Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Good Grief

You know, about thirty seconds ago, I titled this blog post with plans to open it with "Good grief, a lot can happen in one year," but right after I typed that title, I actually thought about it.

"Good Grief"

What the heck? Why do we speakers of the English language say that?

Good grief?
Good grief
Good grief?

Since when was grief ever a good thing?
(Man, I've already typed the word "grief" enough times for it to look really strange.)

Follow me while my keypad breaks this down for my brain....

Okay, "good grief" goes right into the same bucket as "holy 'crap' (for sparring of a different word that would probably drive my point home a little better)" which there is absolutely NOTHING holy about. It's contradicting and impossible, inferring that whatever the statement that follows it is too. The statement that follows expressions like these must be at least somewhat unbelievable since it is introduced with such an unbelievable opening.
So, "good grief"... that concept is unbelievable. Right?
Maybe.... I'm not really sure.

Matthew Henry said,
"We should not pray so much for the removal of affliction, as for the wisdom to make a right use of it,"
and Henry was a pretty wise dude for those of you unfamiliar with his name.
C.S. Lewis (another scholarly guy) said,
"Experience is a brutal teacher, but you learn... my gosh, do you learn."
So, what about the affliction and the experience of grief--do these statements apply there? I think so...
but on the flip-side....

"He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away."
(Revelation 21:4)
Why would God do this in heaven if grief was good?

God is so over my head. SO over my head...
but, good grief, I'm glad He is! How awful would life be if I understood it all?

... And that leads me to my original thought:
Good grief, a lot can happen in one year.

A lot of things prompted this thought: talking with the people who are so kindly taking the title of "freshman" off of my hands, getting ready to rush other girls instead of go through rush myself, reading my blog posts from a year ago (talk about good grief), etc, etc, etc....

A lot sure has happened in the past year. Heck--I went to college! Just saying that alone implies all sorts of change that for sure, without a doubt, nothing less than happened.

For the past few months, I've joked a lot about my "glory days" and how they're over. In high school, I always turned my nose up to the people who I thought were living theirs then, but sometime second semester I thought to myself, "Oh, crap. That was me."

I mean, honestly, guys: senior year I had it all together. I mean, I was kickin' butt in the drama department, I was senior class president, my boyfriend wrote me songs and was president of the entire high school, I took the easiest classes ever, my job was literally to do what I love while being the boss of people, my world hinged on fine arts, and I even managed to dabble along on a varsity sports team I didn't deserve to be on--what wasn't perfect?????

yeah, right.

I went to college and watched every one of those things gracefully (or in some cases, not so gracefully) bow out of my life.
I told myself for a while that this naturally signified the end of my glory days, but, good grief, it did not!

Watching my facade (realizing it was only a facade) of "all-together-ness", my facade of I's and me's and my's, fall apart hurt. I felt grief. But that grief was good for me. That grief was God's tool of sanctification. And woe to me, talking about "glory days"--what do I deserve glory for anyways? OH, yeah: nothing. The only good I do is the Lord's doing in me. The only gifts I have are from Him. All I can offer is an offering of myself back up to my Savior.... Glory days? Please. Those are for heaven, and glory is for God.
What am I thinking?

Frank was right, the best is yet to come.

I am bound for the promise land, and grief on earth is the only way I can realize that. That's why I don't understand God's plan. That's why I don't understand God. That's why a lot can happen in one year. That's good grief.

That's all I've got for my soapbox today. Stepping down now, but before I leave the crowd, I'll use some pictures to fill you in on more of my summer.

(This is the longest post ever.)

For starters, this cute little girl in navy went to France in the beginning of June, and this was the last time I saw her.
We gave her a going away party before she traded us all in for Europe, but she's coming home this week!
In this shot, I'm doing nothing less than the classic dance-move from Sunday School Musical (oh, yes, it's a real movie). 
Ruthdog bought an underwater digital camera.
Big fun to say the LEAST.

In early July, I said goodbye to my ASUS's pet dragon Conrad who terrorized my life as a PC user,
and I said hello to this little beauty!

