Monday, September 29, 2003

Cleaning Up, Cleaning Out

Did a bunch of cleanup last night and today. Deleted a bunch of my bookmarks to the sinful sites. Changed my desktop picture to one of my kitty, and trashed and deleted the three pictures I had saved on my hard drive. On my work computer I changed my screensaver. I had it written in Wingdings so no one else would know what it said, but it reminded me.

I've purposed to never again use the new AIM account I created.

Sunday, September 28, 2003

The Table

The table....the all has to do with the TABLE. This isn't just "Please forgive me Lord and thank You." It starts there, and cleansing feels good, but the table! That's the exciting thing to me. I have only to truly confess, and He is asking me to the table!

Agh! I can't put it into words. *bangs fist on desk* It all has to do with the table!

[Edit, 2 hours later.]I think I've figured out a bit of how to put this into words. It's not just about forgiveness, but restoration. That's what the table symbolized to me today.

Forgiveness and Grace, take 2

There's a verse...can't remember the address of it, but it says this, "When we are faithless, he is faithful, for He cannot deny Himself."

For the longest time I thought this was a verse of hope. But it's not. God faithfullness in this verse is His faithfulness to wound us when we are straying to bring us back. When we are faithless (by indulging in sin), He is faithful (to do whatever it takes to bring us back), for He cannot deny Himself.

In my experience, He first tries to love me back when I am straying. Good things will happen. When that fails, He'll start turning up the heat and bad things start happening. The longer I resist, the hotter He turns it up. Only once has He had to bring me to the point of utter despair before I'd listen. Usually I give in before that.

Today, I'm thinking that "forgiveness" and "grace" are about the best two words in the whole English language.

Forgiveness and Grace

Well, I got hit with the "clue by four" yesterday and it was QUITE painful. God's tried various ways to love me back to Him, but when that failed to work, He pulled out the "clue by four" and whapped me with it. It got my attention, I'll tell you that!

Among the stupid sinful stuff I've been doing, I did something else just as stupid yesterday, and this one I will share with you all - I got drunk. Not just got drunk, but then proceded to seriously get sick and threw up into the toilet for a while. Then as I lay in bed feeling awful I realized I'd been thwapped.

I crawled off to City Church this morning still feeling a bit hungover, and it all stops here today. I'm putting this secret sin I've been indulging in behind me (not the drinking since some drinking isn't wrong IMHO, I just overdid it majorly - the other thing) and I want to start over with God again. I felt so ashamed in church today, and all I wanted from God was for Him to forgive me. And I needed to be reminded of grace.

And grace I got. Because not only does He forgive, but He invites me to the table. The wine and bread have never meant so much to me. Me, who was screwing up in so many ways yesterdays, partaking in so many sins...He invites me to the table! I can't tell you what a beautiful thing that was today, to be able to take the wine and bread and know that He accepts me and cleanses me.

I feel both overwhelming sadness and happiness right now.

I don't know why I do this sometimes, going off my own way and hurting the One who loves me most. He's given me so many good gifts lately, and I just snubbed my nose at Him and took the gifts and used them on my own selfish desires. How stupid could I have been?

So God, I ask for Your forgiveness and I thank You for it. I thank You for getting my attention even if it had to hurt. And I thank You for the wonderful grace and beauty I saw in the table today. Thank You for letting me come. Thank You for grace.

He is so good.

Please, all of you, forgive me for my foolishness. I've been blind.

Saturday, September 27, 2003

Prayer and Praise

A week or two ago my Dad sent me $200. Money has been very tight since the move, so I cashed the check and used it to buy food and such. But by last Wednesday, it was all gone, and I had a doctor's appointment that ate up another $75. I turned in my receipt that very afternoon, but I knew reimbusment would take a while. I asked Ray (down the hall at work) to pray for my money situation. Thursday afternoon, in the fastest turn-around time ever, Lupe had a check for $60 for me (80% of the doctor's cost)! It's not a lot, but it should be a BIG help in getting to the next payday.

The doctor's appointment also went well. I should be able to get my meds from him, and only see him about every six months unless my med needs change.

Thursday, September 18, 2003

Missed Last Bus Home

Because of where I live now, I often barely catch the second to last bus home. So one missing bus with the next bus being late (unavoidable if the first is missing), means I miss the last bus home. This is where I found myself last night. The first driver was a newbie who got lost and was running in tandum with the bus behind, so they just sent him back to the bus garage.

Well, it was 11:30 at this point and I could tell that there was no way I'd make it to my transfer point by 11:55 when the last bus home came through. My friend encouraged me to talk to the driver about it and I finally did, asking her if there was any way to hold my connection until I got there.

She was very understanding and immediately made some phone calls to see what could be done.

When we arrived at the Eastmont Transit Center she pulled over and talked to her supervisor. The supervisor said she'd drive me! She took me all the way home and even made sure I was in the building before driving off!

The AC Transit Board of Directors may suck rotten eggs, but some of the "little people" working for them are great. I never expected anyone to care about my getting home safe.

Tuesday, September 09, 2003

Tiff with God, take 2

I know I have to talk to Him soon about this, as soon as I work up the courage to approach Him. :-p I don't think it'll be the nicest conversation since I don't like Him much at the moment, but He can handle it.

He really does mean everything to me, but sometimes something outside the boundaries is just sooo cool. Not only that, but some parts I don't see as sinful at all, some as questionable, and some as completely wrong. And even if He does answer, I'm not sure I'm prepared to do what He says right away.

This is so stupid. I can see that this is probably Satan (well, one of his minions - I'm not THAT important) trying to pull me away from God, yet I'm allowing it.

I'm so confused.

