My Beast

A lot of men think they are tough.  They think they can handle anything life throws at them with a wave of their hand.  When things do get tough, they back off.  They hide behind the guise of being civilized or well-mannered.  Most hide behind fear of repercussions.  Some hide behind a wife, letting her muddle through and then they can sit back and believe they could have done it better if she hadn’t interfered. 

I know a man who is tough.  He is Rambo with a machine gun slung over his shoulder with barrel blasting tough.  He is the beast in the front of the pack when it is time to kill.  He has a throwback hardness to him that harkens to the days of hand-to-hand combat with swords and knives, Braveheart fashion.  If he believes you are loyal to him, he will do battle with Hell for you.  No dragon is too fierce for him to face.  If he senses a lack of loyalty, he will throw you to the dogs.  With no remorse. 

His is the type of man who caught hold of the first ship heading west to new unknown lands.  The same type who forged through the swamps of the coast, the forests further inland and the mountains and plains that lay beyond.  Seeking a place without class restrictions, without societal rules.  His type herded cattle up dusty death filled trails.  A payday and a good meal his reward.  To have gotten the job done, his reward.  To have survived when others fell, his reward.  He binds his wounds with his own will to move forward.  He has no back down in him.  He raised children with no back down in them. 

He has a temper and sometimes a short fuse.  He has no patience and no desire to develop any.  He yields only when he chooses.  His is an iron will.  Webster’s has his picture next to “stubborn”.  He has on more than one occasion told me “They can’t eat me.”  He respects inner strength and power.  He expects people to show up and to do what needs doing.  He rubs people the wrong way because he calls them out on their façade.  He is not impressed with wealth or social position or education or political power. He guards himself and his small tribe closely and fiercely. Tread near with caution.

There is another side to him.  He loves Jesus.  He loves his children and their children. In fact, all children love him.  Baby whisperer, I call him.  Babies and children love him at first site.  He says it is because they have the same priorities.  Eat, play, sleep.  That is true.  If he sees someone in trouble, he reaches out to help.  He can’t stand to see vulnerable people be left to the wolves. 

He isn’t sentimental or romantic.  Not for him moonlit strolls on the beach or candlelit dinners at some special place.  The first has mosquitoes and the second is just plain silly to him.  He wants to see his food when he eats. He did allow our children to subject him to a vow renewal for our 30th anniversary seven years ago. He would never be mistaken for a gentleman.  He is out spoken and tough. Yet, I do have a collection of love letters and jewelry and a jeep among other things.

Despite his own personal tragedies, he lives life full throttle.  He expects everyone to do the same.  His world is clear cut and black and white.  No gray areas.  He is rock solid.  He is the man God gave me.  He relies on the Solid Rock and I rely on my Rock.  If a dragon comes my way, he is the one who kills it.  He is not afraid to do what real beasts do.  If he even thinks someone is messing with his children, he loads up for warfare.  He will charge the gates of Hell to protect them.  Anyone who causes them distress is at risk of his charge. 

When I am faced with tragedy and heartbreak, he stands in the gap between me and engulfing despair.  He puts me in check with his immovable stand of faith.  Yes, he experiences concern over situations; he flips a switch and it goes right up in the flames of faith filled prayer.  I would have completely destroyed myself by now without him.  Others laugh and wonder how I “put up” with him.  I don’t know how he “puts up” with me.  He makes me want to be stronger, tougher, braver.  He makes me want to live life full throttle. To laugh at the dragons and wave them off with my hand.  To send fear up in the flames of faith filled prayer.  Until that time comes, I will lean on him for protection, for courage, for intercession. 

He is a beast.  He is a warrior.  He is a battle-scarred man who loves God.  He is tough, hard and full of love.  I am so blessed to call him mine.  And so blessed to be his.

God Gave Me You

Me:

Me:

I will write it out.  May not be exactly the plan for you. We are in such different life stages.  But, the ideas may cross over.  I have been struggling about blog topics.  Maybe this could be a two or three part series.

My friend:

Will you start this week or next?

