Man Night, home, & other musings…

Sitting in the coolness of my office with a fan blowing on me drinking an iced-coffee. All to try to avoid the heat of the day, the heat that has been turned up to “11.” Thinking over the soon-to-be-happenings of Man Night. Proverbs 27, especially verse 17.

As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens the countenance of another

Got me thinking about the ‘act’ of sharpening… & how in order for a tool (like an axe, a knife, or a sword – c’mon, it’s Man Night, so I’m thinking of wielding Manly tools) to be sharpened, one has to strike the item to be sharpened, skillfully, in just the right places with an item or implement that is stronger & harder than the item to be sharpened.

So how does ‘iron sharpen iron?’ One way for this to work is for the ‘sharpening iron’ to have been tempered – or put through a process of controlled reheating to harden & strengthen the implement. Interesting….

I wonder how this ‘tempering’ translates to people, to me. What does the heating process do? I don’t think of getting heated to red-hotness being something that is desirable.

But the process makes the forever-changed implement useful. To shape other implements. Hmm.

Regret raises her head occasionally, usually at times where I’m most pensive & introspective. Kinda like when I’m doing the deep cleaning of a room at home… opening up ALL the drawers, going through the corners of the closets, making sure the lights are on in order to see just what is in there… & then I discover a Mess. A big Mess that I distinctly remember thinking that I’d eventually get around to cleaning up. A big Mess that was forgotten, due to the forgetfulness caused by falling into routine busyness. A big Mess that begs to be addressed. But it’s such a big Mess. The only way to deal with the Mess is to put on the special gloves & head into it. A little bit at a time.

Even if it hurts.

Home is ultimately not about a place to live but about the people with whom you are most fully alive. Home is about love, relationship, community, and belonging, and we are all searching for home. Erwin Raphael McManus – Soul Cravings – Entry 8

That resonates with me – I think its because when I think about home, I don’t think about a place. Granted, I live in Sparks, Nevada, & have been a resident of Northern Nevada within 35 miles of my current home, all of my life. But instead of Sparks, I think of people. Faces flash through my minds eye. People that are intimately associated with being ‘home.’ Home is people, & being in a place without those people would be unbearable. No matter how ‘cool,’ elegant, spacious, or desirable that place is.

I see that I have changed. I’m changing.. Will continue to change. At one point in the not so distant past, home was being in my Cave. The place where I could be by myself & get lost in a book, a TV show, or a good movie. Alone. Where I didn’t have to be WITH people. Looking back, I can see times where even in the presence of people I’d try to be apart from them, to be by myself, to isolate & withdraw in the name of my (very real,) introversion. I regret that. The lost opportunities to discover “home” with others. With myself. Where I’d been so focused on my own discomfort that often comes being around people that I missed the joy & wonder of being WITH people.

A hard thought: in not being WITH people, I missed out on things that God wanted to do in & around me THROUGH people.

I don’t want to ‘miss’ God & ‘miss’ others in the name of a misguided self-sufficiency. Fear has stolen enough from me: fear of rejection. Inadequacy. Pain. Being unloved & unlovable. Of making a mess. Saying the wrong thing. Saying nothing. (like the lyrics from REM’s “Losing My Religion” “oh no, I’ve said too much; I haven’t said enough…” ) How many things, friendships, experiences I missed out on because of fear. Knowing that if I couldn’t do it perfect, I wouldn’t try it at all.

Heavy sigh.

So I’m thankful for the process & act of redemption. That as long as its still called today, its never too late for things lost to be regained, restored, healed, & transformed.

a phone conference & other musings on a Tuesday…

Just finished with a 2 hour phone conference call. I’ve had conference calls before, but this is the first one of this type, with 80 other people. The Good News was that there was a feature on the phone program used for the call that would allow all 80 people to mute their phone line (so background noise from each persons’ environment wouldn’t be projected to all on the call. The Bad News was that the instructions for muting were wrong. Not just inaccurate – but wrong. In order to mute the line, we had to press the # key, something the instructions specifically said NOT to press.

Fortunately, when it comes to technology & instructions, I usually follow the “if it doesn’t work, try anything that you’ve found that works on other applications,” method. And it worked. It was a little bit fun to hear assorted (& anonymous) intra-office conversations from those that thought their line was muted. But I am easily amused.

Thanks for the invention of Speaker Phone. I toughed it out for the first 45 minutes because the background noise & distractions were minimized that way… but an ear can only take so much. And both of mine reached their limit.

Reminds me of my days as a reception for PERS. I worked there before Al Gore’s nifty “internet invention” had caught on, so there were quite a few incoming calls… in the years I did the job, I worked it out that there were an average of 650 calls a day.

I still remember the day I got a headset to replace the handset. Almost wept with joy.

It’s January 5, & my thoughts turn to… filing taxes. Go figure.

One of the more challenging relational issues I have with the ladies of my family is their propensity to spontaneously make decisions to do something without having taken adequate time to prepare for their ensuing actions. Spontaneity is fine with me, as long as it can be… planned out. Hmm.

I wonder if being spontaneous is tied to being an Extrovert.

When I think about it, I’m amazed they put up with me. Perhaps they just work around me.

TheWeez turns 13 tomorrow, which means I now have 3 teenagers. In this season of life & parenting, I find myself shooting up more & more quick prayers… especially when talking about the proposed future of Pasty. IDoey’s driver’s license countdown. TheWeez… being beautiful, witty, & loads of fun… & 13 going on 22.

As if you were already tired of hearing this: I have added yet another kettlebell exercise (the Figure 8 w/hold,) to my repertoire, bringing me to a grand total of 5 exercises that I do in a row before my body says, “Done.” My goal is to work up to 10. Can I get a “Booyah!” ?

Me & theBean were given a fantastic 2 night stay in Tahoe, which we’re taking advantage of this Friday & Saturday. Sweet!

Life is beautiful.