Saturday, January 1

I'm doing well, and not

Happy New Year, Ben's readers!

Some people ask how I am doing, and that is such a complicated question to answer.

Some days, I'm pleasantly challenged by a work project, Ben feels decent and we have interesting conversations, I get outside and don't melt. While socializing I realize that we are actually making new friends (however slowly) and still have many good friends all over the world and particularly in Seattle and Colorado Springs. We are able to pay our bills, perhaps consume some excellent barbeque, Ben's treatments and doctor appointments are timely, we don't spy any cockroaches, and I look forward to our upcoming trip to Seattle!

Life can seem pretty good some days, and why not? I at least have my health, and we do have hope for Ben's; we have loved ones and physical provision. We know that we don't have to squeeze in a "bucket list" in this life because of the hope and promise we cling to in Christ: abundant life which we receive now through his Spirit and which will be completely fulfilled and perfected later. I believe we will experience satisfaction, rest and wonder of any kind we miss during our lives now.

Other days Ben moans and can't get out of bed and I have headaches while we worry about money and work. There's the business of working as much as possible while moving, cooking, doing housework and hospital visits. The Houston drivers still tick me off. Of course there's the question of where Ben's treatments are headed. Everyone keeps asking us, but that doesn't get us or the doctors here any closer to an answer. Only time will tell.

While we wait, sometimes we feel trapped. Ben gets discouraged and I feel so isolated, either because some weeks we're all alone in the apartment or because among 20/30-something women, I'm the only caretaker in a crowd of mothers and career ladies.

And why shouldn't things seem bad? Struggle and strife is part of the human condition, we can't really know other people, and creation groans for redemption. We can't see the face of God, who we were created to know. Our bodies are failing and our souls yearning.

So when people ask how I'm doing, I'm not always reflective enough to answer and when I am, as you see, I get confused and don't know how to evaluate my current condition. What do I compare it to? Ultimately, I think I'm doing the same as any Christian who knows the good news but is experiencing trials. It will probably be the same next year.

Maybe there will be a change in my perspective and hopefully another change will be that Ben and I will be in more of a position to give rather than just take. I pray the same for all of you - that your perspectives become more true and that God blesses you by putting you in a position to give!


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