Yesterday the world was spinning.
Well, of course it was. It’s what it’s done every day since it’s very beginning. Faithfully, rightfully spinning on course, in rhythm, perfectly obedient to the Great Creator’s design.
But I meant My World.
My World was spinning. The out-of-control kind of spinning. Ah, just the normal ride of my domain where the six children, they need. And whine. And complain. And beg.
And goodness, aren’t they ever full? Will they be forever hungry?
And when the day starts off with nose-picking (theirs, not mine, goodness), and with foot-stomping, and with lying…. is there any hope of it getting back on course?
Ah yes, if those onlookers at the grocery could see us now – the ones who persisted in telling me how ‘good’ my children are, all lined up, they are… and tell me, are they always so ‘good’? (All I could do is stare at her, for what kind of question is that?)
Well, now. On days like yesterday, I don’t suppose any onlookers would be so quick to comment on how ‘good’ we’re all being.
And just the night before, the question I asked in family worship: “Who in here is good?” One of ‘em, his hand shot straight up, and his sister was quick to shoot it down, “none of us!”
And truly, we aren’t, are we? No one righteous. No one good. The only Good One – thank God He was good enough – He had to cover our no-good.
So when the day starts with nose-picking and lying and foot-stomping and defiance and complaining and whining…. why am I so surprised? Why does my world spin?
But spin it does, and puts me right dizzy and in the meanest mood. And I quip and fuss and wag the finger (as if a quick finger and a quick tongue could change a heart for the better – could do any ‘good’ at all.)
And wasn’t I the one who just wrote about becoming radiant?
And by late afternoon my small frame feels so heavy-laden. And everything inside and out spins so that I want to put them all and me to bed without supper.
I’m not living in the moment, I’m wishing the moments to pass.
Discouragement has crept up on me and wrapped me up in it’s scratchy shawl.
And desperate, I reach for the list... I have to find something – just one thing to list. Because I have to. Because there’s this desperate woman far north who needed it to, and it worked for her – and it’s working for me.
Every time I write down a gift – something to thank Him for – I feel the warming inside, coming alive again.
I take the phone and snap the photo of the three pretty milk-glass candle holders lined atop my oven. They’re my favorite. A touch of ‘pretty’ in the mundane. I write it down.
I hear the rain and all day I’ve been thinking about how it’s got us trapped inside with cabin fever and kids pent up like banshees – and instead I think of it as a cleansing refreshment. I push open the patio door and feel the fresh air, and snap a photo of droplets on big, green leaves… and then I actually see them. They’re beautiful. And I actually hear the dripping. It’s lovely. And I actually hear the rain again. Comforting. I write it down.
And then the droning, repetitive song of the little blonde boy who’s been there for nearly half an hour – he’s been right there playing with his busy-bag… happily pinning up miniature felt clothes on the line strung from bar stool to high chair. He’s happily singing this refrain again and again and now it finally gets my attention…
an hebin an mayture sing, an hebin an mayture sing…
And I finish it in my head… and heaven, and heaven and nature sing!
This little guy – oblivious to my inward spinning out of control – is bubbling joy. He’s spinning happy. Like a child.
I snap his picture and write it down.
Because this finding the gifts and writing them down. It’s making my cold heart start to sing again. I do it because I’ve got to. Because too long have I let the ungratefulness creep in. The oldest disease of mankind. The cancer of Adam and Eve and everyone thereafter.
I look around at the gifts… the warm mug of afternoon rescue…. the happy, squirming girl in my arms… the strong table built with strong hands…
I make my way into the living room and sit on the couch… and soon Jeff walks in the door…. and two of the kids, they’re spinning and dancing in the small open space – so much they make themselves dizzy. Just happy that Daddy is there.
And come morning it’s still so rainy and sleep hardly came at all. And at the breakfast table my big boy, he says that it’s like we got up too early, it’s so dark outside. And I stand at the open patio door, the rain still pittering down. And look up to the gray sky.
“The sun’s just not up yet” says his sister.
“No, the sun is there. Just because you can’t see it doesn’t mean it’s not there.”
And just because you can’t see Me, doesn’t mean I’m not here. I AM. I’ve been here all along. Since before you. Since before I set the world to spinning.