"Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me." Psalm 51:10

Wednesday, January 26, 2011


          Colorful images danced across the big screen.  They looked like formless blogs meshing together like amoebas under a microscope slide.  I gazed about the store from my vantage point pretending that I could see perfectly.  A family of three walked around the corner, glancing my direction. I smiled at their blurry faces not knowing if they were returning my grin. I sought to appear normal despite my inability to see beyond two inches in front of my face.  I wondered what it might feel like to remain this blind, to be incapable of seeing clear, definite faces and objects--ever. Without corrective lenses, my world would appear exactly like this permanently. My physically blind state led me to ponder spiritual blindness.
            Jesus condemns the blindness of the Pharisees.  In Matthew 23, he calls them blind guides, blind fools, blind men and blind Pharisees.  These men are consumed with washing cups and dishes to the neglect of their greedy and self-indulgent hearts. They seem completely oblivious to their blinded hearts unlike my contactless eyes are to my foggy surroundings. I realize I can’t see; it’s obvious the objects around me are indiscriminate and unfocused.  Perhaps this is why I find myself so critical of the Pharisees.  I can see they are completely focused on laws and regulations, dos and don’t’s.  Why can’t they? 
            I’m proud of my clear vision.  Does that make me as blind as they are?

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Writing Day

I am a planner, a goal maker, a rule follower. So far this year, I’ve been frustrated because life has not followed my dictates.  Ok, so maybe I need to lighten up a tad. I created pages of specific goals for a variety of areas of my life.  Prioritizing writing time is a main focus.
My calendar is filled with color-coded schedules for each member of my family.  Without this I would be as lost as a Spanish-speaking traveler in China. I began the year with my pink pen highlighting the days I would devote to writing. Not only would this be a prominent message to my family that I would not be accessible to them during this time, but it would also be a reminder to me not to schedule anything else on these days. 
With the holidays over, I was anxious to follow my plan.  A week into the New Year, I woke up sick and spent the entire day in bed.  Not part of my plan to become sick.  Scratch out my writing day.  Five days later, sickness attacks me again.  Really? I don’t believe I was sick all the previous year, and I’ve been hit twice already?  My plan is not coming to fruition. My goals are glaring at me, wondering why I haven’t done anything. My hubby tries to remind me that goals are not supposed to be like Nazi’s, ruling your life.  He doesn’t know my goals!
Week two arrives and so does wonderful winter snow cancelling school for two days. That’s just terrific, I complain to the air. Writing day cancelled again. I confess I can’t moan about sleeping late for that’s as pleasant as sipping my Starbuck’s Marble Mocha Macchiato. But, entertaining a 9 year-old and a teenager?  My plans didn’t include that.
I’m prepared for week three…two days off school for a holiday and a teacher in-service day. It sure seems like we could’ve used those days to make up the two snow days from the previous, but no one asked me for my expert opinion. I’m not too upset, however, because I anticipate my writing day coming barring another snow storm or sickness.
Finally, it happened! Yesterday, my computer and I spent 5 hours of quality time together at Barnes and Noble simply writing. My rule-following, goal setting, perfectionistic self can cross “writing day” off my list. No interruptions, no phone calls (because I accidentally left it at home), no laundry and no lunch even (unless you count my orange cranberry scone). I can’t wait until the next writing day!
And, today? Well, it’s another snow day…