It's been an incredible day.
The whole family piled into the car and trooped over to the AT&T center here in San Antonio where "church" was produced by Michael W. Smith and Max Lucado. Amazing worship service...incredible atmosphere worshipping with 14,000 other people. Amazing. MWS looked very tired.
After the trauma of yesterdays events I called my parents to see if today was going better, only to find out it most definitely wasn't. My mother, mild mannered and always smiling spent the morning screaming at her ex-husband for leaving her (he's not her ex-husband, she's just delusional during these times), threatened to kill him - including looking for his gun and threatening to cut him to pieces with a knife. She did calm down slightly while she waited for the police to arrive. That's right, she called the cops on him.
Besides deflecting the things Mrs. Hyde was throwing at him, he also got to prove to the police that he was supposed to be there, and the cars that he wouldn't allow her to drive belonged to him.
He's very tired. And we're questioning whether Namenda is actually part of the cause of her new-found violent streak. If you pray for him, or us, pray we use wisdom in making medicinal decisions for her.
I've spent a lot of time just sitting quietly before God today. I haven't the faintest idea what to say and I'm struggling with putting mom out of my mind while I worship. God deserves better than my distraction, and He also deserves for my worship to be focused on Him rather than a constant cry of "please make this better." My mind is full tonight.
That did not stop God from continuing the work He had begun in me recently. He's pushing me to watch my words, to not criticize or complain, but He's also pushing me to begin encouraging others. It's ironic how much easier it is for me to stop one bad habit than it is to start another one. I can stop complaining a lot easier than I can begin encouraging others.
Ironically enough, the pastors message tonight was about our words (surprise, surprise) and how our words are like seeds and they produce after their own kind. If I plant words of encouragement and affirmation, I will reap such - if I reap frustration and complaints, I can tell I have not planted the right seeds.
I sat down tonight to eat supper and pulled out my Bible to read as I ate, and I felt pushed to go to Hebrews chapter 3:8. I read the corresponding passage that ended up from Hebrews 3:7-14
7Therefore, as the Holy Spirit says,
"Today, if you hear his voice,
8 do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion,
on the day of testing in the wilderness,
9where your fathers put me to the test
and saw my works for forty years.
10Therefore I was provoked with that generation,and said, 'They always go astray in their heart; they have not known my ways.'11 As I swore in my wrath, 'They shall not enter my rest.'"
12Take care, brothers, lest there be in any of you an evil, unbelieving heart, leading you to fall away from the living God. 13But exhort one another every day, as long as it is called "today," that none of you may be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin. 14For we have come to share in Christ, if indeed we hold our original confidence firm to the end.
Reading it now, I wonder why the thought occurred to me before, but it seemed as obvious as the nose on my face that exhorting others would help ME not be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin.
It doesn't seem to read that way now that I'm looking at it though, but I'm still holding onto my original interpretation of it simply because I know my own heart. I know the reason that I struggle with encouraging other people is simply because of deceitful sin in my heart. You might not understand, and it might not be something you struggle with, but it's right there smack dab in the middle of my heart. It's one of the few things I can actually say I "wrestle" with. I can feel it rising in me when I try to encourage someone, but God is working on me.
So, until God finishes working this in me you may be seeing me on this topic again soon.
But I want to explain something about why this post is so... odd. Why do I include the days events, the struggle with my mothers alzheimers along with the words of Hebrews 3?
I have an answer, and it is in bold because I want you to read it, and then go back and read it again firmly to yourself.
God does not stop teaching you in the bad times. God doesn't sway all of your teaching and learning to revolve around a hard time you are facing. He expects you to trust Him with that situation and yet still continue to grow and seek Him. Your relationship with Christ isn't about what situations you face or whether you are happy, sad, mourning, or joyful.
It is for all of those times.