days out of the box

Yesterday I:

  • was awakened in the wee hours by vomiting and coughing.  Renee was running to the bathroom with our 8-week-old daughter, Ayda, who has been coughing so much and so hard that it induces vomiting, and Ethan, our 3-year-old, who was also vomiting;
  • tried to explain the reasons for an upcoming job change to my mother, and to mitigate her anxiety over all the possible ramifications of such a change;
  • cried as I read an email from friends who were grieving the miscarriage of their miracle baby – an unlikely pregancy about which they and their other children were overjoyed, a pregnancy which we had only recently celebrated together in the foyer of our church with cheers, laughter, jumping, applause, and a sharp gleam of anticipation;
  • prayed after reading another email from friends requesting prayer for their little boy with Down’s Syndrome who, after having begun eating regular food only in the last year, after years of having to be fed through a tube, has regressed and stopped eating again;
  • accepted and signed an offer letter for a new job to start at the end of February which I have not yet announced to my current employer;
  • had an exciting phone conversation with a friend about the possibilities for the near-term realization of a long-term dream to participate in a local, community-service outreach through a coffee-shop, music and ministry venue;
  • submitted to a drug-screening and physical exam for the new job and was told that I am drug-free and in good health in spite of my age;
  • had a tense conversation with Renee about our doctor’s diagnosis indicating Ayda has RSV and trying to discern the difference between the advice of our doctor and the internet-based education Renee had received after hearing the diagnosis;
  • registered for my second marathon which will take place on May 4th here in Fort Collins in which I’ll be joined by my sister-in-law;
  • read an atheist’s blog, decrying the injustices of religion and the miserable people who propagate its dogma, and felt overwhelmed and frustrated by my inability to effectively counter such notions due to the volume of time and words that would be required without some miraculous intervention; 
  • attempted to feign interest in ongoing business strategy discussions with my current employer;
  • struggled to control the overwhelming sense that I am out of control without a compass or sense of direction in a precarious environment;
  • spent too much money on things only marginally necessary while sensing a conviction that I must be more responsible and offering thanks to God for his ongoing and consistent provision for my family in spite of my lack of merit;
  • was greeted warmly by the affectionate hugs and largely incomprehensible words of my sweet 2-year-old, Meghan;
  • enjoyed a wonderful dinner with the majority of my family quickly assembled around our dinner table, set with a simple but delicious meal lovingly prepared by my wife;
  • attended play rehearsal at the church for our Good Friday production and attempted to discern the best method and voice with which to deliver the last words of Jesus while suspended from a fake cross with fake nails and fake blood;
  • spent almost 2 hours discussing the potential hazards and debilitating impact of internet pornorgraphy and the deceptive, disfunctional lifestyle it engenders;
  • discovered my beautiful 5-year-old, Ellie, up way too late, waiting for me outside the bathroom door, and tucked her into bed with a kiss and a prayer and a CD playing quietly about a ramblin’ road trip.

The point of that recitation is not to set my day apart from any other and proclaim its superiority or inferiority in any aspect, but to recognize that life is fleeting and precious, and wiry.  It tends to get out of the box in which I try to contain it.  Life is unpredictable and inexplicable.  Life is abundant, but not comfortable, and my emotional state or intellectual resolve should never be indicative of its value and purpose.  To know why and how are God’s business, much to my dismay.  To give and to receive, to mourn and to rejoice, to embrace and defend, these things, somehow, are my business.

3 thoughts on “days out of the box”

  1. 1. New job? Share
    2. Kathryn had RSV too…sucked but she got over it in about 1 week. Give it time.
    3. we should talk again so. Give me a call.
    tell renee i said hi!


  2. After I read this, I was looking at your pictures here, and reading some of the captions. I was struck by how FULL your life is. Sure it has ups and downs, is full of struggles, and joys, and even mediocre moments, but it is full. Not in a busy way, but in a good way. Like at Thanksgiving after you eat the big meal and sit back in your chair with a satisfied sigh and think, “That was good. Life is good.” Full.


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