Tag Archive | suffering

Fall, Panera Bread and God’s amazing grace

Here I am at Panera Bread. Again. God how I’m missing you baby. If I weren’t in public I’d cry. I have that choice this morning but sometimes the tears flow without waiting for my permission.

The change in weather triggers different memories. Soccer. Parent-teacher conferences. Field trips from elementary school. Halloween. School pictures. Warmer clothes. I can remember your clothes from elementary school. I see them hanging in your closet. I wish I would’ve saved some of them. But I didn’t know.

I didn’t know. I just didn’t know. Crap… Here come the tears without my permission.

Nothing can make it okay. I just have to live with it every day. I am grateful for the healing that’s come. Truly I am. It is God’s mercy. I don’t feel like I will die of a broken heart anymore. Or die from the heaviness. Or die from withering away.

There are three 60ish year old women studying the bible near by. I hear them… I hear the one who seems to be leading the discussion. Listen to her… all confident and full of advice. I remember thinking I knew a thing or two too. I knew God’s word. I knew suffering. I knew perseverance. Then 8.8.12 hit and I realized I didn’t know dick.

Lord how I wish this woman would shut up. Did I sound like that? Of course I did. And probably much worse. And I bet I still do at times. It’s amazing to me that You love us Lord.

Man I gotta find somewhere else to sit.

Amazing grace!

I got “caught” staring at a dude in a wheelchair…

I was at Panera recently. Hell I’m always at Panera recently. My mind was drifting as I casually scanned the restaurant. My eyes landed on a dude in a wheelchair. Young guy – maybe in his 30’s. I pondered the challenges he may regularly face and I quickly considered him very blessed. Like uber blessed!

I’m learning some of us are “blessed” enough to live with something very wrong, very tragic in the worlds eyes – and in our eyes. And if God has had His way with us we are also blessed enough to know eternity with Him will be unimaginably amazing. So the grid we view this life through is different from others…

Sometimes the view from where I am leaves me irritable and judgmental towards others and their so called “pain” (apparently I am now the queen of pain and can judge whether your response to your circumstances is justified or not!?). But other times the view from where I am gives me more compassion towards others. Yes, sometimes this view even frees me up to be more others-centered. The view from where I now am has set me free. I can be bold and move towards others – in love (or in harshness – yikes!) in a way I couldn’t before… Without fear of rejection heavily skewing my decision to speak or not.

So does the dude in the wheelchair feel “blessed?” “Blessed” to have been given this challenge because of the person it’s shaped him into? Do I feel “blessed” by what I’ve been through and am still going through? Ugh. No, of course not. That’s so flippin gross. But I can feel “blessed” by how God is transforming me, right? That’s not gross is it? As I’m pondering these thoughts the chick sitting with the dude in the wheelchair gives me a dirty look. I’ve been staring at him this whole time…