Monday, February 15, 2010

Setting My Eyes on Things Above

holy experience

For those of you keeping track, I haven't been posting much lately. A few reasons: my sister and her kids came to visit for a week, I was getting ready for my daughter's birthday party (a costume party - I will post pictures sometime this week), and...I have had quite a debacle regarding my camera memory card.

One night I took it to Wal-Mart because I had to make a copy of a picture. I have a bit of a reputation for stuffing something (like a credit card) in my pocket because I like to have my hands free to tend to children. The reputation goes like this: I often lose things. I put it in my coat pocket, constantly checking on it to make sure it was safe. I did this the entire shopping experience...until at some point I forgot about it.

It occurred to me the next morning to check my coat pocket, and it was gone. All day, when I got the chance, I scoured the house, the car, the driveway...I even drove back to Wal-Mart and (holding my heavy/sleepy/cranky daughter and trying to keep up with my energetic/stubborn/wandering son) retraced my steps. I got out and looked in the parking lot. No luck. I was just sick and could focus on little else. By that evening, I would just randomly burst into a wailing sort of sob, thinking about the fact that...there were over 1,000 pictures on that card (WHY did we get the 8gb?!)...and...I didn't save them on the computer or back them up in any way. WHY NOT, you ask? I don't's something we always talk about. It's something I surely wouldn't know how to do. (I just learned how to upload a picture to facebook/blog a year and a half ago. I'm not technology-minded.) Ryan has had the best of intentions to purchase something that would allow us to do that. We don't have the greatest computer/set-up. And there's always something else to purchase instead.

During the midst of my sadness, over the loss of all pictures I've taken since August (fortunately, I have the ones I've posted on my blog), I would feel waves of calm come over me, and I could almost hear God telling me, "Child, set your eyes on things above, not on earthly things." So...deep breath...yes, that's what I'm trying to do.

Ryan and I were in bed that night, watching The Time Traveler's Wife, which I had been looking forward to doing. I couldn't even concentrate on the show, though. I sat up and said, "Should I go to Wal-Mart and look again?" Ryan said he thought I should. I got dressed, drove to WM, and with my flashlight, looked under the row of cars. (I couldn't remember exactly where I parked. You're AMAZED at my memory, organization skills, and good sense at this point, aren't you?) I was about to give up, when suddenly, there it was. My hand shot under that car so fast and plucked it out of a bit of a puddle (Boo, snow!). (It must have fallen out when I pulled my keys out of my pocket.) I praised God the whole drive. When I got home, I tried it in my camera and card reader. But it was wet and didn't work. I didn't praise God any less. I really am grateful that I found it. I'm so thankful that I'm not wasting time looking for it and feeling sick that it's just out there somewhere.

Where I'm at right's dried out and looks like it has made a bit of progress toward working (lights up now in the card reader), but it remains to be seen whether my pictures can be recovered. I pray I will get my pictures. I also pray that if I don't, I will give it to Him...that my heart won't be clouded with worry or anguish over something like this.

A couple of people have mentioned how great it is that I'm so happy and thankful, evidenced in my blog posts. I need to re-emphasize: my participation in this is an exercise. Yeah, on a whole, I am an easygoing person. I am pretty optimistic and generally happy. But...if you could look inside, you would see that there's a lot of junk in here. The past year or two, somehow I've developed a grumbly spirit. I try to hide it, but I have more complaints and disappoinment within my heart than I feel comfortable having. I have begun to focus too much on what's missing in my life - how different my life is than I expected it to be, etc.

I'm thankful that I can see the junk, though, and I have a Lord who loves me in spite of the junk. My family even loves me in spite of it. Which is...a relief. I'm choosing to focus on the outrageous, amazing blessings I have.

On a more superficial note - but important, nonetheless - I lost another pound (actually 1.9) since I mentioned it last. It was very exciting because it put me in a lower tens place! Yay! So now I'm 1_9 lbs. I have more Valentine's pictures on my damaged card (we had a party when my sister was here). For now, here are a few pics from yesterday. The kids opened their homemade gifts from Grandma Nona. She made them little bears (a bear pair for Sis, including a little quilt and pillow). They love them! Thanks, Grandma!

Ryan and I scooted off to see Dear John last night while Mom and Dad watched the kids. I liked it because I like any sweet, slow, romantic movie. I love Nicholas Sparks so much, though, that it was hard to see his book changed to such a degree. If I didn't know the original ending/details, I would have been happy with the ending, but...
And this was Googie and Papaw's Valentine gift to us. Thank you!
To read more from the Gratitude Community, including the always beautiful words from Ann Voskamp, visit here. My list of gratitudes within this post puts me up to...98!


Connie said...

Hi Jenny :)

I was completely heartbroken when my first born's first birthday pictures were lost 2o years ago, but a funny thing has happened over the years, especially the digital years. Literally thousands of photos later, things like that don't matter anymore. There's too many photos to look at these days, much less keep :) It will be ok. (It's my goal to pick one or two photos from each year, put them in an album, then let my kids have the rest.) Embracing life as it is and letting go of expectations is one of my recurrent themes, so I can relate to being grumbly. That will be ok, too.God's heart is goodness towards you.

JoAnn said...

ooh how frustrating. Practicing gratitude really is a discipline, thanks for the reminder.
I want a bear too!

Anonymous said...

Oh Jenny I completely understand your camera card/missing pictures situation and must say that you are handling that a million times better than I would be! I am sad for you! Pictures are very important to me, probably too important. That is one of the reasons that I am one of the last people on earth that still uses film!!!! It is amazing how God uses other people's situations to remind of the things we need to hear like, "Set your mind on things above!" Thanks again for your gratefulness even in a frustrating circumstance.

Lori at The Davidson Den said...

That is CRAZY that you found it!! I can just picture you out there looking under cars (like a mental patient...JK!!). So glad you recovered it, and now I hope you'll be able to salvage some images. I understand. Somehow it feels like if there are no pictures, then you can't get the memories back. (At least, I can't. I forget everything...) Love you!