Dad took his five ladies to Sandestin for our annual 4th of July trip.
Thanks, again, Daddy-O.
... Also, this photo urges me to defend the truth that I am naturally blonde.

pool-side polo hats

I really could dedicate an entire blog post to this group of girls, but these will have to suffice.
This was my huddle group at Camp Briarwood. I worked Jr. High week, and it was definitely the best ten days of my summer. Five of these girls are rising seventh graders and three are rising ninth graders--so they are about to start their first year of Jr. high and high school at different public schools in Birmingham! Pray for them! The little lady on the right in red was my partner in crime. Fondly known as "America" (God bless her), Lacey Entrekin (youngest of the ten-part Entrekin family legend) led the huddle group with me. All of these girls have such beautiful hearts that are so thirsty for the Lord. I learned so much from all of them and everyone else at camp.
Camp is such a humbling haven of spiritual blessings. I wish it could be forever.

Here's the huddle group again!
We call ourselves Socks n' Sandals.
We even had a theme song to go along with our FAILING attempts (if you can call them that--don't know that anyone actually attempted anything) at Cabin Clean-Up.
(Yes, Disney's "So Random'" did copy us.)

This is Pascal. The second best camp pet ever.
(Second only to his owner John Morson who is the first best camp pet ever.)
Read about Pascal on Caroline's blog One Day at a Time.

fried chicken dinner + tacky night + Skate Zone 2000 = a summary Camp Briarwood Jr. High Camp
... in one simple math equation
(I broke out the old clown dress from the Jack and the Beanstalk/Clowns' Play drama days.)

Sandy chillaxin in the pool.
I just love this picture and my old, fat mama dog.

"Summertime, and the living is easy. Fish are jumping and the cotton is high.
Your daddy's rich, and your mama's good-looking. So, hush, little baby, don't you cry.
'Cause one of these mornings you're gonna rise up singing, and you'll spread your wings, and you'll take to the sky.
But until that morning, oh, nothing can harm you with Daddy and Mama standing by.
(I sing that song when I see this picture.)

I spent the majority of my summer hanging out with these cute girls! They're my buddies, and there's no one I'd rather babysit for than them! They are sweet to each other and sweet to me.
Pool days, Chic-fil-a, various parks and playgrounds, libraries, ducklings, even some shopping...
we've had almost all the fun you can have.

I'm not even going to say anything about this,
but I've gotten to clown around with this old friend a lot this summer.
She's so great... as you so obviously can see.

Caroline Neel and James Wesley are now, by law, Mr. and Mrs. James W. Wesley.
This is a picture of our little dance squad reppin' Briarwood Class of 20-10 at the reception;
I stole it from the wonderful Carol Anne Clark.
This was literally the best weekend of my summer.
Watching the wedding happen and hearing their story reminded me so much of how awesome our God is, and how beautiful His plans for us are. Every detail of the wedding weekend was so centered on the Lord and brought him so much glory--just like Mr. and Mrs. Wesley. I loved seeing the grace of God in action as it brought Caroline and James together. Weddings are my favorite; they are such a beautiful picture of Christ's love for us. I wish I could go to one every weekend. I'm even more excited about my own now. I've pretty much got it all planned out, the only thing I still have to do is find a groom (anyone, anyone?), and then we'll be good to go.

This is Linley Taylor Davidson!
( if she had the option not to be--both of her parents are, too, so of course, she is.)
Ruthie and I went to visit she and her mama last Sunday and had the best time cuddling with her and chattin' it up with Me-Mom and Grace! Grace said no to the camera, but know it's coming for her eventually. I think Linley looks just like her (even though she doesn't see it).

Ruthdog and baby Linley... great picture of both of 'em.

This is a framer... Linley and her great-grandmother
(Weird. Me-mom, you are just a regular grandmother!)

Little Linley and I!

To summarize this whole long blog post:
God has been teaching me. I've really started to believe this truth in my heart and not just my head lately:

"Look among the nations, and see;
wonder and be astounded.
For I am doing a work in your days
that you would not believe if told."
Habakkuk 1:5

1 comment:

  1. Thank you Rosie for blogging! I love reading it :)!