Monday, May 4, 2009

Two Things

Gratitude

Last week we refinanced our house. Taking advantage of everything that’s wrong with the economy overall, we boosted ourselves into a much more solid financial position than we’ve ever before enjoyed throughout our years of graduate school and babies. There’s a black hole of worry that I’ve tried to ignore for years, that sometimes would wake me up in the night, and now it’s gone. I am so, so grateful.

I can’t help but feel that our great good luck in pulling this off is a blessing, a gift to us from Heavenly Father, telling us that, yes, we should continue to press forward in these burning-it-from-both-ends years (but wait, isn’t that about the only kind of year we’ve ever had?) of big callings and little kids.

Being More Christian

On Saturday, Mark and I had an argument involving 1) dishwasher sludge and 2) the scarcity of tuna fish sandwiches. So as you can see, this was very serious business and the stakes were high.

Neither of us performed admirably and apparently we forgot about our marriage rule of thumb, which is that only one spouse at a time may lose it/get grumpy/behave badly. Usually we stagger our lameness pretty well so there’s one of us to pull the other back.

Anyway, what I’m trying to say is that the next day, I received a copy of the ward newsletter that included a little article by that dashingly handsome new member of our bishopric. He wrote on Paul’s statement that “the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance” and how we must actively seek out those fruits because they don’t just drop off the tree at our feet. (Or that’s what he meant, because of course that strangely literal and methodical bishopric counselor used no such metaphor.) He concluded, “Let’s share more kind words, friendship, service, and love with one another.” Ouch.

Later in the day, little Levi shared his testimony with the Primary. And he talked about his sadness that one of his uncles is getting a divorce and that he knows that families can be together forever if we “work out our problems.” Double ouch.

Then Levi woke up this morning to tell me that he had had a “terrible” dream that our family “was separated and couldn’t be together.” Triple ouch.

So I’m starting today with a firmer commitment to the soft answer and kind word. Something I’m sure my family will appreciate.

2 comments:

  1. Well, congrats and congrats. Sounds like a serious lesson-learning Sunday. Our lesson on Sunday was about teaching by example and the teacher talked about how the two parts of teaching are 1-Precept and 2-Example. And how the two, when used together are even stronger than 1 + 1. (I'm trying to sum this up, but it's not working, so I'll just go ahead and make this a long comment.) Apparently, if you have one horse pulling a cart, that's one horse power. But if you have two horses pulling a cart, that's THREE horse power. Because each horse could individually pull, say, 1000 pounds. But when they work together, they can pull 3000 pounds instead of the 2000 you would think. Did I say that clearly? Anywho, the point is that it sounds like you've learned the precept and are now working on teaching by example. Way to go.

    *These are the times that I really appreciate how eloquently you can word things. As eloquent as you are, I feel like I'm that clumsy.*

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  2. I find it encouraging when my conscience puts me through the third degree like that. If you can be so aware of your own lameness, you can't help but strive to improve yourself. If you think you have it all figured out and are doing everything you should, that's when you should be worried. And ditto to Nancy's envy of your eloquence.

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