Sometimes Life is just hard…

I thought about only writing when I had something enlightening or profound to say but then I realized, I might not be able to write for weeks. And since this is My Life in Pieces well sometimes the pieces are hard. The last two days were hard. Wednesday I went to a client’s house to dust for her and there was this curio on the wall and I asked if she wanted me to dust it too and she said yes but to be careful with one of the figurines cause it was valuable. About two hours after dusting the other parts of her house I finally decided to tackle that curio. Ever so carefully I opened the doors and started taking out the figurines one by one. There was this beautiful pink egg that started to roll and as I reached to catch it, my arm bumped the nose of the valuable figurine and they both went tumbling to the floor. To say I had a meltdown was an understatement. Why that figurine? Well my client was very merciful and forgiving and as she left to go back to work she hugged me and told me we were good and that it was just a thing. Her words were comforting but I still felt miserable and like such a jerk. I cried for 45 minutes straight.

I went home just wanting to quit my housecleaning jobs because no matter how hard you try and how careful you are, chances are you are going to break something. I took my dogs out to the corral and let them stay out for about an hour and crashed on my couch in much physical pain. Cleaning houses really affects me physically and I hurt for days. The last two weeks I’ve been working 4 and 5 days a week and the pain has been excruciating but I thank God He gives me the will and stamina to go on. And I am thankful to have the clients and jobs I have.

I never planned on being a house cleaner. It just fell into my lap. My neighbor was working for a woman and she was opening her own store so asked if I was interested in taking over for this woman she was helping who had just gone through surgery from breast cancer. It progressed from there, one referral after another. And I couldn’t ask for more wonderful clients. They are all so amazing and loving and they let me blast my Christian music while I work. And I have been blessed to have some pretty amazing conversations with them.

So anyway I go out to get my dogs. I usually have to coax my boxer mix with a biscuit to get her to come to me immediately, but this time I didn’t have one but she came running anyway. I was so excited and as I got her leash ready, she ran right through me and up the hill to chase two chickens that belonged to the neighbor behind me. Cady my other boxer followed right behind. I’m yelling and screaming at them and when I finally catch up, they have this poor chicken pinned down. As far as I could see she only lost a bunch of feathers and I didn’t see any blood on her or my dogs. As I pulled Jewels off of her, she took of running and to this day I don’t know if they found her. I was so upset and immediately talked to the neighbors and all the man would say to me is, “Uh huh.”

Anyone who knows me, knows I love animals and would never allow my dogs to hurt them on purpose. Before I let them out in the morning, I always check to make sure there are no turkeys in the yard. The one time I didn’t I had 20+ turkeys flying right at me with the dogs chasing behind them. I caught Jewels batting a mole around in the corral once and I couldn’t stand it and set her free, even though they are the worst animals to have in your yard. When I was about 10, I saved and nurtured a jackrabbit back to health when the neighbors cat got it. And much to my parents horror I used to bring home every stray animal I found… cats, dogs, lizards, bunnies, horned toads and even a snake once. I’m one of those people who watch movies and get mad if the animal is killed or hurt.

I got back to my house after looking for the poor chicken and all I could do was just cry again. I was shaking so bad for hours. When Greg came home, I poured out my story and broke down and cried again. I think I fractured my fingered a few months ago and after pulling Jewels off the chicken, I think I fractured it again.

Thursday I worked again with no incident and three and a half hours later., I got into my car and headed to our Awakening Prayer Service. What normally takes 55 minutes took 2 1/2 hours due to a major accident in Lathrop. By the time I got to prayer, every joint and muscle was in pain including my head. I was still able to get up and worship and sing and felt much better emotionally.

I always try to ask myself, ” What does God want me to learn from this?” and try to find a lesson in all the things I go through. So you ask what did I learn from this? Well, the jury is still out on that one.

