Lunch Money

One morning, as I drove around doing errands, God flashed an image of a young man who worked at a grocery store by my old apartment. God whispered, “Stan is a nice young man. He has a genuinely good heart.” When I arrived home, I realized I had forgotten to pick up drain cleaner. I got back into my car to buy some from a local hardware store about a mile from my new home. God said,” No. Go to the grocery store in your old neighborhood. Give that young man $10, tell him to buy lunch, and then tell him how I see him. How I see his heart.” Did I hear that right? I don’t know why I even questioned it. The truth was, I wasn’t too thrilled. The store was 20 minutes away, and I had been driving all morning! My hair was also dirty, and I had no makeup on, and I knew the store would be super busy right before Christmas.

I drove to my old hood and when I walked in; I didn’t see Stan cashiering. Oh well. I guess I missed it. Must have been my own thoughts and that cash burning in my pocket talking to me! I turned down the aisle to get the cleaner, and there he was. Standing right in front of the cleaner, unpacking stock with another employee. I don’t know why I was amazed that he was right where I needed to be and that the aisle was totally empty, even though the store was packed. God always knows how to set it up, so you just walk right into it.

“I don’t want you to think I am weird, but God told me this morning to give you $10. Buy yourself some lunch today.” His face lit up, and he suddenly looked upward. I could tell a lightbulb went off. It was about noon, and maybe it was time for his break. Or maybe he didn’t have any money. Didn’t matter, that was just an icebreaker because, of course, God didn’t stop there.

God told him how He saw him. Stan was a nice person with a big, genuine heart. That when he had children, he would be a good father. That he would be patient and encouraging and that his love for his children would help them become people effective in this world. He would be too, and his children would pass this on. Whoa! Sometimes God is a chatty daddy!

Stan’s face was lit up the entire time God spoke to him. His coworker stood silently nearby just taking it all it in. No one interrupted us, and the aisle remained empty.

“Thank you so much! I really really appreciate it. This means a lot to me. God bless you.”

“Yes, I know it does. God just wanted you to know that He loves you, sees you, and thinks you are amazing.”

What a super blessing it is to be used by God. That encounter made my day! I am continually humbled by how much He loves people if we let him through us. I am sure this young man will have an interesting story to tell his family tonight about a God who paid for his lunch and saw the best in him. With no strings! Without any come-to Jesus meetings!

I guess I need to stop being surprised by these encounters. That is just how my Daddy God rolls……

Repent?

You are now a new person in Christ!

You are free from your past TO act like it! FREE TO ACT LIKE IT. Not.. SO you better act like it.

It’s an invitation …..not a beat down.

Doesn’t matter if bad memories of your exploits surface again. (And isn’t that usually the case when you feel good about yourself, things are going right or you’ve met someone new?)

Keep telling yourself you are NOT that person any more. That version of yourself was somebody else. Someone you used to know and who you no longer associate with.

Anyone brings up your past behavior just respond “I am not that person any more. Why are you bringing it up?”

Stop looking in your rear view mirror or in old journals unless you have a testimony or it brings God glory!

Every moment is a new start peeps. New you. New opportunities. Regardless of what happened a minute ago.

That is what it means to repent.

Someone needs to be reminded of this today. Whoever you are… I love you!

Memories

Warning long ramble:

Ever shudder when a bad memory surfaces where you said or did something idiotic? Or hurtful? Or illegal?

You suddenly feel a stomach punch. Or a butt clench. Or your cheeks turn red. As Nick Danger used to say “like a hot kiss at the end of a wet fist.” It feels horrible, and it surprised you, but you still react like it just happened.

I had one of those memorable moments the other day. Even though it was 30 years ago, I felt extreme shame and guilt all over again. I had to take control of it or it would have turned into a 2-hour self-hate fest. Ever felt like that? A friend told me he has laid awake at night kicking himself over some stupid stuff that he can never reverse. “Did it make you feel better?” “No. It brought up a train of past scenes that reminded me of what a horrible ass I was.” Hmmm, so why go back? Or better yet, why can’t we stop ourselves from going back there?

Do you want to know how to fix this? Next time that happens, stop mid-self-punishment and say “This is irrelevant. I am no longer that person. It doesn’t matter anymore.” Then thank God that it was years ago before anyone could live-stream it in the making. Even if it was yesterday or you have already made your 15 minutes of fame on YouTube, let it go. You need to stop the pattern of spanking yourself over shit that went down when you were high, horny, hateful, hormonal, or a revenge-raged ex-lover.

We think we have 3 volumes in our life. Past. Present. Future. The truth is, all we have is now. RIGHT NOW. This very moment. No matter what you are doing, it will always be right now…and you will always be in the present moment. You may lament about the past or fear about the future, BUT you are never anywhere else but in the present. (Don’t come for me, you teleporting peeps…. you’d still be in the present even if you were simultaneously in the future).

Even if your hairstyle hasn’t changed, you still love Boonesfarm, pop tarts, and the Grateful Dead, you are still a new person at this very moment. Even if you did the same mistake today, it would still NOT be the same. Think about that one.

