Monday, July 30, 2012

Ten Reasons Not to Carpet Your House


1) It’s cleaner.  Cleaner is usually healthier, especially if you have allergies to dust, or breathing disorders.  Cleaner smells better, humid or dry.  Cleaner looks better than a dingy or worn carpet. 

2) The need for cleaning is more evident.  You can see the dirt, hair, and spills sitting on top of the floor, not buried in a forest of fibers and absorbed into the very makeup of your flooring.  It is especially useful to see messes caused by pets or children.  Because you can see this, you can remove harmful dirt (that makes flooring wear faster), thus prolonging the life of your floor. 

3) Cleaning is easier.  Brooms and even mops used to clean hard floors are lighter.  You don’t have to find a plug for them. 

4) Cleaning is quieter.  You can sweep up while other people are in bed sleeping, or watching a movie – whereas a vacuum takes over the sounds of the house. 

5) Cleaning is cheaper.  You can get a decent broom for $10 to $15.  Vacuums that work well begin at over $100.  Plus you have no bags or electricity or filters to pay for.  Brooms require minimal maintenance. 

6) There are so many steps to carpet installation/replacement.  One of the worst is carpet tacking: strips of wood with tacks sticking out the top and nails sticking through the bottom into the floor. 

7) On occasion, especially as carpet ages, the seams in the carpet wear significantly and expose the tacking to pierce bare or stocking feet. 

8) “Wood” looks better.

9) Furniture is easier to move on a hard, flat, smooth surface.

10) It is more versatile to not have carpet.  You can leave it bare, or put a rug on top of it.  Rugs are moveable.  They are washable (or beatable in your back yard).  They can be changed to fit a changing d├ęcor. 

To God be all glory. 

Monday, July 23, 2012

Still

On Friday night I asked some friends which Bible character they related to most. Mine was Mary sister of Martha. 


On Sunday I sat on a porch, the last trickles of rain spilling off the roof-edge, noise from a busy kitchen through the door at my back, and a still, sad friend sitting next to me. 


I've never thought before whether Mary felt the tug to get up and do/work/help, but chose over and over, that night, to be still and sit at Jesus' feet, to do what appeared to be nothing, because it was the one thing needed - the good part. 

I am struggling to learn the lesson of stillness, of trust, of prayer, and of waiting.


Work and waiting have the same source for the spiritual man: dependence on God, abiding in Christ.  They have the same end as well: bearing fruit.  


Later on Sunday night, some friends looked up this Hebrew word sometimes translated "wait": chuwl.  It has so much nuance of meaning and implication that I could just swim in it!  


To God be all glory.  

Wednesday, July 04, 2012

Hope for the Manifestation of the Glory of God


God has had me thinking about suffering and persecution, again.  I’m going to be honest here; I don’t want to suffer.  Nope.  I don’t even want to be unhappy.  I want to have adventure, but I want to be able to push “stop” “eject” “rewind” and control the volume, too.  I know in my head that God uses suffering.  He makes us to know Him more, to be more like Him, to be refined from the worldly desires and crutches that keep us from the pure fire of desiring His glory.  He uses the way His people suffer (with grace and faith and rejoicing) to be a witness to the world.  But I’d still rather not go through it.  Part of me always insists that God could do those things in other ways.  He’s God.  He could do things differently.  But this is the way He has made the world, made us, written this story.  Jesus asked for another way, besides the cup of suffering.  Even Jesus went through the excruciating agony of the cross.  So it seems like God’s pretty committed to the suffering theme.  And it is actually a privilege to get to experience some things that Christ did.  This goes back to how we know Him more through suffering. 

Anyway, that’s the background:  I have suffered, though not much.  I know that God uses suffering.  I know it’s likely He isn’t done sending me through painful experiences. 

So when I’m coming up on the next part of my life, but I can’t see what’s going on, I start to seize with fear.  I get really afraid that it’s coming.  What I can’t see is something bad, something painful.  If people are keeping secrets from me, it’s probably because they’re handling things so dreadful that they are even trying to shield me, but it will affect me anyway, and everything will come out, and I will hurt.  Again. 

I don’t know exactly what to call this reaction.  It’s definitely fear.  And it is fueled deeply by distrust.  And what I ought to do in a situation like that is something completely different, and almost entirely absent.  On my best days I might be able to reason myself into a theology of faith: I should trust God.  I should know that He is doing good.  I should desire His glory in whatever way He wants to make it known.  But my feelings have never caught up. 

If I trusted Him, I would see a problem and rejoice with anticipation at how God is going to work it out.  Or I should be on the edge of my seat, maybe with my chest searing at the pain of it, maybe with tears stinging my eyes, but watching all the same for the way God is going to explode forth with a revelation of His glory (even if He doesn’t do what I would consider “working it out”). 

That’s what I’m hoping to see in my life someday.  I figure, objectively, this means I’ll go through a lot of hard things.  I have practice surrendering control, clinging to God when things don’t make sense and I feel so hurt that it borders betrayal.  And I think God will build on those lessons to move me deeper towards His heart, to form in me a heart of joyful trust. 

It’s nice, I guess, to have something you know you’re not good at, but you’re working towards. 

"Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:  By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.  And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience;  And patience, experience; and experience, hope:  And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us." ~ Romans 5:1-5

To God be all glory.