Sunday, September 07, 2003

Tiff with God

I don't want to go into details but I've gotten into a little tiff with God so that neither of us is real happy with the other at the moment. Basically, I want to do something that I see no harm in, and I feel like He's saying no. In fact, I'm afraid to ask Him because I'm afraid He'll confirm the no answer.

He wins in the end - He always does - but I'm just being a bit obstinate and angry right now. I'm basically just staring Him down with my arms crossed and saying, "No!"

Don't know what to ask people to do. I know He'll win out. This sucks big time.

I've noticed this happens a lot. I'll make some sort of big step forward (like getting my own place), and then something will happen so God and I get into it. I don't wanna have to choose.

Monday, September 01, 2003

And On the Subject of the Fuzzbutts...

I got Abby trapped Saturday night and she broke my heart with her pleadings to be let out of the cage. She's SUCH a sweet cat, and did calm down after a while.

The move was hard on both of them. I let Xena out in the large walk-in closet while the men continued to move stuff in. She hid in her carrier the whole time.

I let Abby out as soon as the men were gone. She promptly sniffed her way to the kitchen and peed on the floor. At least she did it on the linoleum and not the carpet, so it was easy to wipe up. Then she hid under my bed in the furthest corner.

Meanwhile, Xena was STILL in the walk-in closet. She had climbed into the cage and was hiding in the litterbox. She came out as she was ready.

Abby seems distressed that the view from the window has changed. They are both exploring a bit when it is quiet and they feel safe, but they both slept under the bed last night. They will probably do a bit of exploring while I am at work today.

Abby seems grateful that I'm around and climbed around on the bed a bit and let me pet her. She also dozed a bit on my legs, until I had to move.

All in all, I have two very freaked out, traumatized cats on my hands, but they will adjust in time.

I have to smile every time I open a cabinet and think about how ALL the space is MINE, or go to the bathroom and have to think to leave the door open JUST BECAUSE I CAN, or wear whatever I want without having to worry about modesty. I ordered a little nightshirt to celebrate that I CAN FINALLY WEAR IT!

For the time being, I'm leaving out food and water in bowls. I'll fill up the water dispenser and put them on a feeding schedule once I decide where I will feed them. The place it's sitting in now - I can just imagine stumbling into the kitchen half awake and spilling everything. :-p

I am no longer leaving classical music on when I am gone. I pay the electric and gas, so nothing should be in use while I'm gone. The furfaces will just have to deal with it.

Oh, Frodo died. I think it was my fault. I filled his tank back up after the move, but didn't add the conditioner. I found him floating on his side at the bottom of the tank this morning. I'll get another one. They are fairly cheap. And this time, I will always remember to put water conditioner in. :-p

A Day In Hell...

...would be better than what happened during my move.

I'm not even sure when to start. My shoulders are locked up and ache, and my pecs are sore. Will have to see if heat helps at all. Also need to see the massage therapist and the chiropractor. It's been too long.

I was scheduled for a move at 11 a.m. At 11, no truck, so I call. They will be there between 11 and 12. Ok, no prob. 12 comes along, still no truck. I call back. A woman tells me they have broken down and are running 2 hours late. Great . So I wait 2 hours. Still no truck. I call again at 1 p.m. She says that the truck could have arrived anytime between 11 and 12, so I need to wait another hour until 2. So I wait. Still no truck. I call again and a man answers and tells me no, no one's broken down, they are just running late. He gives me the driver's cell phone number and tell me to call them. (What the heck?!?)

I call the driver and he says that his men hadn't eaten that day so that has to be done first. They will arrive around 4. He also needed my address. Evidently, even though I had scheduled this, the driver knew nothing about any of it until I called. Hence, no address and no contract.

At 3:30 they called and said they were on their way. They arrived about 3:45, five hours late.

Well, the driver - his accent and light skin tell me he's probably Israeli - took one look at Abby in her cage and said they can't take live animals in the back of the truck...I needed to remove Abby and break down the cage, which, as you all know, is completely impossible. I offered to waive any rights to damage if anything happened. He kept saying no but I was very insistent and eventually he called his boss and got clearance for me to waive those rights.

And oh yes, I was told there would only be two people, so I assumed there would be room for me in the cab of the truck. Nope. They brought 3 people so the cab was full. I would have to take the bus and pay them while they waited for me. I offered to ride in the back of the truck and waive any right to damages from that, too, but they said no. (I'm just going across town, people!) I finally had to call the building owner, who offered to come and pick me up and lead the way to the new place. (The movers didn't know that either.)

The main guy, the driver, was very argumentative. Every box was another reason to argue about why they couldn't take it. They insisted on having everything boxed up tight as if we were driving cross-country. I was criticized for not being ready and not taping the boxes correctly. I was criticized for some boxes not having lids and "We can't take it if it doesn't have a lid."

Money was another argument. I was quoted one price on the phone - $278 as the minimum. I figured we could move in the minimum amount of time. I took out $440 just to be plenty safe. Well, the price now skyrockets because we've got 3 men, tape for the boxes, boxes to box stuff that doesn't have lids and such. I tell him I only have $400. He argues for a while longer but figures $400 is better than the full amount by credit card, and takes the offer. I hold back $40 for myself to buy necessary stuff until the holiday is over and I get settled and learn where to shop and such.

They were fast, but fairly careless and the driver spent more time arguing with me than working. For example, parking is impossible in my neighborhood so he said he could either double park and have me pay the ticket if they got one, or park legally further down the street and pay for the extra time it would take to walk back and forth. He said the ticket would be cheaper so I told him to go ahead and double park.

The whole thing was a fiasco. I have never seen a more insolent and argumentative mover, especially when I'm giving him $400 in cash for just a few hours' work. The entire thing was one long argument from start to finish.