Thursday, September 9, 2010

Car Troubles, Actually

Well, shoot. Sometimes this life stuff just gets in the way of things.

I come to you tonight completely low on life. For pretty much no reason at all. Just being a little transparent and flawed here.

I was thinking on Sunday as they were reading the Scriptures from the pulpit that it would be utterly amazing to meet someone whose feelings never changed. What if you or I were able to be emotionally consistent 100% of the time, yet not be a robot? What if people could always know what to expect from us, yet always be surprised?

This is what it's like to learn about God. That's theology. It's so outside my realm of experience, and so foreign to who I am.

Today was a doozy. All I wanted was to get my car inspection (emissions test) taken care of on my one day off, and they had to go ahead and tell me I needed a $1700 repair for them to be able to do it. I left for a second opinion and got the quote down to $1350. Then I went to look at buying the parts and paying for installation. Now we're down to around $1200. Not too shabby. The guy at the parts place tells me to try to one other mechanic before I do anything else. I go. This guy tells me he can take care of me for $378. Excuse me?

Mind you, I don't have any of this money. I have the sixty bucks for diagnostics and emissions, but that's about where it ends. If you really know me, you know I'm working 2 jobs as it is. I opt for the $378 and I feel elated for a couple hours, until reality sets in. At some point, I'm gonna have to pay that $1200 for this silly car, and all my dreams of financial liberty and freedom are in the can. House arrest.

It's times like these when I watch my feelings and emotional state rise and fall based on my circumstances that I know, I just know, there are spiritual forces at play. How can I react with so much feeling to something so ephemeral as money? It's barely even a concrete idea. And hey, it's plastic when it comes to me. You don't even see the actual stuff itself!

Other things I saw today that mattered to me much less, apparently: tornado-destructed buildings in the nearby city; someone getting into a car accident because of our flash-flood conditions. 

The point is, my soul is challenged today to remember the things that are true, at all times, not just in the heat of the moment -- also in the dull aftermath. I must remember the ultimate things, which I can take with me when I go someplace where the cars and the money (paper or plastic) can't come with me. 

Check out Jeremiah 31:
This is what the LORD says:
       "The people who survive the sword
       will find favor in the desert;
       I will come to give rest to Israel."
 3 The LORD appeared to us in the past, saying:
       "I have loved you with an everlasting love;
       I have drawn you with loving-kindness. [...]
16 This is what the LORD says:
       "Restrain your voice from weeping
       and your eyes from tears,
       for your work will be rewarded,"
       declares the LORD.
       "They will return from the land of the enemy.   
17 So there is hope for your future,"
       declares the LORD.

To believe it, and to take Him seriously, is one of the hardest things I can attempt when my small plans are failing me. I am so frustrated over something so non-epic. Earlier, I was elated over such a small victory. Do you understand? I am so inconsistent, so shifting.

His love is everlasting. I need the everlasting. This up and down sure isn't feeling good to me. BUT, there is hope for my future (declared the LORD!). And I'm just going to take His word for it.

In other news, I wanted to share this song with you. I named my blog after this song, but I betcha didn't know that. Some of the lyrics apply to my attempts to transcend and remember to go with ... my soul! ('Pearls, necklaces .... I ain't seeking to have'.)

Soon I'll return with something a little less mundane. I know I'll finally open my eyes to the sublime somewhere on this winding way tomorrow.

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