Friday, July 07, 2006

Friday Blues

You may have noticed lately (or not) that I have not been my usually chipper self. Oh, it creeps in here and there, but for the most part, I've been battling the blues. I guess it's a mild case of depression.

Maybe it's because I'm facing the fact that I've got to squeeze my blubbery-jelly-belly into a swimming suit next week for all the world to see. Maybe it's because my feet are in such a state of pain, I doubt I'll be able to do much walking on the boardwalk. Maybe it's because I am feeling as though I'm in a dry spot spiritually. Maybe it's because I am mourning not being able to see all the neat things my son is doing on a daily basis because I work full time. Maybe it's because I can't look back and say that I've seen God lately. Maybe it's because it's a beautiful, breezy, big-puffy-cloud kind of day without any humidity, and I'm stuck in an office building breathing stale air. Maybe it's because life is moving so fast -- like a movie before my very eyes ... one that I can't seem to pause no matter how hard I try. Maybe it's just the Popeye's spicy chicken strips I had for lunch coming back to haunt me.

Whatever the case may be, the fact remains. I'm feeling blue. And, as I was reading some blogs this morning, I stumbled across a scripture from Habakkuk. I can't remember whos blog it was, but it sent me in search of the book of Habakkuk.

Ironically, Habakkuk means "embrace" in Hebrew. Ironically, because I could use a "God embrace" right now. And even more ironic, Habakkuk doesn't hesitate to openly question God about all the unfairness he sees, as well as pretty much challenging God's wisdom! AND, he complains a lot! That sounds so much like me. "Why, God? Why is this happening? Why is that happening? Wouldn't it be better if it turned out like this? Or that? Why does everything seem so unfair?" I can totally relate to that.

But more than that, I can relate to Habakkuk's swing of moods. In chapter one, he's feeling pretty low and questioning God ( "How long, O Lord, must I call for help, but you do not listen? Or cry out to you . . . but you do not save? . . . Why do you tolerate wrong?"). In chapter two, he is feeling despair, but he's waiting on God for an answer ("I will stand at my watch and station myself on the ramparts; I will look to see what he will say to me, and what answer I am to give to this complaint"). Waiting seems to be an important step; one which I hate. But in chapter three ... he is praising God. So, pretty much, Habakkuk is pretty moody, and I like that about him. He can swing like a pendulum. Yeah. Me too.

So, I concentrated on chapter three, of course, because I was already down, and feeling despair. Now, I wanted to feel joy! And what a better chapter to zone-in on than one that tracks Habakkuk's progress towards spiritual happiness?

Habakkuk realizes that God is in control. He is holy. And it only took him two chapters to get there (ha-ha). He spends time not only pleading with God, and writing about God's wrath, but he spends time praising God's majesty and his power, and he promises to wait and trust in God. Even though what is looming ahead of him is frightening. He settles down and "embraces" God. He accepts that even though we sometimes don't see God, God is always actively involved. He is holy, and he hears and answers our prayers. Habakkuk did something I find very difficult to do. He relied on God and not -- get this -- human strength. Even when it wasn't in Habakkuk's own timing, but rather, God's timing. Owww.

"Though the cherry trees don't blossom and the strawberries don't ripen, Though the apples are worm-eaten and the wheat fields stunted, Though the sheep pens are sheepless and the cattle barns empty,
I'm singing joyful praise to God.
I'm turning cartwheels of joy to my Savior God.
Counting on God's Rule to prevail, I take heart and gain strength. I run like a deer.
I feel like I'm king of the mountain!"
Habakkuk 3:17-19 (The Message)

"Yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Savior."

Vs. 18 (NIV)

It sort of brings to mind the song Chris Tomlin wrote (and sings) called, How Great is Our God... (I'm going to scrunch it all together to save space)

The splendor of the King, clothed in majesty; Let all the earth rejoice, All the earth rejoice. He wraps himself in Light, and darkness tries to hide. And trembles at His voice, Trembles at His voice -- How great is our God, sing with me, How great is our God, and all will see How great, how great is our God.

Age to age He stands. And time is in His hands. Beginning and the end. Beginning and the end. The Godhead Three in One. Father Spirit Son. The Lion and the Lamb, The Lion and the Lamb. How great is our God, sing with me. How great is our God, and all will see. How great, how great is our God. Name above all names. Worthy of all praise. My heart will sing. How great is our God.

That is soooo what I needed to hear. I'm actually feeling a bit better. Not all the way better. Just a bit. Maybe a banana split kinda date with my husband tonight will make it aaaallll better. DOH! Forgot about the jelly-belly thing. X the banana split. Just spending one on one time with him will be a sweet balm to my sad spirit.

Have a blessed weekend. And remember -- use a shot glass full of sunscreen for an adult's arms and face.


Jeana said...

I'm thinking I've got a much better use for the shot glass. Glad you're feeling a bit better.

Shalee said...

Do the banana split thing. Here's the secret to the swim suit blues. Ready?

