Do the next thing…

It’s been a long, frustrating week.  It’s too much.  There isn’t any of me left, and there is so much that needs to be done.  So many things come up and all I can think is “Lord, I can’t do One.  More.  Thing.”  I can’t think or focus or give…my mind and my heart are full of THINGS and they are big THINGS…I can’t be a good missionary today.  Or a good mom or a good wife…

From an old English parsonage down by the sea

There came in the twilight a message to me;

Its quaint Saxon legend, deeply engraven,

Hath, it seems to me, teaching from Heaven.

And on through the doors the quiet words ring

Like a low inspiration: “Do the next thing.”

Many a questioning, many a fear,

Many a doubt, hath its quieting here.

Moment by moment, let down from Heaven,

Time, opportunity, and guidance are given.

Fear not tomorrows, child of the King,

Trust them with Jesus, do the next thing.

Do it immediately, do it with prayer;

Do it reliantly, casting all care;

Do it with reverence, tracing His hand

Who placed it before thee with earnest command.

Stayed on Omnipotence, safe ‘neath His wing,

Leave all results, do the next thing.

Looking for Jesus, ever serener,

Working or suffering, be thy demeanor;

In His dear presence, the rest of His calm,

The light of His countenance be thy psalm,

Strong in His faithfulness, praise and sing.

Then, as He beckons thee, do the next thing.


Maybe…I can do the next thing.



The summer I got it all together (and other fairy tales)

I had such plans.  Such dreams.  This was going to be the summer that I got it right.

Stop laughing.

We had to move–I knew that.  In my perfect little la-la-la world, we would find the perfect place (it would be miraculously inexpensive and glorious–think penthouse), I would casually pack up our stuff, tossing what we didn’t need with joyful abandon, and one day Dan and I would just throw our remaining belongings in the back of our Trailblazer and ride off into the sunset.

Stop.  Laughing.

We found the perfect place.  It is not a penthouse, nor is it cheap.  It is nice though.  I’ll take nice.  The packing of our stuff somewhat resembled a beagle digging frantically for the mole that just disappeared into it’s home.  Stuff flying everywhere, no rhyme or reason to what went and what stayed…and the moving.  Oh sweet mercy.  Dan and our friend Brian moved about 90% of our stuff in one day while Fibro and I hung out and Fibro made me progressively crazier and sicker.  On Sunday, our friend Pete joined in the moving fun while I sat in a chair and wondered why I wasn’t dead yet, because clearly Fibro had decided my time had come.  By Sunday night, most of our stuff was in the new apartment.  Turns out that I hadn’t gotten rid of quite enough stuff, which would be fine if we didn’t mind having our bed double as the dining room table and letting Patrick sleep on the couch.  Forever.

Clearly I should not be in charge of my life.

Things are somewhat settled now (please don’t open the guest bedroom door) and we are not eating on the bed, which is kind of nice.  Patrick is sleeping in his own room, and being the complacent child that he is, doesn’t seem to mind my “cardboard box” decorating style.  Bless it.  Dan goes cheerfully off to work each morning (which is literally right next door) and I attempt to discover just exactly what is in the boxes that are in the guest room and unpack stuff and put it away.  Yesterday I actually managed to get two boxes unpacked before I looked around at the sheer insanity of it all and went to find a snack.


This is the second part of my “summer that I get it all together” plan.  I was going to start running (STOP.  LAUGHING.  I’m warning you.) and lose weight and get myself into shape.  Instead, in what can only be described as the kind of freak accident that can only happen to me, I managed to tear both my ACL and meniscus.  Boarding.  An.  Airplane.  I don’t know how, so don’t ask.  I immediately realized that I would not be able to run this summer and decided to go with Plan B, otherwise known as “Eat like food is going to be banned tomorrow”.

I got this, people.  Like.  A.  Boss.

If there is a category in the Olympics for sitting and eating, you can all just go home, because I’ve won gold, silver and bronze.  Throw in Facebook and Pinterest surfing and I am Queen of the World or something.  Don’t even try to best me.  I am the bomb diggity on this one.

The final part of my “summer that I got it all together” was going to involve homeschooling Patrick all through summer.  I was going to be “that mom”.  No TV or electronics for that boy.  No way.  We were going to do field trips and every day was going to be a magical learning experience.

OK, Now I’m laughing.

Patrick has spent the summer with teams, with his dad.  He has helped build a house, and spent an entire week with a team of nursing students who thought he was the cutest thing they had ever seen and kept asking if they could just take him back with them.  It’s a 10-year-old boy’s dream, right?  17 girls all clamoring to be your favorite and get their picture taken with you?  I am going to choose to believe that even though we did no field trips (the Middle of the World doesn’t count when you’ve been there so many times that even the cleaning guys know who you are), he still carried his iPad around like it was an extension of his body and my battle cry during the move from Hell was “Oh, just go put a movie on”…he still had a good summer.  Please don’t burst my bubble on this one.  I’m fragile.  And by “fragile”, I mean “woman on the edge”.

School starts in less than a month–September 1st, to be exact.  By then, the apartment will be completely in order, those boxes will be unpacked and I will have lesson plans laid out through Christmas.  Or at least the second week in September.

This is going to be the Fall that I get it right.

Stop laughing.