Saturday, May 25, 2013

Starting Over

There is no worse feeling in the world than the need to start over.
I lost writing files again. Yes—I had backed them up onto a flash drive but had to temporarily move them back onto my laptop when I needed a clean flash drive.  I didn’t get a chance to put things back before the nasty Trojan decided to hijack my computer and demand a ransom. Every file was locked—I couldn’t open a thing. “They” gave me 48-hours to pay up or lose everything.
We don’t negotiate with terrorists in this house. So, my techie husband wiped the hard drive clean and began to reinstall everything from the operating system upwards. It was like getting a brand new laptop. Starting over. 
A clean slate can be a good feeling, but it can be scary when the past is destroyed.
This holds true for computer files, but even more so for health scares, dissolved marriages, prodigal children, losing a spouse or the loss of a dream. Looking forward can feel like being at the edge of a cliff. The past doesn’t look the same and the future scares us half to death.

I am learning through my computer troubles, I just need to begin again—one step at a time. Do the next thing and trust for the ability to move forward. And, when I realize afresh another file I have lost for good—I deal with the disappointment and loss again. Yet I know that there is a promise that says, “I will do a new thing…” (Isaiah 43:18-19) and I know nothing is ever wasted. I have to trust that all things will work together for good…(Romans 8:28).

Sometimes the “good” in the middle of the new thing is discovering more about myself, more about who God is, and gaining empathy for those who may be struggling with similar losses. I remember God’s word to me saying, “Do not be afraid, I will go with you” (Deuteronomy 31:6). And, I am realizing I only see a small portion of a much bigger picture—one that He is stitching together to affect eternity.

Are you at the edge of a cliff? What scares you the most?

Remember, when something wipes out your past – open the present. Seek God for the good things He will bring forth and trust Him to lead your steps forward.



"Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the desert and streams in the wasteland. Isaiah 43:18-19


Wednesday, May 22, 2013

How Do You Wait?

I checked my email for the hundredth time—nothing! I feel like Yukon Cornelius in his quest for gold. But for me, I’m hoping for word about a job interview outcome for my daughter. They say a watched pot never boils—well a watched email account never dings.

Waiting is hard.

I know some who are waiting for word about test results. Others are waiting for the phone to ring. Still others are waiting till just the right time to begin a project. Wait, wait, wait.

Ever notice wait is a four-letter word?

I find it difficult to be productive while I’m waiting. Do you? I get sidetracked trying to get things to hurry up, thinking that if I check my email every hour…or every ten minutes, then I will know the moment the answer comes. Like that is going to help me in the long run?

So when you find yourself in the Land of Wait, here are some things you can do:

Go back to the last thing you were doing and continue. This might be a project around the house, a book you were reading, an article you’re writing, or a future event you are planning. Continue being productive where you know things are in process. You will feel better to have accomplished something at the end of the day.

Make a list of things you want to accomplish this week.

Pray about the concern you are waiting to hear about.

Start a new project or plan something fun. Go buy spring flowers to plant. Design a craft to do with your children or grandkids. Invite someone for tea on the patio and serve little treats. Bake a goodie to share.

Reach out to someone you know who is waiting too.

Thank God in advance for the answer, knowing that He will bring about what’s best for us and for those we love.

What are you waiting for?



Saturday, May 11, 2013

Trusting the Pilot

Air travel is as old as the Wright Brothers, yet even after decades of discovery people are still fearful of flying. Biplanes are a novel form of flight that dates back to an early time period. The Red Baron flew a spiffy red version during WW1. Compared to the armored jets we are used to they don’t appear to be the safest with their fluid dual wingspan and wire suspensions. They are something we are more likely to see in a museum than in the sky.

Well, I got to see one up close. Actually, my husband, John and I flew in a WACO biplane just recently. Our pilot, Phil, of Lakes Biplane, guided us around like a proud Papa, showing off his first-born. After a pre-flight safety check, He settled us into the double cockpit in front. Safety harnesses and headsets in place, we got ready for take-off. Phil climbed into the rear cockpit and we tested our headsets. He planned to do some fancy moves and wanted to check in with us to see how we (mostly me) handled them.  

As we taxied to the short runway, Phil told us he can’t see what’s in front of him at all when he’s taking off, landing or flying. This is not something a passenger wants to hear. Actually, biplanes are famous for blind spots. Yet, in listening to Phil describe his love of the biplane’s simpler form of flying, I wasn’t afraid. 

I can’t explain it, but I trusted our pilot. 

Phil’s knowledge and experience got us into the air and we enjoyed the most amazing scenery over the lakes region of New Hampshire. I don’t know all the technical terms of how all of it works, but experiencing a wingover maneuver was pretty spectacular. That’s when the plane goes into a turn and then lingers in mid-air, looking like it’s standing on its wing. This showy display actually enables the plane to change its direction without losing much altitude and speed. Phil told me to keep my eyes on the horizon to guard against dizziness—it worked. The incredible thing: I, Miss-Fearful-of-lots-of-things wasn’t afraid. I trusted the pilot’s ability to bring the biplane level again.
Phil's photo from the cockpit while doing a wingover

 It’s not unlike my trust in God to navigate me through life’s wingovers. When circumstances cause me to tip over and suspend in midair not knowing which way is up, God’s full knowledge and experience is trustworthy. I know He will navigate me through the tight turns and blind spots. The ride may be bumpy at times, but He has everything under control.

Phil and his baby

In order take on any adventure you need to step out of your comfort zone; I think hanging midair in a biplane fits that description. If you get a chance, fly low in one of these beautiful machines. Phil is ready to be your pilot over the scenic Laconia, NH area. Thanks, Phil for an awesome flight!
And, I hope you know God is the best Pilot ever when it comes to navigating life. Hand Him the controls and get ready for His amazing adventure!