She was sixteen this week. Sixteen! When did that happen? She is stunning, brainy, funny and kind. How did that happen? Takes after Head of House probably. Sometimes, when HOH and I struggle with what we may have achieved in our lives, we look at the people God helped us to make and think - that's not a bad thing we did there is it?
I have struggled a bit to write this week. Nothing dramatic. Just struggled. On a cursory viewing, the week has been fine. She turned sixteen, without any major mishaps. In my own personal opinion, I wasn't too keen on the birthday cake I produced. The girl requested chocolate brownies rather than your basic cake and I was fine with that - done it plenty of times before.The thing was I left it as late as possible to do the cake so that it would still be warm. Unfortunately, this meant that the gooey bit hadn't cooled enough when I came to cut them. So, although they did taste pretty scrummy, the final result did ever so slightly remind me of a candle and glitter bedecked cow pat. Everyone pretended not to notice which was nice.
So it's been a good week really with lots of good things happening and yet I have felt a bit blah, really. Sometimes this can just be due to life. Being tired, pinging your back out cleaning the stairs, your belly having an unfortunate reaction to mackerel on toast. Sometimes though, blahhness has to be chased down. Whatever it is that's making you itch has to be found and scratched. If you can do this much peace will come your way - indeedy.
So the first thing to do is to turn off the TV/Computer/Radio or any other distractions. We are supposed to be in a living relationship with God. Make some space to help his look at this with you.
Then, find some time, to actually shut up and have some silence. Ask God to show you what it is that is affecting you. Sometimes when you do this, God will point you towards the mackerel reaction, two paracetamol and an afternoon watching Sherlock re-runs. He is very aware that sometimes we overdo it and need to slow down. Exhibit A - Elijah whingeing was dealt with by rest and food and water supplied by God's own Raven Delivery Service. If I were God (How grateful we all are that this will never be true) I would have probably dealt with it with a thunderbolt and a big echoy voice shouting "I have just given you a spectacular victory. BUCK UP or I will get someone else!" Still, that's me and I'm not proud of it.
Sometimes, there are things that need to be dealt with. Say sorry. Put something right. Although, there are times when things cannot be put right and unpleasantness will happen.
We need to be developing a regular habit of letting God show us what is making us itch and then showing us how to scratch it. He doesn't always change the circumstances. He always provides the support to survive it.
And when I did this, I found that there were three or four things lurking in the back of my mind that had been worrying me to different degrees over the last few weeks. I can't share them with you because some involve people who may read this and one is quite frankly so stupid, it is embarrassing. But when I identify them - I can pray about them. Then things begin to change. When I identify my woes, I can see what I can do to deal with them or pass them to a saviour who can not only deal with them quite capably thank-you but also provides peace in the midst of his dealings.
Witness the old hymn
O what peace we often forfeit.
O what needless pain we bear
All because we do not carry
Everything to God in prayer
Sometimes it pays to spend some time with your spiritual magnifying glass, examine until you find out what ails you and pray in a specific way. Then, when you look back at what God did you can say thank you - equally specifically. How good does it feel when, having found an itch, you finally get to scratch it? I rest my case m'lud.