From Horrible to Good Friday

It’s Good Friday for us. But it had to have been Horrible Friday for them.

This year, my heart goes out more than ever to Jesus’ original followers on that “not-so-Good Friday.” If you read last week’s post you know that my husband and I had been waiting to become parents for what feels like a really long time—about 10 years. Finally, last week our hopes and dreams were fulfilled when little foster son Benjamin was placed into our care. And then, just 23 hours later, our parenting hopes were gone, and our dreams were crushed as the judge said we had to give him to his great grandparents.

What timing.

Last Sunday was Palm Sunday. On that first Palm Sunday, the people of Israel (God’s chosen) had been waiting for a Messiah for a very long time. I mean, a really really long time.

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Lord, if only you had been here!!

Well, today’s post was supposed to be part 2 of a series on perfectionism, but because of the events of the last 48 hours, I’d like to put that on hold until next week.

Today I want to tell you how grateful I am for God’s Word, and specifically for two ladies in it. Yes, once again, it’s Mary and Martha.

Here’s why.

As many of you know, my husband and I have been married for almost 24 years, and for no reason that doctors have been able to pinpoint, we have not been able to conceive.

Two years ago, we became licensed foster parents with the intent to adopt. In the past two years, we only received two calls to take in kids “just for the weekend” while their parents were away.

Then, out of the blue, came the call on Wednesday afternoon of this week. “Would you be interested in a seven-day old, healthy baby boy?”

“OF COURSE!!! I know I shouldn’t ask you this, but what do you think the chances are of us being able to eventually adopt him?”

“Of course you know that the goal is always to reunite the child with the biological parent, but this situation really looks like it’s not going to end up that way, but still, try not to get your hopes up.”

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The Perfectionism Wheel part 1

In the past, I’ve called Facebook the “Envy Ignitor.” This week I’d like to give it yet another name. (Drumroll, please…) Facebook, the “Perfectionist Pointer-Outer!”

Yeah, thanks a lot, FB.

I thought I had completely overcome my life-squashing addiction to perfectionism. That’s right. I had “perfectly” overcome perfectionism, which is right up there with Moses claiming to be the most humble man on the earth. (Numbers 12:3)

Just how did Facebook do it?

It all started on Tuesday. They announced the birthday of one of my besties early that morning. I sincerely wanted to write her a birthday poem that would clearly communicate that I love her to pieces and think she’s amazing. A simple “Happy Birthday!” just wouldn’t do. But Tuesday was crazy, and it never got done.

“Okay,” I thought as I went to bed that night. “Tomorrow I’ll write her an even BETTER belated birthday poem.”

On Wednesday morning, Facebook announced that it was the birthday of yet another one of my besties. This friend is near and dear to my heart as well, so now the goal was an even better belated birthday poem, PLUS today’s friend’s birthday poem. The poems never got written.

Then Thursday’s announcements brought ANOTHER sweet and dear friend’s birthday to my attention. Well, SHE deserves a poem too!!! So now the pressure was on to write one really good poem and two even better (to make up for them being belated) poems.

I still “owe” 3 birthday poems, and the longer I wait, well of course, the better they’re gonna need to be. 😉

Lately, I’ve been desperately asking God to speak to me. I just never imagined He’d do it through Facebook.

So what exactly is perfectionism? A guy named David Seamands describes it like this:

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Better.

Luke 10:38-42 As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said. But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!”

“Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.”

This story of Mary and Martha is one of my absolute favorites, and I find myself needing to go back to it often. I did a fun post about it two years ago when I started this blog. If you find yourself worried or upset about the details of your life, I encourage you to check it out here.

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What really is BEST?

There’s an old story in Eastern folklore that goes something like this:

A man had a really nice horse, but it ran away.

The man’s neighbor came and said, “Oh, that’s really bad!”

The man answered him, “What do I know about these things?”

A few days later, his horse returned with 20 other beautiful wild horses.

The neighbor came again and said, “Wow! That’s really good!”

The man answered him, “What do I know about these things?”

A few days later, the man’s son was training one of the wild horses, and the horse kicked him so hard it broke the son’s leg.

The neighbor came again and said, “Oh, that’s really bad!”

The man answered him, “What do I know about these things?”

A few days later a rough and evil group of thugs came by to force-recruit able young men into their gang. They came for the man’s son, but since his leg was broken, they left him alone and moved on.

The neighbor came again and said, “Wow! That’s really good!”

The man answered him, “What do I know about these things?”

In one short series of circumstances, we see that what seems best could be bad, and what seems bad could be good. In wisdom, the man responded, “What do I know about these things?”

I want to cling to the only One who does know about the circumstances in our lives—the One who does know about the future, and trust that He not only knows, but is working out His perfect plan for those who submit to His will.

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