In a Flash

“Do not call to mind the former things, Or ponder things of the past.

Behold, I will do something NEW , Now it will spring forth;

Will you not be aware of it?

I will even make a ROADWAY through the Wilderness, RIVERS in the desert”

Isaiah 43:18-19

I saw this scripture on Meg Moore Tully’s blog telling the beautiful story of her and her husband’s journey through cancer.  I didn’t know anything about it until I saw a FB post and a couple of pictures with her and some of her oldest and dearest friends.  I love to read people’s real stories.  I learn so much from each one.

This was the first scripture that she posted.  It it home.  I felt like I had been hit by a steamroller.  FINALLY, I HEARD GOD.  It had been so long.  Late night and early morning prayers; nothing, just darkness.  I have been falling in a black hole for months now.  So many days I just wanted to curl up in bed and not make breakfast for the kids.  My work is very flexible and I would find my self procrastinating to get there and finding any reason to leave early.  I was restless and tired all at the same time.  I have “lost” myself in a LOT of Netflix and Amazon (great, by the way).  Dennis has been pulling the weight of both of us for so long.

But, something happened right before I saw this scripture.  I had hit a new low of which I’m not proud.  I was so ashamed and mad at myself.  I had hurt someone very close to me.  I broke her heart and trust. UGH!!!

Then my friend Meg came along, sharing herself and  the healing power of God.  I am moving closer and closer to the light everyday.

When I was working on my Christmas “card”, I initially began looking at some of those sites where they will ecard them for you.  Then I found out I had to pay money.  The whole point of displaying my family for all of FB to see was to do it free!!!  So then I got on Picasa.  I am not very talented when it comes to picture programs.  When I say I spent all day…I DID.  Somehow I couldn’t figure out how to get the text onto the page of pictures.  I did it once by accident but I changed the picture.  Two hours later I pushed a button and VOILA , text!!  I was going to put a “?” after Dennis and my names but my daughter said it was gay.

During my project, I had a lot of time to think of why we do this as a society.  I picked a picture of each child over the last year because we are never in the same place at the same time.  And, truthfully, I have had enough of trying to get all four of them to cooperate for one second TOGETHER.  I looked back on old Christmas photos of the kids.  Sometimes they were dressed to the nines with hand-made smocked outfits.  They had to be JUST RIGHT!!!  Then when we moved to Fairhope, we had to do the beach picture.  Once we were finally there and relaxed, and responding to Irene Gardner’s toy squeaker, it became fun.  Those are some of my favorites.

Back to my point.  Nineteen years of Christmas pictures.  Nineteen years that have literally gone in a flash.  Where did it go?  What have we been doing in between these “perfect” flashes of our lives at Christmas?  Actually, all the time now due to FB.  We can all show the flash in the pan part of our picture perfect selves.  What happened right before and after that picture?  Who was yelling, crying, laughing, taking their smocked clothes off?  Even in my card this year I had to use an older, younger version of Dennis because I could not find a recent one until I found the one in here.  All he does is snap chat his children and sometimes me.  I hate it because right after it finishes, my phone has the camera facing me.  That has got to be the worst view of yourself: 4 chins, wrinkles and no makeup!!!

Again, I digress.  This year has been especially hard on us.  Moving schools, meeting new kids.  I am out of my element because I haven’t had the best opportunities to meet the girl’s friends parents. I have for a moment at prom pics or stuff.  It’s hard to start over at 50 even though I only live minutes from my hometown. The girls are not involved in any school sport.  That is always my way of socializing.  Dean is a different story.  I know all his friends parents.

This has been tough and lonely.  Depression makes you tired.  The thought of ever having to drive north of 459 for anything now is daunting.  I can barely get my head off the pillow.  If I go past 459 I would actually have to take my yoga pants off and put on something somewhat presentable.  I work in an old house full of men and surrounded by chickens.  I do get to see an occasional deer:).  I have not made the effort.  Once you are spiraling, it is so hard to climb back up. UNTIL…God yelled in my ear with a megaphone and told me something NEW was happening.

Of course I am looking around every corner.  And, of course God is laughing at me because he has put a carrot in my face and told me to wait some more.  But when He does show it to me, it will be in a flash.  It will feel like no time has passed since I had been moaning and groaning, asking where God went when He said he was giving me something NEW?

Everything is a flash of time.  When my mother passed away, Bishop Stough, who had been Bishop of Diocese of Alabama way back when, did the funeral.  He and mama had gone to highschool together and were age-old friends.  He had such a sweet soul.  I remember one thing of his 30 minute Eulogy: that the time between when she died and when I would see her again would be in a flash of time.  When I see her, I will not remember the anguish of her loss.  I will not remember being sad that she has not been able to see my children grow up.  BUT, she has.  She has been over my shoulder the whole time, cheering me on, wishing that she could tell me that this disease I fight (which she fought too) is going to be one of the biggest blessings of my life as well as my family’s.

So, in a meandering way, enjoy this flash of time.  Enjoy each flash.  They go so fast.  And remember, God has something NEW for all of us.  I am not good at remembering verses. But I say New, Roadway and River every morning and pretty  much all day long.  I am trying to learn to stay in the moment and not lament my past mistakes and failures and worry about the future.  Those three words keep me grounded, if only for a flash.

Merry Christmas,



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