Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Color-Coded Life

My poor dear husband. It's kind of scary to start a blog like that, but in this instance, it's really true. I've always been an organizational freak, but with four kids, their friends, four dogs, and life going on around me ... well, it was usually just a dream to be able to color-code everything. I HAVE always organized my closet ... and I like nice drawers where everything has its place. I alphabetize my spices so I can find them easier. All of my earrings are paired together and put in buttons in my earring box so I don't have to scramble to find a pair -- they're already together! Make-up is organized in the drawer (and I can tell if anyone has been messing around with things in there, which is particularly seen after my little granddaughters come to visit! They love Nammy's chapstick and lip gloss!). There are junk drawers with bins, trays, and organizers so it's not tooooo messy. Kitchen utensils are in pretty crocks so I can find the exact one I'm looking for without digging through a drawer. I even use a different highlighter each year in my Bible so I see what stands out to me this year as opposed to the years before. And oh, life is good.

I love to organize. I love things to be in their proper places. And now that all of the kids have moved out of the house and we're only down to two dogs, I'm organizing more than ever. I'm even moving in to my husband's territory. Poor Wes. I'm attacking his tool boxes and shelves. I'm anxiously scouring his office for ways to put it together better. I'm literally trolling on Pinterest to get different ideas or organizational tips. And again, I say, poor Wes.

He's been with me long enough that he sees that a little bit of organization really IS a good thing. (Plus, when something works out well, it makes me feel like Super Woman!) And he's also been with me long enough that he's patient ... and kind ... and will go along with my ideas. We can be seen wandering through Lowe's or Wal-Mart, looking for more organizational tools. Because we work well together, I'll give my idea to Wes -- and he's the creative genius that makes it happen. Want to keep the phone cord from floating all around the table while you're charging your phone? Install a tiny cup hook on the underside of the table and voila! The cord stays in place. (You can use a binder clip on the side of the table if your phone cord will cooperate.) Instead of sitting on the couch at 8:30 at night being two zombies in front of the television screen, I'm directing and Wes is hanging shelves ... or we're going through tool boxes ... or paint is being slapped on the wall. And you know what?! It's actually fun. (Don't ask Wes because he won't give you that same sentiment. He just loves me and suffers along with me.)

Yes, things are slowly but surely being organized more and more in the Allen household. And, for the record, I'm just following in my Father God's footsteps.

I Corinthians 14:33 God is not a God of confusion but of peace.
I Corinthians 14:40 But all things should be done decently and in order.

And no, those aren't my most favorite verses in God's Word, even though I wholeheartedly agree with them and think they're wonderful. My God is a God of order ... and decency ... and peace. There is much security and comfort for me in that knowledge. He's revealed to me that when I try to organize and put things together, I'm looking for security. I know that seems kind of silly, but if I could seriously color-code my life and the lives of those I love so that it would be organized, orderly, without surprises, and I'd be in control of it, then I'd be one happy camper. God has also revealed to me that I'm not the one who's supposed to be in control (duh!). Instead, I'm to have faith in Him and HIS organization. What might seem like chaos to me is His controlled plan, and I'm to follow along, knowing that His plan is the best for all concerned. I'd like to say that He's also revealed to me that Wes's office and tool boxes are in dire need of my organization, but those are just my own brilliant ideas. Fortunately, the office and tool boxes are more along the speed of things I'm allowed to organize (with God's permission as well as Wes's) ... and I leave lives to Him. Pretty fair trade-off.

Monday, July 23, 2012

I. Hate. Politics.

It's getting to that time of year again. Here goes for another personal confession -- I absolutely, totally, with all that I am, H-A-T-E politics. (Seriously, no exaggeration there!)  I hate getting on Facebook and seeing all of the "commentaries".  I despise the commercials where one candidate bashes another. I hate hearing other people talk about politics because they wind up talking horrible about someone. I loathe the debates that turn in to screaming matches. I can't stand the back-stabbing, the mud-slinging, the lies, the arguing. I seriously hate it all.

When I was venting about this to my laid-back husband, he just shrugged his shoulders and said, "It works." Ugh! You know, THAT'S the very problem! It shouldn't work! Are we numb-brained enough that we can't just take the facts and then figure out what we want from there? We have to have these emotional, attacking arguments to convince us who's right and who's wrong? Maybe I'm incredibly naive, maybe I'm intellectually lacking, but I think I've got enough brains and common sense to realize who I want representing me in political office without all of the horrible rhetorical that comes from BOTH sides.

And it just continues to get worse. Well, that might not be totally true. I have a feeling that it's always been this awful -- even back in the days of our Founding Fathers. From what I understand, John Adams and Thomas Jefferson had their personal differences. Abraham Lincoln and Stephen Douglas weren't the best of buddies. Ever read about the duel between Alexander Hamilton and Aaron Burr? It all stemmed from the smearing in a political campaign. This political nastiness has been going on since the beginning of America unfortunately.

To me, the answer simple. A candidate tells what he believes and how he'd vote. Leave the other candidate out of it. He runs his campaign and leaves the other guy to his. How hard can that be? And, as for me, I'll vote for the man/woman who I believe has the same convictions that I have -- and we'll live happily ever after. Ok, that's where my naivete comes in. We won't live happily ever after because life happens to step in. But we CAN live without tearing other people apart, can't we?

I can't help but think that God is grieved by the way we conduct ourselves. When Jesus walked this earth, I don't see any record of His slamming Herod, Pilate, or the Roman government. And honestly, the Roman Empire wasn't high on the list of moral excellence, but the Bible tells us that God is the one Who establishes the government. He wasn't surprised by what was going on. He had that government in place for His reasons and His purposes. Jesus knew that and wasn't screaming about its shortcomings. No one knew better than He that there were some serious issues -- not only in government, but in the hearts of all men. Jesus didn't turn a blind eye to what was going on. He didn't ignore the issues. But He also didn't belittle those who believed differently than He did. In actuality, He DIED for those people, just as He did for me.

I realize there will be people who won't particularly like this post. Sorry about that! Just my soapbox for the day ...