Monday, April 12, 2010

Whose plans are they anyway?

Well, life has been zipping along at warp speed here in Indiana as spring is bursting all over. Planting season for gardeners has started and the farmers are gearing up to go in the next week or so depending on the weather. The wives of said farmers, are busy with those gardens and other projects that will keep us just as busy doing them and running errands-think food/drink-for our guys. This wife, doesn't have those errands to run since Andy actually works for a company that does corn research, however, it is easiest to explain he gets paid to farm. We live on a farming lifestyle schedule and our lives, projects and vacations still revolve around farming calendar. My plans for this spring/early summer were not huge, not really. It was something that I wanted to do and felt that I needed to do. I thought they were great plans, but again I'm reminded that my schedule/plan isn't about me, but about God and His plans for my day to help me grow and prosper. When am I going to learn this, I don't know for sure, hopefully soon, because the lessons are not fun. I don't enjoy repeating lessons over and even now being reminded how like a child I am sometimes with some things in my walk with the Lord, oh yeah, and that I need to exhibit the same patient teaching with my kids as He does with me.

For the past couple months in anticipation of Spring Break, I've been planning on repainting the inside of the house. We've been here now 10 years going on 11 and it is time. It actually was probably time 5-6 years ago when the beams finally dried out and left little gaps of unpainted space around them, but the budget said it wasn't time yet. I was excited, everything was lining up, budget, time and energy. I worked at figuring out the new colors. Was I going to go with any special painting finish or just paint. I spent a whole weekend working up poster boards with the colors I liked, but then didn't use those because they didn't look right with the beams, consulting with Andy too because it's his house too. Finally, the decision was made. The barn door green dining room and the cornmeal kitchen were both going to wild oats. Then north wall of the kitchen is going to have a color called Suede Grey. It really isn't grey, it is more of a green/grey color along the sage line. The cabinets that Andy built in my office are painted this color. The entry, fireplace and TV room, along with the loft upstairs are going from a hollyhock red below chair rail with corckscrew willow above to all corckscrew willow. The north wall of that section of the house will also get changed from holly hock red to the Suede Grey. A2's room is getting done too. He picked out this really neat green color. Okay, everything is picked out. Paint is purchased, while it was on sale-wahoo!!! Ready to roll on this project over spring break, literally. This is My plan, get all those rooms done over Spring Break; My project as Andy will be in KY on mission trip. My plan is set. (No the "M" being capitalized isn't a mistake, it is there for emphasis to remind me that My thinking was wrong.) Little did I know things were about to unravel.

The thread begins to unravel about mid-March. Thursday evening we are sitting watching TV after A2 has went to bed and A1 is a volleyball. Phone rings, after 9 pm, which means this might not be good as most people don't call us after 9. It is not good at all. A1 has dislocated her knee at volleyball practice and Andy's Mom, whom God placed there that week because of a meeting so she wanted to carpool, calls to wonder what she should do. I talk with the coach and they take her to ER where we meet them. Dislocated knee, anyone know what that looks like? Well, A1's was bad. She was holding her kneecap on the outside of her knee, like a whole 90 degrees from where it should be. She was in extreme pain and had to hold it at a weird angle from her body to be comfortable as they wheeled her slowly to the ER room. As we got towards the back the nurse wanted to speed her along to get her into a bed and she wanted to go slowly to keep it from hurting so badly. The mama bear in me wanted the nurse to let us go slowly, however, the practical side of this mama knew that the sooner we got her to the bed the quicker they could get rid of the pain. Long story short, pain meds, semi-conscience sedation meds, straighten her leg and take two fingers to guide the kneecap back and it's done. Followed up with xray and sent home with instructions to follow up with orthopedic surgeon. After visits with 2 different ortho guys we finally got some answers that didn't conflict and actually made sense. Her orthopedic surgeon that she was miraclusly able to get into 2 weeks earlier, thanks to prayers from my awesome group at TLT studied under Dru Bree's orthopedic guy who took care of his shoulder problems a few years ago. I literally hung up with the late appointment and went straight to post the request that we needed to get in earlier, this was at about 9 EST am. I called back after lunch around 2ish and they had an opening for 8:15am the next morning. Isn't God Great!! She is currently in rehab and will see orthopedic guy in about 10 days to check her progress and get our next set of instructions. While he was assuring to her about volleyball he also was assuring to me as he stressed that getting the problem solved correctly now was important so she wouldn't "have problems when she was older like him". I was laughing in my head because this doctor must be at least 10-12 years younger than me. She was given clearance to practice volleyball still, just no jumping and she has to wear a brace. So she has been staying in touch with the ball, just not killing it from the sky.

As A1 says for her all good stories start with volleyball, just 2 weeks later on the way to volleyball practice she was in her first accident, so the unraveling continues. Her Aunt Heather had to pick her up because Andy and I decided to be healthy that night and take a walk, A2 tagged along, but we left the cell phone at home, thus she couldn't get a hold of us. When Heather called, she asked how my day was going and said A1 is fine, I'm on my way to pick her up from an accident. Andy had turned right around when we got back and took the car to get eggs from our friends and didn't take the cell with him so we couldn't leave to meet them there. Heather said that she would just get her and bring her here. Bless her heart, she was so worried and upset, not about the accident totally, but more about what we were going to do and how we were going to react. She was fully expecting to be grounded from driving when she got home. We didn't ground her or take away her driving privileges; we just gave her a big hug, assured her it was an accident and it happens. We did tell her later that weekend that we wouldn't rule out having to help pay for difference in insurance, plates and help with the payment we knew we would probably have. "Sure, no problem," she said. "That will help me not to feel guilty for messing up the accident free bonus." This all happened on my birthday-Happy Birthday to me as A1 says I got you a new car! I was just thankful she was okay.