You hear about celebrities reinventing themselves. (Gee, anything to get some press) You are no different and are continually reinventing yourself too. Your thoughts, body, cells, beliefs, and values are always changing and moving forward (even if it is backward behavior.) You can’t go backward if you are here… now.

You change with your circumstances. So why hold on to circumstances that no longer fit? Or are no longer relevant? That was the old you. Even if it was yesterday.

Repeat after me . “That is irrelevant. I am no longer that person. I don’t even know who that person was because that is something I definitely would not or even could do today. At this very moment. Or even conceive of doing in my next present moment that will come in the near future.

OMG. I wish she would just stick to funny memes instead of these long rambling notes to herself. Lord, that is 5 minutes I will never get back and…… STOP!

Ha, see even the post you just read is NOW in the past… move forward peeps, and get rid of anything that does NOT matter anymore.

End scene. Enjoy your present moment, Beloveds. It’s all we have, anyway.

Why?

Going through a stack of old papers, I found little scribbles of notes all over the pages. I know that I wrote them, but I have absolutely no idea what a lot of them mean. One note said “half and half” Now does that mean that I needed to buy half and half? Did it mean I only believed half of the article? Or what did that mean? I don’t know why I need to make these little cryptic type of notes, anyway.

Paper is cheap and I am not an international spy! I’d like to think I am important, but I ain’t that important that someone would break into my place to go through my papers! AND…. I am not so busy that I can’t write out a full sentence of what I mean or need.

Do you ever write yourself notes that you later can’t decipher? Why do we do this?

Karen Works Here

Is it a full moon? This weekend I heard some noises outside and opened my blinds, and my drunk neighbor with some mental health issues started SCREAMING and flailing her arms at me. WTH

This morning I stopped at Mcdonalds’ to get a sausage McMuffin WITH egg. I opened it and realized it was just a sausage McMuffin. No biggie. I started to eat it anyway…. Nope. I rarely buy these, and if my feet are going to swell from the MSG, I want the full preservative experience. I swung thru again and asked them nicely to exchange it. “Sure, come on up to the second window.” As the window slid open, an employee started screaming at her coworker, who ran the window, and me. ( Isn’t the customer usually the Karen? Ha!)

“ She didn’t pay for an egg!!! It’s another $2 for an egg!!!”
“Yes, she did. She just got the wrong item.”
“No, she didn’t!!! That is not what she asked for! She wants an egg it’s $2 more!!!!
“Here is her receipt; she paid for the egg.”

I just calmly sat back and watched as the older woman continued to manifest. She grabbed the receipt, saw that I was right, and stomped off to get a muffin with an egg. She stopped, looked directly at me, and slammed the muffin into a bag. Then she crumbled up the receipt and slam dunked that in, too, and then stomped off, still yelling. Her coworker handed me the bag, and we both just looked at her like…Yikes! WTH. I paused for a moment and wanted to lash back. Nope. I’m late for church and didn’t want to be featured in the next Drive-Thru Karen reel. 🙂

I am starting to not take these things personally anymore. This isn’t just people having a bad day. It’s a demonic manifestation. When people act like this when it isn’t warranted, it’s demonic. Take authority. Fight it on a spiritual level.

Or maybe it’s Schumann Resonance?

Fear?

The other day, my alarm went off, and as soon as I opened my eyes, I heard, ” My people live in fear because they do not know me.” Loud and clear! No mistaking who was speaking to me. Especially since I’m not a morning person, and I don’t even talk to myself that early.

I keep thinking about what He said. Not in a let’s get out the Bible and look at what has been written about who He is. Not that doing so wouldn’t be important, but I’ve been asking Him to show me who He is to me. I know He is love. That’s a given. We hopefully learn that when we’re 5. But who is He to me? What are my actual beliefs about Him? Not the ones I’ve been told I should have about Him, but the real ones. The honest ones. Maybe some really ugly honest ones.

If He can pull any string on this earth to send out angels, soften hearts, create opportunities, heal bodies and minds, and pull a rabbit out of His hat for any reason, why aren’t we going to Him? About everything?

What fears do we have about Him that get in the way? Or unbelief? What has happened in your past that makes you not trust? Or doubt?

Is it because of something man did? Or didn’t do?

Who are you equating God with?

Don’t bother trying to think about this on your own; ask God to reveal to you the truth. The truth of what is causing a barrier between you and Him.

He can handle it. You’re no surprise to Him.

Then ask Him to fix it. To heal it. To renew your faith in Him.

It’s time for us to get real and honest with God.

I’m tired of living in fear because I do not really know Him. Or who He is or can be in my life if I allow Him in. Totally, let Him in.

Are you?

Flight Confessions

I’m reading Mary Karr’s The Art Of Memoir, and in one chapter, she wrote about getting stuck next to chatty strangers on airplanes. She would rather be trapped with a talker who is painfully or extremely transparent than one-note boring. That transparency is always more interesting than a person who wants to present a glorified “image” of themselves. I agree.