Me:

I am writing on Wednesday’s now.  So, for tomorrow, I could do part one.  Describe and define the problems and then next week start the resolution phase.  If I get inspired before then, I will send you private previews!

My friend:

I will pray for you. Any specifics in prayers?

Me:

I want to let go of what I think my life should have been and embrace what my life is.  I want to let go of actual physical belongings that don’t add to my quality of life but rather cause anxiety and concern.  I want to let things be the way they are without feeling I should “fix” me to make things seem better.

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So, I had a great post going and my computer decided to auto shut down and update Windows. I am going to try to restart.  Pretty sure this will not be a good as all I lost.

Here goes:

Last week I loaded four bags of clothes and hauled them off to the charity shop. I took some things to our daughter.  She kept part and sent part back with me.  I will refill the box and haul it off this week.  I have a couple of boxes loaded in the turtle hull already.  I have another bag almost full of clothes ready to go.

I recorded a thought in my journal the other day. If a ship is sinking, plug the leak to stop the flood then bail like crazy.  I am trying to plug the leak, but by bailing like crazy, I hope to strengthen my resolve to not let the flooding continue.

Why am I obsessed with minimalism? I don’t really know. I just want to have less stuff to clean, store and shuffle through when looking for the stuff I really use.

What is acceptable for storage? This is highly subjective and personal.  Holiday decorations.  I have an artificial tree because it is less mess and easier to put up and take down than a live tree.  I have minimal decorations to go on the tree.  I also like to do a large table center piece using antlers, candles and silk flowers and greenery.  I don’t do outdoor decorations because we live at the end of a very quiet dead end street.  Maybe when the grands get old enough to enjoy such a thing, I will add them.  For Hallowe’en, Valentine’s and Easter, I do a simple table decoration.

What else to store? I have a few extra-large pots and things for bigger gatherings that we no longer host.  I haven’t quite decided to give up on that idea.  Things may expand again someday.  I don’t like the idea of  storing clothes out of season simply because I don’t want to have so many clothes they need to be stored in rotation.  I should be able to put summer things in the back end of the rack and fall things in the front.  I can do that.  My closet’s hanging rod is long enough for that.

I considered getting another shed. My shed was overtaken by a chupacabra (see previous post about a pack rat).  We cleared up big daddy, but I discovered junior has moved in, recently.  I don’t have anything stored in the attic.  I like it that way.  I am physically hindered from accessing things in the attic. (getting too old and arthritic to climb and haul up and down that ladder) My things are in the washroom, the back room closet and in those under the bed storage boxes.  Even as I write this, I am mindful of the things in the boxes I could eliminate.

One of my favorite de-cluttering writers suggests eliminating activities that don’t have adequate rewards to justify the baggage and resources they use. In other words, consider the activities I pursue.  Do I actually enjoy the activity enough to provide space to do the activity and store the items used in the activity?  Do I just do it because I should do something?  Is it something I used to enjoy, but I have lost interest?

Or is it like sewing? I know how to sew.  I am pretty good at it.  I used to sew. My mother loved to sew.  I should want to sew.  Right?  I don’t think I want to sew.  I just want to feel my mother’s presence again.  Sit with her digging through the fabrics and patterns.  Hear the machine whirring as she stitches up a beautiful dress for me to wear.

I would love to have a tiny box with a couple of needles, some basic thread colors, a pair of tiny scissors. Just enough to repair a button or hem.  I have a little more than that.  Not a lot more. But more than I will ever use.  I don’t see myself sewing, again.  Or maybe, after writing this, I see the truth of the thing.  Sewing is something I once enjoyed.  When Mother could no longer sew, I could no longer enjoy it for myself.  Even now, the process gouges too deeply at the wound of losing her.  The big empty place in my life.

I guess I will keep on with my piddling and sorting and hauling off and acquiring. Till someday I latch on to something that doesn’t hurt so much to do.  I didn’t know I was still hurting so much.  I don’t know what I will do with this revelation.

He had to comfort me earlier when the computer went down in the middle of things. He always comes to my rescue when the dragons threaten.  I hear the pounding hooves of his white charger even before I click “publish”…….

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