Thursday, September 24, 2009

Day Eighteen -

It's been a long day. I worked most of the day and into the evening and then sped off to my 16 year old's football game. Wow, I'm sick of football. It would be different if he got to play more but right now he's sitting in the 2nd string QB position. Unless they are beating the other team by 100 the coach won't put him in. Can't quite figure that out. The only way I can bear to sit through the games is to chant over and over in my head, "All things work for good for those who love the Lord and are called according to his purpose." Sometimes I really question whether or not God really knows what he is doing. It hurts me when I see my son hurting.

It reminds me of some similar painful things I experienced in high school. Being a teenager really stinks. But it is a process of growth and learning. If you learn the most when you are in pain then my son is really learning a lot. God bless him!!

After attending the reunion in Long Beach I returned to my "normal" life as a wife, mother and employee. In 1992, eight years after my daughter was born I became pregnant with our third child. He was born in the fall of '92 in Nashville. Through out our marriage, my husband and I had our ups and downs, as do most marriages and this was somewhat of a down time. We began going to therapy and our counselor suggested we attend this week long seminar at a local Presbyterian church. We both agreed and it pretty much transformed our lives.

We began attending Christ Presbyterian Church in Nashville. One of the things that drew us to that church was their music program and their children's program. Both my husband and I were very interested in music. My husband has a beautiful voice and I enjoy playing the piano. We joined the choir and started becoming involved in the church. We also joined a small group, which, to this day, I know I can go to anyone from that small group and they would welcome me as family.

Our choir director was fun and crazy. He was also very talented. We had choir practice on Wednesday nights from 7:30 to 9:00. Because of the size of the choir (over 100 people) he implemented an "on time" award. If you arrived on time for choir you could submit your name into a common pot and at the end of choir he would draw out of this pot and pick different people who then got different fun prizes. One night I remember very well. It was after my husband and I had gone through a particularly difficult period. We went to choir, both were "on time" and thus we in the "pot" for the on time award. This particular evening our choir director rolled out a table full of 6" plants. If my memory serves me there were about 20 - 30 6" plants. As he started to pull names out of the pot the plants dwindled down. It's funny how we, even as adults, want to conform to the "on time" awards as many people made it into the pot. As he continued pulling names I sat back realizing that he was getting down to the end and neither my husband nor I had been picked.

All the plants were being given away to those drawn out of the "on time" pot. We got down to the last two plants. I began praying - remember, my husband and I had gone through one of the most difficult times in our marriage - "God, please pick us." The choir director drew the next to last name. He began to read it. As he spoke the name of my husband, my heart jumped and I knew this was a sign God was giving me to continue to trust in him. There was one plant left. I knew that plant was for me. This was a sign God was giving me showing me that he was in control of my marriage and my life. I should trust in him. As the choir director drew out the last name, my heart was beating so strong. I knew this plant was mine. I knew he would say, "Janet Simmons." As he began to read the name and I heard another person's name my heart sank. I was devastated. God had betrayed me. He didn't want my marriage to prosper. What was wrong? While I was so quick to judge and so quick to express my anger and frustration, God was still at work trying to get my attention. Our choir director pulled out from underneath the table one more plant. This time, however, it was a huge hanging basket with beautiful flowers. He put his hand into the pot and drew out a name. As he began to recite my name, God said to me, "Janet, your expectations of me are too small. You are impatient. (It was a beautiful New Guinea Impatient.) You desire me to satisfy your marriage with a 6" plant, when I can give you this beautiful, full, flowering, enormous plant." That night, God spoke to me like I never before experienced. I felt his comfort like I had never experienced before.

This was in the fall of 1992 or spring of 1993

© Copyright 2009 Janet Calcote Simmons All rights reserved.

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