Monday, October 04, 2004

Catching Up

It's been about 3 weeks since my last entry. Almost a month. Way too long.

Sometimes I don't do entries or write about stuff cuz I can't think of anything to write about - or at least not anything that's "blog-worthy". Or I don't write about stuff cuz the stuff on my mind right then's too personal, too revealing, or too one-sided. But, surprisingly often, I don't do or start a blog entry cuz I can't think of a title.

A lot's happened since the last entry, including another trip up to my parent's house for a weekend. It was origionally supposed to be a(3-day, Sat-Mon) weekend, but Katrina cut her finger bad enough for a trip to the ER and 8 stitches(3 on the inside, 5 on the out) the Saturday night we were up there, so, since she wasn't gonna be returning to work that next Tuesday, we stayed up there till Wednesday morning(this past Wednesday). She was origionally supposed to get the stitches out this past Saturday, but she went to the doctors on Saturday only to learn that the cut's infected, so the stitches are still in. She's also still out of work, till at least this next Wednesday.

Overall, this trip home went much better than the last one, at least in terms of things between my dad and me. We only had one unpleasant/awkward discussion this time, which is major progress over last time. That one discussion was enough to really convince me that he's thoroughly unsaved as well as thoroughly disinterested in receiving anything that might point or lead him in the direction of salvation. Or, to put it more "Biblically", he definitely does NOT have "ears to hear". I'm no Calvinist, nor is my(concept of) "God in a box", but if it's possible for anyone to be beyond/outside the saving Grace of God, he's the closest of anyone I know!

I don't mean to be sarcastic or snide or smug here, but it's even got me seeing the Grace of God as being not only active in, but THE(main, if not sole) REASON why my dad was so detached from me and my life when I was growing up(as well as since then, but especially then). While growing up(as well as since), I basically had a "father", but NOT a "dad", and I've always resented this fact and always had a rather difficult time in seeing God or grace or anything positive or benevolent(etc.) in the father I ended up with and/or our "Living Years/Dead Poet's Society" relationship(if you can call it that?) . And I've suffered from the scars of that, and know and see much evidence that I continue to. Perhaps I always will, I don't know.

But now, as much as his detachment from and lack of involvement in(or support of) my life has always harmed and bugged me, I'm(also) beginning to see God's hand in it. My father's so self-righteously calloused when it comes to genuinely Spiritual things - and so convinced that he doesn't need them and/or he's right and they're wrong, etc. - that - at least in some/many ways - I'm genuinely and sincerely glad that he _wasn't_ any more involved in or any more of an impact or shaping element on my childhood than he was. I know that sounds cruel, or even "rationalizational" and/or defensive. But it's also the truth, whatever else it is, says, or means.

Of course, I also know that, even here, "the apple doesn't fall far from the tree". Which is another way of saying that even tho I'm saved, know I'm saved, put Scripture and the Genuine Trinity above and before his would-be trinity of science, education, and money, I still have those same strong self-righteous, prideful tendencies. I know I have some of the same - or at least very similar - struggles with being as dependent on and/or yielded to God as I should and need to be. I know that's a strong factor in my lack of consistent "spiritual disciplines", as well as in many other areas of my spiritual(and "secular") life. So that's something to work on and a very useful insight.

Rebekah continues to grow and to change almost as fast. All partiality aside, she's truely an amazing kid, and in far more than one way. I'm learning so much from her - about life, about God, about our relationship with Him, about myself, etc. As her personality develops and blossoms, I'm getting to know her better and better. And I feel truely honored and blessed by that priviledge.

Things in our domestic/marital life are also improving - albeit verrry gradually, slowly, and in "fits and starts" rather than anything linear or without downturns. We had a meeting with our pastor, Randy, last week. In and of itself, it was very unsatisfying/unsatisfactory - mostly cuz Kat's "tune" changed _radically_ (from what it was during the meeting) the minute we got home, but I'm still optimistic(and still trying to keep a "the jury's still out" open mind) about where this initial meeting could lead. We have another one scheduled for after church next Sunday. So that's, hopefully, something good and definitely something to keep in prayer.

My personal spiritual life is also improving, in similarly verrry gradual, slow, non-linear fashion. As much as I know that satan's gonna increase the frequency and severity of his attacks as I prioritize and get more proactive about my desires and efforts to grow spiritually and closer to God(and more like Him, etc.), and as much as I know that marriage is one of his "favorite" ways and places to attack married folks, I'm also encouraged cuz I see positive changes in my reactions and responses to and attitudes about those attacks. It's not always perfect, and I don't always follow thru on my "better" thoughts and/or desires, but my reactions and responses and attitudes definitely _are_ improving.

I'm also learning a lot in and thru my/our marital struggles. About life, about people and relationships, about God, about myself, etc. Of course, the "trick" is in APPLYING what we've learned(or think we've learned) from this/them - or anything else. But at least I'm seeing stuff to apply, even tho I'm sure I don't always apply it or apply it as well or as quickly or as thoroughly as I "should" or could or hopefully will grow into doing(more consistently) in the future.

This is yet another blog entry that's turned out considerably differently than I expected it to when I thought about what I might write(and/or how I might phrase it) before I started. That seems to happen a lot. Which makes me glad that this is a cyber-journal, rather than one on traditional paper, cuz cyber ones are so much easier to delete stuff from and/or otherwise edit. I don't know if I'll edit this one yet, or how much, but at least doing it'll be easier this way if I do than it would be with a "regular" journal.


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