Did I mention we just finished the Seeds Campaign at church about giving God our time, talent and treasure? To help everyone be aware of all they have to offer to God and to commit as a church to get the mortgage paid off in 3 years. In looking at our time, talent and treasure we had made commitments to all three things. Commitment Sunday had been the week after the dislocation of A1's knee, the 2 weeks before the accident and new car payment that will now come out of a budget that was balanced well and finally working correctly. Celebration Sunday was also Palm Sunday, we had a lot to celebrate. The following Easter Sunday we had even more to celebrate as we saw things start to unravel and God start to work to put them back together while protecting us from harm. Cup of Cold Water had been on the schedule since January. Andy loves doing this and it follows right into his talent-building things and working with his hands. Spring Break works into the schedule for him at work, because when the group goes in the fall he is in the middle of harvest and can't break away. I was excited for him to go, however, we were under attack and that Friday a rage came over me as I was cleaning up in the kitchen and thinking about painting project for me over Spring Break. It started, no lie, in my toes and went clear to the tip of my head. I slammed my hands on the counter and was ranting, "Why does he have to go on a trip to KY to build a house for someone else, taking a week vacation to do the work, when he could stay here and get our house finished and help me with the painting?" Two seconds later I went, "Whoa, where did that come from? Lord, forgive me because this is not how I really feel. Satan, leave me alone in this for this is something that the Lord is in and you have no place." I was sure to let Andy know about the attack when he got home that evening. He was floored as he knew as well that I was behind him in this ministry. We came under further attack on Sunday night as A2 started having issues with Andy being gone too.

So Spring Break rolls in Monday. Andy is gone by 6:30am and takes the truck, leaving me with a kiss and the kids, who are sleeping in notes. I start on the painting project. Furniture gets moved to the middle of the room, curtains are taken down, the shelf is removed, spackling gets done, walls get washed, everything gets taped. Did I mention that I should have spackled and fixed dry wall with compound first and then washed the walls after sanding? No, well that is because I learned that I should have washed the walls after sanding. Let's just say the walls were well cleaned for the paint. Despite the mix-ups with washing the walls, phone calls made to and from the insurance company and looking for something to replace the van, I was able to get the dining room all painted with the first coat and the kitchen walls that were in the same color done as well. I had A2 reminding me that I needed to workout and my response was I am working out, climbing up and down on the chair to paint was like a giant lunge or squat. I wasn't sore though until Wednesday afternoon. I had to throw in a trip to the chiropractor on Thursday morning because Austin's neck was out of alignment and he had a bad headache going. I was also not feeling quite as well. So I had some adjustments done on my neck and back as well as my wrist. It is amazing what a 12" roller will do to my wrist vs the 9", however, after the adjustment my wrists didn't hurt anymore. I was really tired and just felt off. Thinking I probably just needed to rest a bit I took a nap that afternoon; I could just work later into the evening to make up for lost time. God says, "Guess what Anita, you are not in charge. This plan you have is not what I have for you to do this week." I woke up with a slight fever and still had a headache and now my stomache just felt yucky. No more painting for me. I rested, watched some TV and movies with the kids and researched and researched some more on a vehicle to replace the van. I was able to find something to replace the van, but not finish all the painting. My poor husband came home to a house that looked like a disaster zone and has only recovered somewhat. I did make sure he was forewarned, but I felt so bad. My lesson for the week was that God was in control of my plans and this was most evident when I went to take the things out of our smashed up van.

Things are not important, including freshly painted houses. It is the people who live, laugh and love in those houses that are important. The God I serve protected my daughter that day of her accident and in doing so protected me. The whole right front corner of our van was gone. You could see into the engine and the left side was smooched back to the front of the engine. From the rear it looked normal, but from the front it made my legs shake just to see it. Climbing into the van to empty out our things that Ashley had left in(she grabbed the registration and something else I can't remember now that was important), it looked totally normal as well. Nothing was smashed or crumpled or crinkled. Thank you Lord for protection for my baby girl.

We took an extra week for Spring Break, for me. The kids worked on some makeup things for school, but I didn't teach. I worked on the painting some more. I have some things finished. The dining room, kitchen and office. They are put back together, and my sweet husband's first choice to get things put back together was the dining room. He missed our nightly Sorry game. So after 2 weeks of eating in the TV room because everything was piled everywhere we were back to eating supper in the dining room and playing team Sorry. Last weekend while the kids were at a quiz invitational Andy and I worked on getting the TV room finished. Today I just got the furniture put back into it. The painting for the rest isn't totally finished yet, but it will be; when it's suppose to be done. I'm working on one room at a time now, the fireplace room and lower walls(think no scaffolding) of the entry area are next. The boarder is half off, but I'm taking tomorrow off to chill out, relax and scrap book with my friend. We both need to relax a bit. The painting will still be there when I get home and I can work on it next week between teaching, cooking and all the other things on my list. But it doesn't really matter what is on my list as much as does my list match God's list for me for that day? Does He have something else in mind and am I listening to Him close enough to hear them? If the kids ask for extra help with something or a friend calls and needs something done, am I listening to the Lord asking me to serve them or am I going to have to relearn that lesson about Whose plans they really are. I'm hopeful that at least for a longer period of time, this time, I'll remember Who is really in charge of my day, thanking Him for the chance to serve Him by living, loving and laughing with my friends and family and serving them and strangers who cross my path in the plans He has for my day.

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