Misfit Disciples in an Orthodox World

Misfit Disciples in an Orthodox World
"You had better be a round peg in a square hole than a round peg in a round hole. The latter is in for life, while the first is only an indeterminate sentence." – Elbert Hubbard

An Update and Ordinary Time

Friday, May 6, 2011

I just noticed that it's been around 18 days since I last posted. Obviously, I intend on posting more frequently, but things have  really been hectic. Since my last contribution, we've had family visiting from out of state, my father had a mild aneurysm and subsequent heart surgery, and there's been an escalation in the Worker's Compensation case that I am currently involved in. The only one of these that was planned or foreseen was the visit from family. The other two kind of took me by surprise. 

The visit from family (my wife's parents who live in Illinois) was very pleasant. The occasion for their visit was Jaedyn and Emma's birthdays (belated: they couldn't come until a week after their actual birthdays): born respectively on April 15 & 17. We had a wonderful time together and my daughters enjoyed having their grandparents here to celebrate their special days. It was an extra special milestone for Emma, who finally became a teenager. She seems to think it's taken forever while the rest of us adults kind of scratched our head wondering how this could have possibly happened so quickly! I've been a father for 24 years now and it just doesn't get any easier to watch them grow up! It happens so fast! 

My father is in his early 70's and he's spent the better part of the last 4 years or so caring for my step-mother. She's quite a bit older than he is and her health has been deteriorating over the last five years or so. Dad has faithfully taken care of her the best he could but it finally got a bit too much for him. He had to put her in a nursing home and a few days later he has a heart attack and ends up in the hospital himself undergoing multiple heart by-passes and having a couple of his heart valves repaired. Dad is a man of faith and thankfully God took care of him during this time. The doctor's expect him to make a full recovery and I'd suspect he'll be back to landscaping and cutting grass in no time. Since he retired from an oil company in New Bern, NC, he's kept himself busy with a little landscaping business. He loves to do it and I hope he can continue to do it for a long time to come.

Some of you may know that I suffered an on the job injury back in February of 2010. I fell through a hole on a mezzanine that I didn't know was there until it was too late. Incidentally, it happened to be a church we were building. It wasn't good because I already have rods and screws in my spine due to an injury that occurred back in 1999. Because of that injury my employer's insurance denied my claim and I've been battling it out with them basically since June of 2010 when I received the official denial. My employer promptly laid me off and its been a rough time for us ever since. Throughout the later end of April my attorney informed me that I have a mediation on the 13th of May and so I've been having to fill out allot of paperwork and meeting with the attorney in preparations for the hearing. 

For those of you who have had the patience to read this personal post this far, I do solicit your prayers: both for my father's continued recovery and for God's will to be done in this legal situation. Obviously I feel like I'm entitled to compensation. I've not been able to work since July of last year and it has been a huge financial burden for my family. Thankfully, God has given my wife a wonderful job with amazing benefits during this time. He really has taken care of us and showed his faithfulness, even in times when I didn't feel like I deserved it in the least. I'm not expecting a huge settlement; I just want a reasonable one for the suffering I've endured and loss of wages from the inability to work during this time. There's very little that can be done medically and my medical expenses have been minimal during this time. So just pray that God's will be done here and that I will be content regardless.

As I was debating writing this post about some of these personal issues, I began to reflect upon the liturgical seasons. We've experienced Lent, gazed upon the Cross, and celebrated the Resurrection. Soon we'll remember Pentecost and the birth of the Church by the power of the Holy Spirit. Then, we'll embark upon that time of our liturgical calendar known as "Ordinary time." Ordinary here doesn't mean that its not important or that its usual or non-eventful, but simply that it is not seasonal. One writer said this about it: "the Church [during Ordinary time] celebrates the mystery of Christ not in one specific aspect but in all its aspects."

While we are still celebrating the seasons liturgically, en-route to Pentecost, I sort of feel like I am already in this ordinary time. I am experiencing God in all the little areas: needing him in hospital rooms and legal proceedings, in the everyday happenings of my life right now. And everything that I know about him tells me that he's faithful, steady, someone that I can trust to know exactly where I am at any given moment and to know what I need, even when I don't. I don't have all the answers for tomorrow. I wish I did. But thankfully, I know who does. And in the days and weeks ahead, I know that he will be with me through it all. 

Thanks be to God!


Simple Peasant Girl said...

I like the personal touch and the message at the end was very encouraging. Thank you for your vulnerability.

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