Well, friends, it’s been a few months since “Interruptions of Life 2.0”—so naturally, I hoped I might escape the winter doldrums unscathed. Alas, it was not to be. Lest I lead you too far with that creative imagination you may possess, familiar but slightly different challenges emerged during this latest interruption. In fact, six weeks of misery hurled me towards the pantry, fridge, take-out, eat out, car hop and IHOP to find ten pounds of fat which had taken me three solid months to lose last summer. With zero energy, I proceeded to binge-watch several HULU TV-series episodes with at least one season or more, and eat like there was no tomorrow … anything to find solace from the unrelenting coughing, nose-blowing, mouth-breathing general malaise associated with URI’s (Upper Respiratory Infections).
In addition, at the end of the six-week hiatus from the gym, I go for my annual checkup and the doc sits me down for the “your blood sugars are too high” talk. She then proceeds with a lesson in self-mutilation as I’m shown how to stick my finger and test my blood—which has to be done three times a day. Ouch! I won’t even tell you how stressed I got, and how for the next week my blood test numbers were so elevated, it was obvious I was headed for a stroke. Thankfully, I’ve calmed down and so have my numbers.
If you read my “Christmas Confusion—Chasing the Grinch,” you might conclude that the last few months have not been my best. You would be right (and there is more serious and consequential sharing I could do, but that’s for another time). These things, however, are little more than annoyances in the big scheme of things, and far from the worst life has to offer. If I ever sound like I’ve got it all together and nothing ever gets me down, don’t believe it.
So, in addition to illness, etc., there is one other interruption which reared its ugly head. My goal of publishing a new blog once a week became a distant dream. I just checked the date of my last post—January 14th —in other words, two months! How did it happen? After the debacle mentioned in the “Christmas Confusion” article having to do with spam, more and more auto-spam flooded my blog site; so much so, that by the end of February, I had over 24,000 comments to read and approve, just from February!
I will admit that I became more than a little angry at all of the selfish individuals and companies out there in cyber space who latched on to SusanButlerLive like parasitic interlopers. Some people say I have a “Pollyanna” naïveté, and that’s fine—I’d rather see the glass half full than half empty. However, after hours on the phone with my Godaddy techs, it became obvious I was going to have to delete all those 24k+ comments, both spam and legitimate (no small task), and change the settings to disallow future comments.
My techies tried different spam blocker plug-ins, but nothing worked to prevent spam without preventing all comments. You cannot imagine the disappointment and deflation I felt when I realized that all you good folks out there reading the blogs would no longer be able to communicate with me and others on the blog site.
But because I know God has a purpose for these blogs, I want to experiment with something else. You may have a Facebook account, and if so, this will be an easy alternative. Just go to SusanButlerLive on Facebook, where I post every blog from my web site. You do not even have to find the particular blog you are commenting on. Just state the blog title in your comment and shoot me your post. I would love to hear from you, and especially if you have a question or specific need.
Now, to settle us both down, I learned something yesterday that may help you, too. I went to church for Sunday morning worship, and Pastor Jack’s sermon was on Psalm 84. It speaks of the blessings of strength and grace in dwelling with The Lord (being in His Presence, no matter where you are). It also speaks of “passing through the Valley of Baca.” Baca is from the root word meaning “to weep.” The passage goes on to explain that our tears of adversity can form a spring of encouragement, from which we can find strength for ourselves and encourage others as we learn the hard Baca lessons.
Are you in a season of Baca right now? Is there something happening in your life for which you have no answers, no control? Believe me, I share in your dismay. None of us likes this form of learning, and yet I believe that God knows exactly what form of challenge to give each one of us to learn each particular lesson. If you look back on other hard times you’ve experienced, can you pin point something of importance you learned from it? Sometimes, it’s the only way we sober up from the distractions of the world to see what God wants us to see.
You know, the tendency for most of us is to retreat when life is frustrating and hard. We don’t want to hear how swell things are with the rest of the world, when our own world is crumbling around us. Disappointments can bring about disillusionment which can elicit the desire to shrink back and just give up!
BUT WE MUST NOT GIVE IN TO THAT URGE! Commit this to memory:
“But my righteous one will live by faith. And I take no pleasure in the one who shrinks back. But we do not belong to those who shrink back and are destroyed, but to those who have faith and are saved.” Hebrews 10:38-39
Doing life without Christ is folly. If you have any questions about your salvation and your relationship with Jesus Christ, write me—or find someone who can guide you to the hope and saving knowledge found in Jesus Christ.
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