For several years, I frequently flew for work and it was mostly uneventful. My seatmates mostly kept to themselves, and I was only occasionally annoyed. Like the kid who kept kicking the back of my seat. And the nervous passenger that gripped my arm during most of a bumpy flight. Or the woman who snored while continually passing horrendous gas during an overnight flight back from Vegas. But rarely a “talker”.

I recall one trip where a passenger dumped the details of her torrid affair on me like she was in a confessional. Her story lasted the entire flight, and it was more riveting than reading the in-flight magazine. She thanked me as we unboarded, and I just smiled back. It’s easy to listen to someone’s drama if you never have to hear it again. Or again. Or, again, with 20 other versions and no real desire in hell for a solution. Y’all know what I am talking about. With a stranger’s confession, it’s one-and-done unless they ask to Facebook with you. But that is highly unlikely if they just spilled incriminating evidence.

I am writing a memoir about a period in my life, and it’s very freeing, actually. it’s more liberating to be transparent and not give a rat’s ass than trying to create and maintain some image to make ourselves look less imperfectly human.

Besides, it takes a lot of work to be anything other than yourself. Even yourself “in Christ” will be unique and not like any other….just less airplane drama.


Have a great weekend, peeps!

You’ll Never Catch Me Coppers!

I looked up from my computer to see a County Sherrif’s vehicle pull up and park outside my place. I suddenly froze, held my breath and thought ” Yikes! What did I do now?” Then, I exhaled and laughed! What could I possibly have done or DO that would warrant…..well a warrant? Hahahaha!

Isn’t it funny that even though my crazy redhead days are over with, that I am so quick to condemn myself? Before anyone else does? Or before there is any proof of wrong doing? I think we all tend to do that. Or am I the only one who has some “situations” in my past? You know….the ones you are glad happened before Facebook and Instagram were invented?.

Peeps, not only do we need to get over ourselves, we need to get PAST our past.

I am getting too old for this crap. How about you?

Hear Something…

Sometimes we get a word for someone we are going to for help. Help for a fee. Doctor, Lawyer, Dentist, Therapist, Tax guy….you get it. Not that these people are above us, but it just feels awkward. This isn’t a barter club. Hey, if you do my taxes, I will tell you about your future. Seems a bit unprofessional and woo-woo.

But I get it all the time. Maybe you do too. If it truly is from God, it will come out easily, and you will see or feel a lightbulb go off when they receive it.

Today, I had an appointment, and the tech was bustling around the room as God was downloading to me. “Tell her” “God, she looks like she is in a hurry.” “Tell her anyway.” Why do I even argue?

“Do you know what a word of knowledge is?” “No.” “It’s a Christian term when God gives you some information about someone or something that you don’t have prior knowledge about.” If WOK is not in their vocabulary, they are usually WTH……1,2,3 it’s deer in headlights, and then they are stuck like a fly on an adhesive strip. Holy Spirit style.

“God tells me you are a good mom. You are very strict and love your kids very much. You are like a momma bear with them.” Susie laughs and relaxes. “Yes, you sure got that one right on. I am VERY strict.” Her boss, the doctor, replaces her, and before he can leave the room God prompts me again.

” I know you are a Christian. Do you know what a word of knowledge is?”

“No.” I give him the same simple explanation and tell him, ” God tells me he has surrounded you with very smart and efficient staff. They have got your back. There is no backstabbing or sabotage. They are loyal to you and will always be there for you.

His mouth dropped open, and then he smiled “Thank you so much for telling me this. That is so encouraging. Really. Thank you.”

It is so much easier when you just repeat what you hear, relay it when He tells you to and then get out of the way. You don’t need to know why He wants them to hear these words. Could be for now. Could be for later. Could be for a variety of reasons you really don’t need to be privy to.

No matter who someone is or the title they hold….they were created by God and special to Him. He has imprinted their hearts with the desire to hear His voice and be known by Him.

Hear something….say something.

Let’s give them something to talk about after you leave 🙂

Fake Peace

Do you ever feel like you have fake peace? Like you are forcing peace?

I’m at peace. Really!

I’m at peace, dammit!

I’ll just keep spewing bible verses and telling myself I am fine.

At least if I don’t really believe it, I will look good to the people around me. Can’t let anyone know I am struggling.

That feels more like resignation than peace.

Godly peace sometimes feels warm and gooey. Or light and airy. Or you just know that you know that you know….even if everything around you says you don’t. And at times, it is as simple as the quick release of emotional pain or fear.

Fake peace feels like a “go with the flow” snow job.

How do you shovel yourself out? Or, as my Iowan friends say, “scoop” yourself out?

Relationship with the Father. When He feels real to you, the peace becomes real AND easy!

Repeat after me: Father, show me that you are real! Show me how you have been working in my life lately that I may have minimized or overlooked.

Show me the details. Remind me of the smallest details that wouldn’t impress anyone, but I will know it was you.