Sunday, April 27, 2014

New every morning

I sat on the now concrete floor of the closet and stared at my hands. "Hmm, maybe this isn't the best idea"

I've been wanting to rip out the carpet in my bedroom and replace it with the wood-look tile (cats+potential dog+carpet=blah). I also have a distinct loathing for the late 80's style kitchen tile and want to get it replaced.

I've gotten two quotes and both came in over what I was hoping to spend (my hopes were unrealistic by the way, one of the companies quotes is very fair). I could either pay this company to do one room and I just save for the other, OR I could do it myself and get both rooms done, plus have a lot leftover for other house projects. Felt like a no-brainer decision to me.

So I moved the desk and other furnishings from my closet-turned-office and ripped up the carpet and pad and then started to work on the tack strips which are actually nailed into the concrete slab (seriously!? That seems a bit overkill to me…). About 45 minutes in, I had to stop because my fingers and hands wouldn't work any more. My finger joints had swelled and my hands from the first knuckle up were bright red and throbbing. I have a bunch of ulcers on my right hand right now too and they were pretty irritated from all the moving/pulling of stuff.

I sat on the concrete floor and got VERY frustrated. I like to work with my hands. I like working on my home and creating something new. And, I like being able to save money. It's so easy for other people to do depo work in their homes, to tile, or garden, etc. It's easy for normal people, I kept thinking to myself. And my frustration and bitterness over my disease and season of life grew.

It took a couple of hours, but after some internal fuming, I could see how God was showing me my stubborn rebelliousness to prove to myself and others that despite some physical limitations, I could still do this. My pride was being stepped on with the swollen-hand incident. I wasn't quite ready to give it up but I did start to think, "maybe I should just pay someone to do the room."

Needless to say, I went to bed still mad and upset and grumbling.

The next morning I woke and headed to my friends house to watch their kiddo. While he took a long nap, I pulled out my Bible and journal and started reading.

Journaling's a challenge right now due to some ulcers in the spot where I hold the pen.

I'm reading in John right now and I read the story of how Jesus asked the woman at the well to draw water. What he said to her really struck home that morning:

"Jesus answered her, "if you knew the gift of God, and who it is that is saying to you, 'Give me a drink,' you would have asked him, and he would have given you living water" - John 4:10

I was suddenly struck by how little I had been filling myself with living water (Him) and instead depending on myself and filling myself with other stuff (not bad stuff, just stuff that wasn't Him). Living water quenches my thirst, other stuff doesn't.

As I thought on this, I also realized that I had woken up less frustrated and annoyed with the whole carpet-removal-swollen-hand incident. His mercies are really new every morning…all it took was going to bed and waking up and my attitude had been complete adjusted! What a mercy!

"The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, His mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. 'The Lord is my portion' says my soul, 'therefore I will hope in Him'" - Lamentations 3:22-24

I'm not always there with finding God to be my portion, but the more I am in His word (the Bible) and the more I am aware of him and seeking to please Him, the more easily I can say and know that He is my portion.

I still haven't 100% decided what to do about the floors, but after some rough nights with my joints and my fevers returning, having someone else do the depo/tiling is probably the wiser decision. It often surprises me the things I hold on to, that I can be stubborn about. They are usually things that I think I can control. Time and time again, He reminds me that He's in control, not me, and that it is going to look different, but also be better for me. I'm thankful for a gracious Father who never gives up on teaching me and showing me my stubbornness, so that He can refine and correct it, and grow me to be more like Him.

As an ending side note, I have an awesome steroid cream for those ulcers, but it's pretty much the greasiest-slowest-to-absorb cream in the world. I'm quite proud of the solution I came up with last night to allow the cream to absorb while I sleep (I've tried regular gloves but it soaks in more to the material than my hands). So many uses for ziploc bags :)