Seven words that hurt…

There are seven words I have heard over and over in two different ways that really trouble me. They are, ” You can’t be a Christian if you….” and ” You can’t be a Christian and do..” Every time I hear these words said it breaks my heart and honestly frustrates me. By saying something like this aren’t we really saying, “Since you believe differently than me and I am a true Christian then if you believe differently, you can’t possibly be a Christian?” This is not pointed at anyone directly, in fact I haven’t heard or seen it from anyone I know. It’s just comments I have heard from other people or read in other people’s posts, tweets and blogs. It’s sad.

I was praying about this and the Lord reminded me of how he compares his people to trees. Like a tree there are different stages of growth as a Christian. There is the sapling or brand new baby Christian who is just developing. He or she is just learning about the bible and what it says. They are being nourished through one on one mentoring, church, small groups and bible study. They are young and should not be expected to have the maturity as those who are in a different stage of their life.

The second stage of a tree’s life is the juvenile stage. This is where the most rapid times of growth come. they are beginning to establish themselves in their surroundings. A juvenile Christian is forming his thoughts and learning and soaking up everything he or she can. Just like the tree they are strong but they can also be easily broken. When they are free to grow and not injured, they  will respond with rapid growth, be solidly established, and  found in good health.

The third stage of a tree is the prime of life or mature stage. Trees like a Christian in their prime of life will take care of themselves with little outside help.Growth continues at a slower, steady pace.Just like the branches of the tree that are strong so is the christian strong at this place, and their opinions are pretty formed.

The fourth stage of tree is the middle age or post mature. The tree may prune some of its unproductive branches. They are intolerant of disturbances. The tree’s energy reserves are good and balanced allowing it to fight diseases effectively.  Like the tree a Christian at this stage is growing up and has formed his or her opinions and is discovering what belief systems need to be eliminated as they are understanding the word and applying it to their life. They also can become intolerant of anything or anyone disagreeing with what they believe and are not afraid to stand up for that belief.

There are a couple more stages but I think you get my point by now.

What I’m trying to say is: people like tree grow in stages. It has nothing to do with age but with maturity in their walks. Their systems are being formed as they are nurtured and allowed to grow. We can all be at these stages in different things like politics, denominational beliefs, what we allow into our life, what we eat or drink, what we celebrate etc…So to say someone can’t be a christian if they…… not allowing for stages of growth in that particular area and could be a bit judgmental if it is lacking in discernment and there is a difference……..maybe I’ll write about that at a different time.

It’s so important that we know the heart and maturity of people before we throw out random comments like that. Not that we should even throw out comments like that. I know some great Christian people in my life that think totally different then me but they are strong in their love, walk and belief in the Lord. It could be that I might not be at that stage of life yet…just a thought.

One thing leads to another…and another…

The first time I wrote a blog was in 2005 on Xanga. I started writing again in 2012 but kept that one pretty private to the people who knew me. I was dealing with a crisis at that time and didn’t want to hurt anyone…especially those who were a part of it. I wrote pretty regularly for a year and then started working on a book. Today I have two finished books that have moved through the editing stage and are now ready to move into the publishing stage. The titles? Glad you asked. The first one is Breaking Through to Higher Places: Nine Keys to Successful Fasting for Spiritual Breakthrough and the second one is Diary of a Warrior Princess: Advancing from Victim to Victor. I was joking around with my husband a few weeks ago and said, “What do I write about now?”

Recently I have been feeling that itch to blog again in hopes of improving my writing skills and perhaps another book would be born from it. I put my site together, paid for it for a year and …nothing, complete writers block…until today!

I clean houses for a living so I do a lot of thinking while I clean. I’ve been deeply burdened by some things I have been seeing and hearing lately and have been rolling it around in my mind. I’ll write about that in my next blog. But in the process of my thinking, the Lord gave me a little nugget to think about to go with my thoughts.

I came home and started looking up life stages of a tree and before I knew what was happening, I saw a new book developing and not only that book but several others that will follow. God gave me a theme and I could write about it in several books until the day I die. I am so excited because I didn’t know how many books I had in me left or if I would even write again. It all started with a question that lead me from one thing to another and then another.