We HAVE to have a prayer life! But go ahead and sleep in though. Hell has come for your family, for your marriage, but by all means--get yourself 45 minutes extra of sleep. -Beth Moore, via Lelia Chealey
Today is my first Grandparents' Day without a grandparent on earth. I was in a terrible mood, already, when I figured out it was Grandparents' Day.
One of my childhood friends passed away, yesterday, after a long battle with brain cancer, and she wasn't the first friend I'd lost to death, this month.
My husband got caught up in "workforce reduction" at the end of July and lost his job. He's made a full-time job of looking for a job ever since but hasn't nailed down a position. We're not in desperate straits, quite yet, but it won't be long. In Kroger, yesterday, I thought he and I might throw down over a box of pudding. (The one the girls wanted--the one upon which I insisted--was eleven cents more expensive than the store brand.)
I could tell you stories about other situations with which I'm struggling, too, but I won't; suffice it to say: I've known less confusing, happier days. Fonzie and the Cunninghams have left the building. And I haven't stopped praying or reading the Bible (I started a study on Isaiah this week, in fact.), but I have copped a bit of an attitude with God, here and there. I slept through church, this morning. Then, after reading about Grandparents' Day, I slapped the spoons one by one into the silverware holder, asking God in my mind: Where. Are. You?
I miss my grandma. She passed away in May. She was 97 and had been suffering from Alzheimer's, among other atrocities. She had earned her reward; still, I miss her. When I lost her, I had already been losing her for a long time; still, I miss her. I miss our conversations. I miss her letters.
I was thinking these things when I came across some unopened mail at the end of our counter. I found a package from Joanne Norton, her book inside, also a letter from my cousin Ginny. I don't think Ginny's written to me since I was in elementary school, but my grandma was her aunt. I sat down on the couch to open the envelope and unfold and read the letter. What a happy thing, I thought, to get "real mail" from Joanne and Ginny on Grandparents' Day. A Sunday.
But there's more. As I was opening a door I rarely open in my house, an envelope on top of a book shelf caught my eye: could it be? And yes, it was: a thank-you note from my aunt related to my grandma's services. I had opened it on the counter back in May and read exactly one line of it before one of the kids called me away. When I returned to read the rest, it was gone: just gone! I'd searched high and low for that note for almost four months. I'd actually gone through garbage, looking for it! I'd been feeling so awkward about it; how does one respond to a note she hasn't read? I hadn't wanted to write to my aunt and say: "I got your thank-you note but never actually read it. What did it say?"
I don't think it's a coincidence that the note turned up (for the second time) on a day on which I was feeling particularly discouraged, Grandparents' Day, a Sunday.
I looked at the clock. It was 4:30. I had twenty minutes to get ready for the evening service at my former church. Cade, the girls, and I made it on time.