It's a hot, middle-of-the-summer kind of day. I am at the laundromat - oh joy. Part of the reason I am there is that it's a hot summer day, and everything will be able to dry on the clothesline before the sun sets. This is also a bad idea, because a laundromat is not the place you want to be when it's stifling.
So I wrestle my basket into the car and head home, and pulling up I realize that I don't have any additional clotheslines. It had been the last thing I'd said to my husband two hours ago when I was leaving - please, make sure the lines are up when I get back.
People are more easily irritated when it's hot - did you know that? "They" just did a big study on it as reported on the ten o'clock news - what a surprise...
I am not a happy camper. I hang up a few things and leave the basket with the rest and head into my room, the only room with air conditioning. I reach for my journal and start writing out my frustrations. As I recount how I am both disappointed and angry, I am reminded about other things in my life that are not working, and the more I think, the more I remember and the more irritated I get. My writing grows larger and wilder, then suddenly I stop, and I say to the Lord that this isn't helping and I give this all to You - my disappointment that once again my husband has not done what I counted on him to do, the fact that my mattress is old but I can't get a new one because I may not be living here for much longer, my anger at the one who is keeping us flustered about this living situation, my anxiety about returning to the teaching world after being a stay-at-home mom for ten years and worry about what school would possibly hire someone with a resume that looks like mine.
I laid it all out before my Lord and said, "I am putting all this in Your hands,” and I took a nap, which felt like all I was able to handle at that point.
There are familiar verses in Philippians 4 that have taken on a new understanding for me since reading them in the New Living Translation. " Don't worry about anything; instead pray about everything. Tell God what you need and thank him for all he has done. If you do this, you will experience God's peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus." I don't understand everything these verses are saying, but I do know that by making these things God's "problem" and no longer my own that I was more at peace. It didn't solve the problems but it took them out of my hands, and off my mind, and most importantly out of the emotional quagmire that was my heart.
When I woke up, I found that not only had my clotheslines been hung, but the rest of the clothes had been hung up as well.
Three days later we were given a mattress that is ten times better than the one we had, and along with it a great blue microfiber recliner.
The beauty of it being a blue chair is this: I have a blue chair at home and here it is that I sit in the mornings with my Bible, journal, and of course, my coffee. When I came to this place I had no "blue chair" and had mentioned it in passing to my husband. Throughout the weeks I've tried different places as my "blue chair." (The hammock was great, but it's very hard to journal there ...)
My husband was very excited that he'd found me a "blue chair"; I was amazed because I'd never felt he "got" that part of me before, and now here was evidence to the contrary.
The writer in me is fascinated by how the Author of all brings things to pass. He's taken these things I gave to him and fixed them in such amazing ways. Who would have imagined that suddenly I'd be given a mattress? Or that the acquisition of a new chair would serve as affirmation that maybe the man I married does occasionally "get" me?
I am filled with an anticipatory curiosity to see what is going to happen next.
There is still the matter of a house and a job that I placed in those ingenious hands.
My creative mind has already been blown away, so how the rest of the plot is to unfold I can't even imagine...