Spring Clean

Just as Mother Nature uses the spring season to renew and reset, we all need a season to lose the clutter in our lives. My office at work and my closet at home are physical reminders of this personal need. But it’s the clutter of the heart that truly pulls us down. Let go. Forgive. Move forward.

When starting over seems impossible

Occasionally, I find the need to start over.

More accurately, I have to start over almost every day.

Things I wanted to change yesterday slipped a bit. And I feel like I’m back at yesterday again. Starting over. And feeling a little frustrated with that.

As I walk through life, I’m learning that God gives us new days so we can start over.

  • We can be better.
  • We can walk more closely to Him.
  • We can overcome the impossible.

God knows it’s a journey. It’s my job to step out on the path and join Him. What better partner for starting over?

Sometimes you have to listen to the waitress

I was four hours early for my flight out of Denver. I was hoping that there would be an extra seat on the three flights that would leave prior to my 11:20 a.m. boarding time. The ticket agent laughed when I floated the idea to him. The first of those three had already been canceled and passengers were already being redistributed. “You’re lucky that you’re on that particular flight,” he said.

“Thanks,” I replied with all of the enthusiasm I could muster. “It’s always good to be lucky.”

With the pressure off, I strolled leisurely into the terminal, spotted a sit-down restaurant and settled in for a good breakfast. I had been in Denver for four days and I was proud of my restraint in eating.  Yet, for some reason, hotel rooms have a lot of mirrors and I was reminded at several surprise moments that I should be a bit more disciplined.

So, I scanned the menu, spotted a high protein, low carb plate and hailed the waitress.  “Could I get Eggbeaters instead of whole eggs?” I asked.

“No,” she said. “We don’t have Eggbeaters.”

“Okay,” I said with my healthy move already blunted.  “I’ll take sausage instead of canadian bacon and potatoes rather than tomatoes.”  I figured if the wholesome route was out, I would just wait until lunch to be healthy.

The waitress snapped her book closed, poured me a cup of coffee. I began reading and hardly noticed when she set my plate down a few minutes later. Coming to the end of a chapter, I unwrapped my silverware and pulled the plate to me. Scrambled eggs, canadian bacon, and tomatoes.

“Uh, miss!” I called. The waitress walked slowly over. “I’m sorry, but you got my order wrong.”

She put both hands on the table and leaned ever so slightly toward me. “Didn’t you want Eggbeaters?” she asked.

“Sure, but you didn’t have them. But then I ordered the sausage and potatoes.”

“That was where you made a mistake,” she said. “Somebody wanting Eggbeaters is trying to be healthy. Sausage and potatoes isn’t on the healthy menu. And, you might also notice that I didn’t bring you a croissant.”

She was right. I had noticed that, but I thought I’d start with the big ticket items.

“This is what you need — not sausage, potatoes and bread.”  She stood up straight, flashed me a smile, and walked to help another diner.  I looked around for a manager and then back at the plate. She was right all the way around. This was the breakfast I needed.

I picked up my fork and dutifully ate. And when I paid my check, I gave her a healthy tip. I walked away lower in saturated fats and diminished carbs. Occasionally the voice of reason comes from surprising places. Sometimes you have to listen to the waitress.

Stuff I don’t understand

Many people consider me to be on top of technology . . . except for that select circle of friends and advisors who know better.

While it’s true that I’ll take a small amount of time to look into those problems that arise in the midst of my techno-life, I’m usually rescued by those who notice that I’m thrashing about and who throw me a life-preserver.  That life-preserver most often comes in the form of a link to a help page or a fix that someone has come up with. Nevertheless, it generally works and I’m on my way.

I used to be bothered by the fact that I couldn’t understand something or come to a solution.  Although I have to admit to some frustration when things get a little rocky, I’m learning that some things just aren’t mine to understand.

And as I grow older, I’m also seeing that the areas of my misunderstanding are pretty widespread. Yet, time and time again, friends and advisors, come to my rescue. I see those individuals as special appointees — not appointed by me, but by a divine one who knows my every need.

So, while not understanding used to bring me grief, now I’m beginning to see it as an opportunity to enjoy times of God-sent relationship.