Don't care what anyone thinks.

That's it in a nutshell. You'll be with the man who loves you and the boy who adores you. You won't even know the other people, so don't let what they might or might not think of you put a damper on your family time.

I'm wondering if that spiritual dryness is catchy. I think I've been having a case of it myself lately. But I'll not fear. God will see me through it too. Just like He is doing with you. Just because we can't see Him doesn't mean He's not there being God over all things.

I'm holding on to that.

Blessings to you Gibee. And I love the you that you are - jelly belly and all.

aggiejenn said...

oh my sweet friend, I can totally relate to those feelings. I love chapter 3 from Habakkuk! It is so hard for me to take Shalee's advice about not caring what anyone thinks because the world has so conditioned me to CARE. But I have to remember that my God cares about what my heart looks like. Have I made room for Him to come and fill me with His light and love and comfort and peace and security?

He'll fill you to overflowing, GiBee!

Musical Mommy said...

Glad you're feeling better :) I'm a lurker coming out of lurkdom :) I enjoy reading your blog!

Angie said...

Oh my dear friend I can totally relate to your feelings. I've been in bit of a funk too, as you know. So, I too will be praying for you. And here is a great big cyber {{{HUG}}} for you too! love ya!

kpjara said...

Okay all you "funky" friends. Speaking as someone who is right beside you as we walk up and down the hills and not forget...the valley is as much a part of our journey as the mountaintop! Remember what we gain in the valley, cause we always gain! and I don't mean pounds from Banana splits....though what the heck go for it!

With regards to not feeling spectacularly beautiful...remember your husband chose you just the way you are and he's the only one whose opinion matters...right? You don't strike me as someone who would judge or even NOTICE other potentially imperfect bodies on the beach, so why fret...shouldn't and won't you be afforded the same grace?

As cliche' as it sounds the older I get the more I realize beauty absolutely starts on the inside! If I lived on the east coast I'd go with you sister, but get out there, put on that with that baby and make some freakin' beach memories! OKAY!!!!!!!!!!!!

Love ya!

Susanne said...

Gibee: I've sorta been feeling edgy and down too! I went over to momrn2's (My Quiet Corner) and she's got an awesome post up on "Thankful for the Storms". It really helped me tons!! Praying for you.

momrn2 said...

Hoping my surprise lifted your spirits a bit (even if it was cut short). I have been in a similar "funk" lately and I know it did mine! :-)

Tammy said...

I can relate to your comes and goes with me, too.
And as for the swimsuit thing...well, I always use to be thin and lately, since having kids (and turning 40) well...each year has seen just a few more pounds. I keep battling it though, but sometimes it's discouraging!
Anyway, it was a well-written post, and it blessed me.

flipflop said...

Yes a good God embrace is wonderful. So wonderful.

During these times God wants us to not run from the waves of life. Lean into them and He will help you break them till the next round of waves come.

I know how you feel, about the fat, about the baby, about working full time, about feeling so far from God, about the weather..isn't weather amazing. God's there..His presence is so powerful in the sunshine, the rain, the wind, the heat, the cold, etc.

So you enjoy this weekend, go swimming. I had to suck it up too and crammed by big butt in those flimsy unsupportive, thin piece of cloth they call a bathing suit. You know what, my kids and family didn't care a bit. They just cared that I was there with them. You enjoy being with that little boy (the big one too) and take lots of pictures and enjoy God's blessings on you moment by moment.

After you return to work on Monday look outside at God's creation. He's powerful and He is our Father. He knows what we go through. He knows our heart and He loves you!!

Sometimes a good fall on your face, flat on the ground talk with God will refresh you.

Missed you lately and if you ever need to talk just let me know.

Heth said...

Glad you are feeling better. I love that verse in Habakkuk.

A shotglass full? Are you KIDDING ME?! Holygreasebomb!

theresa said...

Boy, life throws us some curve balls sometimes doesn't it?? Thanks for reminding us of Habakkuk. I needed to hear that after a 'house deal gone dead' today!

Carol said...

When we get down & depressed, we tend to look down and stay in our distress. If we reach up, it's often so we can drag someone else down with us.

Great job looking and reaching up to our Greatest Help, GiBee!

Rabbit said...

Sending cyberhugs, GiBee, and praying for you to be cradled and refreshed.

Heather Smith said...

I hope your date wiped your blues away! I had a great weekend! Wish you could've been there! So many groups, so many songs, so much to post about! Don't know where I'll start. Anyway, have a good one and I'll ttyl!

HolyMama! said...

what a great post! You're quirky even when you're down.

As far as the fitness stuff, I'm doing and I love it. It's free. I've lost 4 pounds in 3 weeks and I'm learning lots. I don't LOOK all that much thinner, but i'm feeling more fit, and that helps me a lot in staying motivated.

thanks for the odd shotglass reminder. I'll certainly remember it and think of you!

zoe said...

LOVE that song. Might follow you over into Habbakuk.