Tuesday, October 20

Meaning of Life moment

My sunday school class is working it's way through Ecclesiastes this semester and it has been a fun journey. Our discussions have centered around where we look for meaning in life, and how that never seems to fill us unless we get our meaning from God. Yet if we do put God in the center, and work to remind ourselves that He belongs there and our wants/needs belong elsewhere than center, He is faithful to remind us of his love through life's many enjoyments. And we can begin to truly enjoy God's gifts of food, homes, jobs, children, sports, family, etc.

My "meaning of life" moment came about a week ago as I was making a much needed trip to Marion's Tractor Supply Co. I had been putting off buying a new pair of work boots this year, hoping to make it through the season but alas an inch long hole and a few days of poorly timed rain and cold, drove me to misery, and thus to Tractor Supply Co. Starbucks happens to be right on the way to Marion, and although I am not a fan of Starbucks coffee in general I do love their Pumpkin Spice Lattes that magically appear on their menus in the month of October. It was a quick decision to pull through the drive-through, a quick decision to buy a "grande" size, and in no time at all I was continuing my journey to TSC. A spontaneous call to mom to tell her about a frustrating experience earlier in the week and a few sips later I was pulling into the rain soaked parking lot in Marion.

Mmmm. "This is the best drink in the world!" escaped my lips before I knew what I was saying and I grabbed my money, keys, much-cherished fall drink and headed for the doors and the new boots that awaited inside. Literally four steps from my car and a split-second later I found myself juggling my favorite drink in the world and watching it crash onto the pavement at my feet. My initial reaction was to stomp around and kick the empty cup halfway to the entrance of Tractor Supply, grieving over the loss of $4 and "the best drink in the world". But in the back of my head, I could hear my sunday school teacher asking, "where do you find the meaning of life?" So instead of getting angry (which I wanted to do quite badly), I began laughing out loud. Consciously noting that God was most effectively teaching me a lesson about my foolhardy attempts at getting meaning from life.

Have you had a "meaning of life" moment lately? Don't forget that the little things are really just little things, and God is most definitely still God. He is the meaning. Rest in that.

Sunday, October 11

a shattering reality

Pretty much my entire adult life I've gotten away with people imagining that I'm actually younger than what I really am. I attribute this to various facts: the fact that I'm single, nomadic, not career obsessed, silly (some might argue immature). But whatever the reason, people are usually shocked when I confess my age, since they were guessing that I was 5-8 years younger.

I know that this trend is only temporary, and eventually I will hit the tipping point. And though I know my day of reckoning is coming...eventually, I don't think about this too often. Well, eventually happened a few weeks ago and I am still laughing at the scenario. It goes something like this...

I attended a high school football game with a college friend a few weekends ago. It was rainy, cold and I was starving. The lines at the concession stand were long, and I didn't want to wait for marginal food in the pouring rain. So at 10:00 pm that night after the game was over I made my way to the closest Subway to procure a $5 foot long that could serve as my dinner and lunch the next day.

I was the only patron at that time and per usual I was chatting it up with the young (eighteen or something) sandwich maker. I shared with her about my night at the football game, we talked high school football and homecoming nonsense for a bit. And then I found myself picking out two oatmeal cookies before paying for my long awaited supper. As she rang up my order, she asked one last question that shattered my wishful imagery of my youthful self. And I quote,

"So, does your kid play for the Madison-Grant football team?"

Wha...What? I'm sure I flashed her an "are you serious?" look before answering with an emphatic, "No". As I made my way out of subway and to the confines of my vehicle, I had to laugh at myself. And at the pieces of my youthfulness that just eroded away with that one question. Wow? Do I really look like I would have a high school age child? Maybe. Maybe not. Regardless, it was a startling reality that I am getting older and maybe I finally look like it too.

Ah well. Sometimes the future is all of a sudden the present. Kills me.

Tuesday, October 6

from the farmers almanac

I picked up a 2009 farmers almanac the other day just for fun. And oh, has it been fun. There is some crazy stuff in there:
  • astronomical glossary
  • configurations of Sun, Moon and Planets
  • Gardening by the Zodiac and the Moon's Phases
  • gestation table
  • strange headlines
There are also some really great things in there:
  • general weather forecasts
  • sunrise and sunset times
  • hints for your health
  • frost date chart
  • planting tables
  • natural pest control
And then just to keep things lively:
  • crossword puzzle
  • "Storks - the ultimate social security model"
  • "News to Amuse"
  • Facts and Fancies
  • Cookery Corner
Even if you aren't a farmer, I encourage you to pick up an almanac sometime. Take a gander. It will be quite enjoyable. This particular almanac is titled, "The Almanac for Farmers & City Folk". And proclaims on the front cover that it is your "entertainment and information for the entire year".

These three little pigs found their way to Victory Acres about a month ago. Their time here will be short, though they are making the best of it. They have successfully rooted through our compost pile, working the new matter in, and turning it for us. Those little noses are big deals. Their last day on the farm is at the end of this month. I keep hinting to management that I wouldn't mind a Christmas bonus in the form of half a hog. I don't think anyone is taking notice of my memos.