09 September 2010

Gin with a Straw and Taco Bell.

I've had an awful day. No one has died, no one is really terribly ill, and we are able to eat and have a roof over our heads.

I like to write about what we believe. I like to write about what we hope. I like to write about that in which we have faith.

But, a lot of the time, life just happens. And it doesn't happen according to what I've so perfectly planned and about which I've so brilliantly opined.

Sometimes, at three oclock, I text my husband and say, "Sandwiches for the kids? Taco Bell for us?" and he says, "Absolutely that's the right thing to do." And then, at five oclock, I pour myself a gin and tonic. And then at 5:03, I make it a double and add a straw.

Why? Well, because my life, like most people's lives, is sometimes not very fun. Sometimes, one child is teething, one is unable to burn all of his energy in obedient ways and consequently is literally alternating between standing on the dining room table and serious bouts of discipline, and the third, well, she's upset at herself because her S's and her 5's are looking remarkably the same and that gets on her nerves.....

And then my husband is anxious about and frustrated at inefficient beaurocracy, professors who have an axe to grind, and the unreliability of teenagers. And sometimes that, shockingly, overflows into our home life.

Sometimes all of this happens on the same day that the dryer inexplicably stops working, I realize I've forgotten a pretty big responsibility, one of our cars is in the shop, and the dogs have found yet another route of escape from the back yard.

And on those days, all of the belief and the faith and the hope and the wonderful aspirations go flying out the door; they are replaced by comfort food from a chain food store and New Amsterdam gin to take off the edge. But they aren't really replaced... or shouldn't be. The faith and hope and belief cannot stand alone, and so they are propped up by the non-homemade bean burritos and the tonic/lime/juniper concoction.

[Is it weird that our favorite homemade supper is bean burritos and our go-to fast food supper is bean burritos? you'd think, when rarely eating out, we'd order something I don't make at home, but no, I make bean burritos with salsa, onions, beans and cheese....and so does Taco Bell....]

And that's okay.

Well, maybe it's not okay. It's certainly not ideal. But, it's life. And reacting that way is better than reacting with a nervous breakdown or a silent, emotional withdrawal.

It is better to laugh and admit life stinks sometimes - too many times - than it is to pretend it is always perfect and hate your spouse/children/self or God when it doesn't turn out so perfectly.

God is good, we are fallen, and He has provided many remedies - prayer, fermentation and Taco Bell being the three relevant tonight.

So, next time you have a terrible day:

1) Know that we all do.
2) Pray. No seriously. Take a moment, sit down, and confess your sins, and obey that wonderful verse that commands that we be anxious for nothing, but in everything, by prayer and supplication, we make our requests made known to God.
3) Pour yourself a glass of wine. If that's not for you, a nice hot cup of tea, or a cold glass of the iced stuff with mint. Or a perfectly ice-cold canned coke poured over ice. Whatever it is, do it, because why? God promises that the peace of God, which surpasses our understanding, will surround our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. And he gives us many such ways to get to that peace.

If we are truly seeking peace, not avoidance or other forms of false-peace, then God will be faithful to use all sorts of vehicles for that peace.

Scripture, friends, backrubs, taco bell, and gin.

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