Monday, March 02, 2009

Snow Day

Last night I decided that today would be a "snow day" for me, meaning an unexpected day off from work (since there is absolutely no snow in Chattanooga). Yesterday was a hard day. I didn't want to go to church but made myself, largely because I was supposed to go out to lunch with some friends (and their brother and sister-in-law who were visiting) afterward and a little because I knew I needed to go.

My heart is so fickle. I spent Friday night, Saturday morning, and Sunday night at "Inquirers Fellowship" at my church, which is a series of classes you have to attend before joining our church. As I sat in the class Saturday morning, I was so glad to be in the Word and learning more about God. But I had a conversation Saturday afternoon that reminded me that I was pretty irritated with God and how fallen the world is. It's silly, but hearing how another "strong Christian guy" mistreated one of my friends in a dating relationship just made me mad at God and how hard relationships are. And then I realized that I had developed some expectations of God because I've been "so good" in the dating arena. Yuck.

Saturday night was suppose to be a fun night with my neighbor and Oliver, but it ended up being not fun and a lot of serious conversation (about my neighbor's struggles). I think it made my "funk" even deeper--in part because we only talked about my neighbor, and I felt very unloved--as if neither of them care about what is going on with me (as neither asked me anything about me) and that feeling reminded me of how selfish and self-centered I am. And then I realized that I really need a best friend in Chattanooga. I'm blessed with some great friends here but not a go-to best friend, and I miss that and need it.

But more than that I need my heart to be softened to the Lord and to spend some time with Him. So today I'm resting, spending time in prayer and the Word, and enjoying the "snow."

p.s. I'm grateful for the latte I will soon be enjoying and job flexibility.


Isabella said...

Great, great post...

1) I am so thankful that you're taking a day for yourself - it is so important that we respect ourselves and allow ourselves that downtime.

2) "And then I realized that I had developed some expectations of God because I've been "so good" in the dating arena. Yuck." -- oooh, this one really convicted me because I have been experiencing some of the same frustrations with God and relationships. I struggle so much with wanting to be content but not complacent...wanting God's timing but also wanting to know the details and that the end result will make me happy. Yuck.

Praying for both of us...

W T G said...

Hi Ally - In regards to the 'strong Christian' who wronged your friend - please remember that Christians still sin. Though we are saved we are not immune from temptation and we still have free will hence why we sometimes feed our sinful nature. thnakfully God is merciful and paitent with us. I feel Jesus get's a terrible rap on account of what we 'Christians' do. BTW - why must one 'take classes' to 'join' a Chruch? curious on that one.

Enjoy the day and many good cheers and smile big because Jesus LOVES YOU ! : )

Mamacita said...

According to Libby, March is worse than Feb for the blahs and blues. I'm holding out on my opinion since today is sunny and hopeful but yesterday was rather gloomy to me and a couple of my guys were sick to top it off.

I hear what you're saying about expectations for God. Expectations are just a problem for me, in every why should my relationship with God be so different? I'm having to do a lot of heart weeding lately. Sounds like you're doing the same. Press on. Yesterday I listened to a Tim Keller sermon where he quoted from Jer 45:5, "Do you seek great things for yourself? Seek them not..." Such a relief to just TRUST.

Let's set up coffee soon...if you don't mind being seen with a hugely prego girl. I'm about 6 weeks shy, ya know, but still love my cup o' joe.

TC said...

I think we're all guilty of that selfish feeling of wanting people to care about how WE are doing. No matter what all is going on in someone else's life, they aren't the only ones struggling sometimes.

Enjoy your "me" day (or snow day, whichever you want to call it). Sometimes, those mental health days are so, sooooo necessary.

PS: A snow day without snow is definitely MY favorite snow day :-D

Ally said...

Isabella: Thank you sweet friend. I think I understand the content v. complacent struggle. When I'm complacent it's easier to be content, but I wonder if I'm suppose to be more than complacent.

WTG: Absolutely--part of this funk is the realization of my own sin and our fallen nature (which only makes Jesus seem that much more incredible to me). I think the more we grow in our faith the mroe we see our sin--and the more we realize how tremendous Christ's love/sacrifice is.

As for the classes, I think it's really important to understand what a church believes and is striving for before you formally join it. It's easy to assume that a church shares your theology when in fact, it may not in some important (Scriptural) ways--that permeate the teachings (although in the past I've not realized until some time later). Thanks for the well wishes.

Mamacita: Yes, praise God for the sunshine today! I needed it. Coffee would be lovely.

TC: Yes, this is definitely a needed mental health day. I just told the office I wasn't feeling well, which is the absolute truth.

Princess Extraordinaire said...

It's those days we take for ourselves that can be so rejuvinating - especially when in the unsurpassed company of The Lord.

L.C.T. said...

Firstly I love the P.S. there.

Secondly, if you're going to take a snow day with no snow, I couldn't think of a better excuse. That shows how much God is your priority and I love that.

If you can, can you update us on how that went? I love to hear how God blesses people when they devote real time to Him.

Here's to praying that your day was a blessing.

Anonymous said...

I hope you found what you were searching for today. Answers and peace.

