'Be anxious for nothing..." ~Philippians 4:6

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Hello, 2011


Christmas day was spent just sitting around with my family. No stress. No exhaustion. No drama. No intrusions. Good breakfast. Good dinner. A few snowflakes to officially say it was a white one. Christmas hasn't been the extravaganza that it once was when Mommy was alive--complete with holiday china, flatware, tablecloths, more than one tree, outdoor decorations, homemade egg nog and the like-- but it was a pleasant day, and I'm thankful.

The days leading up to 2011 were pretty calm, and very educational, insightful, and reminders of how good it is to be flexible, patient, understanding, and discerning. The following occurred to me on one day or another:
*Some people appreciate you more than you thought.
*Pride won't allow some people to be honest about what they want and need.
*If closeness is what people desire, they've got to dispose of mean spirited behavior, and learn to trust.
*Guilt trips are not designed with comfort or fun in mind.
*Some people don't want your input, they want your consent and support--no matter what.
*Selfishness won't allow people to see that the very negative behavior they accuse others of exhibiting, was once their own--and worse.
*Some people weigh what they are told, and question what doesn't make sense.
*Some people prefer to believe the worst and could care less about truth.
*You can't fault people for believing what they're told by someone who appears to be reliable.
*If people know their behavior bothers you, and their aim is to bother you, any sign of your annoyance is a gift to them.
*Some people really don't know what's appropriate to say.
*Some people survive and thrive on confusion. Your peace of mind infuriates them.
*There IS a tactful way to tell people to mind their own business.
*Some people don't understand kindness. They seem to be afraid of it.
*Some people aren't trying to insult your intelligence. They honestly don't think you can discern their motives, or see what they are doing.
*Silence is often mistaken for stupidity.
*What if God isn't the least bit impressed by the noise of the CURRENT floor show? No sense bragging about taking a self-centered farce to yet ANOTHER level.
*If no boundaries are set, people will overstep what is supposed to be in place.
*Sometimes you don't have to say anything at all.
*You may be sought as an ally by someone who once formed alliances with others against you.
*Some folk are just angry and messy and looking for a reason--ANY reason-- to confront you.
*Wait for it. Some people will always tell on themselves.
*Anger has an uncanny way of turning to pity when you really understand the notion that hurting people, hurt people.
*Nosy people try, but can never match the nuances of genuinely concerned people.
*When you make up your mind that you will not be bothered, you won't.
*Love and truth always wins.
*The perfect gift is always waiting for you to pick it up.
*God DOES see and know-- and handle things and people on your behalf.

2010 didn't end with the big snow that we were all anticipating. It did end with bad news. Another one of my Mom's friends lost her husband. The funeral on Thursday the 30th led to an invitation to worship in the new year. (I'm pretty sure I put 2010 on the check I wrote on Sunday morning. Yes. I'm still writing checks.)I had such a lovely time at Woodstream Church on Sunday. Once again the world proved itself small. Family friend David Tinsley was there supporting deacon friends of his who were being ordained. A lady was there who knew my friend Wanda from Germany. Rev. Leon Swanson, who used to be in the plays at First Rock BC was there. (I was sure he would sing.) The pastor, Bob Wingfield, is the same Robert Wingfield who was in my sister's class of 1973 at my junior high school, St. Thomas More. It's so nice to see what God does in the lives of others. It's nice to know that someone is standing on the unadulterated Word of God--or at least making a sincere, concerted effort.

The new year has begun happily, peacefully, musically and full of hope and anticipation. It began with games and black-eyed peas and cabbage, too. I've had a great time with my family over the past few weeks. I always love it when my big sister comes home. She came packing pralines, and didn't leave without making gumbo and frying catfish. I drove her to the airport yesterday afternoon and hated to see her go. I missed the days of seeing loved ones off at the gate as opposed to the curb.
I'm glad she made it safely back to Baton Rouge last night. (I have to get to Louisiana some time this year.)

Today, I woke up excited. I had a brief rehearsal with the National Symphony Orchestra in preparation for the sacred Sounds concert at THEARC on Saturday. I'm looking at what I just typed. It's not my first time working with them, but I'm always floored by the thought. I really thank God for the opportunity. Before it was time to go over the song, I marveled at the expertise of my friend Nolan Williams as he conducted. I was so proud of him. It's always at times like today that I wish I had done more than dusted the piano.
Today for me was one more reminder that our steps are ordered by God. Talk about feeling unqualified! But everyone was so gracious and I even got a chance to listen as Y'anna Crawley rehearsed. One word. Powerful.
I drove home happily, and admired the beauty that Washington, DC possesses in some parts. It really is a spectacular colony...: )

I'm grateful, and prayerful today as I wind down. There are friends who are bereaved; others are facing health challenges, personal problems, career obstacles. Still others are excited about new paths, changes, and opportunities. I know that God knows and cares about it all. My mind is always on my Lisa as she prepares for the bar examination. How I admire her work ethic and determination.

I don't know what this year will bring. Yes. There are plans. Lisa's graduation, Richard's project, and a new business venture with an old friend, among them. Things change, though, and I'm learning how to go with change and not allow it to slow me down, devastate or paralyze me. I'm 50 now, and I honestly think 50 brought a new calm with it. Not a "whatever" kind of thing, but a "Lord, you've got it", kind of thing...and He's got it. I trust Him to handle it all.

Happy New Year.

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