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pothole

It has been quite a week. My school year officially ended last Friday with a bang: a 21-hour day which included a 3 hour exam and a 15-hour creative project. The next night we went jive dancing with some friends and on the way home, blew two tires out on a nasty pothole. Dean's car went into the shop on Monday for new tires and some minor body work. He commandeered my car, so I was without wheels for 4 days. Meanwhile, Dean had a business trip scheduled, so he drove to Vermont, parked my car at the airport, then flew to Memphis to oversee shipping and inventory at the new warehouse location for his company. When he got there, he encountered a bigger mess than he had bargained for. He called me yesterday to tell me he was extending his trip by 3 days. That leaves me in charge of leading the Sunday night church gathering and speaking.

On top of that, I have had a house guest for the past 2 weeks who is writing three exams and dealing with some curve balls that life is tossing at her (and me, too, I guess. I was very thankful that she was with me throughout the whole Tea ordeal.). I was impatient and discouraged at home group on Wednesday night, though we had several good encounters as we wandered the streets of Montreal doing random acts of kindness. Someone asked me today if I was okay. I guess things are fine. I am tired and somewhat subdued and once again, feeling like I have very little left to give.

This has been a rather tumultuous 9 months, and we have hit a few potholes. I do get deflated with the wear and tear of it all and find myself asking more frequently than usual why I do what I do. And if I am doing it well.

The answer is that I have to trust that God put me in this place (and not someone else) for a good reason. My specific set of skills and my unique personality are what are needed to bring about some good purpose here, and I am here to draw something beautiful out of the situations and people that I encounter along the way. And these people and circumstances are to accomplish something beautiful in my life as well. If I keep silent or withdraw or give up, the world is missing my voice and my influence, and I believe I have something important to add to this place. The very fact that I had trouble believing the previous sentence while I typed it means that I trust my doubt more than God's goodness and wisdom. Got to change that.

Throughout these challenging weeks, there have always been the daily moments of blissful gratitude that I find myself caught up in. I love this place we live in, I love being able to go outside and walk in the sun, I love hearing Dean's voice on the phone, I love eating out with friends, I love Arizona Green Tea, I love watermelon, I love my nice comfy bed with a sleeping cat on it, I love listening to inspiring music, I love doing laundry, I love sitting in the park and reading a book, I love going shopping with a friend and trying on silly hats, I love getting emails, I love going to city hall and encountering helpful people, I love crossing things off my 'to do' list, I love buying gifts for my family, I love the feeling of a good workout and stretch, I love taking a deep breath, I love a good hot shower, I love my hair, I love waking up every morning and seeing the light, and I love this body. Yes, I love the gift of today and I look forward to the hope of tomorrow.

Hey, I have started up on my fiction blog again, so catch the latest chapter at http://www.outwordplus.blogspot.com/.

This is a picture of the front right tire after we hit the pothole. Today I went to city hall and filed a claim for $422 (the cost of 2 brand new tires). We'll see what happens. Stay tuned.
NOTE: The claim for the tires was refused because the city is not responsible for any damage caused by the state of the roads. Oh well. God bless Montreal! And I really mean that.

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