I think we all deserve a "snow day" every now and then.

Kimberly said...

Our Bible study tonight was about how much we need to spend time studying the Word...and how sometimes it is during times of drought that our spiritual roots are getting deeper even though we don't feel like we are making any progress. The image they gave was that the tap root (largest root) of a tree grows the deepest during times of drought when it is trying to find water, but then that root is what makes the tree strong and resistent to the wind later. It's nice to know that being persistent in my time with God might still be paying off even if I still feel like I have a bad attitude and I'm stuck in a funk...I'm not sure that any of this made sense, but thanks for keeping me thinking about all this.

KennethSF said...

Your snow day is turning out to be quite reflective. I suspect the "strong Christian guy" in question is just a misguided individual. His poor judgment and conduct may have more to do with his character and integrity than with his religious belief.

Ys said...

I am feeling in a smilar place myself: feeling like I'm too selfish and need to spend more time with God. Just today I literally read one line of scripture (I have this thing on my desktop that gives me daily quotes from the Bible) and I immediately felt a little lighter. Like you, I'm going to spend some time with God today, giving thanks. You've just got to remember that God doesn't make the bad in the world, he guides those who wish to be guided.

OK Chick said...

Good for you! I think taking a "snow day" is a wonderful idea. I hope it was a great day, and you were able to relax and recover.

Sometimes I get in those funks. I know for me, I start to feel down in the dumps, and then being around people that are either down in the dumps or having problems, just makes it worse. I try to be patient and listen to their struggles, or encourage them; but really I just want to yell- ME! What about me? I need a friend right now, can't you see that!!!
I haven't figured out the right way to handle all this. But for now I'm trying to read my bible more, because the big man upstairs knows I need someone; and more than likely he's reaching out to me.

I hope things get better. Hang in there.

Ally said...

Ok Chick: You hit the nail on the head when you wrote "but really I just want to yell- ME! What about me? I need a friend right now, can't you see that!!!" That's how I was feeling this weekend. Definitely feeling better today. Thanks.

Ys: Our selfishness stinks! But yes, just being in the Word a little helps. Hope you had some good time with the Lord.

Kenneth: Yes, I'm almost sorry I wrote "strong Christian guy" b/c I didn't mean to indicate that his poor handling of the matter was because of his faith. Instead I know it was just a result of his sin and our fallen and broken state. Regardless (and right or wrong) I think it's more disappointing to me because he is a Christian.

Kimberly: I am grateful for your comment. What a great image of how we might be growing (in spite of our funk).

FC&F: Thanks...I found that I need to spend more time with the Lord--and not just when I get to feeling awful.

L.C.T.: I'll update in my next post. And I am trying to make God my priority sort seems He become a much bigger priority when I'm struggling :)

PE: "Unsurpassed" is exactly right.

Bone said...

For the past few years, there have been two people I felt like I could talk to about anything for as long as I needed. One got married last year. And the other, we tried dating, then couldn't go back to friends. Well, we tried to, but it was never anywhere close to being the same.

So I've been dealing with the lack of a real good friend lately. There's just a big void in my life there.

Jennifer said...

One of the reasons I love reading your blog is because of how honest you are about your relationship with God. It kind of reminds me a lot of how mine looks with Him. Messy, full of struggles and questions, but absolutely glorious and genuine. I admire your honesty and realness in the places you feel angry with Him at. Isn't it great that He is big enough to handle those things? I also think your thoughts and feelings are normal - I think one of the reasons I quit being so good in the dating arena at one point because I was angry at God for not giving me someone. If He wanted me to be pure than He should have made a way for that pureness. Either way, He and I worked all that out. I appreciate you sharing there - your transparency is a gift.

I don't think we as women ever outgrow the need for a best friend. I've been feeling that void too for one close female friend and I just don't have it. I'm sad that your neighbor and Oliver didn't spend any time wanting to know where you were at. That feels hard and I'm sorry you were missed.

Glad you're taking a snow day. I am constantly amazed at how you know what you need and when you need it. Your'e very kind to yourself. I wish I was more like that and in tune with what my heart needed.

Enjoy the snow friend.

Ally said...

Bone: That definitely creates a void. I'd blessed with some close friends, but it's not the same when they live hours away.....

Jennifer: I was just thinking about what you wrote--that it's fabulous to have a God who is so big and loving that He can handle me being irritated and feeling like I deserve X, Y, and Z. I appreciate your encouragement and sweet words. You're a gift.

ella said...

I'm over Christian guys. They can be just as douchey as non-Christain guys and often have more issues.

brunettekoala said...

Oh Ally, I totally hear ya! Been so mad myself about Christian guys who've treated my Christian friends like pants, and then I realise how much I put them on a pedestal. As a result a few of them have ended up rejecting God, which is even more pants.

And as for needing a best friend, I've been there. I have some great friends here in Edinburgh. But my 'best friend' lives in another city. That can be tough.

Anyway, I'm praying for you. Thank you for your honesty and openness. Hoping you're already in a cheerier more settled place...

Thomas said...

I had a bit of an ice day today, Ally.