls is Faithful and True. He is represented as a Bridegroom, who will forever rejoice over His bride. We will also rejoice when we hear the bridegroom’s voice.

In Song of Solomon, the King is represented as a lover. In spite of how the bride sees her own faults, he says, “Behold you are fair my love. There is no spot in you.” He never holds our sins against us. What a comfort! We can see our sins so clearly and feel unworthy of such a Lover, but He is always gentle with us. “Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more.” Such mercy!

Our family is very multicultural. Our son-in-law is Egyptian, so we had stuffed grape leaves alongside open-faced salmon sandwiches for the Finns. The wedding feast in Heaven will also be multicultural, with the redeemed representing all nations, tribes,  peoples, and tongues. Imagine the food!

Although the wedding itself seemed to be over before we realized, the marriage was just beginning. The marriage feast in Heaven will inaugurate our new life in the presence of Christ. How can we begin to contemplate eternity?

Most cultures focus on the bride. All eyes are on her. Women comment on her dress, her hair, her beauty. The wedding in heaven will be focused on the groom. It is after all, called the Marriage feast of the Lamb. We love Him although we’ve never seen Him. He is the fairest of ten thousand. One day we will see with our eyes the One we recognize with our hearts. We won’t be able to keep our eyes off Him.
"Therefore you now have sorrow; but I will see you again and your heart will rejoice, and your joy no one will take from you." John 16:22

One verse in the hymn, The Sands of Time Are Sinking, by Anne R. Cousins captures this idea so well,

“The bride eyes not her garment, but her dear bride-groom’s face. I will not gaze at glory, but on my King of Grace; not at the crown He giveth, but on His pierced hand; the Lamb is all the glory of Emmanuel’s land.”
Pia Thompson
Originally published in Barnabas, Winter 2013