"Whenever they measure themselves by their own standards or compare themselves among themselves, they show how foolish they are." 1 Corinthians 10:12
I've been reading more of my old posts from our suburb house and the one where we lived for 6 months after that.
Good grief! I sounded like Pollyanna On Speed. Seriously.
And I have been concerned. "Where did all that daily happiness go?" I ask myself. "I'm just not feelin' that. No, lately it's more like I spend my days trying to pass tests and searching in corners for happy thoughts." And I'm, also lately, trying to keep conviction from straying into condemnation. Blech.
But then it comes to me: All these changes! All these changes I've gone through since August 31st when Tom lost his job. It takes time to adapt to changes like those. It requires time to learn how to live a whole other way, to live confidently depending upon God, not a paycheck. Especially when Mrs. Happy Loner now has two other people in her house almost constantly and she can't play her happy music loudly or run the vacuum whenever she wants or rearrange furniture on a whim or spend hours alone in blessed, sweet silence.
It requires much more time with Grace to adapt to all that.
What also doesn't help is that, in one month, her favorite kindred spirit cat died, she got sick, broke a tooth, two ribs slipped out of place, her one good ear is still clogged-up, the earthquake in Japan happened (on top of all those earlier earthquakes) and it's Springtime yet there's snow all around, 20 degree days and long winters have always made her nuts.
But then that verse at the top of this comes to me and you know what? I'm comparing my past self to my present self (and being foolish.) I'm comparing the Debra who so often had her own way, got to do her own thing, with this new Debra who hasn't yet found the imagination to get what she needs in this new life. She's still too often giving-in and giving-up easily. Going with the flow instead of fighting, swimming upstream against the current.
Being the old happy Debra was, in reality, pretty easy. Walking in happiness for this new Debra is more challenging, so when satan is hissing that I'm growing weaker, how good of God to remind me that--in reality--I'll actually come out of this a stronger person who can find happiness anywhere and whether she gets her own way--or not. (So take that, satan, you ol' liar!)
It takes Time to learn all that. And it takes Time and Grace (oh Grace!) to adjust to new Life Situations when they are thrust upon you. And I realized this morning I've been in a hurry to get it all right, to receive all A +'s--and then when I've gotten it wrong--I've been too hard on myself. And slipped from God's conviction into satan's (and my own) condemnation.
So. Rather than aiming for the old Pollyanna on Speed, instead, my goal is to become Debra on Grace. That sounds saner, with extra space for patience with myself, even. And much, much more do-able, for Grace is one awesome helper, indeed.
Often we expect way more from ourselves than even God, Himself, does!