Scripture for the day:
7 “Two things I ask of you, O LORD;
do not refuse me before I die:
8 Keep falsehood and lies far from me;
give me neither poverty nor riches,
but give me only my daily bread.
9 Otherwise, I may have too much and disown you
and say, ‘Who is the LORD ?’
Or I may become poor and steal,
and so dishonor the name of my God.
Uff dah. This passage makes me squicky inside. I don’t want my daily bread. I want my monthly bank account. I want weekly farmer’s markets, and daily allowance with which to peruse used bookstores and buy Fair Trade organic coffee. Even now, when all of those things are but a gleam in my underemployed eye, I look eagerly forward to the day when I will actually have a paycheck.
In short, I want comfort and security in degrees that transgress daily lines; comfort and security are my biggest idols, and I want to be able to look into the future and see both of them. I’ve been throwing fits this whole year because I’ve been stripped of both, and I don’t let go easily. But personal experience and a quick survey of human nature as a whole demonstrates that comfort and security erect some nearly impassable barriers between God and man. So I need to be grateful that I’m exactly at that point between starvation and surplus (of course, compared to about 98% of the rest of the world, I’ve well surpassed “surplus,” which I also forget far too often).
My five gratitudes for the day:
1) The ability to write. I said earlier that I appreciate “reading and writing,” but here I’m not just referring the ability to put symbols on a page and understand what they communicate–I’m meaning the ability to capture and put to words what before was merely a vague impression on my heart and mind. I’m talking about the fact that sitting at my computer typing, or sitting on my bed with a notebook and sharp pencil, scribbling away, brings such delight to me. I’m grateful that I’ve been given a passion for it.
2) Simple pleasures. I love standing outside and watching a rainstorm brewing; I love winter nights when I can sling on a pair of oversized men’s sweatpants and grab a cup of hot chocolate with real whipped cream, and read a great novel. I love the smell of old books and spices. I love the color of leaves in the fall, and buds in the spring. I love that God has imbued this world with tiny hints of what’s to come.
3) The rough draft of my paper is ready to go! Make no mistake–I can’t remember the last time I wrote a paper this poor–maybe 6th grade? Regardless, however, it is done. And while I sometimes think pulling off my own fingernails would have been more fun than trying to organize and write this paper, I’ve enjoyed researching the topic enough to see myself eventually specializing in counseling couples after one or both has had an affair.
4) That I only have one more forum to do for my online class. That’s my pride talking, so I’m not sure it’s a legit gratitude. But here’s how the forums typically go down:
Question: “Interpret this completely obscure passage and what it means for us today.”
Seminary student one: “Well, in the original Greek (begins to spew a bunch of words I can’t possibly understand).”
Seminary student two: “Yes, that’s true, but the Hebrew and Aramaic texts. . .”
Me: “Well, I mean, like, the Bible, is, like, about God, so there’s probably something of or pertaining to God in the passage or somewhere around the passage. I think. Probably.”
Seminary student one: “Lauren, I see your point. Well done.”
On the plus side, they are super nice to me. On the negative side, it’s because they’re pretty sure I’m not very bright. One forum left, and I’m free to be a non-Greek-speaking sub-par Christian in peace.
5) The next season of Project Runway is on! It is one of the two TV shows I watch with regularity: Psych makes me laugh, and Project Runway inspires me (though when the Project Runway designers are inspired, they make fantastic, and sometimes fantastically horrible, couture clothing. When I’m inspired, I sew a crooked seam and spend the rest of the episode tearing it out).
Your turn! Whatcha grateful for today?