I'm currently sitting in our newly redone guest room while the hubs plays a video game and I work on my report cards (ahem...I'll get to them). My brother is deployed and graciously sold us his couches at a discount :) We really didn't have room for three new couches, but I have had my heard set on new couches since we got married, so I couldn't pass these up! To acquiesce, Joel completely disassembled the guest bed and stored it in the attic, moved our old couch into its place, and organized the living room in a way that is most pleasing. This spurred on a two-day cleaning marathon, when we finally gutted our closets, guest room closets, and the guest room itself. It is ridiculous how much junk we had accumulated in the past 2.5 years. Friends who know us well can testify that our guest room was more of a storage room, housing Christmas decorations, old lamps, disorganized papers and school supplies. It feels completely refreshing to have simplified our house, and finally we're able to utilize this space well. The guest room is no longer a storage dump with a bed; it's now a den that is perfect for girls night conversations, relaxing on a Sunday, and reading all by myself.
Report cards are due Friday, and if you've read long enough you know that report card season tends to take over my life. I'm much more organized this quarter than I've ever been, but I'm still so anxious to get them finished. Bleh. I actually went in to school on a SATURDAY in order to work on things, and I spend 4 hours of my day of rest typing up comments for my students. When all is said and done, I'll have written 5 paragraphs for each of my 23 kids. Needless to say, I'm incredibly thankful for having all seasons of 30 Rock on my Netflix Instant Queue and cookies and cream ice cream to ensure that I stay seated long enough to get anything accomplished.
On Friday night, I spent an hour looking back through my pictures, all the way to sophomore year of college. I realized that since then, I've been to Mississippi and England with people I had never met, Spain for a summer, Turkey with Joel, and Belize with my wonderful third grade team. I remember feeling very anxious before many of those trips: fearing the unknown and worried about the relationships I would make when there. But the Lord reminded me that He had planned each one, brought me through them, and grew me as a result. I am so thankful for each of those experiences, but I mention my anxiety in relation to them only because I need to be reminded that I've been and will be taken care of!
Often, I fear that I will be inadequate to complete responsibilities in front of me, especially when it comes to teaching. Ultimately, I am inadequate. But I need to be reminded that anything He has called me to, He has equipped me for.
Lately, I've been feeling really overwhelmed with my to-do list. Anything added to it seems to send me into a panic. I'm learning to say no to extraneous things that aren't top priority, as well as to rely on Joel for more help. So often he asks, "What can I do to help?" and I don't let him help! (Today, I realized that with my crazy day I wouldn't be able to make dinner. I sent him some simple instructions and he put together a delicious chicken and veggie soup that will last us FOUR meals. The best part is that it cost a total of $13!) "Resting in God's grace" is a phrase that has been running through my mind since yesterday. Too often I try (unsuccessfully) to rely on myself, and that is shamefully proud. How wonderful to have a personal and loving Father who knows our faults and assures us that He is enough!