I know that you are supposed to grow through adversity but personally I think it’s overrated. I’ve even had people tell me to my face that they wouldn’t trade their cancer for anything. (My mom was one of those.) I can’t decide if I’m totally selfish or more honest than most but I can already tell you if I get cancer I would give it back if I could.
The last few weeks are a case in point. Plan A was to go out west and be all the way to Wyoming by the eclipse. (Brent ended up watching it in Orlando and I was in Nashville.) After Plan A imploded, Plan B was to go out east and support our daughter Marta who is going through a rough time. (She ended up moving to Nashville and living with us for the last week at our house.) Plan C was to go to Houston to help the hurricane victims. While we still hope to do plan C, it’s almost too early in the process to provide support. We have contacted the Red Cross and are getting some training but it’s our understanding that we need to wait until the waters recede before we could be much help. And, I know, how much good can two people in an RV do, but people could charge their cell phones and maybe we could pass out food and water? I kind of have the starfish mentality when it comes to helping out.
You know that story, right? A boy and his dad are walking on the beach and they come upon a ton of stranded starfish and the little boy starts throwing them back into the water one by one and the dad says, “Son, why are you doing this? You can’t help them all.” And the little boy picks up another one and says, “I know but what I’m doing matters to that one.”
Well, I’m probably not telling the story perfectly but you get what I’m saying. If we can bless one or two families, wouldn’t that be enough? No, we can’t change their lives but we can show them that we care.
I’ve been selling most of our stuff for the past few weeks and every once in a while, I give something away for free. I gave a lady 7 nice patio chairs and she spontaneously hugged me and that was more satisfying than all the money we got from the things we sold.
Because I’m a “doer” by nature, I’m always wanting to do “big” things, but recently with all the changes in plans and my kids being redirected here and there, I’m seeing that sometimes it’s more important to just be available. The doing will come eventually.
By the way, plan D is to leave tomorrow, and head to Bloomington for the IU/Buckeyes game (O-H anybody?), then head to Columbus to visit Brent’s mom and then we will see what happens next. I can’t decide if living this way is exciting or terrifying and I guess the truth is a little bit of both.
God has just impressed on me this past week that this year is a gift and I need to be ready (and willing) to give back.