Thursday, December 28, 2006


I love the time after Christmas, especially the new year coming. I'm in the midst of cleaning and painting my house. I'm painting my paneling in my living room. I know, gasps from the crowd about painting good wood paneling. Well, I felt that way, too, but I've lived here since 1985 with it, and it's lovely picture frame paneling, but I finally settled on a color and we're going to love it. Our house faces north, so the sun doesn't shine into the windows much. I need light, lots of it, and the color I chose is cozy, almondy, and warm while lightening things up a bit.

Walking Gracie this morning, it's trash day, and I see everyone has their Christmas trash set out. You can tell a lot about people from their trash! Some houses had the remnants of food; popcorn maker boxes, pizza, cookware. Another house had carpet, broken tile. Another had toy boxes, lots of them. One had office boxes: shredder box, file boxes, etc. Most had old trash out. Looks like they're cleaning, too.

What would my trash tell others about me? Well, I think that our trash right now is full of stuff that we've hung on to for far too long. Useless, broken stuff that is not necessary to our living now, and certainly might hold us back from moving forward. Old clothes, kids' toys, ripped up dog toys, old linens, magazines, broken appliances. We're cleaning lots of this out and it's comforting to see the stuff leave.

I guess winter is God's clean-out time. The trees have shed their dead and useless limbs...and their leaves. (all over my yard! ;-)) They are bare and stark now, but ready to bud in the spring and begin again, fresh. So we should be.

Kansas Bob has been talking about healing. It's a major factor in his life and his family's life. Mine, too. This year has been a revelation to me. I've dealt with a lot of health issues, and wondered why I haven't healed. One blog buddy sent me some great books and a CD on healing which have certainly helped me out in this journey. Thanks again!

I have had 3 contentious relationships in the last year, but thankfully, the Lord has filled those voids with loving people in abundance. I have blamed myself for these relationships until, of all people, my 19 year-old sat me down and told me how it is. Having someone who can step away from your situation is a great blessing. As I've said before, God leads me to people who will minister to me, He is so good. My kid pointed out that it's not my fault about these folks; he suggested that they have some personality disorders (don't we all?) that I had nothing to do with. I think he was on the mark. I thought I was so smart and I have to have a 19 year old knock me upside the head. God works. Isn't it funny how we have problems, and we try to fix them, and we throw our hands up in the air, saying, "Well...I've done everything I can, guess all I can do now is pray!" when the praying part should always come first?

The amazing thing from all of this is that I have experienced a modicum of physical healing from these revelations. By turning the blame away from myself (and I'm not blaming these people. They also need to be healed) I'm receiving healing! Maybe this is what God had in mind. That I would stop hurting myself because of anger or sadness over others. It's easy for me to minister to those I don't know very well. It's easy to keep distant and rational and helpful. But when I have a close relationship with someone, and something goes awry, I always blame myself. It takes 2 to "tangle" of course. I can't change their behavior, but I can certainly change mine.

So in the last few weeks since this has happened, God has reminded me of the many wonderful people and relationships that I have that are give-and-take, healthy, truly supportive and loving. I'm the luckiest gal around! I feel stronger physically and especially in Him....and ready to move forward. I guess, with God's leading, I'm cleaning out a lot of the old stuff, and it's comforting to see that stuff leave! What stuff do YOU need to toss out?

I pray for healing for those of you that need it, as well, in asking Him to help you find what you may need.


Helen said...

Hi Karen! Happy new year to you and I pray it's a healthy one for you,

glad your son set you straight, it's hard when there are tough times but we are encouraged by many that show their love and concern for us in these times, it's these relationships that we praise God for and are thankful,

Take care!
Helen x.

Kansas Bob said...

Yikes! Painting paneling! You and Ann would get along well ... she likes it bright and I like it a bit dimmer ... we have had dimmer wars but have found common ground.

I want to see the power of God more in 2007 but (I think) I want to drop my expectations and be open to letting Him figure out what that looks like ... easier said than done :)

Karen said...

Thanks and same to you, Helen!!

Bob, it's not bright in here's a warm tone, and very cozy. I don't like bright, but during the day, light is nice. Our houses on this block are all in the same come in, and it's like a cave.
Here's to God's 2007!

Robert said...

karen- I like your last line on your comment above... Here's to God's 2007!!!! Amen to that and thanks for sharing about your son. helps that God brings us those who can see past our blindspots, even a kid!!!

BruceD said...

Better days are ahead, my friend! They're waiting deep within us, ready to spring out when the moment's right. May your moment "be right" very soon!